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Shayth (a)

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Shayth (a)
Name in
the Bible:
Place(s) of
Before: Enos (a)
After: Adam (a)
Book: Tablets from God
Well known
Adam (a) (father), Eve (mother), Habil (brother)
Enemies: Qabil

Shayth (a) (Arabic: شيث) or Seth was the second prophet after Adam (a). He was among the children of Adam (a) and Eve and the small brother of Habil [Abel] and Qabil [Cain]. His birth was a gift from God for Adam (a) after the murder of Habil; therefore, Shayth (a) was known as Hibat Allah (gift of Allah).

Shayth (a) was the vicegerent of Adam (a) and the prophet after him. He had several tablets from God. He had four children, the first one of whom was Enos (a).

According to historians, the lineage of Adam (a) continued through Shayth (a). Shayth (a) lived 912 years and his burial place is mentioned to be in Abu Qubays Mountain. In Baalbek region in the east of Lebanon, there is a town called Nabi Shayth (a), where there is a great tomb attributed to Shayth (a).


Shayth (a) was the third son of Adam (a) and the younger brother of Habil and Qabil. Based on historical reports, after the griefs and complaints of Adam (a) about Habil's murder, God gave him a son called Shayth (a) instead of Habil.[1] Thus, his epithet is "Hibat Allah" (gift of Allah). He was born when Adam (a) was 130 years old.[2] Like other children of Adam (a) and Eve, Shayth (a) was born together with his twin sister whose name was Azura.[3] However, based on some sources, he was born alone.[4]

Marriage and Children

Historical sources considered Shayth's (a) wife a houri, the marriage of the two was due to the request of Adam (a). The result of this marriage was four children, the first of whom was Enos (a), who became Shayth's (a) vicegerent.[5] Shayth (a) was 105 when Enos (a) was born.[6]

Some sources have spoken about the marriage of Shayth (a) with Iqlima (Eklima), Qabil's sister.[7]

Continuation of Human's Lineage

An attribute of Shayth (a) is that the human's lineage reaches back to him; as the children and descendants of Qabil were all lost.[8] Based on historical sources, Qabil's family committed sins such as adultery, drinking alcohol, fire-worship and using the instruments of play and dissipation and were perished by the storm of Noah (a) and only the family of Shayth (a) survived.[9]

Adam's (a) Succession and Prophethood

By the order of God, Shayth (a) became the successor of Adam[10] (a) and was given all the knowledge Adam (a).[11] After Adam (a) passed away, Shayth (a) reached prophethood[12] and began his leadership and governance among people. Shayth (a) administered Adam's (a) principles, including the rules and punishments of the corrupt and ordered people to piety and good deeds.[13]

In order that Shayth (a) does not end in the same destiny as of Habil because of Qabil's envy, Adam (a) advised Shayth (a) to conceal his knowledge and position from Qabil.[14] Therefore, Shayth (a) practiced taqiyya (dissimulation) for a while.[15] There are also reports mentioning the threatening of Shayth (a) by Qabil after Shayth (a) was chosen as Adam's (a) successor.[16]

It is transmitted from Imam al-Sadiq (a) that when Adam (a) passed away, Shayth (a) asked angel Gabriel to lead the prayer upon Adam's body. Gabriel said, "God ordered us to prostrate to your father and we do not get ahead of his righteous children and you are the best of his children."[17]

Tablets of Shayth (a)

Like Adam (a) and other prophets, Shayth (a) had several tablets from God. Fifty is the highest number, sources have mentioned for the number of the tablets of Shayth (a).[18]

Mecca is mentioned as the place Shayth (a) lived and preached.[19] During his prophethood, he was in contact with Gabriel and other angels.[20] Based on some reports, he was the first person who invented writing.[21]

Demise and Burial Place

Attributed shrine to Shayth (a) in Baalbek, eastern Lebanon

Al-Tabari mentioned his lifetime 930 years,[22] but other sources mentioned his lifespan 912 years.[23] Some sources considered Shayth's (a) burial place, a cave in Abu Qubays Mountain, where Adam (a) and Eve are buried.[24] However, in Nabi Chit town in Baalbek region, east of Lebanon, there is a grave attributed to Prophet Shayth (a). In Mosul, north of Iraq, too, there is a grave attributed to Shayth (a), which was demolished by ISIS in 2014.


Upon his death, Shayth (a) appointed his son, Enos (a) as his vicegerent.[25] He advised Enos (a) to have God-wariness and asked him to order his people to God-wariness and good worship.[26] Also before his demise, Shayth (a) asked his household to swear not to marry the children of Qabil.[27]

Sabians' Belief

Some Sabians consider their holy book, the tablets of Shayth (a).[28] Some historians believe that Sabians are from Syriac people, the most ancient religion on earth who claim that their lineage reaches back to Sabi', a child of Shayth (a).[29]


  1. Qummī, Tafsīr al-Qummī, vol. 1, p. 166.
  2. Genesis, 4:25-26; Ibn Kathīr, al-Bidāya wa l-nihāya, vol. 1, p. 95.
  3. Ibn al-Jawzī, al-Muntaẓam, vol. 1, p. 218.
  4. Ṭabarānī, al-Tafsīr al-kabīr, vol. 2, p. 382.
  5. Dāwarpanāh, Anwār al-ʿirfān, vol. 8, p. 13; Ḥusaynī Hamidānī, Anwār-i dirakhshān, vol. 3, p. 325.
  6. ʿAskarī, ʿAqāʾid-i Islām, vol. 3, p. 101.
  7. Ṭabarānī, al-Tafsīr al-kabīr, vol. 2, p. 386; Samarqandī, Tafsīr, vol. 1, p. 385.
  8. Sharaf al-Dīn, al-Mawsūʿa al-Qurʾānīyya, vol. 2, p. 140.
  9. Thaʿlabī, Tafsīr al-Thaʿlabī, vol. 4, p. 53; Ṭabrisī, Majmaʿ al-bayān, vol. 3, p. 287.
  10. ʿAskarī, ʿAqāʾid-i Islām, vol. 3, p. 63, 231.
  11. ʿAskarī, ʿAqāʾid-i Islām, vol. 3, p. 63, 229.
  12. Ibn Kathīr, al-Bidāya wa l-nihāya, vol. 1, p. 99.
  13. ʿAskarī, ʿAqāʾid-i Islām, vol. 3, p. 64-65.
  14. Malikī Mīyānjī, Manāhij al-bayān, vol. 2, p. 174.
  15. Ṭabarī, Tarjuma-yi tafsīr-i Ṭabarī, vol. 2, p. 399.
  16. ʿAyyāshī, Tafsīr al-ʿAyyāshī, vol. 1, p. 104.
  17. Ṣadūq, Man lā yaḥḍuruh al-faqīh, vol. 1, p. 163.
  18. Ṭabarī, Tarjuma-yi tafsīr-i Ṭabarī, vol. 2, p. 399.
  19. Ibn Athīr, Kāmil tārīkh buzurg-i Islām wa Iran, vol. 1, p. 230.
  20. Jurjānī, Darj al-durar, vol. 1, p. 662.
  21. Ibn Kathīr, al-Bidāya wa l-nihāya, vol. 1, p. 99.
  22. Ṭabarī, Tarjuma-yi tafsīr-i Ṭabarī, vol. 1, p. 62.
  23. Ibn al-ʿIbarī, Mukhtaṣar tārīkh al-duwal, p. 4.
  24. Bīāzār Shīrāzī, Bāstān shināsī, p. 244.
  25. ʿAskarī, ʿAqāʾid-i Islām, vol. 1, p. 230.
  26. ʿAskarī, ʿAqāʾid-i Islām, vol. 3, p. 332.
  27. ʿAskarī, ʿAqāʾid-i Islām, vol. 1, p. 230.
  28. Maydānī, Maʿārij al-tafakkur, vol. 7, p. 546.
  29. Maydānī, Maʿārij al-tafakkur, vol. 7, p. 546.


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