Ibn Wahb

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Muslim jurist
'Abd Allah ibn Wahb ibn Muslim al-Qurashi
Title Ibn Wahb
Born 743 CE (125 AH)
Fustat, Egypt
Died 813 CE (197 AH)
Ethnicity Berber
Era Abbasid Caliphate
Region Medina and Egypt
Jurisprudence Maliki
Main interest(s) Fiqh Hadith

'Abd Allah ibn Wahb (743 – 813 CE) (125 AH – 197 AH ), better known as Ibn Wahb was an important Egyptian early jurist in the Maliki school. He was one of Malik's best known companions and had a tremendous influence in spreading the Maliki school in Egypt and the Maghreb.


Ibn Wahb was of Berber descent through his grandfather Muslim, although he was allied to the Arab tribe of Quraysh. He stayed with Malik for about twenty years, and disseminated his fiqh in Egypt. He studied not only with Malik but also with many of the companions of Ibn Shihab al-Zuhri. Ibn Wahb took from more than four hundred shaykhs of hadith in Egypt, the Hijaz and Iraq, including Sufyan al-Thawri, Ibn 'Uyaynah, Ibn Jurayj, 'Abdu'r-Rahman ibn Ziyad al-Ifriqi, Sa'id ibn Abi Ayyub and others. Many also related hadiths from him.

Ibn Wahb has a high standing in the Maliki school as he was one of Malik's first and most prominent companions. Al-Asbagh, one of the students of Malik's companions said of him, "Ibn Wahb was the companion of Malik with the most knowledge of the Sunnah and traditions although he related from men who were weak". Ibn Wahb himself recognised that some of his hadiths were weak. He said, "if it had not been that Allah rescued me through Malik and al-Layth, I would have been lost. I knew many hadiths, and that confused me. I used to present them to Malik and al-Layth and they would say, 'Take this and leave that'".

Malik esteemed and loved Ibn Wahb. He did not spare any of his companions criticism except for Ibn Wahb. Malik used to call him "the faqih" when he wrote to him. Ibn Wahb was one of those who spread Malik's school in Egypt and the Maghreb. People travelled to him to learn Malik's fiqh both during Malik's lifetime and after his death. He left many excellent books, including what he heard from Malik which took up about 30 volumes. He died in 197 AH (813 CE) at the age of 72.[1]


  1. ^ Some of Malik's Students (This is taken from the section on Imam Malik in The Four Imams by Muhammad Abu Zahrah, soon to be published by Dar al-Taqwa)