Al-Waqidi

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al-Waqidi الواقدي (d. 822) 'Abu Abdullah Muhammad Ibn Omar Ibn Waqid al Sahmi أبو عبد الله محمد بن عمر بن واقد السهمي' (d. 207 AH = 822 CE). Muslim historian.

Born in Al Madinah, he moved to Iraq in 180 AH. There, he became acquainted with Yahiya al-Barmaki who sponsored him and introduced him to Harun al-Rashid, who made him judge of Baghdad, a position he continued to hold till his death.

Although he knew lots of hadiths, but his speciality was historical data, and biographies of early Islam. It is said that he used to visit the places where battles occurred to see it for himself.

His scribe, Ibn Saad was also a famous historian.

His works include:

  • Kitab Al Tarikh wa Al Maghazi (Book of History and Battles)
  • Akhbar Makkah (History of Mecca)
  • Darb Al Dananeer wa Al Darahim (Minting of Dinars and Drachms)
  • Kitab Al Tabaqat (Book of Generations)
  • Kitab Al Seerah (Book of Prophet Muhammad's biography)
  • Futuh Al Iraq (Conquest of Iraq)
  • Futuh Al Sham (Conquests of Syria). This book is a historical account attributed to Al Waqidi, but it is not actually his in its present form, since it contains characters from the 6th century AH. The manuscript of this book made it to the West early on, and based on one manuscript in the Bodleian Library, Simon Ockley's based his 'History of The Saracens'.
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