Jami' al-ruwat (book)
|Author||Muhammad b. Ali al-Ardabili|
|Original title||جامِعُ الرّواة و اِزاحَةُ الاِشْتباهات عَنِ الطّرُقِ و الاِسْناد|
Jāmiʿ al-ruwāt wa izāḥat al-ishtibāhāt ʿan ṭuruq wa al-isnād (Arabic: جامِعُ الرّواة و اِزاحَةُ الاِشْتباهات عَنِ الطّرُقِ و الاِسْناد) is a book in rijal in Arabic by the scholar of Safavid period, Muhammad b. Ali al-Ardabili (b. about 1058/1648). With this book, al-Ardabili opened a path for knowing transmitters of hadiths and distinguishing between the common points among them and solved many problems. After reflecting upon different approaches, he concluded that by studying the transmitters of hadith and what is transmitted from them, the ambiguity in the names of the transmitters can be removed and even find out about the true identity of the transmitters. In this book, he clarified many unknown transmitters of hadith and made many apparently mursal chains of hadith authentic and removed the weakness label of weak hadiths. Writing Jami' al-ruwat took about 20 years and finished on Rabi' I 19, 1100/1688. Due to its comprehensiveness and including the transmitters of hadiths in the Four Books, many Imamiyya scholars benefited from it.
Importance of the Book
Regarding the manner of discussion, this book has an important position. With this book, al-Ardabili opened a path for knowing transmitters of hadiths and distinguishing between the common points among them and solved many problems. He clarified many unknown transmitters of hadith and made many apparently mursal chains of hadiths authentic and removed the weakness label of weak hadiths. The benefit of this approach is knowing and introducing many Imamiyya transmitters of hadiths whose biographies are not mentioned in common sources of rijal. al-Ardabili said that he corrected about 12 thousand hadiths scholars found mursal.
Date of Writing
Writing Jami' al-ruwat took about 20 years and finished on Rabi' I, 1100/1688.
Permission for Transmitting Hadiths
Muhammad Baqir al-Majlisi was among al-Ardabili's sources of hadith who gave him his general permission for transmitting hadiths on Dhu l-Qa'da 17th, 1098/1686.
In the introduction of the book, al-Ardabili mentioned the goal and the approach of writing the book. When learning the hadiths of the Ahl al-Bayt (a), he forced himself to study their chains of transmission. However, he was confused in referring to the sources and did not find any way to give a verdict about the weakness or authenticity of a hadith and like many scholars of jurisprudence who gave the opinion that the hadith was weak while it was not. He emphasizes that there are many such hadiths in hadiths sources.
After studying different methods, al-Ardabili concluded that by studying the transmitters of hadith and what is transmitted from them, the ambiguity in the names of the transmitters could be removed and even find out about the true identity of the transmitters. He explained that none of rijal scholars used such a method and sufficed to briefly mentioning about those who transmitted hadith from a person, but he collected the names of all transmitters. According to what is mentioned in the introduction of the book, it should be considered a clarifier of the common points (similar names) and the first written work in this field. Aqa Buzurg Tihrani too called it "Tamyiz al-mushtarakat" (clarifier of common points).
In this book, al-Ardabili mentioned the names of transmitters of hadith in full, in addition to the names mentioned in rijal sources of Shi'a and mentioned the names which did not exist in rijal sources, but existed in the Four Books of hadiths. These names (7846 names) which take the most of the book are ordered alphabetically.
Also, one chapter is dedicated to kunyas beginning with "Abu", a chapter to the names beginning with "Ibn" and another chapter to famous titles and attributes of the transmitters of hadith. A chapter is dedicated to the names of women (88 people). In another chapter, cases such as " 'an rajul" (from a man) and " 'an shaykh-in min aṣhabina" (from a teacher among our companions) which are ambiguous are mentioned.
This way, 9050 names in total are mentioned in the chapter for names, kunyas, titles and other chapters.
Jami' al-ruwat has an ending in which the author speaks about important issues he referred to them as "fawa'id" (benefits). They are adopted from Talkhis al-maqal wa naqd al-rijal and are shown with the same abbreviations.
One of the important characteristics of al-Ardabili's book is showing the order of transmitters of hadiths. Also, after mentioning the names of the transmitters of hadiths and the necessary information about them, the author mentions the names of those who transmitted hadiths from them and this way, he extracted the hadiths transmitted by every transmitter of hadith from the Four Books of Shi'a, al-Shaykh al-Tusi's al-Fihrist, Muntajab al-Din al-Razi's al-Fihrist, hadith sources of Ibn Babawayh's Man la yahduruh al-faqih and hadith sources of al-Shaykh al-Tusi's Tahdhib al-ahkam and referred to them using certain abbreviations.
Relation between Jami' al-Ruwat and Talkhis al-Maqal
According to Ayatollah Burujirdi, Jami' al-ruwat is a follow-up of al-Astarabadi's Talkhis al-maqal fi talkhis ahwal al-rijal and al-Ardabili summarized its introduction and then reported the biographies of transmitters of hadiths based on the order of Talkhis al-maqal and using the same expression and he added beneficial points in Naqd al-rijal or the Four Books, if he found any.
Jami' al-ruwat was published by the advice of Ayatollah Burujirdi with his short introduction containing many points in 1380/1960 and was reprinted many times afterwards.
- The material for this article is mainly taken from جامع الرواة (کتاب in Farsi WikiShia.