Ghurar al-hikam wa durar al-kalim (book)

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Ghurar al-hikam wa durar al-kalim
AuthorAbu l-Fath al-Amidi
Original titleغرر الحکم و درر الکلم
Series1 vol.
SubjectSayings of Imam Ali (a)
English translation
En. titleGhurar Al-Hikam Wa Durar Al-Kalim, Exalted Aphorisms And Pearls Of Speech
En. publisherQom, Ansariyan Publications

Imam 'Ali (a)
First Imam of Shi'a

Event of GhadirLaylat al-MabitYawm al-DarCaliphateTimeline

Nahj al-BalaghaGhurar al-hikamAl-Shiqshiqiyya Sermon

Excellences of Ahl al-Bayt (a)Al-Wilaya VerseAhl al-Dhikr VerseUlu l-Amr VerseAl-Tathir VerseAl-Mubahala VerseAl-Mawadda VerseAl-Sadiqin VerseHadith Madinat al-'IlmHadith al-ThaqalaynHadith al-RayaHadith al-SafinaHadith al-Kisa'Al-Ghadir SermonHadith al-ManzilaHadith Yawm al-DarHadith Sadd al-AbwabHadith al-WisayaLa Fata Illa AliThe First Muslim

'Ammar b. YasirMalik al-AshtarAbu Dhar al-Ghifari'Ubayd Allah b. Abi Rafi'Hujr b. 'Adiothers

Related Topics
Holy Shrine

Ghurar al-ḥikam wa durar al-kalim (Arabic:غُرَرُ الحِکَم و دُرَرُ الکَلِم) is a collection of short quotations from Imam 'Ali (a) that was compiled by Abu l-Fath al-Amidi, a scholar of the 5th/11th century. Ghurar al-hikam is a famous hadith book among the Shi'a and several supplements and a commentary have been written on it.


The author of this book is Nasih al-Din Abu l-Fath 'Abd al-Wahid b. Muhammad b. 'Abd al-Wahid Tamimi al-Amidi (d. 510/1116-7)[1]. Very little is known about his life apart from that he was a judge from Amid (now Diyarbakır, Turkey).[2] He has written another book called Jawahir al-kalam fi al-hukm wa al-ahkam min qissat sayyid al-anam.[3]

Author's Religion

Some scholars believe that Abu l-Fath al-Amidi was not a Shi'a. This is due to a place in his introduction where he praises Imam 'Ali (a) with the title, "KarramAllah-u Wajh-ah" (meaning, "May Allah honor his name"). Mirza 'Abd Allah Afandi[4], Ibn Shahr Ashub[5], al-'Allamah al-Majlisi[6] and Muhaddith Nuri[7] all believe that he was a Shi'a. Mirza 'Abd Allah Afandi reasons that using this title here for Imam 'Ali (a) is either a case of taqiyya (precautionary dissimulation) or a modification by scribes and copyists.[8]

Content and Structure

Ghurar al-hikam contains 10760 short hadith of Imam 'Ali (a). These have been ordered alphabetically according to the first letter of the first word of the hadith and divided into 91 chapters. The author has collected these hadith from books such as Nahj al-Balaghah, Jahiz's Mi'at Kalimah, Tuhaf al-'Uqul and Dastur ma'alim al-Hikam; however, he has omitted all references.[9] It is therefore problematic to use this book as reference.[10]

Goal of Writing

At the beginning of the book, the author says that when he saw Jahiz's Mi'at Kalimah (A Hundred Words), he decided to write a collection of Imam 'Ali's (a) sayings. He criticizes Jahiz for including such few hadith and then says:

Being so busy-minded and low in the levels of the people of perfection and while I know myself to be so weak in achieving what top scholars have sought and that I admit being not worthy to associate with them, still I have tried to collect the words of his eminence (a) as much as I could.[11]


  • Manuscript no. 1168 in the Library of the Holy Shrine of Imam al-Rida (a) which was copied in 517/1123-4.
  • The manuscript in the library of Haj Husayn Malik which was finished in 961/1553-4.
  • Manuscript no. 186 in the Library of the Holy Shrine of Imam al-Rida (a) which was copied in 961/1553-4.
  • The manuscript in the library of Shahid Motahhari University which was completed in Ramadan, 995/1586-7.


  • Typescript printed in 1280/1863-4 in India.
  • Typescript printed in 1349/1930-1 in Matba'at al-Irfan in Saida, Lebanon.

After that, the book is printed many times by various publishers.


The only available commentary is written by Agha Jamal Khwansari on the request of Shah Sultan Husayn Safavi. This commentary explains certain concepts and wordings in the hadith in addition to points in theology, literature, ethics, interpretation of the Qur'an, jurisprudence and philosophy.


  • 'Uyun al-hikam wa al-mawa'iz wa dhakhirat al-muta'iz wa al-mawa'iz: written by Kafi al-Din Abu l-Hassan 'Ali b. Muhammad b. Abi Nazal Laythi Wasiti, known as Ibn Sharafiyyah, a scholar of the sixth/twelfth century.
  • Al-Jawahir al-'illiyyah fi al-kalimat al-'alawiyyah: written by 'Ali Baghdadi. This book is sorted alphabetically.
  • Al-hikam min kalam al-Imam Amir al-Mu'minin 'Ali (a): This book is written by the group of hadith studies in the Islamic Research Foundation of the Holy Shrine of Imam Reda (a) under the supervision of Kazim Mudir Shanehchi.


  1. Tihrani, al-Dhari'a, vol. 16, p. 38.
  2. Al-Amin, Mustadrakat a'yan al-Shi'a, vol. 6, p. 326.
  3. Afandi, Riyad al-'ulama, vol. 3, p. 284.
  4. Afandi, Riyad al-'ulama, vol. 3, p. 281.
  5. Ibn Shahrashub, Ma'alim al-'ulama, p. 81.
  6. Al-Majlisi, Bihar al-anwar, vol. 1, p. 34.
  7. Nuri, Khatimat al-mustadrak, vol. 3, pp. 91 - 96.
  8. Afandi, Riyad al-'ulama, vol. 3, p. 281.
  9. Al-Amidi, Ghurar al-hikam, Introduction.
  10. Anwar al-fiqahah, Kitab al-Bay' (Chapter on Dealing), p. 465.
  11. Al-Amidi, Ghurar al-hikam, Introduction.


  • Afandi, Mirza Abd Allah, Riyad al-'ulama wa hyad al-fudala, Matba'at al-Khayyam, Qom, 1401 AH.
  • Amin, al-Sayyid Hasan al-, Mustadrakat a'yan al-Shi'a, Dar al-Ta'aruf li l-Matbu'at, Beirut, 1408 AH.
  • Amin, al-Sayyid Muhsin al-. A'yan al-Shi'ah. Dar al-Ta'aruf li l-Matbu'at, Beirut, 1406 AH.
  • Ibn Shahrashub, Rashid al-Din Muhammad b. 'Ali. Ma'alim al-'ulama, Manshurat al-matba'at al-Haydariyyah, Najaf, 1380 AH.
  • Majlisi, Muhammad Baqir. Bihar al-anwar, Mu'assisat al-Wafa', Beirut, 1403 AH.
  • Makarim Shirazi, Nasir. Anwar al-fiqaha (kitab al-bay'). Madrasat al-Imam 'Ali b. Abi Talib (a) Publication, Qom, 1425 AH.
  • Muhaddith Nuri, Mirza Husayn. Khatimat al-mustadrak. Qom: Mu'assisat Al al-Bayt (a),1417 AH.
  • Tihrani, Agha Buzurg. Al-Dhari'ah ila tasanif al-Shi'ah, Isma'iliyan, Qom, 1408 AH.