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Reconstruction of a Source of Ibn Isḥāq’s Life of the Prophet and Early Qurʾān Exegesis


A Study of Early Ibn ʿAbbās Traditions


This important work is a source-critical study of a group of traditions (aḥādīth) found in Ibn Isḥāq's Biography (Sīra) of the prophet Muḥammad, widely considered one of the most important early historical texts on the Prophet's life. Through a meticulous isnād-cum-matn analysis, the author reveals that Ibn Isḥāq relied on Muḥammad b. Abī Muḥammad, a hitherto undocumented source of his. Important new light is also shed on problems with Ibn Hishām’s recension of Ibn Isḥāq’s Sīra.
Publisher: Gorgias Press LLC
Availability: In stock
SKU (ISBN): 978-1-4632-0659-8
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Publication Status: In Print

Publication Date: May 15,2017
Interior Color: Black
Trim Size: 7 x 10
Page Count: 150
ISBN: 978-1-4632-0659-8
$58.00
$34.80

This important work is a source-critical study of a group of traditions (aḥādīth) found in Ibn Isḥāq's Biography (Sīra) of the prophet Muḥammad, widely considered one of the most important early historical texts on the Prophet's life. Through a meticulous isnād-cum-matn analysis, the author reveals that Ibn Isḥāq relied on Muḥammad b. Abī Muḥammad, a hitherto undocumented source of his. Important new light is also shed on problems with Ibn Hishām’s recension of Ibn Isḥāq’s Sīra.

This important work is a source-critical study of a group of traditions (aḥādīth) found in Ibn Isḥāq's Biography (Sīra) of the prophet Muḥammad, widely considered one of the most important early historical texts on the Prophet's life. Through a meticulous isnād-cum-matn analysis, the author reveals that Ibn Isḥāq relied on Muḥammad b. Abī Muḥammad, a hitherto undocumented source of his. Important new light is also shed on problems with Ibn Hishām’s recension of Ibn Isḥāq’s Sīra.

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Contributor Biography

Harald Motzki

Dr. Harald Motzki (retired) is one of the world's foremost specialists in the field of early and medieval Islamic history and law, on which he has authored multiple groundbreaking books and articles. Together with Professor Gregor Schoeler, Motzki is credited with establishing the isnād-cum-matn methodology, which seeks to reconstruct and date historical texts from the early Islamic period.

Introduction (1)

I. The problem of sources on the life of the Prophet Muḥammad (9)

II. Source analysis (21)

1. A reaction of the Quraysh to Muḥammad’s rise (21)

2. Muḥammad b. Abī Muḥammad (35)

3. The profile of the source “Muḥammad b. Abī Muḥammad” (47)

4. Muḥammad b. Abī Muḥammad outside of the Sīra sources (75)

5. Al-Kalbī’s variants (100)

6. Muḥammad b. Abī Muḥammad’s sources (115)

III. Muḥammad b. Abī Muḥammad: a source for the historical vita of the Prophet? (121)

IV. Excursus: Ibn Isḥāq’s exegetical traditions from Muḥammad b. Abī Muḥammad (129)

Appendix: Isnāds of the most important traditions (133)

Bibliography (135) 

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