Sunan Abu Dawood
|Original title||سنن أبي داود|
|Part of a series on|
Abu Dawud compiled twenty-one books related to Hadith and preferred those ahadith which were supported by the example of the companions of Muhammad. As for the contradictory ahadith, he states under the heading of 'Meat acquired by hunting for a pilgrim': "if there are two contradictory reports from the Prophet (SAW), an investigation should be made to establish what his companions have adopted". He wrote in his letter to the people of Mecca "I have disclosed wherever there was too much weakness in regard to any tradition in my collection. But if I happen to leave a Hadith without any comment, it should be considered as sound, albeit some of them are more authentic than others". Hadith Mursal (a tradition in which a companion is omitted and a successor narrates directly from Muhammad) has also been a matter of discussion among the traditionists. Abu Dawud states in his letter to the people of Mecca: "if a Musnad Hadith (uninterrupted tradition) is not contrary to a Mursal or a Musnad Hadith is not found, then the Mursal Hadith will be accepted though it would not be considered as strong as a Muttasil Hadith (uninterrupted chain)".
The traditions in Sunan Abu Dawud are divided in three categories. The first category consists of those traditions that are mentioned by Bukhari and/or Muslim. The second type of traditions are those which fulfil the conditions of Bukhari or Muslim. At this juncture, it should be remembered that Bukhari said, "I only included in my book Sahih Bukhari authentic traditions, and left out many more authentic ones than these to avoid unnecessary length".
Abu Dawud collected 500,000 hadith, but included only 4,800 in this collection. Sunnis regard this collection as fourth in strength of their six major hadith collections. It took Abu Dawud 20 years to collect the hadiths. He made a series of journeys to meet most of the foremost traditionists of his time and acquired from them the most reliable hadiths, quoting sources through which it reached him. Since the author collected hadiths which no one had ever assembled together, his sunan has been accepted as a standard work by scholars from many parts of the Islamic world, especially after Ibn al-Qaisarani's inclusion of it in the formal canonization of the six major collections.
Sunan Abu Dawud has been translated into numerous languages. The Australian Islamic Library has collected 11 commentaries on this book in Arabic, Urdu and Indonesian.
- Jonathan A.C. Brown (2007), The Canonization of al-Bukhārī and Muslim: The Formation and Function of the Sunnī Ḥadīth Canon, p.10. Brill Publishers. ISBN 978-9004158399. Quote: "We can discern three strata of the Sunni hadith canon. The perennial core has been the Sahihayn. Beyond these two foundational classics, some fourth/tenth-century scholars refer to a four-book selection that adds the two Sunans of Abu Dawud (d. 275/889) and al-Nasa'i (d. 303/915). The Five Book canon, which is first noted in the sixth/twelfth century, incorporates the Jami' of al-Tirmidhi (d. 279/892). Finally the Six Book canon, which hails from the same period, adds either the Sunan of Ibn Majah (d. 273/887), the Sunan of al-Daraqutni (d. 385/995) or the Muwatta' of Malik b. Anas (d. 179/796). Later hadith compendia often included other collections as well.' None of these books, however, has enjoyed the esteem of al-Bukhari's and Muslim's works."
- Various Issues About Hadiths
- Ignác Goldziher, Muslim Studies, vol. 2, pg. 240. Halle, 1889-1890. ISBN 0-202-30778-6
- Scott C. Lucas, Constructive Critics, Ḥadīth Literature, and the Articulation of Sunnī Islam, pg. 106. Leiden: Brill Publishers, 2004.
- Ibn Khallikan's Biographical Dictionary, translated by William McGuckin de Slane. Paris: Oriental Translation Fund of Great Britain and Ireland. Sold by Institut de France and Royal Library of Belgium. Vol. 3, pg. 5.
- Australian Islamic Library
- Arabic Wikisource has original text related to this article: Sunan Abu Dawud
- Translation and Commentaries in English, Urdu, Arabic and Indonesian Languages
- English translation of Sunan Abu Dawud