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Yasir b. 'Amir al-'Anasi

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Sahaba
Yasir b. 'Amir al-'Anasi
Personal Information
Full Name Yasir b. 'Amir al-'Anasi
Lineage Madhhij clan from 'Anas tribe
Well-Known Relatives Sumayya, 'Ammar b. Yasir
Place(s) of Residence Yemen, Mecca
Cause of Death/Martyrdom pagans' tortures
Burial Place Abutalib cemetery, Mecca
Religious Information
Known for the first martyr of Islam

Yāsir b. ʿĀmir al-ʿAnasī(Arabic: یاسِر بن عامِر العَنَسي), the Prophet (s)'s companion, Sumayya's husband, and 'Ammar's father, was one of the first people who joined Islam, and was the first martyr in Islam who was killed by pagans' tortures.

Biography

Parentage

Yasir was from Yemen, of "Madhhij" clan from Anas tribe. Biographers have mentioned up to his 20th ancestor.

Residence in Mecca

Yasir lived in Yemen until his youth. He had three brothers. One of his brothers was lost. So he and his other two brothers, Malik and Harith, went to Mecca to find him, but they disappointed from finding him. Malik and Harith went back to Yemen, but Yasir decided to stay in Mecca. At that time, there was a tribal rule in Mecca, according to which outsiders—people who did not belong to any tribes in Mecca—could have safety and financial security only if they joined, and took refuge to, one of the tribes.

Marriage to Sumayya

Yasir made a pact with Abu Hudhayfa, the head of Banu Makhzum tribe, and joined this clan. Abu Hudhayfa married Yasir with his own bondwoman called Sumayya. They had a son called 'Ammar, and after this, Abu Hudhayfa emancipated Sumayya. Yasir and 'Ammar were always with Abu Hudhayfa until his death.

'Ammar was born in Mecca, and since his mother was Abu Hudhayfa's bondwoman, due to slavery rules, he became his slave too, but Abu Hudhayfa later emancipated 'Ammar. This is why, 'Ammar is sometimes named mawla Abu Hudhayfa, that is, a slave who was emancipated by Abu Hudhayfa. Yasir and Sumayya had another son called 'Abd Allah who converted to Islam along with his parents. Yasir had another son older than both of 'Ammar and 'Abd Allah, called Hurayth, who was killed by Banu Dalil tribe during the Jahiliyya (Ignorance) era.

Conversion to Islam

The Yasir's family is among the first Muslims. It has been said that this family visited the Prophet (s) in the fifth year of his Bi'that (his first revelation or prophecy) in Arqam b. Abi Arqam's house, and converted to Islam. They were about the thirtieth and so people who had converted to Islam. Sayyid Muhsin Amin says: it is highly probable that it was 'Ammar who invited his parents to Islam. According to some hadiths, there were seven people who first expressed their belief in Islam, the sixth one being 'Ammar followed by his mother.

Sumayya at the time of Bi'that

Since 'Ammar was martyred in the battle of Siffin in 657 at the age of 94, he must have been born 44 years before Bi'that. And if we assume that Yasir married Sumayya when he was 20 years old, it would seem that he and his wife were about 60 years old at the time of the Prophet (s)'s Bi'that. Ibn Sa'd cites Mujāhid as saying that Sumayya was an old woman when she was martyred.

Tortures by the Pagans

When the Yāssir's family converted to Islam, it was very hard for the Banī Makhzūm tribe to tolerate this, since they were Banī Makhzūm's slaves. In the meanwhile, Abu Jahl, who was Abu Hudhayfa's nephew and was very hostile towards Islam, forced the Yasir's family to abandon Islam by variety of tortures.

However, despite all the physical and psychical sufferings and their senility, Yasir and Sumayya never retreated from their beliefs. The pagans tortured them by different instruments such as hot irons, whips, drowning in polluted water, steel armors (with their chains penetrating into their bodies), and burning them under the hot sun.

The First Martyr in Islam

Though Yasir was old, he resisted all the pressures and tortures, and he was finally martyred as a result of these tortures.

References