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Faṭima bt. Mūsā b. Jaʿfar (b. 173/790 - d. 201/816) well known as Fatima al-Ma'suma (a) is the daughter of Imam al-Kazim (a) and sister of Imam al-Rida (a). She is one of the famous Imamzadas. In 201/816, she traveled to Iran to visit her brother, Imam al-Rida (a), in Tus. However, she passed away in the middle of the way due to an illness and was buried in Qom.

She has a great and special position in the Shi'a tradition. It is narrated that the reward of the Ziyarah of her shrine is Paradise. Shiites have built a structure over her grave which is known as the Holy Shrine of Lady Fatima al-Ma'suma (a).


There is no specific mention of Lady Fatima al-Ma'suma's birth date in early sources; however, later history books state that she was born on Dhu l-Qa'da 1, 173/March 22, 790, in Medina. She is said to have passed away on Rabi II 10, 201/November 5, 816. Her father is Musa b. Ja'far al-Kazim (a), the seventh Shi'a Imam. When recounting the daughters of Imam al-Kazim (a), al-Shaykh al-Mufid mentions two Fatimas –the elder Fatima and the younger Fatima. Also, Ibn al-Jawzi records two other daughters of the Imam, known as the middle Fatima and the last Fatima. The mother of Lady Fatima al-Ma'suma and Imam al-Rida (a) is Najma Khatun.

Rida Ustadi believes that the oldest source which mentioned the dates of birth and demise of Lady Ma'suma (a) is Nur al-afaq (published in 1344/1925-6) written by Jawad Shah 'Abd al-'Azimi (d. 1355/1936-7). Ustadi referred to different parts of this book and concluded that many of its claims including the dates of birth and demise it mentions for Lady Ma'suma (a) are forged and other books have cited them from this book. Some years after the publication of Ustadi's article, Rasul Ja'fariyan complained about mentioning these dates of birth and demise in calendars and published a summary of Ustadi's researches. Also, Sayyid Diya' Murtadawi emphasized the same point in an article titled as "the dates of birth and demise of Lady Fatima al-Ma'suma (a), a report on baseless documentation". In this report, he explained fruitless efforts for finding the dates of birth and demise of Lady Ma'suma (a) and introduced the sources Jawad Shah 'Abd al-'Azimi referred to as fake and unreliable.

Sayyid Musa Shubayri Zanjani mentioned the dates of birth and demise of Lady Ma'suma (a) forged and told the story of their forgery. The author of Rayahin al-shari'a mentioned that the dates are invalid. He claimed that he referred to the source Shah 'Abd al-'Azimi mentioned, but did not find anything in this regard. He also mentioned that he consulted about this issue with Shihab al-Din Mar'ashi and he too emphasized that both dates are forged and invalid and that Ayatullah Mar'ashi knew the forger and about his intention.

Her titles include Tahira (the pure one), Hamida (the praised one), Birra (the righteous one), Rashida (the mature one), Taqiyya (the pious one), Naqiyya (the pure one), Radiyya (the contented one), Mardiyyah (the one with whom God is pleased), Sayyida, Siddiqa (the truthful one), and Ukht al-Rida (the sister of al-Rida). She is also widely known as Karimat Ahl al-Bayt (a).

Al-Ma'suma

Her most famous title is al-Ma'suma. This title is taken from a narration of Imam al-Rida (a) which states, "Whoever visits (the Shrine of) al-Ma'suma in Qom, it is as if he has visited me". According to another narration, she has also referred to herself as al-Ma'suma, the sister of Imam al-Rida (a).

Karima of the Ahl al-Bayt (a)

Lady Ma'suma (a) is known today as Karima of the Ahl al-Bayt (a). It is said that this naming is based on a dream Sayyid Mahmud Mar'ashi Najafi, father of Ayatullah Mar'ashi Najafi had, in which one of Imams (a) called Lady Ma'suma (a), "Karima of the Ahl al-Bayt (a)" (the generous lady of the Ahlal-Bayt (a)) and advised Mar'ashi to visit her grave.Read more...
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"Darih of the Holy Shrine of Lady Fatima al-Ma'suma (a)."

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