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Aban b. Taghlib

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Companion of Imam (a)
Aban b. Taghlib
Full Name Aban b. Rubah
Companion of Imam al-Sajjad (a), Imam al-Baqir (a), Imam al-Sadiq (a)
Teknonym Abu Sa'id
Well Known As Aban b. Taghlib
Place of Birth Maybe Kufa
Place(s) of Residence Kufa
Death/Martyrdom 141/758-59
Professors Sulayman al-A'mash, 'Asim b. Abi l-Najud, ...
Works Al-Gharib, Ma'ani al-Qur'an, Kitab al-Qira'at, Al-Fada'il, Kitab Siffin

Abū Saʿīd Abān b. Rubāḥ al-Bakrī al-Jurayrī al-Kindī al-Rabaʿī al-Kūfī (Arabic: ابوسعید بن رُباح البَکری الجُرَیری الکِنْدی الرَبَعی الکوفی) (b. ? - d. 141/758-59), known as Aban b. Taghlib (Arabic: أبانِ بن تَغْلِب) was a Shi'a litterateur, reciter and exegete of the Qur'an and scholar of fiqh and hadith. Aban spent most of his life with the Followers (Tabi'un) and learned a lot from them. He had the opportunity to meet Imam al-Sajjad (a), Imam Muhammad al-Baqir (a), and Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (a). It is said that he narrated about 30,000 hadiths from Imam al-Sadiq (a).

Genealogy and Teknonym

His title as al-Jurayri was because he was mawla of (affiliated with) Banu Jurayr b. 'Ubada. His other title was al-Bakri referring to Bakr b. Wa'il who was the great ancestor of the tribe. Most references have mentioned his teknonym as Abu Sa'id[1] or Abu Sa'd[2] and some references have mentioned his teknonym as Abu Umayma.[3]

Birth

There is no information about his date and place of birth, but since he is known as al-Kufi, he possibly lived most of his life in Kufa and maybe he has been born there.

In the View of the Followers and Imams (a)

Aban lived most of his life with Tabi'un (the Followers) and learned a lot from them, therefore Ibn Hibban[4] regarded him among the most famous followers of the Followers in Kufa, even though al-Najashi quoted from Abu Zur'a that Aban narrated also from Anas b. Malik (d. 93/711-12), the Companion.[5]

Aban had the opportunity to meet Imam al-Sajjad (a), Imam Muhammad al-Baqir (a), and Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (a) and learned different types of knowledge such as hadith from them and reached a high position in the school of Imam al-Sadiq (a).[6]

Aban was famous for the multitude of his narrations from Imam al-Sadiq (a) and it is said that he narrated about 30,000 hadiths from Imam al-Sadiq (a).[7]

Great Knowledge in Different Sciences

He learned recitation of the Qur'an from 'Asim b. Abi l-Najud, Talha b. Musarrif, and Sulayman al-A'mash and was among the three people who had the opportunity to learn the whole Qur'an from al-A'mash.[8] He was among the greatest reciters of the Qur'an and used to recite the Qur'an in a special way which was known to reciters.[9] Al-Shaykh al-Tusi quoted from Muhammad b. Musa b. Abi Maryam, the author of al-Lu'lu' that Aban was the most famous person of his time in reciting the Qur'an.[10]

In addition to the Qur'an and hadith, Aban was considered a distinguished scholar in jurisprudence, 'Arabic literature, lexicology and syntax.[11] According to al-Tusi, Imam al-Sadiq (a) once chose him to stand against a challenging expert in 'Arabic literature.[12]

Defending Shi'a

At the time of Aban, due to Muslims' familiarity with culture and teachings of other nations, intellectual and ideological challenges were made in different topics and different schools defended their theological and jurisprudential thoughts according to their own principles and Aban was among those who defended and preached Shi'a based on the teachings of the Ahl al-Bayt (a). Therefore, he received a great position before Imams (a) of Shi'a and his peers referred to him to listen to his knowledge in hadiths and rulings.

Imam al-Baqir (a) had told Aban, "sit in the mosque of Medina and issue rulings for people! I love that people similar to you would be seen among Shi'a."[13]

In the View of the Scholars of Rijal

Shi'a scholars of rijal regarded him as trustworthy.[14]

However, Sunni scholars of rijal have different views about him. Some scholars such as Ahmad b. Hanbal, Yahya b. Mu'in, Abu Hatam, and al-Nasa'i regarded Aban as trustworthy.[15]

  • Sa'di al-Juzjani considered him za'igh (distracted from truth), with a disliked religious affiliation and mujahir (one who recites bismillah in daily prayers with a loud voice).[16]
  • Al-Dhahabi defended Aban and answered to wrong accusations about him in detail.[17]
  • Ibn 'Uday said that although Aban made ghuluw [exaggeration] about Shi'a, still his narrations are reliable.[18] It is important to note that in the 2nd/8th century, ghuluw meant "to object to the enemies and opposers of Ali (a)"].[19] Therefore, one needs to distinguish between these people and those who exaggerated about Imams (a).

References of Hadith

His references of hadith, except the mentioned three Imams (a) and Anas b. Malik are as follows:

Narrators

Famous narrators of the 2nd/8th century heard hadiths from Aban and narrated from him. 'Abd Allah al-Mamaqani[21] counted them about 50 people, some of whom are:

Works

The books attributed to Aban are not available today. Some of those books are as follows;

  • Al-Gharib: In this book, Aban explained infrequent words in the Qur'an. To explain those words, he referred to what he heard from 'Arabs. Aban was the first person who wrote about 'ilm gharib al-Qur'an [the unfamiliar words of the Qur'an].[23] This book was the first work in this field and was very important in studying the words and exegesis.[24]

Lexicologists and exegetes of 2nd/8th century referenced to this book. Abd al-Rahman b. Azudi al-Kufi benefited from other works in this field and wrote a book which contains the common points and differences in them.[25]

  • Ma'ani l-Qur'an
  • Kitab al-Qira'at[26]
  • Al-Gharib fi l-Qur'an; al-Najashi mentioned the name of this book as Gharib al-Qur'an
  • Al-Fada'il[27]
  • Kitab Siffin[28]

Notes

  1. Ḥillī, Rijāl, p. 12.
  2. Mizzī, Tahdhīb al-kamāl, vol. 2, p. 6; Ṣafdī, al-Wāfī bi l-Wafīyāt, vol. 5, p. 300.
  3. Suyūṭī, Bughyat al-wuʿāt, vol. 1, p. 404; Ibn Jizrī, Ghāyat al-nihāya, vol. 1, p. 4.
  4. Ibn Ḥabbān, Mashāhīr ʿulamā al-amṣār, p. 163-164.
  5. Najāshī, Rijāl al-Najāshī, p. 7; Khoei, Muʿjam rijāl al-ḥadīth, vol. 1, p. 144.
  6. Najāshī, Rijāl al-Najāshī, p. 7.
  7. Ḥillī, Rijāl, p. 9-10.
  8. Suyūṭī, Bughyat al-wuʿāt, vol. 1, p. 404; Ibn Jizrī, Ghāyat al-nihāya, vol. 1, p. 4.
  9. Najāshī, Rijāl al-Najāshī, p. 7-8.
  10. Ṭūsī, al-Fihrist, p. 7.
  11. Najāshī, Rijāl al-Najāshī, p. 7-8; Ḥamawī, Muʿjam al-adibāʾ, p. 107-108.
  12. Ṭūsī, Ikhtiyār maʿrifat al-rijāl, p. 4.
  13. Najāshī, Rijāl al-Najāshī, p. 7-8.
  14. Ṭūsī, al-Fihrist, p. 5; Ḥillī, Rijāl, p. 9-10.
  15. Ibn Abī l-Ḥātam, al-Jarḥ wa l-taʿdīl, vol. 1 p. 297; Mizzī, Tahdhīb al-kamāl, vo. 2, p. 7; Ibn Saʿd, al-Ṭabaqāt al-kabīr, vol. 6, p. 250; Ibn Ḥabbān, Kitāb al-thiqāt, vol. 6, p. 67; Dhahabī, al-Mughnī fī al-ḍuafā, p. 6; Ṣafdī, al-Wāfī bi l-Wafīyāt, vol. 5, p. 300.
  16. Ibn al-Jawzī, Kitāb al-ḍuʿafā wa al-matrūkīn, vol. 1, p. 15.
  17. Dhahabī, Mīzān al-iʿtidāl, vol. 1, p. 5-6.
  18. Ibn ʿUday, al-Kāmil fī ḍuafā al-rijāl, vol. 1, p. 380.
  19. Dhahabī, Mīzān al-iʿtidāl, vol. 1, p. 5-6.
  20. Najāshī, Rijāl al-Najāshī, p. 7; Ṭūsī, Ikhtiyār maʿrifat al-rijāl, p. 4; Bukhārī, Tārīkh al-kabīr, vol. 1, p. 453; Mizzī, Tahdhīb al-kamāl, vol. 2, p. 6; Ibn Jizrī, Ghāyat al-nihāya, vol. 1, p. 4.
  21. Mamaqānī, Tanqīḥ al-maqāl, vol. 1, p. 4-5.
  22. Mizzī, Tahdhīb al-kamāl, vol. 2, p. 6-7; Najāshī, Rijāl al-Najāshī, p. 7; Ṭūsī, Ikhtiyār maʿrifat al-rijāl, p. 4; Ṭūsī, al-Fihrist, p. 6.
  23. Amīn, Aʿyān al-Shīʿa, vol. 2, p. 98; Ḥaydar, al-Imām al-Ṣādiq wa al-madhāhib al-arbaʿa, vol. 3, p. 57.
  24. Najāshī, Rijāl al-Najāshī, p. 7; al-Ṭūsī, al-Fihrist, p. 5-6.
  25. Ḥamawī, Muʿjam al-adibāʾ, vol. 1, p. 108.
  26. Ibn al-Nadīm, al-Fihrist, p. 308.
  27. Ṭūsī, al-Fihrist, p. 6-7.
  28. Najāshī, Rijāl al-Najāshī, p. 8.

References

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  • Dhahabī, Muḥammad b. al-Aḥmad al-. Al-Mughnī fī al-ḍuafā. Edited by Nur al-Dīn ʿAter. Aleppo: 1391 AH/1971.
  • Dhahabī, Muḥammad b. al-Aḥmad al-. Mīzān al-iʿtidāl. Edited by ʿAlī Muḥammad al-Bajāwī. Cairo: 1382 AH/1963.
  • Ḥamawī, Yāqūt b. ʿAbd Allāh al-. Muʿjam al-adibāʾ. [n.p]. [n.d].
  • Ḥillī, al-Ḥasan b. Yūsuf al-. Rijāl al-ʿallāma al-Ḥillī. Tehran: 1342 Sh.
  • Ibn al-Jawzī, ʿAbd al-Raḥmān b. ʿAlī. Kitāb al-ḍuʿafā wa al-matrūkīn. Edited by Abu l-Fidāʾ ʿAbd Allāh al-Qāḍī. Beirut: 1406 AH.
  • Ibn Ḥabbān, Muḥammad. Mashāhīr ʿulamā al-amṣār. Edited by M. Fleishemr. Cairo: 1379 AH/1959.
  • Ibn Ḥabbān, Muḥammad. Kitāb al-thiqāt. Hyderabad Deccan: 1400 AH/1980.
  • Ibn Saʿd, Muḥammad. Al-Ṭabaqāt al-kabīr. Edited by Karl Vilhelm Zetterstéen. [n.p]. 1325 AH/1907.
  • Ibn ʿUday, ʿAbd Allāh. Al-Kāmil fī ḍuafā al-rijāl. Beirut: 1405 AH/1985.
  • Ibn al-Nadīm, Muḥammad b. Isḥāq. Al-Fihrist. Amīn, Muḥsin. Aʿyān al-Shīʿa. Edited by Ḥasan Amīn. Beirut: 1403 AH.
  • Jizrī, Muḥammad b. Muḥammad. Ghāyat al-nihāya. Edited by Bergstrasser, Gotthelf. Cairo: 1351 AH/1932.
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  • Najāshī, Aḥmad b. ʿAlī al-. Rijāl al-Najāshī. Mumbai: 1317 AH.
  • Rāzī Ibn Abī l-Ḥātam, ʿAbd al-Raḥmān b. Muḥammad. Al-Jarḥ wa l-taʿdīl. Hyderabad Deccan: 1373 AH/1953.
  • Suyūṭī, ʿAbd al-Raḥmān b. Abī Bakr al-. Bughyat al-wuʿāt. Edited by Muḥammad Abu l-faḍl Ibrāhīm. Cairo: 1384 AH/1964.
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