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Khulasat al-aqwal fi ma'rifat ahwal al-rijal (book)

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Khulasat al-aqwal fi ma'rifat ahwal al-rijal
Bibliographical Information
Author 'Allama al-Hilli
Original title خُلاصَةُ الأقْوال فی مَعْرفَةِ أحْوالِ الرّجال
Language Arabic
Series 1 volume
Subject Rijal
Published 1417/1996
Publisher Institute of Nashr al-Fiqaha

Khulāṣat al-aqwāl fi maʿrifat aḥwāl al-rijāl (Arabic: خُلاصَةُ الأقْوال فی مَعْرفَةِ أحْوالِ الرّجال) known as Rijal al-Hilli is among the eight principal (collections) of Shi'a rijal. This book is the famous work of al-'Allama al-Hilli regarding the authentication of transmitters of hadiths classified as weak and reliable. Due to the importance and citation of the book, many great scholars summarized it, wrote marginalia for it or translated it.

About the Author

Main article: Al-'Allama al-Hilli

Abu Mansur Jamal al-Din, Hasan b. Yusuf b. Mutahhar al-Hilli (648/1250 – 726/1326) known as al-'Allama al-Hilli was among the scholars of 8th century AH. His works and debates led Öljeitü (later called Sultan Mohammad Khuda'banda) to accept Shi'a and spread Shi'a in Iran. Al-'Allama al-Hilli had many works in the sciences of fiqh, usul, beliefs, logic, supplication, etc. He had three books in rijal which are Khulasat al-aqwal fi ma'rifat al-rijal, kashf al-maqal fi ma'rifat al-rijal and Idah al-ishtibah.

Date of Writing

In a biography of al-Sayyid al-Murtada, al-'Allama al-Hilli mentioned that he wrote his book in 693/1294.

Content

Khulasat al-aqwal is divided in two parts:

  • First part: including those who can be trusted and their hadiths are accepted.
  • Second part: about those, transmission of hadiths stops when it reaches to them and their statements are not accepted due to unreliability.

Names of transmitters of hadith are ordered alphabetically and for every one of them, one chapter is assigned. All the transmitters of hadith with similar names are mentioned in the same place so that the commonness of names are distinguished.

Writing Approach and Features of the Book

Rijal of al-'Allama al-Hilli is a reliable reference for knowing Shi'a transmitters of hadith. It has explained the reliability or weakness of the transmitters of hadiths very clearly and without ambiguity. Al-'Allama divided his book to different chapters and in each chapter mentioned the name of one person and then clarified the similar names that for example, the name "Sayf" refers to three persons, and the name "Sulayman" refers to six persons, etc.

In many cases, al-'Allama has mentioned the views of other scholars of rijal as well; but, finally he has also mentioned his opinion in approval or rejection of their views.

He has also advised the manner of pronunciation and correct manner of writing the names of transmitters of hadith, whose names may be mispronounced.

In this book, somehow the order of transmitters is clarified and the Imams (a) every transmitter of hadith has transmitted hadiths from are mentioned.

Al-'Allama's Approach for Approvals and Criticisms

  • Relying on the approvals and criticisms about transmitters of hadiths he received from previous scholars.
  • Frequency of transmission of hadiths by the sources of hadiths from a transmitter of hadith is a sign of his reliability.
  • Any of Imams' (a) asking for forgiveness (tarahhum) for a person is a sign for that person's reliability. (Saying "may Allah forgives him" upon mentioning a deceased person.)

Value and Credit

Some of the points which have given value to this book are as follows:

  • The author of the book is al-'Allama al-Hilli who had more than 100 works in different fields and regarding knowledge and piety, he was famous to all, so that he reached the level of ijtihad before the age of puberty.
  • Al-'Allama quoted many of discussions from the books which are not available to us and the only way to know about their content is referring to books such as Khulasat al-aqwal.
  • Regarding the issues reported from the books, one version of them is available, it is considered an old and authentic source which can approve the authenticity of other versions of the books.
  • Versions related to the time of the author are available which leave no doubt about the attribution and authenticity of the content of the book.

Researches about the Book

Due to the importance and citation of the book, many great scholars summarized it, wrote marginalia for it or translated it.

Anthology

Muhammad Rida b. Isma'il Musawi Shirazi compiled an anthology of it titled as al-Wajiza fi al-rijal.

Marginalia and Glosses

Aqa Buzurg Tehrani listed about 10 glosses and marginalia written for it by great scholars:

Translation

Khulasat al-aqwal was translated to Persian in 1129 AH by Muhammad Baqir b. Muhammad Husayn Tabrizi.

Versions

Available versions of the book are:

  • A version in the library of Najaf written in 766/1364 which contains the signs of its recitation by scholars. It was dedicated to Gharawiyya library in 842 AH.
  • A version available in the library of Ayatullah Sadr recited for the author and at the end of the first and second parts, al-'Allama has written his permission for it mentioning the date 715/1315.
  • A version copy-written from the version held by the son of Fakhr al-Muhaqqiqin and the permission of Fakhr al-Muhaqqiqin can be seen at the end of it.
  • A version by the handwriting of Shah Murtada, father of Fayd Kashani written in 985/1577 to the end of which Mirza Lutf-Ali Tihrani (d. 1350/1931) added some complements.

References