'Ubadah ibn al-Samit

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'Ubadah ibn al-Samit Ibn Qais bin Asram bin Fahr bin Thaalbah bin Ghanem bin Auf bin (Amr bin Auf) bin Al Khazraj
عبادة بن الصامت
Born38 B.H
DiedD 34 AH
Resting placeJerusalem, Palestine
Known forBattle of Badr

Battle of Uhud

Battle of Khandaq

Battle of Khaybar

Battle of Hunayn

Expedition of Tabouk

Ridda wars(unspecified battles)[1]

Siege of Emesa[1]

Battle of Tartus[1]

Siege of Latakia[1]

Battle of Ajnadayn

Siege of Damascus

Battle of Yarmouk

Siege of Jerusalem

Siege of Babylon fortress

Siege of Alexandria

First conquest of Cyprus

Second conquest of Cyprus
FamilyShamit Ibn Qais Ibn Asram Ibn Fahr(Father)[2]
Qarat al-Ain Bint 'Ubadah bin Nidhal al-Khazrajiyya(Mother)[3]
Umm Haram(wife)
Jamilah bint Abi Sa'sa(wife)[4]
'Aws ibn al-Samit(brother)
Nussaybah Bint al-Samit(sister)
Ubaydah ibn 'Ubadah(son)
Walid ibn 'Ubadah(son)

Ubadah ibn aṣ-Ṣāmit (Arabic: عبادة بن الصامت‎), was a notable companion of Muhammad and a well respected chieftain of Ansar tribes confederation, which participated in almost every battle during the Muhammad era.

His official title, according to the Muslim scholarly tradition, was 'Ubadah bin Saamit al-Ansari al-Badri (Arabic: عبادة بن صامت الأنشاري البدر‎) due to his attendance in Battle of Badr.[5]

He was also who served under the first three caliph of Rashidun in the Muslim conquest against Byzantine from Egypt until Levant campaigns. This included helping the Caliphate to lead the first Caliphate naval armada in history under Muawiya I, which conquered the island of Cyprus, thus marked 'Ubadah as one of the most successful military commanders in history of Rashidun army.

'Ubadah participated in at least seven large scale military campaigns during his life before ending his career as a Qadi or Islamic judge in Palestine assisting Muawiya I, who at that time served as governor to impose stable order in said area until his death.

In general, the Islam scholarship community regarded 'Ubadah as influential Companion of Prophet that transmitted many hadith, which became basis of Fiqh ruling in various matters.[6][1]

Life in Yathrib[edit]

Early life[edit]

Hailing as prominent chief of the Khazraj tribe, 'Ubadah is a descendant from Yemeni Arabs that settled in Yathrib, which formed the Aws and Khazraj tribe.[7]

Pledge of Aqaba[edit]

Sometime before the migration of prophet Muhammad from Mecca, 'Ubadah and other Aws and Khazraj tribe chieftains, such as Abdullah ibn Rawahah, ʿAbdullah ibn Haram, Sa'd ibn Ubadah, and Abu Talha al-Ansari met Muhammad in mount Aqaba during their journey from Medina to perform Hajj in Mecca. In historical literature, these clan leaders are said to have done Hajj to see enlightenment after they grew weary due to the conflicts that were happening between their tribes. Particularly the latest civil war of Yathrib, which Muslim historians called Battle of Bu'adh, is an event that was described to be very destructive in result to causing many traumatic casualties. 'Ubadah, Sa'd and other chieftains were described to have had their heart broken after witnessing the aftermath of the battle.

Then on their way towards Mecca, 'Ubadah and his clan leaders' colleagues met with Muhammad, who preached Islam to any Hajj pilgrims he met. They listened to his preaching until they thought of Muhammad as the solution to their problem as they thought Muhammad can unite their conflicting tribes in Medina. They also immediately pledged their allegiance to him, marking this event as the first pledge of al-Aqabah. At the time, Ubadah ibn Aṣ-Ṣāmit RA was around forty years old.[8][9]

Later he also participated in the Second pledge at al-Aqabah, where 'Ubadah narrated the event

When the Meccan Muslims were doing Hijra to seek refuge in Medina, called Yathrib at that time, 'Ubadah and his fellow Aws and Khazraji immediately gave shelters to the Meccan Muhajireen (refugees). The Prophet instructed 'Ubadah to take an oath of brotherhood with the Muhajireen, named Abu Marthad al-Ghanwi.[12]

Battles under the Prophet[edit]

Battle of Badr[edit]

During the Prophet stay in Yathrib, 'Ubadah participated at the battle of Badr. This battle specifically elevated 'Ubadah status as a patron of Islam in a view of both early and contemporary Muslim scholars. By attending this battle also earn 'Ubadah a title of al-Badri, which bestowed specially to Muslims who attended the battle.[5][1] 'Ubadah giving his testimony regarding the aftermath of the battle when the Muslim army discussed about their prisoners of war which recorded Al-Bukhari narrated in his Sahih that Abdullah bin Umar[5]

Later, he also recorded in Seerah Nabawi participated in the battle of Uhud.

Later on, 'Ubadah who is one of Ansar tribe chief announced that he annulled the alliance with Jews of Banu Qaynuqa due to an accident happened between the Prophet and Banu Qaynuqa Jews and after revelation of verses 51 and 52 of Al Ma'idah from the Prophet. 'Ubadah position as respected head clan even able to counteract Abdallah ibn Ubay, another Khazraji chief who favored the Jews. In the end, the entire clan instead followed 'Ubadah and goes to support the Prophet[13]

'Ubadah then expelled Banu Qaynuqa from Medina and gain the Jews abandoned numerous Date palm gardens as booty for Muslim community of the city. the he continued to serve in Battle of Khandaq[14]

Accident during raid on Banu Mustaliq[edit]

The Ansaris under 'Ubadah and his colleague, Sa'd ibn Ubadah followed an Expedition of al-Muraysi', expedition along in January 627 against Banu mustaliq. the Muslim raid succeeded in this operation after they have taken. Two hundred families were taken as captives, two hundred camels, five thousand sheep, goats, as well as a huge quantity of household goods which were captured as booty.[15] However, there is an accident during the battle where 'Ubadah unintentionally killed one of his Ansari clansmen, Hisham ibn Subabah by mistake.[16]

Sometime after the treaty of Hudaybiyya, he participated at the battle of Khaybar.[1] Until death of the Prophet, Ubadah practically participated in all battles under Muhammad before the Prophet's death[14]

Writer of Qur'an[edit]

Muhammad ibn Ka'b al-Qurazi narrated that during the time of Prophet, 'Ubadah are among those who collect and write down Qur'an along with Muadh ibn Jabal, Abi ibn Ka'b, Abu Ayyub al-Ansari, and Abu Darda[17]

Service under Rashidun caliphate[edit]

After the prophet's death, The Medinan Ansaris including 'Ubadah along with Meccan Muhajireen quickly discuss matters regarding who should continued the leadership of the still infant Muslim community. at first 'Ubadah and his clansmens nominated Sa'd ibn 'Ubadah. however the Muhajireen nominated Abu Bakr instead. It is noted that the Ansars does not complaint and agreed to select Abu Bakr as a Caliph to lead the overall Islam authority, causing the progress of the Muslim leadership election goes smoothly in Muslim citadel.

Under Caliph Abu Bakr[edit]

Later after the selection of the first Caliph, rebellion outbreaks happened in almost all territory of the caliphate. 'Ubadah then commanded by Caliph Abu Bakr to join the army to smash rebellions across Arabia although it is not specified which battles he involved.[18][19]

Under Caliph Umar[edit]

According to David Nicolle, the four Rashidun contingents left the capital Medina between the autumn of 633 to 634. then Khalid converged with other contingents led by generals such as Abu Ubaydah ibn al-Jarrah, Yazid ibn Abu Sufyan, Amr ibn al-A'as and Shurahbil Ibn Hasanah around that time.[20] 'Ubadah, Abu Darda, and Muadh ibn Jabal was sent to Syria after Yazid asking the Caliph to sent him preachers who can teach the newly subdued Christian population in Syria. nevertheless, 'Ubadah later at some point was tasked to also assist the military campaigns in Syria as he is also known for his military ability.[1][12]

Campaign in Levant[edit]

route of 'Ubadah army under Abu Ubaidah and Khalid when conquering Damascus, Homs, Latakia, Jablah, and Tartus.

During the time of Caliphate Umar bin Khattab, there was request for reinforcement from Syrian front during Rashidun conquest of Levant. Umar Al Khattab sent Ubadah ibn Aṣ-Ṣāmit to join forces with Abu Ubayda ibn al Jarrah and the famous Khalid ibn al-Walid.[1]

Ajnadayn battle[edit]

Waqidi recorded 'Ubadah ibn al-Samit participation in the Battle of Ajnadayn where he lead a small decoy squad consisted of women and children to deceive the Byzantine army and lure them so they could be baited before main army led by Khalid ibn Walid came to finish the Byzantine army.[21] soon as the 100.000 soldiers of Byzantine under Vardan were trapped as 'Ubadah and Khalid trample the enemy ranks until the enemy were routed and retreat to Damascus This battle ended that at least 50.000 Byzantine soldiers killed, including their general, Vardan[22][23]


during the Siege of Emesa between 635 and 636 AD. It is said that 'Ubadah role during the siege were prominent.[1] After the Muslim armies successfully occupied Homs, Abu Ubaydah appoint 'Ubadah as his deputy in Homs while Abu Ubaydah himself goes to capture Hamah city. 'Ubadah stayed there along with his wife, Umm Haram who often accompanying her husband wherever he goes to war.[24] An interesting note came from Bukhari, as he narrated from the Khalid ibn Ma'dan, whose reported that he heard Umair ibn Aswad al Ansi once told by Umm Haram who at the time accompanying 'Ubadah in Homs that the prophet once tell her:

Similar narration also told by 'Umair ibn Aswad al-Ansi who has been told by Umm Haram when 'Umair visiting 'Ubadah residence in Homs[12]

Further record came from testimony of a Abd al-Rahman al-Awza'i, a Tabi'un and founder of now extinct Awza'i Madhhab. Imam Awza'i saying that 'Ubadah are the first Wali or Caliphate Governor in Palestine.[4]


Waqidi also noted in his chronicle of the conquest of Sham that 'Ubadah was also participated in the Battle of Yarmouk. Heraclius sent a messenger to Vahan ordering him not to start the war with the Muslims until he sends to the Muslims a messenger promising that he would send annually much money and gifts to their Commander Umar ibn Al-Khattab and to all their Amirs and that they can have all that is between Al-Jaabiya and Al-Hejaz. Vahan reluctantly doing Heraclius order to no avail.

Later Vahan sent Jabalah ibn al-Aiham, ruler of Ghassanid ally to negotiate for the second time since Vahan though only an Arabs could reach out to negotiate with their kinds. Jabalah was then came to the Muslims as envoy and speak to threaten Muslims to retreat and abandon their intention to go war with the Byzantines, since the Byzantines had about 200.000 mens consists of Greeks, Slavs, Franks, Georgians, Armenians and Christian Arabs. Jabalah promised safety if they do.[26] Abu Ubayda instead sent 'Ubadah ibn al Samit. It is said that Jabalah was impressed by the appearance of majestic and dark appearance of 'Ubadah. then 'Ubadah to Jabalah replied in confidence as 'ubadah make it clear that the Muslims does not consider to abandon their intention from conquering Byzantine territory in Levant. :

Ubada ibn Al-Samit said

Later on, after they managed to beat the Byzantine coalitions in Yarmouk. 'Ubadah along with the army of Abu 'Ubaydah and Khalid continued their conquest until they reached the outermost of Northern Syria, where they turned south to pacify the shore areas of Levant. firstly 'ubadah was sent to subdue Tartus or Tortosa, a coastal fortress city.[27] as 'Ubadah has occupied Tartus, Muawiyah came to the city and further fortified the town. Muawiyah then gave fiefs to the garrison commanders[28]


after Tartus subdued in 636, 'Ubadah commanded by his superior, Abu 'Ubaydah to march towards Jablah and Latakia.[29][30][1] Latakia, which at the time was named Laodicea in accordance to its Seleucid ruler founders.

'Ubadah meet a particularly stiff resistance from local garrison. 'Ubadah observed that the city has massive gate that could only be opened by numbers of men. Then 'Ubadah ordered his mens to camp from distance, then they digging a trenches which could hid a horse rider along with the horse. the soldiers are noted as putting their efforts to dig such earthworks. Then 'Ubadah and his army now pretended to return to Homs during daylight, while later in night 'Ubadah ordered the army to return quietly and hid themselves inside the trench. As soon as Peoples in Latakia though 'Ubadah has left, they opened the gate and drove forth their cattle.

Having sensed the opportunity, 'Ubadah immediately ordered his entire army to launch the attack. the Byzantines were caught in surprise until they are too late to close the gate as 'Ubadah swift movement has passed them. 'Ubadah climbed the wall then shouted takbeer battlecry which followed by his soldiers with booming echoes resonancing around the fortress of Lattakia as they charging. this act terrified the Byzantine defenders to the point they are flee in terror towards Al-Yusaiyid, leaving the city of Latakia. Thus allowing 'Ubadah to completely subdue the city.[28]

The fleeing Byzantine soldiers and local citizens returned and surrendered to 'Ubadah. then 'Ubadah accepted their surrender and allowing them to return to their homes at specific conditions, including the obligation to pay Kharaj land tax.[28]

'Ubadah did not raze any buildings including churches. then 'Ubadah started to build mosques and took a stay for while in here to impose order of Caliphate to the freshly subdued population. one particular great mosque(Jami), Jami' al Bazaar or Mosque al-Bazaar built by 'Ubadah ibn al-Samit. this Mosque still stands until today. the Latin named Laodicea city now renamed to Latakia or Al-Ladhiqiyah[27][31]


Finally, he joined the main force of Muawiyah to conquer Caesarea in 640, Ubadah ibn Aṣ-Ṣāmit appointed to lead the Right Flank of Muawiyah corps during the last battle the Romans put up at Qaysariyyah or Caesarea Maritima. It was a hard-fought battle as the Muslims were repelled several times. Finally, `Ubadah climbed down his horse and began advancing towards the Romans. Several others joined him. Ubadah and several of his mens crushing the Byzantine ranks in single charge and breaking the stalemate. This resulted the Muslim armies achieved complete victory against the historical territory of Byzantine which led to the formation of Jund Filistin military district of the Caliphate. this ended the long journey of 'Ubadah in Levant

During this time, 'Ubadah was appointed as the first governor of Jund al Filistin, or caliphate military district of Palestine[32][30][1]

Transferred to Egypt[edit]

During the siege of Babylon fortress in Egypt against the Byzantine forces. In July, 'Amr wrote to 'Umar requesting reinforcement; Later Caliph Umar has giving a letter to accompany the reinforcement to 'Amr

those 4 commanders whose praised personally by 'Umar consisted of two veteran Muhajireen, Zubayr Ibn al-Awam and Miqdad ibn al-Aswad, a young ansari commander named Maslama ibn Mukhallad al-Ansari, and 'Ubadah himself. These reinforcements arrived at Babylon sometime in September 640.[1] Imam Awza'i also recorded that he witnessed the Muslim conquest of Egypt where he confirmed that 'Ubadah were among one of those who was sent to aid 'Amr ibn al-Aas[4]

Battle of Heliopolis[edit]

Soon as the reinforcement in Egypt, Amr ibn al-Aas, as his zeal renewed by the new reinforcement, decide to take the Byzantine in pitch battle on the open field. in early to mid July 640, Heliopolis. The 8.000 of 'Amr soldiers with the lead of Zubayr, 'Ubadah, Maslama, Miqdad, Bisr ibn Abi Artat, defeated the much 20.000 Byzantine army under theodore[34][35]

Siege of Babylon fortress[edit]

Later on the Muslims under 'Amr ibn al Aas besieging the fortress of Babylon. the siege taken months in stalemate. During the siege, both sides exchanged envoys in an effort to demoralize each others.[1] Then on the last days of the siege, 'Ubadah was sent heading a delegation to Muqawqis to negotiate for the last time. It is said that Muqawqis became afraid to 'Ubadah as he saw 'Ubadah dark and majestic appearance. Ubadah then mocking Muqawqis in written chronicle:

lastly 'Ubadah gave him three options: accept Islam, pay Jizyah, or fight it out in accordance as 'Amr ibn al-Aas instruction. It is said that Muqawqis, after the negotiation ended, speaking to his aide regarding 'Ubadah

"I was afraid to that man appearance. But im more afraid to the way he talks[1]

Following consultations, the Byzantine forces opted to fight it out, and the same day the fortress fell to Muslims due to the courageous act of Zubair ibn awam who climbed the fortress wall alone and opened the gate from inside.[1]

Siege of Alexandria[edit]

After the fortress has been taken, 'Amr then consulting with Maslama ibn Mukhallad. Then Maslama suggest 'Amr to give a field command to 'Ubadah to take attack Alexandria. 'Ubadah rode to 'Amr, Then 'Amr immediately giving him his spear of command.[36] Thus, 'Ubadah immediately rode toward the army and gave speech before commence general attack to Alexandria[37]

'Ubadah then lead a detachment to launch attack to Alexandria on the same day. 'Ubadah repeated his strategy of ambush trench in Latakia in the past. 'Ubadah firstly dug deep trenches and hid huge portions of his troops inside. this act done without being acknowledged by Byzantine defenders in Alexandria, So it is likely 'Ubadah doing this before the battle happened. the trenches described being so deep and huge that its described can hid a rider along with his horse entirely. Then as soon he and his main force has arrived at the outskirt of Alexandria, 'Ubadah gave signal to the entire army including those who hid in the trenches to launch general assault. Ubadah launch a powerful strike, which said successfully breach and rout the Alexandrian garrison forces on the very first charge.[12]

After the conquest completed, 'Ubadah stay in Egypt for while assisting 'Amr to built Fustat city and its landmark, Mosque Amr ibn al-Aas.

Campaign of Anatolia[edit]

Shortly after entire Sham pacified and 'Ubadah has completed his tasks in Egypt, 'Ubadah dispatched by caliph Umar to assist Muawiyah I to attack `Amuriyyah or Amorium during winter of 23 Hirj[38], or 644 AD with a forces of 10,000 with him. This campaign northernmost continues until Muawiyah reached an area in Anatolia called Shaifa[38].

Becoming Judge in Palestine[edit]

Later at some points during the last years of the life of Caliph Umar, the Caliph wanted to appoint 'Ubadah as a governor permanently in Homs. 'Ubadah humbly reject the offer instead, which prompted 'Umar insisted until 'Ubadah agreed instead to be appointed as Qadi in Palestine. 'Umar reasoning that the grip of Caliphate and the influence of Islam still new in that area, so he need someone with high integrity and strong personality to impose strict order in the newly conquered area[14]. 'Umar going as far as he give 'ubadah independent authority to the point 'ubadah can implement his own authority outruling Muawiya, who is the de facto governor of Levant. Thus he became the first Qadi or Islamic jurisprudence judge in Palestine. 'Ubadah also spent his time to taught people the Quran and hadith during his tenure as Qadi, opening a public lecturing Majlis[14] and leading sermons in Palestine[39][1]

Under Caliph Uthman[edit]

The middle age depiction of Cyprus island, where 'Ubadah ibn al-Samit under Muawiya conquered

First Conquest of Cyprus[edit]

After the ascension of Uthman ibn al-Affan as new caliph, Muawiyah further pressed the caliph to allow him building a navy to attack cyprus. Muawiyah reasoned that the Cyprus has became a satellite island of Byzantine forces which can threaten the Caliphate in the western banks of Palestine [40]

Ubadah along with some veteran companions of prophet such as Miqdad Ibn al-Aswad, Abu Dhar GhiFari , Shadaad ibn Aws, Khalid bin Zayd al-Ansari, and Abu Ayyub al-Ansari also participated in building the first Naval armada of caliphate led by Muawiya.[41][42] before he joined Muawiya project to built first naval forces of the caliphate, 'Ubadah joined force with another famous Muslim general, Abdallah ibn Qais. Together with Muawiyah they built the very first backbone of Caliphate naval armada with Muawiya in Acre with permission from Caliph Uthman ibn al-Affan. Abu Dharr also mentioned another big name, Miqdad ibn Amr al-Aswad also participated in this expedition to Cyprus Island [43]

shortly, Muawiya and 'Ubadah departed from Acre. they later goes to Cyprus.[44]

According to al-Baladhuri and Khalifa ibn Khayyat, Mu'awiya and 'Ubadah led the attack were accompanied by his wife Katwa bint Qaraza ibn Abd Amr of the Qurayshite Banu Nawfal while 'Ubadah also bringing his enthusiastic wife, Umm Haram, whom narrated the prophecy of Hadith which she believed related to this campaign. Anas ibn Malik, her nephew quoted the prophet's words hadith:

The embarked forces of Muawiya and 'Ubadah quickly pacified almost every Byzantine garrisons as there are at least 50 military operations of Muawiyah were occurred in Cyprus between this first campaign in 648 until 650 at the end of the campaign[40], which strengthened by the evidence of two Greek inscriptions in the Cypriot village of Solois cite those two offensives were occurred between 648 and 650.[45] . The entire Cyprus were surrendered for the first time after their capital, Salamis, were surrounded and besieged for unspecified time. However, the wife of 'Ubadah, Umm Haram deceased during the campaign due to accident[40].

Then Muawiyah and 'Ubadah accepted the surrender of the Cyprus under the condition that they will not doing anything hostile to the territory of Muslims, informing the caliphate for any Byzantine movements, paying Jizya with amount of 7.200 dinar anually, and never giving any information to outsiders regarding the caliphate military operations[40]

Second conquest of Cyprus[edit]

Years later on the year of 32 Hiri or 652 AD, the Cyprus island rebelled against the caliphate and causing Muawiyah and 'Ubadah to mount the second campaign to the island[40].

This time Mu'awiyah and 'Ubadah split their forces into two, which one is led by Mu'awiyah himself while the other were led by Abdallah ibn Sa'd. This punitive campaign were described in Tarikh fi Asr al-Khulafa ar-Rashidin as particularly brutal as there are so many died in the campaign and the captives from the Cyprus forces are so abundant[40].

As soon as they pacified the entire Cyprus for the second time, 'Ubadah saying to Mu'awiyah:

Then Muawiyah giving 'Ubadah the task to manage the spoils of war. After finished with the spoils of war, Muawiyah consulted with one of his officer named Ismail bin Ayyasy as Muawiyah does not want such uprising happened again. After the consultation Muawiyah decided he placed a garrison of 12.000 soldiers to guard Cyprus. Muawiyah also transferring portions of Muslim settlers from Baklabak, Syria to Cyprus while also constructing Mosques to help the islamization program on the Island.[40]

Later, the Muslim forces accepted the surrender of Cyprus and spared them as they paying Jizya tribute to the caliphate. Then after securing Jizya tribute from governor of Cyprus, this forces marched forward.[44] This campaign paved the way for the more successful second campaign many years later where the famous Battle of the Masts, which also known to the Muslim historians as Battle of Dhat al-Shawary occurred, where the first Muslim naval forces proven themselves as more than a match for the Byzantine mariners. This battle occurred after 'Ubadah death.[44]

Later life and death[edit]

At the end of his military career,'Ubadah retired himself to Palestine and remained there.

Entrance to the Bab al-Rahma Cemetery, Jerusalem, where the grave of 'Ubadah ibn al-Samit is located.

During the time of turbulence in Medina when Caliph Uthman faced dissidents from Khawarij sect and portions of the followers of Abdullah ibn Saba, which is regarded as embryo of Shia sect. 'Ubadah are among one of those who expressed his support towards Uthman. He, Mu'awiyah, Kharijah ibn Huzafah of Egypt, Anas ibn Malik, Hisham ibn Amir, Abu Darda, and Tabiin disciples of Abdullah ibn Masud in Kufah were among those from outside Medina who urged the caliphate army to take action against the Khawarij dissidents in Medina.[43]

It is further described that 'Ubadah along with other senior Companions such as Ali ibn Abi Thalib, Thalha ibn Ubaydillah, Zubayr ibn Awwam, Usama ibn Zaid and Abdullah ibn Abbas does not appreciate the revolts from Abdullah ibn Saba follower, which headed by Yazid ibn Qais and Malik al-Ashtar against the Caliph[46]

'Ubadah died in Ramla in age of 72.[47][48][49] He said in his deathbed:

Personal life[edit]

Physical appearance[edit]

According to the research of Dr. Khalid Basalamah Lc, MA, by interviewing the Imam of Al-Aqsa mosque during a visit to 'Ubadah grave in Palestine. the Imam described through oral tradition which has been passed through generations in Palestine that 'Ubadah is "handsome man with dark skin".[1] This also nodded by Ibn Hajar in his Siyar A'lam Nubala in chapter of 'Ubadah where he describe 'Ubadah as physically attractive[52]

furthermore, the Imam noted 'ubadah is "very muscular. so ripped and huge the Ansari is that his forearm size are equal to the span of adult male handpalm".[1]

Several historians also noted how his enemies, such as Muqawqis, governor of Egypt and Jabalah, leader of the Ghassanid Arabs in the battle of Yarmouk were struck in awe by extraordinary appearance of the hulking and dark skinned 'Ubadah.[1]


'Ubadah have a sister named Nusaybah.[7]

His father is Shamit Ibn Qais Ibn Asram Ibn Fahr while his mother named Qarat al-Ain Bint 'Ubadah bin Nidhal al-Khazrajiyya

His brother, 'Aws bin al-Samit was married with Khawla bint Tha'labah, a female companion of prophet who has been mentioned in Surah al Mujadalah

Records from Bukhari and Muslim has written the words from Anas Ibn Malik that 'Ubadah was married with Umm Haram bint Milhan during the First conquest of the Island of Cyprus with Muawiyah, when Umm Haram died during the campaign. Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani translate this that 'Ubadah just married with Umm Haram during the campaign. However, Ibn Ishaq disagree with this and translate words of Anas as Umm Haram was already married with 'Ubadah even before the campaign. Ibn Hajar further argued that there are another record from Ibn Hibban that Umm Haram were just married with 'Ubadah, Thus causing Dr. Ibrahim al Quraibi, author of Tarikh ul-Khulafa, siding with the opinion of Ibn Hajar[53]

'Ubadah also married to Jamilah bint Abi Sa'sa' and they had son named Walid ibn 'Ubadah[4]

His son, Ubaydah ibn 'Ubadah ibn al-Samit, was buried in Egypt[54]

Character assessment[edit]

'Ubadah was known in his biography as fearless warrior in battlefield. He once recorded for displaying his personal bravado at sometime when the Muslims had besieged a fort of Byzantines. Ubadah was found alone praying in a field. A few Roman soldiers came down, but before they could come close, he jumped to his horse and advanced towards them. The Byzantine soldiers fleeing in panic and dropped down their arms to distract him in the chase. But Ubadah b. As-Samit RA chased them until they were in the safety of the fort. As he returned, he paid no attention to the arms they had dropped down.[36]

'Ubadah were also known as clever commander who able to deploy brilliant strategies according to situation such as the strategy of ambush trenches which allowing him to successfully beat difficult strongholds such as Latakia in Syria and Alexandria in Egypt

Historians described 'Ubadah as stern man with high confidence who can not easily intimidated by his enemies during negotiation which shown before the Siege of Alexandria and before the battle of Yarmouk.

'Ubadah also known as solemn person who detest sycophants. He once attended a Friday prayer in Damascus where the khatib of the sermon prayer are overpraising him, as 'Ubadah are a chief judge of the time. then 'Ubadah throwing a mud to the face of Khatib. then 'Ubadah speaks quoting prophet words:

"Did not the Prophet, Peace and Allah blessing belong upon him, said that when we saw a person extolling virtues to his face, then we should throw mud to his face?"[55] 

Despite this difficult attitude, However, Caliph 'Umar himself seems had high esteem on 'Ubadah. 'Umar respect him so much as honest ascetic with good integrity and competent employee which shown how 'Umar has favored the Medinan veteran by giving him so many important tasks during his time as Caliph. the Caliph once also praised him as a man compared to 1000 soldiers in quality during the campaign in Egypt. This gesture are analyzed by scholars to describe how the Caliph helds 'Ubadah in high confidence he can do the impossible odds, despite the 4.000 reinforcements from Medina are deemed insufficient since there are at least still 100.000 of Byzantine army left in Egypt According to 'Amr ibn al-Aas report in his letter to the Caliph[1]

In another occasion, 'Umar even goes to backing up 'Ubadah when the latter enganged in some trouble with Muawiyah. in response, 'Umar keep 'Ubadah as Qadi judge while giving him a degree of autonomy so Muawiyah, who is the governor of Syria at the time cannot interfering any verdict passed by 'Ubadah[1]


It is said by Dr. Khalid Basalamah the prominence of 'Ubadah in conquest of Egypt and Levant are noted by Middle Ages and contemporary historians praised 'Ubadah as a patron of Qur'an and Hadith exegesis science while also praised as venerable military figure whose contribution to the spread of Islam in Syria, Palestine and Africa are almost incomparable. until this day his presence is revered by many Palestinian Arab community which preserving his memorial tomb in Ramla, Palestine.

Historical book author Simon Sebag Montefiore also write in his book the keeper of 'Ubadah tomb until this day 21th century modern era was hailed from Nusaybah clan, a modern Arabic generation claimed as descendant of both 'Ubadah and Nusaybah, sister of 'Ubadah.[56] the Palestinian Arabs in general also regards 'Ubadah as influential figure which evidenced by the public sermon by Dr. Yusuf Juma Salama, one of official khattib of Al-Aqsa Mosque that also speaking the virtue of 'Ubadah ibn al-Samit as the first judge of Palestine, in one of his sermon[57]


Jami' al-Bazaar mosque in Latakia built by 'Ubadah ibn al-Samit during conquest of Levant

'Ubadah proven he is an able architect which shown after the conquest of Latakia city. When he administering the city, 'Ubadah built Great mosque of al-Bazaar. The mosque has two western entrances. And south of the mosque leading to the courtyard of the mosque, which is a heavenly open space recently roofed with boards of raspberry, and follows the intended bowl from the eastern side, two open sky spaces open in front of the mosque's mosque, it is a rectangle that is covered with six stone arches, and a minaret of the mosque is of medium height, and stands on its highest base on the one hand The south is a sundial drawn on a rectangular slab of marble on which an inclined person is installed by which daylight hours can be identified and the mosque does not contain any urban artistic touches except for some decorations on the entrance and the minaret and adjacent to the mosque from the western side is an old bathroom, until 2009 2 April, the mosque was headed by Imam Professor Bilal Shaheeri [58]

Another example of his architecture expertize are when he finished the conquest in Egypt With `Amr bin al-`Aas, he was involved in planning and developing the city of Fustat and was also involved in constructing the first mosque in Egypt which exists till today known as the mosque of `Amr bin al-`Aas. He along with some prominent Sahaba or companion of the prophet such as Zubayr ibn Awam, Abu Darda, Miqdad ibn Amr al-Aswad also constructed and decided the Qibla or direction of the prayer of the mosque.[59][1]


Quran exegesis experts generally accepted 'Ubadah participation in the Pledge of the Tree are Asbab al-nuzul of the verse 55-56 of Al-Ma'idah, which is one of the factor that 'Ubadah are venerated in the Muslims community[1]

Furthermore, Tradition from Al-Tabarani and bayhaqi agreed the revelation of verse 51 to 52 of Al Ma'idah also linked with 'Ubadah. Where the verses reprimanded 'Ubadah to not follow the path of hypocrite like Abd-Allah ibn Ubayy who taking companionship from heretics like Jews and Christian[60]


Ibn Hajar in his book, Siyar a'Lam Nubala recorded there are at least one hundred and eighty one hadiths, and he has six Bukhari and Muslim six, and Bukhari two hadiths and Muslim two hadiths were transmitted from 'Ubadah[52]

Muslim scholarship community in general has remembered 'Ubadah as one of influential Sahaba or companion that transmitting many hadith narrations from the Prophet which many of them became correspondence basis for many fiqh rules in Sunni Madhhab.[6][1] one of the most famous narration were regarding the Hadith that narrated from his wife from the Prophet himself regarding the Prophecy that the Islamic caliphate will dominate the sea in two occasion. general consensus of the Muslim scholars has though this hadith are referencing the First conquest of Cyprus and the second campaign which followed years later, where 'Ubadah participated in both campaign.

Muslim scholars of Sunni Maddhabs are narrating a Hadith transmitted from 'Ubadah :

Maddhab scholars from Hanafi, Hanbali, Shafii, Maliki and other smaller and extinct Madhhab schools like Madhhab of Sufyan al-Thawri has taken this Hadith as a basis of Sharia law regarding governorship and conduct of ruling that a loyalty and obedience to the rightful rulers or leaders are a part of Muslim obligation.[53]

Another example of Hadith from 'Ubadah which has been used as basis for Madhhab scholars were a Hadith narrated by Ibn Shihab al-Zuhri which he attributed to 'Ubadah through Mahmud ibn al-Rabi that he said he heard the Prophet saying:

This Hadith has become a basis of Fiqh scholars to formulate the ruling that Al Fatiha are obligatory to be recited in every Salah ritual for Muslims[61]

A specific Hadith from 'Ubadah were also attributed as a metric by Muslims to measure the existence and omen of Laylat al-Qadr, which held in big importance in their faith:

Scholarly view[edit]

Aside from being one of prime transmitter of hadith, Sunni scholars also classified 'Ubadah as being among the higher ranked Companions of the Prophet, due to his being an Ansari and attending the First and second pledge in Aqabah, the Battle of Badr, and the Pledge of the Tree, a pledge which played role later in the participants of the Battle of Khaybar.[62][1]

Earliest Muslim scholars records as Imam Ahmad also supported 'Ubadah veneration status as evidenced from Ahmad ibn Hanbal.[63]

The status as veteran of Battle of Badr are particularly special in the eyes of scholars as the Prophet has regarded those his companions who attended Badr are among the highest in Islam.[5]

Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani, also attributed his praise. Ibn Hajar even listed a specific chapter of personal biography of 'Ubadah bin al-Samit in his Siyar a'lam Nubala[52]

See also[edit]


Primary source[edit]

  • Bukhari; Sahih Bukhari
  • Muslim; Sahih Muslim
  • Bayhaqi; Sunan Bayhaqi
  • Al-Tabarani
  • Tarikh at Tabari
  • Ibn Hajar; Siyar A'lam Nubala
  • Baladhuri; Futh al Buldan
  • Waqidi; Futuh as-Sham
  • Ibn Hisham;
  • Ibn Kathir; al-Bidayah wan-Nihayah
  • Ibn Abdul Hakam; Futh al Misri wal Akhbaruha


  1. ^ It was called Baiat an Nisa, or Pledge of the Women, because of the presence of 'Afra bint 'Ubaid ibn Tha'labah, who was the first women to swear an oath of allegiance[10]
  2. ^ Referencing Al-Mumtahanah verse 12


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External links[edit]