|Born||214 AH (c. 829 CE)|
|Died||303 AH (915 CE)|
|Era||Islamic golden age|
|Main interest(s)||Hadith and fiqh|
|Notable work(s)||Al-Sunan al-Sughra|
Al-Nas?'? (214 - 303 AH; c. 829 - 915 CE), full name Ab? `Abd ar-Ra?m?n A?mad ibn Shu`ayb ibn Al? ibn S?n?n al-Nas?'?, (variant: Abu Abdel-rahman Ahmed ibn Shua'ib ibn Ali ibn Sinan ibn Bahr ibn Dinar Al-Khurasani), was a noted collector of hadith (sayings of Muhammad), of Persian origin from the city of Nasa (early Khorasan and present day Turkmenistan), and the author of "As-Sunan", one of the six canonical hadith collections recognized by Sunni Muslims. From his "As-Sunan al-Kubra (The Large Sunan)" he wrote an abridged version, "Al-Mujtaba" or Sunan al-Sughra (The Concise Sunan). Of the fifteen books he is known to have written, six treat the science of had?th.
Al-Nasa'i himself states he was born in the year 830 (215 h.) - although some say it was in 829 or 869 (214 or 255 h.) - in the city of Nasa in present-day Turkmenistan - part of Khorasan, a region in Western Asia and Central Asia known for its many centres of Islamic learning. There he attended the gatherings and circles of knowledge, known as "halqas". At about 15 years old, he began his travels with his first journey to Qutaibah. He covered the whole Arabian Peninsula seeking knowledge from scholars in Iraq, Kufa, the Hijaz, Syria and Egypt, where he eventually settled. A habit of his was to fast every other day, as this was a habit of Dawud (A).
Abu Abdullah Al-Hafiz said that's: "I heard Ali ibn Umar saying, 'Abu Abd-ur-Rahman An-Nasai was the most knowledgeable among the Sheikhs (teachers) of Egypt in terms of Fiqh, and authenticity and narrators of Hadiths, during his time. Being the best among them, they felt envy towards him. Thus, he moved to Ar-Ramlah (a town in Palestine) where he was asked about Muawiyah ibn Abu Sufyan. He did not reply in a good thing, and thus people beat him badly. He asked to be moved to Makkah, in spite of his illness, where he passed away."
Abu Abdullah also said: "In addition to his multiple merits, he was given martyrdom at the end of his life."
Hafiz ibn Hajr and others claimed that Imam Bukhari was among his teachers. However Al-Mizzi, refutes that the Imam ever met him. As-Sakhawi gives the reasons in great detail for al-Mizzi's claim that they never met, but argues these must apply also to his claim that An-Nasa'i heard from Abu Dawud. Moreover, Ibn Mundah narrates the following: We were informed by Hamzah, that an-Nasa'i, Abu Abd-ur-Rahman informed us saying, 'I heard Muhammad Ibn Isma'il Al-Bukhari...' Ibrahim ibn Ya'qub al-Juzajani was also an influence.
In Egypt an-Nasa'i began to lecture, mostly narrating ahadith (hadith plural) to the extent that he became known by the title "Hafizul Hadeeth". His lectures were well attended and among his many students were the scholars:
Imam Izzakie was a follower of the Shafi'i fiqh (jurisprudence) according to Allamah as-Subki, Shah Waliullah, Shah Abdulaziz and many other scholars. The leader of the Ulama'a Allamah Anwar Shah Kashmiri and Ibn Taymiyyah consider him a Hanbali, but the truth is that he was a Mujtahid more inclined towards the Hanbali Fiqh but many a time would differ from the Hanbali scholars.
Imam an-Nasa'i had four wives but historians mention only one son, Abdul Kareem, a narrator of the Sunan of his father.
Selected works: