CHAPTER ON THE TURBAN OF
SAYYIDINA RASOOLULLAH SALLALLAHU ALAIHE WASALLAM
Shamaa-il Tirmidhi Contents
The length of the turban of Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam
has not been given in the well known ahaadith. In a narration from Tabrani
seven dhira' have been mentioned. Bayjuri has related from Ibn Hajar that
this hadith has no origin.
Allamah Jazri says, "I studied the books on seerah (the history of
the Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam), but I found no mention
of any length."
It is related from Imam Nawawi that Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam
had two turbans, one was a small one, the length of which was six dhira'
(cubits, hands) according to Munaawi, and seven dhira' according to Mulla
Ali Qari. The long one was twelve dhira'. The author of 'Madkhal' mentions
that the length of the turban of Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam
was seven dhira'. He has not mentioned any other size.
It was a continuous sunnah to wear the turban. It has been related
that Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam ordered the wearing of the
turban. He said, "Wear an amaamah (turban) regularly, for it increases
one's hilm (gentleness)". (Fathul Baari)
Someone enquired from Abdullah bin Umar radiyallahu anhuma, "Is it
sunnah to wear an amaamah (turban)?"
He replied, "Yes it is sunnah." (Ainy)
In one hadith it is stated that a turban should be worn regularly
for it is a sign of Islam, and it distinguishes between a Muslim and Kafir.
The author has mentioned five ahaadith in this chapter.
(107) Hadith 1
Hazrat Jabir radiyallahu anhu reports that when Makkah was conquered,
Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam entered the city wearing a black
This hadith seems to contradict the previous ahaadith (mentioned
in the previous chapter on the helmet of Sayyidina Rasoolullah sallallahu
alaihe wasallam, wherein it is stated that Sayyidina Rasoolullah
sallallahu alaihe wassallam wore a helmet and entered Makkah. In reality
there is no difference. It is not impossible to wear a turban on a helmet.
Both hadith can be summed up easily. Some Ulama say that when he
entered Makkah he wore a helmet. As soon as he removed the helmet, he wore
a turban. Therefore in that narration, the time of entry is mentioned since
the time was appropriate. Some Ulama are of the opinion that because a
metal head cover may have been troublesome, he may have worn a turban beneath
(108) Hadith 2
Hazrat Amr bin Huraith radiyallahu anhu says, "I had seen Rasoolullah
sallallahu alaihe wasallam wear a black turban."
In Muslim and Nasai, Hazrat Amr bin Huraith radiyallahu anhu says,
"That scene is still before my eyes, when Sayyidina Rasoolullah sallallahu
alaihe wasallam was delivering the sermon on the mimbar. He wore a black
turban on his aauspicious head, and its shamlah (the end portion of the
turban) was between his shoulders.
(109) Hadith 3
Hazrat Amr bin Huraith radiyallahu anhu relates that Sayyidina Rasoolullah
sallallahu alaihe wasallam was once delivering the sermon, and there was
a black turban on his auspicious head."
According to well known sayings, this sermon was at the time when Makkah
Mukarramah was conquered. It was given from the threshold of the Ka'bah's
door, as has been mentioned in the previous ahaadith by Hazrat Jabir radiyallahu
anhu. In some ahaadith relating to this incident, it has been mentioned
that the sermon was delivered from a mimbar (pulpit), whereas the sermon
at the time when Makkah Mukarramah was conquered was not given from a mimbar.
Some say that this incident did not take place in Makkah Mukarramah, but
at Madinah Munawwarah on a Friday. In some ahaadith it is also mentioned
that this was a Friday sermon. Mulla Ali Qari has written on the commentary
of Mishkat from Meerak Shah that this sermon was delivered before Sayyidina
Rasoolullah sallallahu alihe wasallam passed away, and Allah knows best.
(110) Hadith 4
Hazrat Ibn Umar radiyallahu anhuma reports, "When Rasoolullah sallallahu
alaihe wasallam fastened an amaamah (turban), he used to put the shamlah
between his shoulers (i.e. he used to put it on the back)."
Nafi says, "I had seen Abdullah bin Umar radiyallahu anhuma do it in
the same manner."
Ubaidullah, who is the student of Nafi, says, "In my time the grandson
of Abu Bakr radiyallahu anhu, Qasim bin Muhammad and the grandson of Umar
radiyallah anhu, Saalim bin Abdullah did the same."
The practice of Sayyidina Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam in
putting the shamlah (back-end portion of the turban) varied. He usuallay
left a shamlah on the turban. Some Ulama have gone so far as to say that
he never wore a turban without a shamlah. The Muhaqqiqeen (research scholars)
say that he sometimes did not leave a shamlah. When wearing a turban he
observed different practices with the shamlah. He sometimes left it in
front on the right shoulder; sometimes on the back between the shoulders.
Sometimes the two ends of the turban were left as a shamlah. Allamah Munaawi
says, "Although all methods are mentioned, the best and most correct is
to leave it between the shoulders on the back."
(111) Hadith 5
Hazrat Ibn Abbas radiyallahu anhuma reports, "Sayyidina Rasoolullah
sallallahu alaihe wasallam was once delivering a sermon. He was wearing
a black turban, or an oily strip of cloth."
This was before Sayyidina Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam passed
away. It was his last sermon. After this Sayyidina Rasoolullah sallallahu
alaihe wasallam did not ascend the mimbar, nor deliver a sermon. In this
sermon, Sayyidina Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam especially stressed
the privileges of and consideration for the Ansaar. He counted their virtues
and kind favours and also requested that the one who was chosen as an amir
should give special attention to the needs of the Ansaar. At that time
Sayyidina Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam had a severe headache,
for which reason he might have fastened a strip of cloth. Also since the
hair of Sayyidina Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam used to be oiled
regularly, which is mentioned in the ensuing chapters, the strip may have
been oily for this reason.
His habit of wearing a black turban is well known. The Ulama have two
meanings of a 'black turban'. Some have translated it as a black coloured
turban and some say it is an oily strip of cloth. Both are correct as it
can have both meanings.
One narrator of this hadith is Ibnul Gaseel, who is from the progeny
of Hazrat Hanzalah radiyallahu anhu who was bathed by the malaaikah (angels).
Hazrat Hanzalah radiyallahu anhu was nicknamed 'Gaseelul Malaaikah', which
means the one bathed by the angels. There is a thought provoking incident
regarding this. When the call for the Battle of Uhud was announced and
the army was beginning to leave, he was having relations with his wife.
In this state he heard the call for war, and heard the army leaving for
the battlefield. He left everything at that moment and joined the army.
He did not have a chance to do gusl (bath). He was martyred in the battlefield
and because a 'shaheed' (martyr) is not given a gusl, he too was not given.
Sayyidina Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam saw the angels bathing
him. He made inquiries and, on returning to Madinah Munawwarah, was informed
by his wife of his condition. Truly, these people gave their lives for
the sake of deen, as willingly as we would, today, fulfil our passions
in which we are so heavily engrossed.