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Jalal al-Din al-Suyuti
Shrine for Galal El-Dean al-Seyoti in Asiut
Born3 October 1445 CE / 1 Rajab 849 AH
Died18 October 1505 CE / 19 Jumadi Ula 911 AH
Main interest(s)Tafsir, Sharia, Fiqh, Hadith, Quran, Usul al-Fiqh, History, Aqidah
Notable work(s)Tafsir al-Jalalayn Tarikh Al Khulafa Khasais Kubra Khasais Sughra Mazhar Jami al Kabir Jami Al Saghir
Muslim leader
Arabic name
Personal (Ism)'Abd al-Ra?m?n
Patronymic (Nasab)ibn Ab? Bakr ibn Mu?ammad
Teknonymic (Kunya)Ab? al-Fa?l
Epithet (Laqab)Jal?l al-D?n
Toponymic (Nisba)al-Suy, al-Khu?ayr?, al-Sh?fi'?

Ab? al-Fa?l 'Abd al-Ra?m?n ibn Ab? Bakr ibn Mu?ammad Jal?l al-D?n al-Khu?ayr? al-Suy[3] (Arabic: ? ? ? ?‎; c. 1445-1505 CE); aka Jalaluddin; an Egyptian of mixed Persian and Circassian origin. As an historian, biographer, jurist, teacher and scholar of Islamic theology, he was one of the most prolific writers of the Middle Ages. His biographical dictionary Bughyat al-wuh f? ?abaq?t al-lughaw?y?n wa-al-nuh contains valuable accounts of prominent figures in the early development of Arabic philology. [4] He was appointed to a chair in the mosque of Baybars in Cairo in 1486, and was an adherent of the Shafii madhhab and a late authority of the Hanbali School. He was one of the Ashabun-Nazzar (Assessors) in his degree of ijtihad.[]


Al-Suyuti was born on 3 October 1445 AD (1 Rajab 849 AH) in Cairo, Egypt.[3][5] His mother was Circassian[6] and his father was of Persian origin. According to al-Suyuti his ancestors came from al-Khudayriyya in Baghdad.[3] His family moved to Asyut in Mamluk Egypt, hence the nisba "Al-Suyuti".[5][7] His father taught Shafi'i law at the Mosque and Khanqah of Shaykhu in Cairo, but died when al-Suyuti was 5 or 6 years old.[7][8]

Al-Suyuti's studies included: Shafi'i and Hanafi jurisprudence (fiqh), traditions (hadith), exegesis (tafsir), theology, history, rhetoric, philosophy, philology,[7] arithmetic, timekeeping (miqat) and medicine. He started teaching Shafi'i jurisprudence at the age of 18, at the same mosque as his father did. In 1486, Sultan Qaitbay appointed him shaykh at the Khanqah of Baybars II, a Sufi lodge.[8] He was a Sufi of the Shadhili order.[5]

Al-Suyuti was named the mujaddid of the 9th century AH and he claimed to be a mujtahid (an authority on source interpretation who gives legal statements on jurisprudence, hadith studies, and Arabic language). This caused friction with scholars and ruling officials, and after a quarrel over the finances of the Sufi lodge, he retreated to the island of Rawda in 1501. Al-Suyuti died on 18 October 1505.[5][8]


The Dalil makhtutat al-Suyuti ("Directory of al-Suyuti's manuscripts") states that al-Suyuti wrote works on over 700 subjects,[7] while a 1995 survey, put the figure between 500[6] and 981. However, these include short pamphlets, and legal opinions.[5]

He wrote his first book, Sharh Al-Isti'aadha wal-Basmalah in 866 AH, at the age of seventeen.[]

Ibn al-?Im?d writes: "Most of his works become world famous in his lifetime." Renowned as a prolific writer, his student Dawudi said: "I was with the Shaykh Suyuti once, and he wrote three volumes on that day. He could dictate annotations on ?ad?th, and answer my objections at the same time. In his time he was the foremost scholar of the ?ad?th and associated sciences, of the narrators including the uncommon ones, the hadith matn (text), isnad (chain of narrators), the derivation of hadith rulings. He has himself told me, that he had memorized One Hundred Thousand hadith."[9][10][unreliable source?]

In ?usn al-mu?a?arah al-Suyuti lists 283 of his works on subjects from religion to medicine. As with Abu'l-Faraj ibn al-Jawzi in his medicinal works, he writes almost exclusively on prophetic medicine, rather than the Islamic-Greek synthesis of medicinal tradition found in the works of Al-Dhahabi. He focuses on diet and natural remedies for serious ailments such as rabies and smallpox, and for simple conditions such as headaches and nosebleeds, and mentions the cosmology behind the principles of medical ethics.[11]

Major Works[12]

  • Tafsir al-Jalalayn (Arabic: ‎, lit. 'Commentary of the Two Jalals'); a Qur'anic exegesis written by Al-Suyuti and his teacher Jalal al-Din al-Mahalli[7]
  • Al-Itq?n fi 'Ulum Al-Qur'an (translated into English as The Perfect Guide to the Sciences of the Qur'an, ISBN 9781859642412)
  • Al-Tibb al Nabawi (Arabic: ? ‎, lit. 'Prophetic medicine')
  • Al-Jaami' al-Kabir (Arabic: ‎)
  • Al-Jaami' al-Saghir (Arabic: ‎, lit. 'Little mosque' )
  • Dur al-Manthur (Arabic: ‎) in tafsir
  • Alfiyyah al-Hadith [13]
  • Tadrib al-Rawi (Arabic: ‎) both in hadith terminology
  • History of the Caliphs (Tarikh al-khulafa)
    • The Khalifas who took the right way, a partial translation of the History of the Caliphs, covering the first four Rashidun caliphs and Hasan ibn Ali
  • Tabaqat al-huffaz, an appendix to al-Dhahabi's Tadhkirat al-huffaz
  • Nuzhat al-julas?' f? ashr al-nis?' (Arabic: ? ? ‎), 'an anthology of women's verse'[14]
  • Al-Khasais-ul-Kubra, which discusses the miracles of Islamic prophet Muhammad
  • Wikisource-logo.svg Al-Muzhir. (linguistics)
  • Nawir al-ayk f? ma?rifat al-nayk (a sex manual attributed to al-Suyuti)
  • Shaqiq al-utrunj f? raqiq al-ghunj (another manuscript dealing with sex attributed to al-Suyuti)

Selected Works

See also


  1. ^ Spevack, Aaron (2014). The Archetypal Sunni Scholar: Law, Theology, and Mysticism in the Synthesis of Al-Bajuri. State University of New York Press. pp. 99, 179. ISBN 143845371X.
  2. ^ In Masalik al-Hunafa' fi Walidayy al-Mustafa, he says: "The Prophet's parents died before he was sent as a Prophet and there is no punishment for them, since (We never punish until We send a messenger (whom they reject)( (17:15 ). Our Ash`ari Imams among those in kalam, usul, and fiqh agree on the statement that one who dies while da`wa has not reached him, dies saved. This has been defined by Imam al-Shafi`i.. . . Some of the fuqaha' explained that the reason is, such a person follows fitra or Primordial Disposition, and has not stubbornly refused nor rejected any Messenger"
  3. ^ a b c Geoffroy, E. (1960-2007). "al-Suy". In P. Bearman (ed.). Encyclopaedia of Islam (2nd ed.). ISBN 9789004161214.
  4. ^ Meri, Josef W. (January 2006). Medieval Islamic Civilization, Volume 1 An Encyclopedia. Routledge. p. 784. ISBN 978-0-415-96691-7. The family of al-Suyuti, of Persian origin, settled during the Mamluk period in Asyut, in Upper Egypt (from where they derive their name).
  5. ^ a b c d e Meri, Josef W., ed. (2005). "Suyuti, Al-, 'Abd al-Rahman". Medieval Islamic Civilization: An Encyclopedia. Routledge. pp. 784-786. ISBN 978-1-135-45603-0.
  6. ^ a b Irwin, R. (1998). Julie Scott Meisami; Paul Starkey (eds.). Encyclopedia of Arabic Literature. Taylor & Francis. p. 746. ISBN 978-0-415-18572-1.
  7. ^ a b c d e Oliver Leaman, ed. (2006). "Al-Suyuti". The Qur'an: An Encyclopedia. Taylor & Francis. pp. 618-920. ISBN 978-0-415-32639-1.
  8. ^ a b c Dhanani, Alnoor (2007). "Suy: Ab? al-Fa?l ?Abd al-Ra?m?n Jal?l al-D?n al-Suy". In Thomas Hockey (ed.). The Biographical Encyclopedia of Astronomers. New York: Springer. pp. 1112-3. ISBN 978-0-387-31022-0.
  9. ^ Al-Kaw?kib as-S?yirah 1/228[verification needed]
  10. ^ Hasan, Abu, Im?m Jal?luddin Suyi - Biography and Works (PDF),, pp. 6-7, archived from the original (pdf) on 2016-03-04, retrieved
  11. ^ Emilie Savage-Smith, "Medicine." Taken from Encyclopedia of the History of Arabic Science, Volume 3: Technology, Alchemy and Life Sciences, pg. 928. Ed. Roshdi Rasheed. London: Routledge, 1996. ISBN 0415124123
  12. ^ Ghaffari, Talib (7 January 2011). "Writings of Imam Jalaluddin al-Suyuti". Maktabah Mujaddidiyah. Retrieved 2013.
  13. ^ "USC-MSA Compendium of Muslim Texts". Web Archive. 2 January 2008. Archived from the original on 2 January 2008. Retrieved 2010.
  14. ^ James Mansfield Nichols, 'The Arabic Verses of Qasm?na bint Ismil ibn Bagd?lah', International Journal of Middle East Studies, 13 (1981), 155-58.

External links

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