Rayhana bint Zayd

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Rayhāna bint Zayd (Hebrew: ריחאנה בת זידRaychana bat Zayd, Arabic: ريحانة بنت زيد‎) was a Jewish woman from the Banu Qurayza tribe.

Rayhana was originally a member of the Banu Nadir tribe who married a man from the Banu Qurayza. After the Banu Qurayza were defeated by the armies of Muhammad in the Siege of the Banu Qurayza neighborhood, Rayhana was among those enslaved, while the men were executed for treason.

According to Ibn Ishaq, Muhammad took her as a maiden slave and offered her the status of becoming his wife if she accepted Islam, but she refused. According to his account, even though Rayhana is said to have later converted to Islam, she died as a slave.[1]

Ibn Sa'd writes and quotes Waqidi that she was manumitted but later married by Muhammad.[2] According to Al-Halabi, Muhammad married and appointed dower for her. It is further narrated that, upon marriage, she refused to wear the hijab, causing a rift between her and Muhammad. The couple later reconciled. Ibn Hajar quotes a description of the house that Muhammad gave to Rayhana after their marriage from Muhammad Ibn al-Hassam's History of Medina.[3]

In another version, Hafiz Ibn Minda writes that Muhammad set Rayhana free, and she went back to live with her own people. This version is also supported as the most likely by 19th-century Muslim scholar, Shibli Nomani.[4]

She died young, shortly after Muhammad's hajj and was buried in Jannat al-Baqi cemetery.[5] Not much is known about Rayhana; she died a year before Muhammad.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Guillaume, Alfred. The Life of Muhammad: A Translation of Ibn Ishaq's Sirat Rasul Allah, p. 466. Oxford University Press, 1955. ISBN 0-19-636033-1
  2. ^ Ibn Sa'd. Tabaqat. vol VIII, pg. 92–3. 
  3. ^ Ibn Hajar. Isabaha. Vol. IV, pg. 309.
  4. ^ Nomani, Shibli (1979). The Life of the Prophet. Vol. II, pg. 125–6
  5. ^ al-Halabi, Nur al-Din. Sirat-i-Halbiyyah. Uttar Pradesh: Idarah Qasmiyyah Deoband. vol 2, part 12, pg. 90.  Translated by Muhammad Aslam Qasmi.