Expedition of Surad ibn Abdullah

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Expedition of Surad ibn Abdullah to attack the people of Jurash took place in 10 AH of the Islamic calendar,[1][2] around Spring[3][4] (632 AD in the Gregorian calendar).

Background[edit]

In 10 AH of the Islamic calendar, 15–20 men from the Banu Azd, led by Surad ibn Abdullah, presented themselves to Muhammad to submit to Islam. Muhammad recognised Surad as the ruler of his clan, and ordered him to war against the Non-Muslim tribes in his neighbourhood.[2][3][4]

Expedition[edit]

Initial attack[edit]

Surad ibn Abdullah then set out on his military expedition to Jurash in Yemen, and Muhammad provided him with an army of Muslim fighters to fulfil his task. At that time, Jurash was a closed city inhabited by Yemeni tribes. The Khatham tribe sought refuge with the people of Jurash, when they heard of the Muslim marching to the area, they shut themselves inside the closed city and refused to open the doors.[1][3][4]

Surad ibn Abdullah besieged the city of Jurash for 1 month, but with no success. But then he pretended to withdraw from the area into the hills, the enemy fell into the trap, and then in pitch battles he defeated the pursuing enemy,[5] and Tabari mentions that he inflicted heavy casualties on them.[1][3][4]

Citizens of Jurash killed[edit]

The people of Jurash sent 2 ambassadors to Muhammad for talks of reconciliation, they talked to Muhammad kindly by referring to him, as "The Messenger of God".[3][4][6]

They then asked Muhammad what was currently happening at Jurash, he said that camels were being slaughtered, to which Abu Bakr or Uthman (which the 2 men were sat next to) said that what Muhammad meant was, that their people have been killed already i.e. slaughtered. Abu Bakr or Umar then said to the 2 men, that they should go to Muhammad, and ask him to pray to remove the affliction (pain and suffering). They did just that and returned to their city to find their people were killed.[1][3][4]

Islamic primary sources[edit]

The event is mentioned by the Muslim jurist Tabari. He wrote:

Surad b. 'Abdullah al-Azdi came to the Messenger of God with the deputation from al-Azd. The apostle put him in command of those of his people who had accepted Islam and ordered him to fight the polytheists from the tribes of the Yemen with them. Surad b. 'Abdallah then left with an army by the Messengerof God's command and alighted at Jurash, which at that time was a closed city inhabited by Yemeni tribes. Khath'am had sought refuge with them, and when they heard that the Muslims were Marching they shut themselves in it. The Muslims besieged them for about a month but the tribes refrained from coming out of the city. Surad withdrew from them, appearing to return. While he was near a mountain called Kashar, the inhabitants of Jurash, thinking that he had fled from them, came out in pursuit of him. When they overtook him he turned on them and inflicted a heavy loss on them.

The people of Jurash had sent two of their men to the Messenger of God while he was in Medina to explore and see [what was taking place]. One evening, after the afternoon prayer, while they were with the Messenger of God, he inquired in what country Shakar was. The two men from Jurash got up and replied, "O Messenger of God, there is a mountain in our country called Kashar, and the people of Jurash call it likewise." It is not Kashar but Shakar", he replied. They said "What is [the news of it], O Messenger of God?". He replied "Camels brought for sacrifice to God [at Mecca] are being slaughtered there now." Then the two men sat with Abu Bakr, or with 'Uthman, who said to them, "Woe to you! The Messenger of God has just now announced to you the death of your people, so go to him and ask to pray... [Tabari, Volume 9, The last Years of the Prophet, pg 88–89][7]

The event is also mentioned by the Muslim Scholar Ibn Sa'd in his book "Kitab al-tabaqat al-kabir".[8]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Tabari, Al (25 Sep 1990), The last years of the Prophet (translated by Isma'il Qurban Husayn), State University of New York Press, p. 88, ISBN 978-0-88706-691-7 See pg 88–89
  2. ^ a b Muir, William (August 1878), The life of Mahomet (Full free digitized version), Kessinger Publishing Co, p. 219 
  3. ^ a b c d e f Jandora, John Walter (1990), The march from Medina: a revisionist study of the Arab conquests, Kingston Press, Original from: University of Michigan, p. 42, ISBN 978-0-940670-33-4 
  4. ^ a b c d e f Watt, William Montgomery (1981), Muhammad at Medina, Oxford University Press, p. 120, ISBN 978-0-940670-33-4 
  5. ^ Muir, William (August 1878), The life of Mahomet (Full free digitized version), Kessinger Publishing Co, p. 220 
  6. ^ Muir, William (August 1878), The life of Mahomet (Full free digitized version), Kessinger Publishing Co, p. 206 
  7. ^ Tabari, Al (25 Sep 1990), The last years of the Prophet (translated by Isma'il Qurban Husayn), State University of New York Press, p. 46, ISBN 978-0-88706-691-7 
  8. ^ Sa'd, Ibn (1967). Kitab al-tabaqat al-kabir,By Ibn Sa'd,Volume 2. Pakistan Historical Society. p. 398. ASIN B0007JAWMK.