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Hukaym b. Jabala

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Companion of Imam (a)
Hukaym b. Jabala
Companion of The Prophet (s), Imam Ali (a)
Lineage 'Abd al-Qays
Place(s) of Residence Basra
Martyrdom 36/656
Cause of Martyrdom In the Battle of Jamal
Activities One of the commanders of the army of Imam Ali (a) in the Battle of Jamal

Ḥukaym b. Jabala (Arabic: حُکَيم بن جَبَلة) (martyred 36/656) was among the companions of Imam Ali (a). After the murder of 'Uthman, he forced al-Zubayr to give allegiance to Imam 'Ali (a). He was the commander of the army in Basra at the time of the rule of Imam 'Ali (a). In the Battle of Jamal, when the army of Nakithun entered Basra he fought with them and was martyred. Imam Ali (a) composed a poem in his praise and mentioned him as "the righteous man".


The lineage of Hukaym b. Jabala (or Jabal) reaches 'Abd al-Qays tribe and thus he became famous as al-'Abdi.

As a Companion

According to some sources, Hukaym b. Jabala lived his youth age at the time of the Prophet (s) and met him. Al-Shaykh al-Tusi considered him and his brother, Ashraf, among the companions of Imam Ali (a).

Accusation of Theft

Al-Tabari quoted from Sayf b. 'Umar al-Dabbi that Hukaym was a thief from 'Abd al-Qays who went to war as a soldier in the army of Islam, but he left the army upon the inadvertence of the soldiers and for a while harassed and plundered non-Muslims of Fars, until people of Fars objected to 'Uthman and he asked 'Abd Allah b. 'Amir to capture and imprison Hukaym and others who harassed people. This way, Hukaym could not exit Basra any more.

Also according to al-Tabari, when 'Abd Allah b. Saba', known as Ibn Sawda', entered Basra, Hukaym was among those who joined him and helped him until 'Abd Allah b. 'Amir banished 'Abd Allah b. Saba' from Basra and he first went to Kufa and then went to Egypt, but still had correspondences with his companions.

It is possible that the story of stealing and plunder of Hukaym was forged by Sayf b. 'Umar to harm the personalities of the companions of Imam Ali (a); especially that, Hukaym led the rebellions of Basra against 'Uthman.

Leadership of the War at the Border of India

When 'Uthman reached caliphate in 23/644 and appointed 'Abd Allah b. 'Amir for the government of Basra, asked him to send someone to "Sindh" (border with India) and 'Abd Allah chose Hukaym for it. Hukaym b. Jabala conquered "Mukran", but could not enter Sindh and returned to Basra. Ibn 'Amir sent him to 'Uthman.

At the Time of the Revolt Against 'Uthman

On a Friday, after performing the prayer, 'Uthman went up the pulpit and addressed the rebellions against himself and said, "People of Medina know that the Prophet (s) cursed you. When Muhammad b. Maslama wanted to stand and approve it, Hukaym made him sit down to prevent the approval of that forged hadith.

After Malik al-Ashtar, who led the people of Kufa, withdrew from the siege of the house of 'Uthman, Hukaym b. Jabala too gave up however Ibn 'Udays and his followers from Egypt kept the siege.

After the murder of 'Uthman, Hukaym b. Jabala forced al-Zubayr, who refrained to give allegiance to Imam Ali (a), to give allegiance to Imam (a) so that later al-Zubayr claimed that a thief from 'Abd al-Qays put sword on his neck and forced him to give allegiance. Al-Shaykh al-Mufid rejected this report.

During the Battle of Jamal

After the appointment of 'Uthman b. Hunayf for the government of Basra by Imam Ali (a), the leadership of the soldiers of Basra was given to Hukaym b. Jabala.

In 36/656, 'A'isha and her companions moved toward Basra and gathered around Abu Musa well. When the news reached, Hukaym wanted to move the army to them, but 'Uthman b. Hunayf did not accept it. He sent 'Imran b. al-Husayn and Abu al-Aswad al-Du'ali to them to change their mind about war, but they did not change their mind. So, 'Uthman b. Hunayf ordered to begin the war and sent a group led by Hukaym b. Jabala to attack them. After a serious battle, both sides asked for a ceasefire and wait until Imam Ali (a) arrives in Basra. After the ceasefire, Talha and his companions attacked the house of 'Uthman b. Hunayf at night and killed the guards of the public treasure (Bayt al-Māl, بیت المال) and badly tortured 'Uthman b. Hunayf. Hukaym and some of Banu 'Abd al-Qays rushed to help 'Uthman b. Hunayf. In this fight, one foot of Hukaym was cut, but he did not surrender until he dropped unconscious due to loss of blood and Sumaym al-Haddani beheaded him.

Together with him, seventy of Banu 'Abd al-Qays, his brother, his son and Mujashi' b. Mas'ud al-Salami, a companion of the Prophet (s) were martyred.

After hearing the news of the martyrdom of Hukaym b. Jabala and the torture of 'Uthman b. Hunayf, Imam Ali (a) composed a poem praising Hukaym and mentioned him as the righteous man. Then Imam 'Ali (a) moved to Basra with twelve thousand soldiers.