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Jariri is the name given to a short-lived school of fiqh that was derived from the work of al-Tabari, the 9th and 10th-century Persian Muslim scholar in Baghdad. Although it eventually became extinct, al-Tabari's madhhab flourished among Sunni ulama for two centuries after his death.[1]


University of Oxford lecturer Christopher Melchert describes the Jariri school as semi-rationalist, similar to the Shafi‘i school.[2] It also shared features with the Ẓāhirī school in addition to the Shafi‘is.[3]

The Jariri school was frequently in conflict with the Hanbali school of Ahmad Ibn Hanbal. The Jariri school was notable for its liberal attitudes toward the role of women; the Jariris for example held that women could be judges, and could lead men in prayer. Conflict was also found with the Hanafi school on the matter of juristic preference, which the Jariri school censured severely.[4]

Al-Tabari's was characterized by strong scripturalist tendencies. He appears, like Dawud al-Zahiri, to restrict consensus historically, defining it as the transmission by many authorities of reports on which the Sahaba agreed unanimously. Like Dawud al-Zahiri, he also held that consensus must be tied to a text and cannot be based on legal analogy.[5]


Bosworth, C.E., Encyclopedia of Islam, "Al-Tabari, Abu Djafar Muhammad b. Djarir b. Yazid"

al-Mawardi, Ahkam fi Usul al Fiqh


  1. ^ Brown, Jonathan A. C. (2014). Misquoting Muhammad: The Challenge and Choices of Interpreting the Prophet's Legacy. Oneworld Publications. p. 193. ISBN 978-1780744209. Although it eventually became extinct, Tabari's madhhab flourished among Sunni scholar for two centuries after his death.
  2. ^ Christopher Melchert, The Formation of the Sunni Schools of Law, 9th-10th Centuries C.E., pg. 69-70, 74-76, 80 and 83-86. Taken from Studies in Islamic Law and Society, Vol. 4. Leiden: Brill Publishers, 1997.
  3. ^ Stewart, Tabari, pg. 339.
  4. ^ Devin J. Stewart, "Muhammad b. Dawud al-Zahiri's Manual of Jurisprudence." Taken from Studies in Islamic Law and Society Volume 15: Studies in Islamic Legal Theory. Edited by Bernard G. Weiss. Pg. 135. Leiden: Brill Publishers, 2002..
  5. ^ Devin J. Stewart, "Muhammad b. Jarir al-Tabari's al-Bayan 'an Usul al-Ahkam and the Genre of Usul al-Fiqh in Ninth Century Baghdad," pg. 339. Taken from Abbasid Studies: Occasional Papers of the School of Abbasid Studies, Cambridge, 6–10 January 2002. Edited by James Montgomery. Leuven: Peeters Publishers and the Department of Oriental Studies, 2004.