Authenticity, Type and Huge Number of Hadiths and Narrations Regarding the Topi

The Authenticity of the narrations in this book

When discussing the viability of a hadîth as proof, we divided the narrations into three categories:

  1. Strong– this includes ‘sahîh’ and ‘hasan’ narrations, as well as ‘hasan li ghairihî’ i.e. those weak narrations that are classified as strong on the basis of their being supported by other narrations.
  2. Weak– by these we mean such narrations that have slight weaknesses in them. This may be used to show the desirability of a certain act or to back up other narrations.
  3. Very weak– these are such narrations that may only be quoted if their weakness is mentioned at the same time. No law at all may be extracted from such narrations.

In this book we used the first group as our main source, taking support from the second group when the need arose. The status of the chain of narrators of each hadîth is clearly mentioned in the footnote accompanying it; however we kept it in the Arabic language, as the terms used are quite intricate and generally only understood by those familiar with Arabic. However, if an extremely weak narration was quoted, then this was pointed out in the English text as well.

The different types of narrations

The narrations in this book are of two types:

  1. Marfû`– The statements of Rasûlullâh (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) concerning covering the head or narrations concerning the topî of Rasûlullâh (sallallahu alayhi wasallam).
  2. Mauqûf– The narrations concerning the topî of the Sahâbah (radhiyallahu anhum), the Tâbi`în رحمهم الله or those after them.

When quoting narrations from the first category, we endeavoured our utmost to find judgements of the leading muhadithîn (scholars of hadîth) concerning the strength of each narration. An in-depth study was conducted into every narration, to such an extent that, at times, hundreds of books were referred to resulting in over a week being spent on one hadîth. The summary of each study can be found in the footnote under the respective hadîth.

When checking the narrations of the second group, the difficulty we encountered was that very few muhadithîn have ever discussed the condition of these narrations. We thus had to check up each narrator individually, to ascertain his reliability. This was quite a daunting task, as the narrations of this type, in this book, number over 100. Each narration has a chain of transmission containing 4 to 10 narrators. Thus over 500 narrators had to be scrutinised according to the standards laid down by the leading scholars of hadîth.

Errors have undoubtedly occurred, but we tried to keep them to a minimum by double-checking everything and by relying on the accepted and trusted books of ‘Jarh wat Ta`dîl’- the field of ascertaining the strengths and weaknesses of narrators.

We relied to a great extent on the books of Ibn Hajr Asqalânî, Shamsudîn Azh-Zhahabî, Yûsuf Mizzî and Khatîb Baghdâdî. Great support was also taken from the works of ImâmBukhârî,

Ibn Abî Hâtim Râzî, Ibn Hibbân, Ibn Asâkir, As-Sam`ânî  رحمهمالله and many others.

The majority of the narrations in this book were taken from such books of hadîth and history that mention a chain of transmission with each narration, thus each narration was checked to determine its strength. Many narrations were however, taken from the reliable books of history which either do not mention the chain of narrators or if they do mention them, then the need was not felt to check up these narrations on the basis of the reliability and authenticity of these books eg. Al-Bidâyah wan Nihâyah of Ibn Kathîr, Târikhut Tabarî, Siyaru A`lâmin Nubalâ of Az-Zhahabî etc.[1]

The number of narrations in this book

The total number of narrations that we could find concerning the topî is over 250.

40 of these are Marfû“ (concerning Nabî (sallallahu alayhi wasallam)), while the remainder are Mauqûf (concerning the Sahâbah (radhiyallahu anhum) and others). The overwhelming majority of these narrations are strong while there are weak ones as well.

We inserted these narrations into their relevant chapters where possible and mentioned all the Marfû` narrations as well as a summarized discussion of their strength, in Arabic at the end of the book.

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Next: The Topi – A Confimed Sunnah and a Salient Feature of the Muslims

FOOTNOTE

[1] تنبيه:

  • عند العزو إلى إحدى الكتب الستة الرقم الأول هو رقم الصفحة بالطبعة الباكستانية والرقم الثاني هو رقم الحديث بطبعة دار السلام- الرياض.
  • المراد بقولنا “رجاله رجال الصحيح ” أن رواته كلهم قد روى عنهم البخاري أو  مسلم في صحيحيهما
  • المراد بقولنا “رجاله موثقون ” أن بعض رواته قد وُثّق و الباقين أقوي منه أو مساوين له

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