Kharija b. Hudhafa

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Kharija b. Hudhafa
Personal Information
Lineage'Adi b. Ka'b
Place(s) of ResidenceMecca, Fustat (in Egypt)
Death/Martyrdom40/661, Egypt
Cause of Death/MartyrdomIn a conspiracy for the assassination of 'Amr b. al-'As, Kharija was killed instead
Burial PlaceEgypt
Religious Information

Khārija b. Ḥudhāfa b. Ghānim al-'Adawī (Arabic: خارجة بن حُذافة بن غانم العَدَوي) was an Arab gallant warrior. He converted to Islam after the Conquest of Mecca. He is one of Prophet Muhammad's (s) sahaba. According to historical accounts, he was brave and a skillful horseman. Kharija played an influential role in the conquest of Egypt after Islam, and was 'Amr b. al-'As's successor in Egypt for a while. In a conspiracy for the assassination of 'Amr b. al-'As, Kharija was killed instead.


The lineage of his father, Hudhafa b. Ghanim, goes back to the clan of 'Adi b. Ka'b. His mother, Fatima bt. 'Amr b. Bujra, was from this clan. Kharija converted to Islam after the Conquest of Mecca.


Historical sources mention Kharija's gallantry and his skill in horse riding. On some accounts, his war skills equaled those of 1000 cavalries. This account goes back to 20/640 when the Islamic army planned to conquer Egypt and 'Amr b. al-'As asked 'Umar b. al-Khattab for aids. 'Umar sent a 4000-army for aid and wrote to 'Amr b. al-'As that each group of 1000 soldiers has a commander who equals in power to all those 1000 people. One of these commanders was Kharija b. Hudhafa who attended the conquest along with 'Amr b. al-'As.

Conquest of Egypt

When 'Amr b. al-'As conquered Fustat, he commissioned Kharija to raid the cities of Faiyum, al-Ushmunayn, Akhmim, al-Basharudat and villages in the area of al-Sa'id, and conquered there. Kharija also conquered al-Khays and al-Sakha in Egypt.


When 'Amr b. al-'As was going to conquer Alexandria in 21/641-2, he appointed Kharija as his successor in Egypt (Fustat). He was also appointed as a judge in Egypt.

On some accounts, after the conquest of Egypt, he was appointed as the head of guards and police forces. He held the same position in the period of Mu'awiya b. Abi Sufyan as well.

Share from the Treasury

'Umar b. al-Khattab, who was from the same tribe as Kharija's, ordered 'Amr b. al-'As to give Kharija a full share of the treasury (bayt al-mal) like that of Arab noblemen, because of his gallantry.

Advocacy of 'Uthman

Kharija stayed in Egypt until his death. In 35/655-6, when there were objections to the caliphate of 'Uthman b. 'Affan in Egypt, he advocated 'Uthman.


In 40/660, when Khawarij made a conspiracy to assassinate Imam 'Ali (a), Mu'awiya, and 'Amr b. al-'As, Kharija was killed instead of 'Amr b. al-'As, because the night before the assassination, 'Amr b. al-'As had a severe stomachache, and told Kharija to lead morning prayers. Thus the person who was commissioned to kill 'Amr b. al-'As killed Kharija instead.

When the murderer was arrested and learned that 'Amr b. al-'As was still alive and he had instead killed Kharija, he said: "I intended 'Amr and God intended Kharija". This sentence turned into a proverb in Arabic.

There a not much reliable account on which the person who was killed instead of 'Amr was Kharija's namesake from the Banu Sahm tribe. Kharija's murderer was a person called 'Abd Allah b. Malik al-Saydawi or Zaduya, who is said to be the same person as 'Amr b. Bakr al-Tamimi. The murderer was beheaded and his corpse was hung.

Narration of Hadith

Kharija narrated a hadith from the Prophet (s) regarding the virtues of the al-Watr Prayer. So he was considered to be a narrator of hadiths from the Prophet (s) and one of his companions. 'Abd Allah b. Abi Murra narrated this hadith from Kharija.