Talk:Battle of Mu'tah

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I removed reference to Donner from the box because he doesn't sites any Byzantine source, but rather states his own opinions. (talk) 04:08, 30 October 2008 (UTC)

Removing Christian perspective by the above user was unfortunate, because Donner is at least scholarly secondary source. I came up to this article accidentally, and the comment above at the talk page, made me interested in topic. I made a short humble research and came to conclusion that was right, but deleting any reference to Donner outright was rush decision. Wikipedians correctly reversed deletion, but I feel necessary to state in the article that Donner rather states his own opinion.
By the way I appreciated Jagged85's contribution to article (see view history page). It seems that he is one of the main contributors to the final state of article and he didn't involve much in the rifraf here, on the talk page. (talk) 00:36, 11 November 2010 (UTC)


Missing wikipedic form: "You can visit the tombs..., the venerable companion..., Zaid fought in matchless spirit of bravery until he fell..., Credited with great wisdom and piety..." - This is a hagiographical narration, no sober encyclopedic article. Probably a copyvio as well. --tickle me 01:43, 20 February 2006 (UTC)


Upon a quick skimming, I really had no idea how/why/what the battle of Mut'ah was, just that people died from it. It is very descriptive of the tombs however, so i think that this might actually fit into a different artic, maybe Shrine's near/from Kerak. I couldn't really grasp any of the nuances (if recorded) of this battle. Chapparal 21:42, 24 February 2006 (UTC)

This is the first time I am contributing and I am not sure if this is how to do it. I just want to highlight that if anyone knows how to change the cross symbols/icons at the side of the fallen commanders at the muslims side? I think it should be changed to crescents instead of crosses. It was a battle among muslims and christians and as they are not christians here, they should change that. Frankly speaking, when i read it was kinda misleading. Thanks you. Effendy aka fendyoasis, 16 December 2010. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 03:56, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
The cross symbols are nothing to do with religious affiliation-they are the convention for marking someone who died in the battle!-- (talk) 21:40, 18 January 2011 (UTC)

No matter what it is, it should be changed. There is a reason why in Palestine we call the ambulance there the "Red Crescent" instead of the "Red Cross". A cross is still a cross, refers to christianity so it is a religious affiliation. It was misleading when I read it the first time and altough I know now it refers to people who died in battle, out of respect to the fallen muslim warriors, it should be changed. I don't think they want that symbol beside their names. Please remove the symbol totally and just replace it with "KIA" or something. I would do it it if I know how. Signed fendyoasis. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:53, 25 January 2011 (UTC)

To whoever that changed the cross symbols to "KIA", thank you. Waited for almost a year for that, I went in today and it has changed. As I said, I would have changed them myself if I know how to do it. Signed fendyoasis. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:52, 17 January 2012 (UTC)

And what the...why did somebody changed "KIA" back to the cross symbol. Who did that? Please change it back. They are muslims, they are not christians and whoever gonna give this BS about it has nothing to do with religious affiliation should be shot. Signed fendyoasis. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:34, 13 August 2012 (UTC)

These are Daggers not crosses, stop being butthurt about them.--Rafy talk 22:02, 15 August 2012 (UTC)

They are still crosses. Look it up in wikipedia yourself with the search word CROSS. Why dont we just let Red Cross be Red Crosses then in the muslim countries? Remember the riot around the world when somebody made a stupid movie to condemn Islam?? We take this matters seriously. This is not a petty thing. These people are not the prophet but they are the finest muslims that ever lived. I will try and make the necesasry changes and change the cross into KIA. If it has been done, pleased nobody change them back into crosses. We are asking in a nice way here. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 06:03, 18 September 2012 (UTC)


The place is clear, however, not really showable. Only can be shown in near/from sentences. There is now a university [1] there. In early Islamic history, there, was a place that best swords had been made. But in certain Islamic sources, this battle is known.

Its importance may not be seeable to everyone, but its heroic story is well known among muslims. Though, it is said that the Byzantinian army was 100.000, in some sources, it is also said that it may be 15.000. The important thing is the muslims were outnumbered.

This battle is fought because the Gassanid-Byzantinian King Shurahbil had killed the messenger of the prophet. It was not decided to be a battle of ten of thousands men. It was only an adventure, sort of, that the Prophet had to punish the kingdom that killed his messenger. In turn, Shurahbil, may have heard the power growing in Arabia and gathering Arabs in union, so, he may have thought that a big army is coming, or may have thougth to punish them. Because Arabia was, kind of, no-man's land or a place no one wants, only keeping there in silent was acceptable. At that time, also Persian Empire wanted this silence, because Yemen was in control of the Persian Empire. Yemen near that time (it is certain that nearly a couple hundreds year before ) was a nice place with plenty of water. But it is known that a flood made this area a desert. Whatever...

And there is a mistyping or similarity in the name.. Some one calls the place (as in wikipedia) Mut'ah. It is the a name for a type of marriage (not very acceptable to muslims). Also there is a link at the bottom of the page in the Mut'ah. Some calls it Mutah, some calls it Mootah, some calls it Mûtah. Turks calls it Mûta. I think we must overcome this at first, I mean finding the real name.

Western sources usually do not note this battle, because, it has not viable consequences for the history. Think of a weird battle,one part had some gain, and the other part was outnumbered but had gainings too in battle. At last, this part withdrawed from the battle, and the outnumberer part did not follow them. What do you call this. A victory, a defeat? Islamic scholars have been arguing about that for 1400 years. Mfyuce 19:46, 4 March 2006 (UTC)mfyuce

Another Islamic propaganda, eh? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:52, 10 May 2013 (UTC)

Third opinion[edit]

I agree that the article is in need of a cleanup, as some of the wording needs improvement e.g. "you can visit". As a compramise, how about adding the article to the category in question, so it appears on the correct cleanup list but without having the banner splashed across the top? Regards, MartinRe 12:24, 4 March 2006 (UTC)

Thx, which cat would that be? [[Category:Cleanup]] doesn't exist, and I found nothing appropriate in Wikipedia:Browse? --tickle me 00:42, 5 March 2006 (UTC)
Try [[Category:Cleanup from February 2006]] which is the category {{cleanup-date|February 2006}} puts it in. (The generic category is [[:Category:Wikipedia cleanup]], btw.) Regards, MartinRe 07:45, 5 March 2006 (UTC)


I have removed the word 'martyred' from the first paragraph.i can understand why it was used,but it is the muslim POV.--Hectorian 13:05, 20 March 2006 (UTC)

Ok, in order to stop reverts concerning the word 'prophet' i think it is better to let the article be the way it is now:mentioning the word only once in the beginning. --Hectorian 20:24, 1 April 2006 (UTC)
Or maybe would it be better to say 'Prophet of Islam'? --Hectorian 20:26, 1 April 2006 (UTC)
I think its fine putting it in once at the beginning and leaving it after that. --Irishpunktom\talk 20:28, 1 April 2006 (UTC)
Yeap,this is what i said. it is nice the way that u have edited it, to redirect to 'Prophets of Islam'. so, no problem... --Hectorian 20:32, 1 April 2006 (UTC)
Calling Muhammad a "Prophet" is POV because many people think otherwise; this is why we call him just Muhammad as per Wikipedia:Manual of Style (Islam-related articles). Pecher Talk 20:35, 1 April 2006 (UTC)
If we wrote 'Prophet of Islam' instead of just redirect there? would that be better? or just omitte the word? --Hectorian 20:39, 1 April 2006 (UTC)
I've C&Ped the term used in the MOS. --Irishpunktom\talk 20:39, 1 April 2006 (UTC)
Sorry 'bout the edit conflict Irishpunktom...Seems that now is just fine! --Hectorian 20:42, 1 April 2006 (UTC)
I don't agree. In my estimate, this is just your way of retaining the POV phrase "prophet Muhammad". You are not really trying to inform people.Timothy Usher 07:01, 2 April 2006 (UTC)

Flying Jafar[edit]

Might someone explain to me how this Jafar fellow managed to hold up the banner without any hands?Timothy Usher 01:15, 24 April 2006 (UTC)

You may want to ask an eyewitness :). Pecher Talk 18:50, 24 April 2006 (UTC)

Yeah, you are right... They say, he managed to hold it with his arms, not with his hands. Because his hands were cut, not his arms...Mfyuce 16:53, 30 June 2006 (UTC)mfyuce


Anon, what are the sources for the information you've added to this article?

Also, we shouldn't be using language like "inviting them to Islam."Timothy Usher 00:27, 31 May 2006 (UTC)


The Arabs only lost 14 of their 3000 troops, but 3 of those casualties were commanders? This seems unlikely. OlYeller 15:08, 31 May 2006 (UTC)

Maybe it's like Star Trek, where the highest-ranking officers are the first (and only ones) on the scene?
Except in Star Trek they do usually take a few faceless people along but its always those that get killed, not the commanders. Jedi Master MIK 16:12, 8 March 2007 (UTC)
Seriously, this article is unsourced nonsense. We need serious editors on the case.Timothy Usher 05:36, 1 June 2006 (UTC)

Muslim Commanders of that war were the idol of the fight, who fought in front. This encourages the soldiers. They are not like the commanders of our time. Our commanders administer the fight on a hill near the battle field, so no harm comes to him. This is why so many muslim commanders killed in that battle. Mfyuce 16:58, 30 June 2006 (UTC)mfyuce

Commanders of our time? Our commanders are not cowards. Besides, why can't everyone just accept that it was a clear cut Byzantine vicory? The Muslims completely obliterated the Byzantines anyways at Yarmuk. Why not just Boast Yarmuk. That should keep some face. Its all about keeping face.
Ok correction, Commanders of that time used to get involved in the heat of the battle more so than today where they are particularly in the rear line planning and playing command & conquer; its not saying they're cowards but the way of doing it changes with how we mentally approach war then and today. Heck it was still like that to a degree one and a half centuries ago, the US civil war for example. Jedi Master MIK 16:12, 8 March 2007 (UTC)

I have you know that most commanders in any military tend to work there way up from being front line troops and use that experience to their advantage. As for this battle its a complete joke to say less than 20 muslims got killed and call it a stalemate. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:46, 18 December 2007 (UTC)

Never said anything about their experiences on the battlefield before they get high end rankings. And the joke isn't to say that 20 Muslims out of 3000 died is a stalemate, it is to say that 3000 Muslims fought 100,000-200,000 Byzantines and lost only 20 themselves while the Byzantines lost 20,000; that is the absurdity we're trying to find a better estimate for and/or better number source. Jedi Master MIK (talk) 09:08, 22 December 2007 (UTC)


I protected this page since there is a revert war going on. Please discuss the page below, and when consensus is reached request the page be unprotected at WP:RFPP. Prodego talk 19:19, 1 June 2006 (UTC)

Prodego, you have protected an unsourced version of the article created by 3RR-violating sockpuppets, who don't bother with this discussion page anyhow - and why should "they"? Thanks to you, their tactics were entirely successful. Congratulations.Timothy Usher 19:53, 1 June 2006 (UTC)
I am sorry about this. However see m:Wrong version. The protection policy requires me to impartially protect the page, so I can not choose which version to protect. If consensus is gained then the page can be semi-protected, and changed to your version, but until then the page has to stay as it is. Prodego talk 21:06, 1 June 2006 (UTC)
As you'd already defended the sockpuppetter on Ami's page on the basis that the IP's were from Saudi Arabia - never mind that they're all sequential, and the talk pages read like rap sheets - and as you learned of User:Falso, a transparent sockpuppet (contributions, username - hello?) from Ami's page - your explanation is difficult to accept. The only "edit war" at the point it'd been protected was my post on Ami's page asking for a reversion because unlike Falso et al., I actually care about following the rules (yeah, I know, sucker!).
"I can not choose which version to protect." - well, of course you can, you're just not supposed to. Look, there was no reason to protect the page. Did someone ask you to? Maybe Falso? The "edit war" ended when 3RR was enforced, and would have ended again were WP:SOCK enforced.
There is consensus on the talk page. The sockpuppeteer has not joined the talk page, and again why should he?. What's there to talk about? He got his way, and he didn't have to discuss anything to do it.
User:Falso...come on. At the very least, your actions here are laughably negligent. Please reverse them, and block the puppet.Timothy Usher 23:08, 1 June 2006 (UTC)
I did not pick what version to protect. Protection was requested at WP:RFPP by Pecher. If you do not believe the IP was registered to the country of Saudi Arabia you can look up the IP on WHOIS. As I said before, if you gain consensus here then we can restore the page to the version consented upon. Prodego talk 23:12, 1 June 2006 (UTC)
I apologize for my unnecisarily skeptical tone. I did check Whois before reporting the 3RR violation, but can't see why its registration is relevant here, as it's obviously a single user.
I've a better solution: semiprotection. This would keep the anon 3RR violator off the article without blocking SA users generally (supposing that's even a possible consequence here), prevent him from opening more sockpuppets for this purpose and keep the article open for established users. Pecher, Prodego, what do you think?Timothy Usher 01:02, 2 June 2006 (UTC)
That was my original intent but the semi-protection policy says, "[It is] not to be used to deal with regular content disputes". I need consensus against the edits to be able to semi-protect the page. The problem with the IP address isn't that it is from Saudi Arabia, but if you read the WHOIS report it says "Part of this IP block has been used for proxy/cache service at the National level in Saudi Arabia. All Saudi Arabia web traffic will come from this IP block." Of course we can't block an entire country over a one person. So you just need to get enough people to agree (two or three should be fine), then the page can be unprotected. Prodego talk 01:10, 2 June 2006 (UTC)
I requested semi-protection on WP:RFPP upon Prodego's advice, so I'm surprised why Prodego chose to protect the page altogether rather than semi-protect it and thus prevent the sockpuppets from editing and circumventing 3RR. Pecher Talk 08:04, 2 June 2006 (UTC)
Really? I don't recall that, where did I advise that? (Unless you are talking about my comment to AmiDaniel) I had to fully protect it because of this section of the semi-protection policy. Prodego talk 12:10, 2 June 2006 (UTC)
"I think semi-protection would be a better choice here."[2] Looks like your words. Pecher Talk 14:32, 2 June 2006 (UTC)

Flying Jafar (2)[edit]

How he held the banner with no hands? Simple. After both of his hands were cut off, Jafar held the banner to his chest by pressing it with his upper arms, until he was killed. The event is known in many Islamic sources. He was given the name Flying Jafar because, from the muslim POV, Allah replaced his cut off hands with wings to fly in paradise.

P.S. I am not a sockpuppet. I am only contributing. Falso

Might you be willing to explain to me the reason for your username? And, how you came to know of this page? And how you learned to check article histories and revert? For starters.Timothy Usher 08:22, 2 June 2006 (UTC)

Compromise uncompromisingly improve this article[edit]

Okay, the above protection section isn't discussing the issue. Yes, it seems that the anon aren't exactly doing a great job sourcing things... but, let's discuss. We'll use this diff as the difference between the two versions.

The first thing is the version in use now only cites Philip Khuri Hitti's book. Does this book cover all of the differences? Honestly, this does read like hagiography... or its portrayal of individuals... that's fine if it's labelled as such and not presented as fact. So, can we source up some of those traditions... mention that they are traditions and should not be accepted as we would well documented history. Does that sound good? But, it all needs to be well sources... page, etc. from various sources. So, does this sound like a good basis? gren グレン 09:44, 2 June 2006 (UTC)

Compromise with 3RR violating sockpuppets? Forget it. I agree with you that we need sources, but first I want this user to admit to his misdeeds and affirmatively pick one username/address.Timothy Usher 09:50, 2 June 2006 (UTC)
Okay, I have changed the title... but, what I suggested still stands. What is cited is not accepted truth... it's a perspective from ... well, probably some traditions... so, it is reasonable to cite it as such, right? gren グレン 15:38, 2 June 2006 (UTC)

Remove protection?[edit]

This page has now been protected for three weeks. I have not seen any discussion on the issues in the article in the last two weeks. Are the parties moving towards a consensus or at least discussion? Unless there are objections, I am going to request unprotection. Calwatch 00:33, 19 June 2006 (UTC)

Yes, let's unprotect. Pecher Talk 08:03, 23 June 2006 (UTC)
Done. Prodego talk 15:21, 23 June 2006 (UTC)

Use of "Chaledos"[edit]

Chaledos is a single person - not a group of people. BhaiSaab talk 01:13, 24 June 2006 (UTC)

Question Marks in front of Muslim Commanders and number of "Casualties , but heavy"[edit]

Pecher, Why are their question marks in front of the names of Muslim commanders? There shouldn’t be any confuses as far as that is concerned, right. If you are confused about something that doesn’t mean you should make other confused as well. The Casualties part if you don’t know the numbers then how can you say "Unknown, but heavy". I don’t get it man where you come up with these kinds a things man. Were you present on the day of the Battle and were you counting the soldiers being killed from each side, no right so how can you say “Unknown, but heavy” and put question marks in front of the names of Muslim commanders. Please man; don’t try to hide the truth by trying to make it look like a part of confusion. Thank You Salman

There is no confirmation of their names from academic sources; it's just a Muslim tradition. Pecher Talk 21:22, 30 June 2006 (UTC)
What if I give you the titles of the books that contain information of them? I am not saying I am going to get you the book which is going to be completely written about them. I am saying about a page, two or more about them in a book. Every single person that is familiar with Islam knows about the members of Banu Hashim off their back and you are saying that Jafar ibn Abu Talib and the commanders of Muslims in the Battle of Mu'tah didn’t exist because “There is no confirmation of their names from academic sources; it's just a Muslim tradition”. I doubt it man. And what excuse do you want to state about the Casualties "Unknown, but heavy", let me think there is no confirmation on the numbers from academic sources; but I (Pecher) think "Unknown, but heavy". What's up with that Bro. Thank You Salman

Comments based on this diff. Questions marks are ugly and bad practice. It should be made into a footnote discussing what the sources are and the fact that it is not necessarily accepted by academics. If I'm not mistaken there are no contradictory commander names so that works.

Theodorus links to a generic page... so don't link it. Location should be "present day Jordan" probably... because it wasn't Jordan then. "Unknown, but heavy" is wordy and not very good. If there is any information (even if only traditions and not academic) then cite them as such. Ibn Ishaq says XXX about casualties or whatever the case may be... traditions are fine as long as they are noted marked in the proper context.

"According to the Muslim sources" is too vague. Because, the issue is historical Muslim traditions that tend to be far enough removed to not be fully trustworthy, to say the least. However, as it stands it's basically saying that Muslims can't be honest or academic about their history...

Before this turns into an edit war can we agree on that? gren グレン 22:09, 30 June 2006 (UTC)

I reverted to Pecher, Salman01s edits where not acceptable - whatever issued might need to be adressed. "Muslims can't be honest or academic": the article states indeed that Muslims bend history to further their aims all else did, from Jengis Khan to Charlemagne to Mao Tse Tung. That Muslim historiography and particularly the hagiography were acurate accounts to be understood literally is a stance evaluated critically even by major Muslim historians when there were. --tickle me 00:58, 1 July 2006 (UTC)
"Muslims bend history to further their aims" is a universal that cannot be substantiated... saying "Communists bend history to futher their aims" is not better. Because, the old Muslim sources which are very hagiographic are not Muslims. Modern Muslim scholars need not be hagiographic but using such a phrase as "According to the Muslim sources" lumps all Muslim sources into one category... when it is in fact exact sources of these traditions that are relevant (the level of acceptance in the Muslim community of these sources is also an issue--and the traditions are widely accepted as fact). gren グレン 07:18, 1 July 2006 (UTC)
I was to curt: the academic view section IMO doesn't make an unwarranted point of a general Muslim tendency of misrepresentation but points to the specified event in question. However, it would be good if the "traditional Muslim sources" cited would be specified, as their summarily mention leads to generalisations and slanted interpretation by the reader.
Striver: "Implying muslims are non-Academicians is FAR worse". Nobody does that, it doesn't follow. Besides, we write what can be sourced reliably, not about what "Everyone that knows what they are talking about" know. That just amounts to PA. --tickle me 19:19, 1 July 2006 (UTC)


I changed the "(?)" to [citation needed]. Its not questioned that they where there, only unrefereced. And no, i is not acceptable to state that non-Muslim scholars are "Acamecis", it implies that Muslim scholars are "non-academis", that is "idiots". We are not going to imply that Muslim scholars are sloppy, pious idiots. I would change it to "secular scholars", but there are christians in it, i would change it to "western scholars", but there are people in non-western countries among them. The only common thing is that they are non-Muslim and have deceided to ignore 1400 Muslim research and start from scrach. And therefore, they come to other conclusions. Also, they many times have a "Muhammad can not be a true prophet" pov, either since they are secular and dont belive in miracles, or since they are christians and need to belive he was a false prophet. Claiming non-Muslim scholars have the right to be labeled "Academics" in exlusion to Muslim scholars is nothing more than egocentric arrogance, and wikipedia is not going to tolerate such childish behavior.--Striver 11:50, 1 July 2006 (UTC) --tickle me 01:38, 3 July 2006 (UTC)

Along with undoing the unfortunate change of section title "Academic view" to "Non-Muslim view", perhaps it'd be better to label what is now called the "Muslim account" the "Traditional account"? That would seem significantly less presumptious in this regard. The current section titles "Muslim view" vs. "non-Muslim view" divides readers into camps before they've even read the text, instructing them which to favor according to their religious beliefs.Timothy Usher 16:29, 1 July 2006 (UTC)
Thank you for a atempted solution, but it does not cut it. Muslims are not "traditionanls" implying "retarded", while non-Muslims are "Academics" implyin "well-educated". No, thank you, no. --Striver 23:56, 1 July 2006 (UTC)
Striver, there's no such thing as the "Non-Muslim view" of the Battle of Mu'tah. Beyond the fact that most people have never heard of the Battle of Mu'tah, there's certainly no "non-Muslim" ideology, religious or otherwise, which asks that we have any particular view about it (or about most other things).Timothy Usher 02:33, 2 July 2006 (UTC)
If there is no non-Muslim view, than why are you quoting non-Muslim who have a view that differ from muslims? Dont play games and semantics with me, please.--Striver 03:48, 2 July 2006 (UTC)
Your excuses are really ridiculos, have you even bothered to read the article? "<disputed term> scholars find the Muslim account of the events as an attempt to find excuses for the Muslim defeat, ". Are you really claiming that <disputed term> is NOT "non-Muslims"? --Striver 03:54, 2 July 2006 (UTC)
Is there something fundamentally nonsensical about the allowance that a Muslim might be critical of traditional accounts of history? Perhaps the problem can be avoided by getting specific about sources - right now there's only Buhl, sourced by Pecher, I'd presume, from a subscription-only site. Whence does this "Muslim view" derive (which you've now just presented as "The Battle"), and whence the "academic view" (which you've retitled the "Non-Muslim view")? He-said she-said s a poor way of organizing articles.Timothy Usher 04:23, 2 July 2006 (UTC)
The roman guy is not going into the main view, since his data is disputed. Only undisputed facts go into the main view. If Muslim sources would say that the sun was split during the battle, non-Muslims would hade disputed that, and it would neither go into the main space, it would have gone into the "Muslim view" part. -striver, 05:59, 2 July 2006
"Muslims are not 'traditionanls' implying 'retarded', while non-Muslims are 'Academics' implyin 'well-educated'": The only academic view offered happens to be non-Muslim, you are free to add Muslim academics that comply with WP:RS. So far there are none.
"roman guy": No "roman guy" to be found. Making no difference between byzantine and roman is early Muslim parlance. The only academic view presented in the intro is the Encyclopaedia of Islam which is authoritative as long as not contradicted by sources of equal weight. --tickle me 19:45, 2 July 2006 (UTC)
Making difference between byzantine and roman is in fact "late western parlance". Byzantines never called themselves byzantines, they called themselves roman. The term Byzantine coined in 19th century. Before it the Byzantine Empire was called Eastern Roman Empire or just Roman Empire. (talk) 04:48, 30 October 2008 (UTC)

"The only academic view offered happens to be non-Muslim" — there, you just proved my point. You just sweeped all Muslims as non-academicians. except for the roman guy (no, I am not a acedemicans, nor do i care for the difference between roman and byzzrandom...), the only information that has survived is from Muslim scholars. When you say that "The only academic view offered happens to be non-Muslim", you are saying that those Muslim scholars are not academics. And that is a huge etnocentric bias, and even worse if you fail to understand it. To make it clear: You are sayin that Bukhari is NOT a academic, just because he is a Muslim. You should start by reading the article for it: Academia --Striver 22:03, 2 July 2006 (UTC)

That hardly merits answer: reliable scholarly sources per WP:RS are contemporary members of reputed academe, not primary sources superseded 1000 years ago like ibn Hisham or Bukhari. "etnocentric bias, and even worse if you fail to understand it": that's PA. "no, I am not a acedemicans, nor do i care for the difference between roman and byzzrandom...": could some admin put an end to this? If you don't agree with Pecher's version, amend accordingly, but don't encourage Striver by sitting idle. --tickle me 01:38, 3 July 2006 (UTC)
well I will repeat making difference between byzantine and roman is in fact "late western parlance". Byzantines never called themselves byzantines, they called themselves roman. The term Byzantine coined in 19th century. Before it the Byzantine Empire was called Eastern Roman Empire or just Roman Empire. IMHO tickle me has an ethnocentic POV, but trying to conceal it with hot air(talking I mean), and also talks about subjects he isn't familiar with, maybe even say ignorant. (talk) 04:58, 30 October 2008 (UTC)

So, are you now trying to claim that WP:RS only includes "contemporary members of reputed academe, not primary sources superseded 1000 years ago like ibn Hisham or Bukhari"? C'mon! Do you take me for stupid? You expect me to belive that wikipedia only acknowledges "contemporary members"? Do you expect to swallow that ibn Hisham or Bukhari are PRIMARY sources? --Striver 02:18, 3 July 2006 (UTC)

Hadith are considered primary sources... they are widely acknowledged by scholars all across the spectrum to be of varying quality and sometimes contradictory, and necessarily in need of interpretation and evaluation before use. - Merzbow 02:27, 3 July 2006 (UTC)
I think the crucial distinction here is between historical Muslim sources and modern scholarship. We shouldn't lump all Muslim scholars, past and present and future, on one side of this debate, so I added the qualifier 'historical' in a few places. I hope this helps. - Merzbow 02:37, 3 July 2006 (UTC)
I see that as a spirit of cooperation. You see, you are correct that hadith in them selves are a primary source, but when a scholar has autheticated it, it becomes a secondary source to quote it. So quoting Sahih Bukhari is a secondary source, just stating a random hadith from no book is a primary source. regarding "crucial distinction here is between historical Muslim sources and modern scholarship". Tell me the difference, in great detail. Tell me how the difference is NOT that the "modern scholarship" (as you refer to them) are non-Muslims. and tell me, were does the PRESENT Islamic centers of Qom (Shi'a) and Al-Ahzar (Sunni) come into your definition. Im still convinced that you lump al non-Muslims into "academic" and all muslims as ... "traditional","historical", random, anything but "academic". --Striver 15:25, 3 July 2006 (UTC)
True, Bukhari's words themselves would be a secondary source. - Merzbow 17:16, 3 July 2006 (UTC)
"Academic view" does not necessarily exclude Muslim sources. If you can find Muslims from those universities (or from wherever) discussing this battle in a reliable source, you're free to add this to the "Academic" section. - Merzbow 17:19, 3 July 2006 (UTC)
And what are "those universities (or from wherever)"? Is Qom and Al-Ahzar universities excluded from "those universities (or from wherever)"? If yes, why? --Striver 18:52, 3 July 2006 (UTC)
Nobody is excluding them. If you can find an English-language publication by a professor at one of these universities that discusses this battle, then add it. - Merzbow 20:29, 3 July 2006 (UTC)

Alright, so now we have established that they are accedmic, right? So, what happens when they happen to have the exact same view that you label "traditional" or "historical"? --Striver 20:55, 3 July 2006 (UTC)

Then you can add that to the academic section, saying "...but Professor X form Al-Ahzar agrees with the traditional view because XXX and YYY". - Merzbow 00:19, 4 July 2006 (UTC)

Khalid ibn al-Walid[edit]

His article disapered. --Striver 04:09, 2 July 2006 (UTC)

Wha...? I can't figure out what happened. Looks like a redirect conflict gone very awry.Timothy Usher 04:24, 2 July 2006 (UTC)

“Unknown, but heavy” and the Muslims section of this article[edit]

I don’t understand that why the Muslims accounts are being changes. I believe that only Muslims should write the Muslims section parts and non-Muslims should only add and make sure that whatever the Muslims have written on wikipedia is neutral. I don’t like that fact that whenever I write something in the Muslims section of this article, it always get reverted without the reason being discussed on the talk page. So I am only changing that Muslims section of this article and if someone doesn’t feel comfortable with the material in that section then please discus it on the talk page first. And again why is their “Unknown, but heavy” under the Casualties of Muslims. If the editor doesn’t know the numbers of Casualties then how can he say “Unknown, but heavy”. Thank You Salman

the muslim account of this battle is extremely unreliable. here's a quote taken from a summary of the muslim account of what happened. "In the six days of the fighting, all three Muslim leaders fell in the order of succession: first, Zayd ibn Haritha, then Jafar ibn Abi Talib, then Abdullah ibn Rawaha" ('tah.htm). seriously, just from that line alone it's pretty evident that the muslim account is a religious narrative as opposed to a historical account. The Byzantine empire didn't heavily report on the battle because it wasn't very significant at the time, but did indicate the enemy was routed, and during the route they killed three generals. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 08:02, 20 May 2010 (UTC)

No more citation needed[edit]

Now I believe that there shouldn’t be any “citation needed” in front of the names of Muslims commanders’. I am providing some websites that also say that the Muslims commanders (Zayd ibn Harithah, Jafar ibn Abi Talib, Abdullah ibn Rawahah, and Khalid ibn al-Walid) were commanding the Muslims army in the battle of Mu’tah. If I didn’t placed the citations properly then please do so but please do not revert the whole article. Thank You Salman

We need an academic source.Timothy Usher 00:17, 4 July 2006 (UTC)
Ans what about “Unknown, but heavy” under the Casualties of Muslims. If the editor doesn’t know the numbers of Casualties then how can he say “Unknown, but heavy”. Thank You Salman
"If the editor doesn’t know the numbers of Casualties then how can he say “Unknown, but heavy”": no comment, awesome. If the number is unknown we say exactly that. --tickle me 03:07, 5 July 2006 (UTC)

Battle of Mu'tah[edit]

TO Tickle Me: You've added in the history page: "a soldier's view is relevant only adhering to a literal interpretation of sources, which WP doesn't, else A.I. Akram is a non-descript, self-taught historian at best"

I added this links, because there was many people on the talk page requesting sources. I know, A.I. Akram may not be the source, but in his book, he shows many of them. He had studied very early islamic sources, and interpreted them. But he shows the sources, so anybody can look at them, then he may interpret. What do you say about this?Mfyuce 07:28, 3 July 2006 (UTC)mfyuce

Please cf WP:V, particularly "3.4 Self-published sources (online and paper)" and WP:RS:
  • 3 Beware false authority
  • 6 Using online and self-published sources
  • 8.1 History
All applies to a military who claims to be knowledgeable on history without proving his scholarship and without known and verifiable reference for his scholarly reputation in the field. WP policy doesn't mandate any source to be better than none. On the other side, the Encyclopaedia of Islam is a work of reference. Also, please post this on the article's page, where the discussion belongs. Unless you really understood WP:V, WP:RS, WP:NPOV, WP:NOT and WP:OR you won't succeed - we all had to read this sooner or later. --tickle me 11:10, 3 July 2006 (UTC)
well I will repeat, IMHO tickle me has an ethnocentic POV, but trying to conceal it with hot air(talking I mean). (talk) 05:04, 30 October 2008 (UTC)

196.204.*.* - please justify your edits[edit]

Mr 196.204.*.*, can you justify your continuous attempts to insert POV text into this article? The only source listed is the Encyclopaedia of Islam. Do you have this? If not, you are making unjustified changes. If so, please point out where it makes claims that 'His withdrawal plan was entirely successful'.- Merzbow 21:24, 5 July 2006 (UTC)

I have stopped inserting POV text. And no, I dont have the Encyclopaedia of Islam. I am only performing minor edits to the muslim view of the battle. Besides, it was stated before I wrote 'His withdrawal plan was entirely successful', that 'Al-Walid managed to save the remaining troops from complete annihilation', meaning he was successful. The reason I changed it in the Muslim view of the battle is because Islamic sources do not state that the muslims were going to be completely annhilated. Sherif9282

I don't think that necessarily implies 'His withdrawal plan was entirely successful'; maybe his actual plan was something else (hide behind a hill and ambush the attackers while withdrawing and hope to pull off an upset). That's why it's important to hew closely to the text of the source. - Merzbow 00:39, 6 July 2006 (UTC)
In many Islamic sources, it is said that Al'Walid reorganized the muslim army, by reshuffling the left and right flanks of the army and making new banners. He wanted to create the impression on the Byzantines that a new army had arrived from Madinah, and that the army the Byzantines had been fighting against for the past six days was hiding somewhere else. So when they retreated, the Romans didn't follow because they feared an ambush. They stayed behind, thinking the muslims might attack again, and the muslim army was safe. Sherif9282
Perhaps, but you can't modify the article to reflect that without actually referencing specific Muslim sources that are reliable according to WP:RS. - Merzbow 19:17, 6 July 2006 (UTC)
See Abbas Al-Akkad's book about Khaled ibn Al-Walid. Sherif9282

Messrs. Said, Ashqar & al-Ali[edit]

Two nobodies and, only possibly, a general might be a lot of things, arguably Muslim, but not anything bordering a relevant academic evaluation. Exceptional claims require exceptional evidence: if you are to disprove a standard reference, you're to prove that this concoction and its authors have any clout. Besides, what kind of doctors are the nobodies? Ophtalmologists, geologists? Self-styled or from a renowned university? Al-Azhar or Qom per chance? If so, do these institutions have authoritative info on these gentlemen, so we don't have to take their word for it?

Besides, where do they publish, apart from Argentine websites and the occasional souk? Is there more where this came from, telling us about "the angels' world, in the light of the qu'ran and sunnah"? Will university presses or renowned commercial houses pop up eventually? Seemingly le Docteur O. Ashqar is a Sheikh too - you may find them in large quantities in any mayor Islamic cities, ranging from the squat guy next corner underwriting the occasional legal brief for a couple of Dinars to the well respected al-Azhar professor. So, that doesn't cut it. --tickle me 16:18, 30 July 2006 (UTC)

I think what you're looking for has to do with this site:
well I will repeat, IMHO tickle me has an ethnocentic POV, but trying to conceal it with hot air(talking I mean). (talk) 05:07, 30 October 2008 (UTC)
And they do give more than those 3 people from the looks of it Jedi Master MIK 21:22, 28 March 2007 (UTC)

POV tag[edit]

The tag is unwarranted, obviously it's a means to force admission of unsourced or poorly sourced info - see above. --tickle me 23:49, 31 July 2006 (UTC)

certain point to mention[edit]

  • the figure for the number of muslims participating at the battle of mu'tah (3,000) is cited in za'ad al-ma'ad of ibn al-qayyim volume 2 page 155, fath al-baari volume 7 page 511 of ibn hajar, and subsequently ar-raheeq al-makhtoom (the sealed nectar) by mubarakpuri (sidenote: mubarakpuri puts the figure of byzantines present at a mere 200,000 i see it's already present in the article)
  • in the same works as mentioned above it is mentioned that khaalid ibn al-waleed made a strategic change (za'ad al-ma'ad page 156 of same volume, fath al-baari pages 513-514 of same volume, and again raheeq al-makhtoom- in which mubarakpuri explains that the nature of the change was the shuffling of the left and right flanks while bringing fighters from the rear into the front-line), which deluded the byzantines into thinking that the muslims had fresh reinforcements and thus made them unwilling to press forward- thereby allowing a calculated and successful withdrawl by the muslims with minimal damage.

therefore, some parts of the "traditional" account need change ([3] seems to be a more accurate narration of traditionalist perspective of events) ITAQALLAH 00:20, 1 August 2006 (UTC)

O dear, let's agree that sinister Orientalism's dominator, Mr. Mubarakfuri, is one Mr. Mubarakpuri, really. Not a good start to show off Islamic science's splendours, some ever suspicious pagan nit-pickers might say, so accuracy should rule to swat off those kafir flies devoid of higher intelligence and inspiration.
Anyway, good ol' Mubarakpuri studied in Medina - err, so he says? Well, they don't know him there, not even under his, ugh, maiden name. That's how a real academic's universitarian homepage looks like. Prof. Lewis doesn't need a wikipedian or an Islamic gift shop, retrievable only through the Google cache, to vouch for his academic reputation. Then again, "Madarsa Ehyaul Uloom, Mubarakpur", "Madarsa Faid Aam, Maunath Bhanjan District Azamgarh", etc. pp. - whoopie: he might just not want to mention it, but who am I to tell one Mr. المباركپوری.
Now, let's play the devil's advocate, if it's not a too unislamic thing to do: Let's assume he did study in Medina's alma mater. It happens that these pesky Chinese at Shanghai Jiao Tong University didn't rank it among the World's top 500 - or any Islamic, or Arab university, incidentally. Western prejudice? Communist prejudice? Capitalist prejudice? General non-Muslim bias? Zionist plot? I guess in the end this brains business is just a mess for most of us.
Now, to heap some ridicule to insult, and for proper academic evaluation, I got me a copy of that divine juice, some Western devilish evil doer even uploaded it to the net, thus depriving poor ol' Mub of his royalties. Guess what: not one mention of a scientific source on 225 pages! Not one Muslim, pagan, or Martian peer from academia! And we're not into footnotes either, aren't we? Are footnotes shirk, per chance? Just Qu'ran and Sunnah... Talking of which - something shocking's coming up: this masterwork of, ugh, Islamic science mentions the "Prophet" 1269 times, "Muhammad" 380 times and the combination "Prophet Muhammad" 26 times. However, Ol' Mub only PBUH's meagre 1392 times, leaving him naked 231 times, so to speak.
 "Prophet"              1269
 "Muhammad"           +  380
                      = 1649
 "Prophet Muhammad"   -   26
                      = 1623
 "Peace be upon him"s   1392
 PBUHs needed:          1623
 PBUHs given          - 1392
                         231 times missing salat, how makruh is that?
That doesn't speak well of Mr. Mubarakpuri's strict observance of the din's requirements, and if he can't do math properly, he isn't likely to become a reputable WP:RS ever, I'm afraid. I edited accordingly. --tickle me 16:04, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
BTW: "mubarakpuri puts the figure of Byzantines present at a mere 200,000": Real scholars, you now, those guys with the research thing going, estimate the maximum numbers of any Byzantine army ever having existed in the course of the empire's -remarkably well documented- 1000+- years of existence, somewhere in the lower 10,000s. 200,000 is a respected element of Islamic hagiography and should be mentioned ...there - like the rest of Mub's poetry in motion. --tickle me 16:04, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
well I will repeat, IMHO tickle me has an ethnocentic POV, but trying to conceal it with hot air(talking I mean). (talk) 05:09, 30 October 2008 (UTC)

well i have to admit 'tickle me', you've got me pretty puzzled! with all due respect i find your critique lacking almost any credibility whatsoever. i don't understand why you are focusing on the name "mubarakpuri", where "mubarakpuri" simply indicates the place he was born (i.e. mubarakpur, india) which i am sure you already knew. perhaps you should take a good look at the cover of raheeq al-makhtoom and see where it says "Islamic University Medina al-Munawwarah". it is endorsed by the islamic university of medina and thus easily qualifies as RS. the hard copy, of which i do not have immediate access to right now, also has a certificate of authentication from the university of medina. the book is published by dar-us-salam, the official press of saudi, and a well known muslim press. and as far as i know, mubarakpuri is currently working in riyadh. furthermore perhaps you should check out the abridged translation of ibn katheer into english (the only english translation of tafseer ibn katheer to my knowledge), which was done by mubarakpuri at the head of a "group of scholars" as claimed by dar-us-salam (mubarakpuri is referred to as "Head of the Research Committee of Darussalam" in the publishers note). his credibility and scholarship is proven (please be sure to read the overviews and publisher's notes for both publications in the links provided). therefore i don't quite understand why you have been so verbose in trying to dismiss him as an unreliable source. as for the honorifics (or lack of according to your wonderful OR), so what? are you going to discredit ibn hisham too? what about the plethora of historical texts written by muslim classical scholars which contemporary historians/encyclopaedias rely upon? or do they simply not exist just because you know not of them? hope that clarifies any misunderstandings ITAQALLAH 16:52, 1 August 2006 (UTC)

as for this ranking you have provided, which is extremely irrelevant in this context, then quite clearly it depends on what criterion they are ranked. islamic studies, which is what the university naturally and exclusively specialises in, does not seem to be one of them, or at least not a sinificant factor. regardless, i'm guessing that you are going to have to try much harder if you want to dismiss a verifiable, relevant and reliable source as non-RS. ITAQALLAH 17:26, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
i forgot to mention that perhaps you should note that the letter پ (pa) does not exist in the arabic language (it exists in urdu/hindi/farsi), which is why in arabic his name his written with a ف (fa)- and this is why his name is written as both mubarakfuri (or can be even mubarakburi) and mubarakpuri ITAQALLAH 18:47, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
What qualifies something as a reliable source is a process called "peer review" whereby the author's peers check the work for accuracy and compatibility with scholarly standards. This is the reason why works published by reputable scholarly journals and university presses qualify as reliable sources. We know exactly nothing about review processses at Islamic University of Medina, but we know for sure that on the scale of scholarly authority it's exactly nowhere. Another thing we can say for sure is that The Sealed Nectar is a piece of hagiogrpahy, not a scholarly work. The question is whether it qualifies as a good source source to describe the Muslim hagiographic view of the events. Here, the answer is "no". Biogrpahies of Muhammad are numerous, and they differ from each other; for example, in the number of the Byzantine troops cited. Therefore, to give to the reader a complete picture, we need a reliable academic source that would present a study of the most notable Muslim biogrpahies of Muhammad and give a concise picture, describing common and diverging features in Muslim hagiogrpahy. The Encyclopaedia of Islam qualifies as such source, The Sealed Nectar does not. Pecher Talk 19:13, 1 August 2006 (UTC)

regarding "peer review", i did request that the publishers notes be read. i quote:

The first Islamic Conference on Seerah (biography of the Prophet) was held in 1976 in Pakistan sponsored by the Muslim World League. The League announced a world contest for writing a book on the life of the Prophet. One hundred fifty thousand Saudi Riyals (SR 150,000) (forty thousand U.S. Dollars) was the grand prize for the best five books. One hundred and seventy-one manuscripts were received from all over the world. Out of these, eighty-five were in the Arabic Language, sixty-four in Urdu, twenty-one were in English and one in French and Hausa.

A board of highly qualified scholars judged the manuscripts and announced the results. The manuscript of Shaikh Safiur-Rahman Mubarakpuri, Jamiah Salafiyah Banaras (India), author of the book in hand (The Sealed Nectar) received first the grand prize of SR 50,000 (fifty thousand Saudi Riyals) for its authentic and sound collections of the narrations. Dr. Majid Ali Khan, New Delhi, India, placed second. The third prize went to Dr. Naseer Ahmed, Islamic University, Lahore, Pakistan. ...

... Afterwards, the book was published by the Muslim World League and then many other organizations gained the honor of publishing this masterpiece. Darussalam also published this book in the Arabic language. I had wished to publish this book in the English language for the wider benefit of humanity. Shaikh Safiur-Rahman willingly agreed to the idea and consented to publish the English translation. The stage of translation was traversed with the help of brother Mahir Abu Dhahab, owner and general manager of Markaz Noor Ash-Sham in Damascus, Syria. unquote.

the fact that it has been published by a number of presses, endorsed by the islamic university of medina and the Muslim World League indicates that it has received significant review and analysis.

" we need a reliable academic source that would present a study of the most notable Muslim biogrpahies of Muhammad and give a concise picture, describing common and diverging features in Muslim hagiogrpahy. "

you would thus be eliminating all scholarly secondary sources, notably those of muslim origin as they would be denounced as hagiography. even then, the sealed nectar is a tertiary source as it brings together material from secondary sources like ibn hisham, ibn al-qayyim and ibn hajar et al. and cites secondary sources in a large number of the paragraphs. i will set up an RfC for this so we can establish the relevance and reliability of the source. ITAQALLAH 20:08, 1 August 2006 (UTC)

"i forgot to mention that perhaps you should note that the letter پ (pa) does not exist in the arabic language (it exists in urdu/hindi/farsi), which is why in arabic his name his written with a ف (fa)- and this is why his name is written as both mubarakfuri": thx for informing me, I did bother to check the ف option, knowing the sloppyness present whenever Islamic sources are cited, alas, that didn't help a wee bit. Speaking of which: "regarding "peer review", i did request that the publishers notes..." Non datur, we don't go for some publisher's pompous flourishes of spiced blurb on behalf of his author. If Mr. Mubarakpuri studied in the past and works at the moment at Medina university, as he claims, they're supposed to inform the public. They wouldn't be ashamed of such prestigious collaborator, would they? Not that it matters, given the institution's thunderous rep. Again, speaking of sloppyness: Saifur Rahman al-Mubarakpuri would spell himself Saif al-Rahman al-Mubarakpuri if he was well advised by somebody knowledgeable about proper transliteration, but the Merciful's Sword seems not to be too sharp a cutter.
"are you going to discredit ibn hisham too? what about the plethora of historical texts written by muslim classical scholars which contemporary historians/encyclopaedias rely upon? or do they simply not exist just because you know not of them?". Thx again for assuming you need to educate me, always refreshing. I had a heated discussion on de about Ibn Ishaq, which Mr. Ibn Hisham was so friendly to edit. And no, I won't discredit those guys, both were accomplished scientists, in a time when the Islamic world had real cloud on that turf - ugh, 8th and 9th century, isn't it? And I won't stand to discredit any Muslim classical scholar, the point is: they were secondary source to their contemporaries, but they are mere primary sources now. "Contemporary historians/encyclopaedias rely" on them only if they happen to be of the Mubarakpuri kind - the rest evaluates them critically, while not diminishing their rank, quite in the contrary - unskilled idolatry does.
"you would thus be eliminating all scholarly secondary sources ... the sealed nectar is a tertiary source as it brings together material from secondary sources like ibn hisham, ibn al-qayyim and ibn hajar et al.": again, no, I wouldn't. Ibn Hisham, Ibn al-Qayyim & friends are actually, as explained before, primary sources. Thus the sealed ambrosia isn't a tertiary source, at least not to the academic, the pious has other views on that. That sweet secretion is a compilation of primary sources, and a pious one as such.
However, you're not the only one to mix up the source business: Al-Azhar's Grand Sheikh Tantawy, when writing one of his academic, err, works, took the Protocols of the Elders of Zion as -reliable & reputable- secondary source too, when they're -disgustingly sloppy made- primary, ugh, secretions ...on their own behalf exclusively, for all other concerns they're just third grade forgeries. They just don't make'em Grand Sheikh's like they used too ...say, in the 11th century. --tickle me 22:12, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
A facetious addendum, if you allow. "you should take a good look at the cover of raheeq al-makhtoom": no, again, again again, I shouldn't. What's said of publisher's blurb is true for book covers as well. It boils down to this: don't judge any book by it's cover - nr.1 rule in life ...and when going for the real Mcoy. à propos: you might want to mail Mr. Tantawy on behalf of the RfC below... I'm all ears what our inbred in-house specialists will come up with on the subject. --tickle me 23:00, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
well I feel obligated to repeat, IMHO tickle me has an ethnocentic POV, but trying to conceal it with hot air(talking I mean). (talk) 05:13, 30 October 2008 (UTC)
Saifur Rahman al-Mubarakpuri would spell himself Saif al-Rahman al-Mubarakpuri if he was well advised by somebody knowledgeable about proper transliteration, but the Merciful's Sword seems not to be too sharp a cutter.
saif-ur-rahman (or saif-ar-rahman) is more accurate in an english transcription of the arabic, as the lam is not pronounced. although i would only point it out to you tentatively.. as i gather from your lattermost response that seem to have an issue with people educating you, as you put it. as for his studying or working there, then i don't think he has claimed that he studied there or that he currently works there?
i am yet to discover why you deem it necessary to resort to such trivial, and somewhat distasteful rhetoric in order to discredit him. first it's the damning PBUH count and now it's an ill-founded critique on him for his spelling? are these really legitimate reasons for his being discredited?
as for your searching of the iu website... please see where it says that the "shaykh" worked as a researcher at the university, in the seerah department.
as for the publisher's comments (in both links), then i did not ask you to digest the flowery prose, i asked you to digest the facts present within the prose, namely the book was approved of by the MWL and university of medina, and was published by a number of presses let alone darussalam, after having been reviewed by a group of scholars and awarded "first place".
as for your comments on ibn hisham and other muslim historians being primary sources, please at least summarize this heated discussion you had as i do not speak german. as far as i understand, ibn hisham et al. are secondary sources as they cite ahadeeth (primary sources) and establish conclusions based upon them. please explain why they are now primary sources (and hence how quoting conclusions made in seerat an-nabawiyyah, bidaayah wa an-nihaayah or fath al-baari amounts to OR). perhaps we need outside help on this issue to ascertain whether or not they are usable in wikipedia (not to mention specific reference to a WP policy to support your claim)? ITAQALLAH 23:42, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
again, when i requested that you look at the cover, i did not mean the pretty pictures. it quite clearly says "Islamic University Al-Madinah Al-Munawwarah". what does it mean? that the university endorses the publication. simple, non? ITAQALLAH 23:50, 1 August 2006 (UTC)

certain point to mention II[edit]

" more accurate in an english transcription of the arabic, as the lam is not pronounced. although i would only point it out to you tentatively.", "i am yet to discover you deem it necessary to resort to such trivial, and somewhat distasteful rhetoric in order to discredit him. first it's the damning PBUH count and now it's an ill-founded critique on him for his spelling? are these really legitimate reasons for his being discredited?": of course not, he's not to blame - you are for not providing accurate reference, as we don't write the Arabic as it is spoken, but as scientific transliteration demands, and, lo and behold, the Manual of Style (Arabic) - we explicitely don't want to base writting and thus transliteration on hearsay.

"then i don't think he has claimed that he studied there or that he currently works there?", "as for your searching of the iu website... please see where it says that the "shaykh" worked as a researcher at the university, in the seerah department.": you're half right here, on closer scrutiny he didn't study in Medina, he just wrote about having joined: ...up to September, 1988 until I joined Islamic University at Al-Madinah. So far for higher qualifications.

Anyway, it may surprise, I'm fed up with not being given proper information as you', incidentally are demanded to deliver. Yes, you're asked to deliver verifiable names. Switching from mubarakfuri to mubarakpuri to المباركپوری to المباركفوري certainly doesn't help your wikipedic peers -I'm the unfortunate one here- to verify your information, as the edit summary blurb demands on every "Save page" click: "Encyclopedic content must be verifiable". The ی / ي issue escaped me, as it did to you until now - lest you were withholding verifiable info on purpose, see below.

"as for the publisher's comments (in both links), then i did not ask you to digest the flowery prose, i asked you to digest the facts present within the prose": some non-descript publisher's blurb is *not* fact, neither in pars nor in toto - a *reputable* universitarian website's entry on its staff is - you were to provide that right from the beginning, not having me checking the permutations for you to profit when following that business.

"as for your comments on ibn hisham and other muslim historians being primary sources, please at least summarize this 'heated discussion' you had as i do not speak german." not needed -> "as far as i understand, ibn hisham et al. are secondary sources as they cite ahadeeth (primary sources) and establish conclusions based upon them.": I explained so already, so what can I do than to repeat myself? They were secondary sources to their contemporaries and inmediate succesors, as it happens with any scientist. However, historic erudition of 1000 years ago has been superceded by now: it may astound, but 1000 years is a sizable amount of time for scientific progress. The problem here is: the religious point of view, above all the orthodox, which is de rigeur in Islam, doesn't share this view at all when it comes to historic sciences, which happens to tangle it's theology. However, this encycopedia is a secular one. Again, I can only point to OpenIslampedia, where ... "it would be disingenuous not to admit that a Muslim voice will be privileged". Alas, that generous offer doesn't suffice, I know - all we can offer is WP:RS, WP:NPOV, WP:V, WP:MOS, which happens to be outright, ugh, uninspiring? --tickle me 04:12, 2 August 2006 (UTC)

regarding the issue of the MOS and transcription, then please see where it says the assimilated form (i.e. saif-ur-rahman or saif ar-rahman) is entirely acceptable and even recommended (check the examples too, notably the salaf example), although i do not mind being corrected if i am wrong on this issue (or any other).
regarding the search of the university website, please AGF about my intentions. i didn't know about the iu website until you first linked to it, and i did not check to verify your search initially as i did not question the accuracy (or not) of the search. only afterwards when you again insisted that his name must be on the website did i find an error in the search. so it was a mistake on both of our parts.
regarding the issue of primary source/secondary source, then as far is i understand, wikipedia is neither secular nor non-secular. regardless, to negate the source-based interpretations of ibn hisham, ibn al-qayyim (about 400 years after ibn hisham), ibn hajar (maybe 500), as-suyuti, ibn katheer et al. ad nauseum and make them of the same ranking as primary sources, then you will require a solid WP policy on which to base this upon. until then, there does not seem to be any issue in using them, and currently i see a lot of articles which make use of the works of the aforementioned personalities without any problem. ITAQALLAH 14:44, 2 August 2006 (UTC)
"regarding the issue of the MOS and transcription": true, I was told differently when having a semester of Arabic in the eighties, I falsely assumed WP to go on the same line here.
"regarding the issue of primary": WP rules do rule, not bad WP articles. Usage of primary sources is allowed to illustrate secondary sources or facts sourced otherwise, as wikipedians are not allowed to infer on or qualify sources themselves. cf. WP:RS#Some_definitions: "Wikipedia articles should not depend on primary sources but rather on reliable secondary sources who have made careful use of the primary-source material. Most primary-source material requires training to use correctly, especially on historical topics.". Wikipedians are anonymous users who cannot prove academic expertise as long as they don't out themselves. --tickle me 11:53, 3 August 2006 (UTC)
the question is whether (according to WP policy) interpretations, analysis and evaluation of reports specific to Muhammad's life by traditionalist muslim historians (some of whom come over half a millenium after Muhammad) are to be considered primary or secondary sources when it comes to ascertaining events during his life. it seems that WP treats such sources as secondary (and rightly so) and should be legitimate for us to use in the way secondary sources are used, unless WP policy is provided explicitly negating the literature of such scholars as secondary sources. ITAQALLAH 16:10, 3 August 2006 (UTC)
From the text of WP:RS: A primary source is a document or person providing direct evidence of a certain state of affairs; in other words, a source very close to the situation you are writing about. The term most often refers to a document produced by a participant in an event or an observer of that event. It could be an official report, an original letter, a media account by a journalist who actually observed the event, or an autobiography. Statistics compiled by an authoritative agency are considered primary sources. In general, Wikipedia articles should not depend on primary sources but rather on reliable secondary sources who have made careful use of the primary-source material. Most primary-source material requires training to use correctly, especially on historical topics. Wikipedia articles may use primary sources only if they have been published by a reliable publisher e.g. trial transcripts published by a court stenographer, or historic documents that appear in edited collections. We may not use primary sources whose information has not been made available by a reliable publisher. See Wikipedia:No original research and Wikipedia:Verifiability.
The fact that a volume compiles and categorises content that would otherwise consist of primary sources doesn't make the book itself a primary source. It isn't the source document and is not close to the events they describe. While a book like Sahih Al Bukhari might be considered closer to being a primary than a secondary source, other books by scholars (including Al Raheequl Makhtum) that compile narrations from such hadiths are secondary sources. Note that WP:RS doesn't ban the use of primary sources outright, just those not made available by a reliable publisher. PLEASE, if someone challenges your sources using Wikipedia policy as reason, READ the policy and make sure it's not being exploited or misinterpreted. There is no reason to exclude these very reliable sources. His Excellency... 00:33, 5 August 2006 (UTC)
A primary source is what is used by historians as a basis for research. Muslim biogrpahies of Muhammad are thus by definition primary sources because they are much closer to the events than modern historians are. We can draw parallels between Muslim biogrpahies of Muhammad and ancient or medieval chronicles; the latter are also primary sources, even though many were written centuries after the events they describe. Pecher Talk 12:15, 8 August 2006 (UTC)
see WP:RS for how WP defines a primary and secondary source. the parallel you draw is not accurate, as medieval chronicles would not base their works on numerous primary source literature (of which the corpus is available and published even today) while citing it accurately. muslim historians who analysed, evaluated and reconciled the primary sources count as secondary sources, and their scholarship in the field of islam and studies related to it is unquestioned. again, this objection is not endorsed by WP.—Preceding unsigned comment added by Itaqallah (talkcontribs)
It's just your opinion on how medieval chroniclers worked. The point is that modern historians do not accept Muslim histories as anything but a primary source for further research. Pecher Talk 19:58, 8 August 2006 (UTC)

Why did they need to accept Muslim histories as primary sources? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:04, 10 April 2013 (UTC)


i have created an RfC for this article specifically in relation to whether or not "The Sealed Nectar" qualifies for use under WP:RS so that we can have more opinions on the validity or not of this work ITAQALLAH 20:23, 1 August 2006 (UTC)

The Sealed Nectar definitely qualifies as a reliable source. It is a secondary source, most importantly. Just because it bases its accounts on compilations of primary sources, doesn't mean IT is a primary source. Secondly, it's notable as it has recieved acclaim and awards from Islamic institutions. It's published and easily available. There is no good excuse for excluding it, other than that it isn't a western publication (which happens to be a very bad excuse). His Excellency... 00:36, 5 August 2006 (UTC)

The Sealed Nectar is not an academic scholarly source. It's written from a strong religious POV, and as it happens, there is a difference between religion and science. Pecher Talk 12:17, 8 August 2006 (UTC)
Let someone else decide that if it is or isn't, because obviously it has been credentialed as academic and scholary by islamic institutions of repute. Orientalism pretty much says that academic scholary sources from the west can also be viewed as NPOV, therefore if there is a dissenting and differing account available we should source, cite it and place in the article accordingly. That would be the sensible thing to do, unless their is some other problem with the credentials of the book.--Tigeroo 13:29, 8 August 2006 (UTC)
Evaluating sources is the most critical part of the job of Wikipedia editors. "islamic institutions of repute" is not the same as "academic institutions of repute, so I'm all for allowing "islamic institutions of repute" to speak about Islam, but not about history. Pecher Talk
non-secular sources are entirely legitimate for qualifying as RS. there is no restriciton on only resorting to secular western academia (perhaps tantamount to western-euro centrism?). the sealed nectar is an authoratative work on islamic history, and its accolades speak volumes. ITAQALLAH 15:37, 8 August 2006 (UTC)
No, only thise sources that adhere to the scientific method and other widely accepted academic standards of scholarship, which include a refusal to accept any predetermined dogma as the ultimate truth, can qualify as reliable sources on subjects outside religion. I have no qualms admitting Muslim sources on matters of Islamic law and theology, but, sorry, not on history. Pecher Talk 20:01, 8 August 2006 (UTC)
just making sure if i am reading that correctly: are you saying that muslim historians (classical or contemporary) are not acceptable sources as they "accept" a "predetermined dogma as the ultimate truth"?? so they are being negated on the basis of their being muslim? dismissing muslim historians and their works as hagiography has no basis at all (on WP or anywhere else), and neither does your perception that this work or other scholarly works conflict with academic standards. ITAQALLAH 20:12, 8 August 2006 (UTC)
A Muslim academic scholar is fine as long as he adheres to the scientific standards in his works, while practicing Islam in private. Pecher Talk 20:24, 8 August 2006 (UTC)
again, one must see WP:RS to understand the requirements of legitimate sources. the standard of secularism is not one of them, as secularism is not a premise for academia. there is no basis for dismissing scholarly works because you perceive they are non-scientific in their approach, as such an assertion is untrue and would require authoritative published criticism of the book in question for the notion to carry any weight. in fact, so far we see the work has received exactly the opposite. if you have any objection, please support it with WP policy, else it is a waste of time discussing it. thank you. ITAQALLAH 20:53, 8 August 2006 (UTC)
"secularism is not a premise for academia" Actually, it is. The scientific method is secular in the sense that it is completely detached from religion. In addition, you're confusing WP:RS and WP:NPOV. Muslim hagiogrpahy is POV by definition; you cannot state hagiography as a finding of a scholar, just as what it is: hagiogrpahy. Pecher Talk 20:59, 8 August 2006 (UTC)

"in fact, so far we see the work has received exactly the opposite": In fact, what we have is the publisher's, the University of Medinah's, the Islamic Conference on Seerah's and the Muslim World League's grandiloquent appraisals. All these institutions share the quality of being religious and Muslim, true, but none has any reputation of academic historical expertise and repute. And the "grand prize of SR 50,000 (fifty thousand Saudi Riyals)" doesn't cut it either. --tickle me 21:27, 8 August 2006 (UTC)

well Ifeel obligated to repeat it again, IMHO tickle me has an ethnocentic POV, but trying to conceal it with hot air(talking I mean). (talk) 05:17, 30 October 2008 (UTC)

the scientific method in historical terms is analysing the primary/secondary sources and evaluating what is plausible according to that, in an effort to string together the possible sequences of events as well as their causes. this is what mubarakpuri and other muslim historians do. WP does not demand secular sources exclusively, and it does not negate non-secular sources. the source does not contravene WP policy as i understand it, and is both reliable and usable for WP.

tickle me: if a recognised islamic institution (and a leading one within the islamic world) specialising in knowledge related to islam endorses a publication on islamic history, that is of significant relevence and recognised by WP. ITAQALLAH 21:50, 8 August 2006 (UTC)

Possibly a leading one within the islamic world, however, not within the rest of the planet. And we're talking history here, not Islam, which happens not to be entirely the same, even if Muslim traditions opine otherwise. "this is what mubarakpuri ... do[es]": that he does, is your assesment. Folks like these ([4],[5],[6]) are Muslim too, however, they don't need wikipedians to vouch for their rep. --tickle me 22:39, 8 August 2006 (UTC)
mubarakpuri's credentials are already established[7] as you well know. listing the top 500 universities is a moot point, hardly any of them focus/excel/specialise in islamic studies and sciences. study of islamic history, and especially analysis of the time of Muhammad, is indeed a branch of the islamic sciences, which is why the islamic university has a research department exclusively for seerah. a university specialising in islamic studies and in seerah is reputable, especially when it is a leading institution on such. and a scholar who works in its research department is equally reputable. i am sure we covered this before? ITAQALLAH 23:19, 8 August 2006 (UTC)
that he does, is your assesment - not merely my assessment, but also that of the MWL which at the intl. conference for seerah credited it for its use of "authentic sources" in its narrative. ITAQALLAH 23:27, 8 August 2006 (UTC)
Please reference claims to its non-scholarly nature or even that is any more POV than other sources in use across wikipedia than of a more attested POV authors such as Daniel Pipes, Norman Stillman or Bath Yeor. The secular = academia implies there is no POV, this is not true but only vis-a-vis a certain religion. History is all about informed POVs, most of the reverts are to citations that do not present any POV that has been challenged as a fact. Your claim for POV and unacceptability with academia must be verifiable to hold weight. It is the nature of many historical battles to have conflicting accounts please cite and reference discrepencies with the current account otherwise desist. There is no wikipedia policy that blocks its qualification or limits sources to western academia, and accuracy is not in jurisdiction of editors unless it can be challenged via other sources of equal or greater notability. --Tigeroo 08:49, 9 August 2006 (UTC)

The Authentic Sira[edit]

That is a very famous academic book about the Sira. All based on authentic traditions. It has been printed many times (already in the 7th edition). It has been reviewed by many academics and described by one of them (Dr Bassam Faraj)[8] as "the best Sira book that has been written". The book has been written by an academic Ibrahim al-Ali [9] under the supervision of his professor Dr Hammam Saied [10] [11]. The book was also per-reviewed by Dr Omar al-Ashqar [12]. All of the three are famous and well-known. You don't need to be smart to figure out that you should search for their names in Arabic not in English! Finally, if you need the book, go buy it as I will not buy it for you. --Islamic 12:35, 4 August 2006 (UTC)

Please explain the quote citing it as an islamic victory otherwise it is in contradiction with the article that shows a retreat it has been removed pending clarification.--Tigeroo 14:08, 8 August 2006 (UTC)

Roman = Byzantine[edit]

equating Roman with Byzantine is obviously wrong and a sign of missing information on history's essentials, that goes for rest as well

erm, no it is not obviously wrong - maybe you should read up on 'history's essentials' before you make such a spurious claim. See this. All Islamic sources actually refer to the Byzantines as Romans and the Byzantines themselves actually called themselves Romans. Heraclius was referred to as 'emperor of the Romans'. Roydosan 14:05, 8 August 2006 (UTC)

Roydosan is actually correct, the Byzantines were Romans just not as we know them today. To avoid confusing readers and others I have kept it simply Byzantine, rather than Greek or Roman as would also be technically correct but confusing.--Tigeroo 14:11, 8 August 2006 (UTC)
Usually, we follow the terminology established in contemporary academic literature, not in Islamic sources. Pecher Talk 14:13, 8 August 2006 (UTC)

Yes but 'Roman (Byzantine) Empire' should go in the box because all Islamic sources (including contemporary ones - see here) refer to Romans not Byzantines so only having 'Byzantine Empire' will also cause confusion. Roydosan 14:16, 8 August 2006 (UTC)

"Byzantine Empire" is the term that is prevalent in contemporary academic usage even if some scholars object to it. Therefore, it is the single easiest way of disambiguating; adding "Roman" will only cause confusion. Pecher Talk 14:29, 8 August 2006 (UTC)
Yes that's why it should be used throughout the article but in the box it should state Roman (Byzantine) Empire. I fail to see how that causes confusion. Roydosan 14:30, 8 August 2006 (UTC)
Because its plainly wrong - anywhere. The Roman Empire existed between the 8th to the 5th century BC, while Byzantion was it's successor till the the 15th century. The Romans spoke Latin, the Byzantines Greek. The historical and cultural ties are well known and undoubted - however, that doesn't alter what historical sciences have established as authoritaive terminology to describe things that where related, but no the same. is a lot of things, but not a source of academic repute. Nobody doubts that Islamic religious sources speak of Rome where Byzantion is meant for want of accurate terminology. And nobody doubts that as consequence this misconception is popular among Muslims. I included it in the "Muslim account" section, as it might be of interest to non-Muslim readers as well.
A for the sealed nectar's value as reliable academic source: WP:RS#History states that "Reputable history books and journal articles always include footnotes and bibliographies giving the sources used in great detail". The sealed nectar thus not only doesn't qualify as such, but is its mockery. --tickle me 14:54, 8 August 2006 (UTC)
re: sealed nectar. this is not a valid objection and indeed rather far-fetched. the link does not work for me. perhaps you should get a hard copy of the book: it uses plenty of footnotes, and has a section on bibliographic references at the end of the book. back to the drawing board? ITAQALLAH 15:31, 8 August 2006 (UTC)
The link works alright, besides its a verbatim copy of the pdf ebook vailable from the University Of Arkansas Muslim Student Association. I won't indulge with the pathetic OR below. --tickle me 15:53, 8 August 2006 (UTC)
i have the pdf also, and no it does not include the footnotes present in the book. please search for "sealed nectar" on amazon (hope this works [13]) to check out the contents where it lists the section for the bibliography and also some excerpt pages where numerous footnotes are provided. thank you. ITAQALLAH 15:59, 8 August 2006 (UTC)

No you are completely wrong. The Roman Empire existed between the 8th to the 5th century BC No it lasted from 753Bc to AD1453 - this is not disputed by any scholar Western or Islamic. See here while Byzantion was it's successor till the the 15th century. A successor state requires that there be some break between it and the prior state. This is not the case with the Byzantine empire where there is no break only continuity - hence the Byzantine empire is the Roman empire as argued in this recent book by a Western Byzantine scholar. The term Byzantine empire is used simply to distinguish the late Christian medieval Roman empire from the Ancient Roman empire it does not mean that there were two separate entities. See hereand here. The Romans spoke Latin, the Byzantines Greek. This is overly simplistic - Latin never displaced Greek as the main language in the east of the empire - the empire was effectively bilingual which is why you find Greek & Latin inscriptions throughout the empire. See here.

With reference to your comment that my statement above is to use your phrase "pathetic OR" maybe you should try reading something about it and then you would see it is by no means OR - I even listed some books that support what I said. Rather than disparaging my comments you should find out about it first - as you quite clearly know nothing about the subject. Roydosan 07:35, 9 August 2006 (UTC)

Could you be bothered not to cross-post constantly, to force reaction where it's not warranted? And could you be bothered to prove that it's established terminology in contemporary academic literature to equate Romans with Byzantines? All you "proved" so far is that Western historical science is well aware of the ties between Byzanztium and Rome. Incidentally, that's what nobody denies. --tickle me 02:02, 11 August 2006 (UTC)

I posted it on your talk page because I found your accusation of "pathetic OR" offensive. If you acctually read any of the links I posted you would see that it affirms the fact that the Byzantines were Romans and referred to themselves as such and their empire as 'the Roman Empire'. Every book on Byzantium acknowledges this. Gibbon in his decline and fall of the Roman Empire goes up to 1453 and the fall of Constantinople. This index of Roman emperors goes all the way till 1453. All Islamic sources refer to Byzantines as Romans and most modern scholarship recognises that it was the continuance of the Eastern Roman Empire and not a successor state as you claim. Maybe you should try reading about it. Roydosan 08:32, 11 August 2006 (UTC)

You're on the wrong talk page. The generally accepted term for the state in question is "Byzantine Empire". If you disagree, raise the issue on Talk:Byzantine Empire; here we simply go with the consensus view. Pecher Talk 13:20, 11 August 2006 (UTC)

No you are wrong - the term is in dispute for the article here so it should be discussed here. Roydosan 14:35, 11 August 2006 (UTC)

No, what you're saying are general objections to the usage of the term "Byzantine". Or do you contend that the usage of the term "Byzantine" on other articles is appropriate? Pecher Talk 14:38, 11 August 2006 (UTC)

I don't object to the use of the term. On the contrary I think it should be used throughout the article. However all Islamic sources do refer to the Roman empire not the Byzantine empire thats why I argued the box should say Roman (Byzantine) Empire and then refer to Byzantine throughout the rest of the article. Roydosan 19:59, 11 August 2006 (UTC)

OK. The term Byzantine was introduced as a descriptor after the empire stopped existing, for the same reasons we are discussing now, to help distinguish its historical period from the earlier periods. In all likelyhood no contemporary historical account of the empire has ever called it by the term byzantine empire. I feel putting the word Roman in confuses people into thinking of a empire centered around Rome. As UserTickle me's confusion has already demonstrated, the term Roman Empire is better associated today with the one that existed in the pre-division period, with Caesar and Nero etc. The western empire was already been overrun by the 5th, so in 7th the only surviving part that remained was the east, which is why they still saw and called themselves Romans. If you must have Roman I suggest you consider making it so: Eastern Roman (Byzantine), while it is redundant, atleast in this form it gives the readers more accurate and less confusing information which I suppose is good.--Tigeroo 07:13, 12 August 2006 (UTC)
We should simply adhere to the most common terminology, whether the terminology itself is right or wrong. Pecher Talk 20:43, 13 August 2006 (UTC)
I was just going for a compromise with Rydosan, rather than engage in an edit war with him across other wiki articles where he has the done the same. Personally, I think Byzantine is more common and more comprehensible, and the subtleties are adequately conveyed in the article Byzantine.--Tigeroo 11:54, 14 August 2006 (UTC)
I agree with Byzantine. I also think the section names should be parallel, or at least not promote a judgment on sources, so I've changed "Secular academic view" to "Non-Muslim account". I hope this will be temporary until we can find a better organization for the material that doesn't split it into Muslim and non-Muslim sections, but with the material we have now, this is the fairest compromise. - Merzbow 18:19, 14 August 2006 (UTC)
Roydosan, unless you're directly quoting the Islamic sources, we should use terms based on their most common and accepted usage, and in English Byzantine is the accepted term for this particular empire (see Byzantine_Empire). If you want to change that usage, here is not the place to fight that battle. If you want to preserve the exact word usage of the Islamic source, please quote the translation verbatim. - Merzbow 16:59, 15 August 2006 (UTC)

If you disbelieve me look at this. And as I repeatedly stated above I have not argued that Roman should replace Byzantine throughout the article (nor am I trying to change the accepted terminology as you claim (though that is a moot point as far as the 600s go since many scholars still refer to the Byzantines as Romans at this point as this book does) - only that the box should read Roman (Byzantine) Empire which does not cause confusion because any Muslim expecting to read about the Romans will see that they are referred to as Byzantines throughout the article because of this. Also the opening paragraph should state that the Muslim accounts refer to the defeat of a Roman force because Muslims do not have the term Byzantine; so it is a complete misnomer to state that Muslim accounts refer to a 'Byzantine' force when no Muslim account does. Roydosan 09:24, 16 August 2006 (UTC)

I have changed it to emphasis the modern usage as well as to providing footnoted information on the term Byzantine, as well as noting the Muslim account's reference to the same entity as Roman.--Tigeroo 10:17, 16 August 2006 (UTC)
It looks like we have a deal. - Merzbow 17:23, 16 August 2006 (UTC)

Notability trumps reliable[edit]

I took a look at the illicit copy of The Sealed Nectar that someone posted online ... no, I would not rate it highly as an academic source. It IS hagiography. However, I think that it's notable hagiography, as representing the approved Saudi take on the life of Muhammad. We've been having this battle over "reliable sources" in numerous WP articles. The same cadre of editors keeps trying to exclude Muslim voices on the ground that they aren't "reliable." They aren't reliable in the academic sense; they wouldn't pass peer review in a Western academic press. BUT -- by completely shutting them out of WP you're denying useful knowledge to encyclopedia users.

I had an interesting email exchange with a professor at a California college, who talked about his difficulties teaching classes re Islam. He would make certain statements, his Muslim students would erupt in outrage, and he would be left wondering exactly went wrong. I was able to explain what went wrong (thanks to endless sparring here on WP) and he was grateful. He's going to be a better teacher now. He can make exactly the same points he was trying to make -- he won't censor himself, and I wouldn't want him to do so -- but now he knows where he can expect difficulty.

If you exclude Muslim POVs from WP you are condemning countless encyclopedia users to the same problems. Non-Muslims need to know what Muslims think. You don't have to present those POVs as true; all you need to note is that they exist and what they are. Trying to make those views go away by censoring them from WP isn't going to work. Full and fair exposure works a lot better at combatting musty medieval POVs than censoring them does. Zora 02:07, 9 August 2006 (UTC)

thank you Zora for your input, i have some (actually a lot) questions for you: i am struggling to understand what kind of peer review is required for a work to be considered reliable. does it require western academic approval specifically for it to be RS on WP? i don't seem to be able to pinpoint exactly where in WP:RS the conflict is occuring regarding the status of mpuri and moreover his work. if the methodology of the work is scientific and sourced, does the POV put forward negate its reliability? .. or does WP only accept secular scholarship as reliable?
on the premise that the work is not reliable according to WP (which i don't feel is necessarily correct), to what extent can the work be used in relation to islamic history? facts, figures, names, places? cause, effect, context? what about using other sources like ibn hisham.. or at-tabari, or later sources like ibn hajar and ibn katheer... is it legitimate to have a sentence of narrative or a particular assertion and then citing such works (which from a secular viewpoint will also be hagiographical) as can be done with usual RS (as long as there is no conflict, in which case both views are mentioned as per WP:NPOV), or is it only a tool for balancing out opposing POV when the relevant RS are missing? thank you. ITAQALLAH 04:01, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
Zora, what are you talking about, of all things? The "Muslim account" account section is already almost twice as large as the "Academic view" - plenty of opportunity to amend it by hagiographic expertise, to which so far nobody did object outspokenly. How dare you smear us as "cadre of editors", allegedly forbidding that. The "Muslim account"s existence or possible alteration has not been contended in this dispute.
Did you bother to check the edit war's diffs? What qualifies a "notable hagiography", Saudi approved, not "reliable in the academic sense", that wouldn't pass "peer review" to switch from
  • "Byzantine victory" to "Islam victory"
  • "strength1=Unknown" to "strength1=3,000"
  • "Byzantine force" to "Roman force"
Then mark all the infobox stuff as disputed and clarify the nature of the dispute. I've been involved in infobox disputes in other places and the problems come when people insist that their POV be enshrined in the infobox. I wouldn't describe the battle as a Muslim victory myself, but it would be important for someone dealing with Muslims to know that some Muslims take a different view of the outcome. Zora 05:52, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
only one of the three bullet points is relevant to the "Saudi approved" source, and tickle me already knows that. the source is also involved with certain prose within the "muslim pov" section where it has been costantly removed from citation. ITAQALLAH 17:16, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
How does it justify to smear "Academic scholars" as "Western academics"? Why is the "Muslim account" not enough, so the "musty medieval POV" faction has to sprout in the "Academic view" section too ("Muslim academic scholars rejects the Western view...") And finally, why should -doubtable- notability warrant more than mere mention at best? Since when and on what grounds does it "trump" RS?
Western, hmmmm ... Western-style academic tradition has in fact become international, so that degrees from New Delhi or Tokyo schools are recognized as readily as degrees from Stanford. That is, if they're accredited. Islamic institutions aren't accredited. They're in their own little closed-off universe. BUT ... the Islamic traditionalists are also right in seeing the world of accredited universities as being Western in origin (if not necessarily in practice, these days) and alien to traditional Islamic academic institutions. I usually don't use just the word "academic" for that reason; I'll use Western academic or Western-style academic. If you try to reserve "academic" exclusively for one faction, that's subtly POV.
(I believe that Western universities and Islamic universities rose at much the same time, in imitation of models such as the Academy of Gundishapur. See university. The Western branch of the tradition has changed faster than the Islamic branch, but I'm not sure that it's fair to say that only Western-style academics can be considered academics.) Zora 05:53, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
That's non sequitur. Whatever the origins of the Western higher education and research, academic science is international and it is separate from religion. It's quite silly to call religious scholars "academics", even though no one denies them the title of "scholars". Pecher Talk 08:00, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
No that is completely wrong - most universities have a religious or theological faculty or department and no-one denies that they are academics. The subject matter may be religious but the tools used to study it are no less academic for that. Roydosan 08:10, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
You're mixing together religious studies, a discipline in social sciences, and theology, which is what it is, even though many universities have schools of theology. Universities have sports teams too; not everything located near a gothic-styled building is academic. Pecher Talk 08:28, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
Comparing university theology & religious studies to sports teams is quite frankly bizarre. Theology & religious studies has been a recognised academic discipline for centuries. Roydosan 09:04, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
the IUoM is a recognised institution (and accredited organisations like MENALIB concur) and offers BA's in the subjects that it teaches. any published research conducted by the univerisity and its scholars is noteworthy to say the least, and in my view qualifies under RS. ITAQALLAH 16:56, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
You know quite well that your post will be used as encouragement to go on warring for unwarranted changes, disregarding of your intervention's fine print. Did it really escape your attention that the Sealed Nectar was used as reliable secondary source in the ongoing dispute? And what need is there to go for compilations of doubtful reliability, when the underlying primary sources are there to be cited directly to, hello, illustrate the traditional account? --tickle me 05:30, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
You're right that I intervened in a dispute that I haven't been following. But it seems to me that a little bit of accomodation might defuse things. Just note where contemporary historians or interpreters differ. Zora 05:52, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
For a change, I'd be glad to hear from *contemporary* historians that differ on the infobox stuff - or any other contended issue. Muslim, Jewish, Klingon: all welcome. "The Western branch of the tradition has changed faster": indeed, so fast that usage of, say, the protocols of the elders of zion as secondary source is being poopooed at. That can't be said of some little closed-off universes, where it's a mainstay, even at al-Azhar or in learned pundits al-Ahram commentaries. They have reasons to close them off, and it didn't do them any good. --tickle me 07:25, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
a technicality: I ask all contributors to cite & quote my edits, not to interpost, others might have to dig through this eventually. --tickle me 07:47, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
Why don't we pikc up the issues one by one and sort out this mess. Most of the article is not cited AT ALL and smacks of OR. It will be easier to solve if you have some "western academic view" that cited that can be verified.--Tigeroo 08:31, 9 August 2006 (UTC)

NPOV is perhaps the most frequently misunderstood policy, and this discussion demonstrates how and why. The whole point of NPOV is not to give equal validity to science and pseudoscience, like astrology, flat Earth theories, or intelligent design. Such views are either not described at all, if they are insignificant, or their existence is acknowledged, if they are significant, like in this case. Thereore, it's incorrect to invoke NPOV when one wants to give equal validity a scientific and a non-scientific view. It's even more incorrect to invoke NPOV to justify an argument that a non-scientific view must be given preference over the scientific one, as Itaqallah and Tigeroo are claiming. Pecher Talk 08:43, 9 August 2006 (UTC)

It is only your contention that it is pseudo-science and insignificant. There is abviously a disagreement and your claim cannot be verified, this not flat-earth theory or creationism. The accounts are derived from historical narratives much as any historical accounts are, can you substantiate your claim to non-scientific this subject matter is not dealing with abstracts concepts of a theological nature or based on unverifiable articles of faith. This can easily be resolved we are talking about issues such as estimates on number of combatants (these can get usually no better than just estimates for histories), generals involved, tactics employed etc. I agree the victory condition needs to read byzantine because they were the last ones left standing on the field by all accounts, and if people claim muslim victory they need to contextualize it, because there are things such as pyrrhic victories. I am sure we can qualify and contextualize the usage of the reference texts appropriately to reflect slants. As is the battle is very sparse on any reference material and removing such information from reference is not doing any service to the wiki--Tigeroo 08:57, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
Even if there is a mythical account for a battle it deserves mention. Quite simply split the sections into two accounts cited from supporting sources and a third noting the discrepencies in the accounts. This issue CAN be solved by collaborative editing. Even mythical battle account can be found in Wiki such as the Trojan War. --Tigeroo 09:33, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
So, see the "Muslim view" section for the mythiv\cal account. Pecher Talk 07:11, 11 August 2006 (UTC)
as said above, the descriptor of pseudo-science for a work that exerts scientific methodology in its analysis of sources and in its narrative of historical events is not accurate in my opinion. is the work deemed pseudo-science as it is non-secular concerning its POV, even if it is scientific in methodology? ITAQALLAH 17:10, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
If it used scientific methodology, it would have been reognized by the secular scientific community rather by the Muslim community. Pecher Talk 07:11, 11 August 2006 (UTC)
to use such an argument to suggest that the methodology is not scientific is non-sequitur (more specifically denial of the antecedent when used in the form: if the scientific secular community recognises the book, then the methodology of the book is scientific). such an argument is not supportive of the claim that the publication is non-RS ITAQALLAH 03:20, 14 August 2006 (UTC)
Would the following solution fit, it seems to suggest itself quite easily. Let the "Sealed Nectar" speak for the Muslim account, it is at the least an authorative source for that, and western renditions in the section that puts forth their account also sourced. Remove criticisms and disparaging of the opposite account from with the account sections segregated to a section specificly to that purpose. Seems rather straight forward, is there some aspect to the problem that I am still missing? --Tigeroo 06:58, 12 August 2006 (UTC)
There are many Muslim accounts of the battle, and they wary. Ibn Hisham is hardly less authoritative than The Sealed Nectar, but again, Ibn Hisham says the Byzantines were 200,000 strong, others say they were 100,000; how are we going to account for these differences if we stick to one source? Then, why is the Encyclopaedia of Islam, an authoritative secondary source not fit to describe the Muslim view? "Remove criticisms": why is the academic criticism of the Muslim account not fit in the "academic view" section"? Pecher Talk 20:38, 13 August 2006 (UTC)
Mention other accounts and we can take them up on their own, cite em and include em. I meant move criticisms so that the tone of the article is a smoother flow and less jarring, not remove them, if they exist cite them and let them stand.--Tigeroo 11:57, 14 August 2006 (UTC)
I have no problem with using "Sealed Nectar" for the material it's currently being referenced for. - Merzbow 18:25, 14 August 2006 (UTC)

Western academic views[edit]

Fred Donner, The Early Islamic Conquests, pp. 105-110 (treated glancingly)

Hugh Kennedy, The Prophet and the Age of the Caliphates, pp. 42 and 46 (again, glancingly)

Montgomery Watt, Muhammad at Medina, pp. 53-55. Watt treats the matter in much greater detail and says that it is not at all clear who could be described as "winning" the encounter. He suggests that it may have been an inconclusive skirmish rather than a battle. Later accounts were manipulated, he believes, to exalt or blacken various people involved.

I don't want to write the article, but surely someone could look up Watt and give his version. Zora 08:45, 9 August 2006 (UTC)


I have begun to reorganize and layout the article at Talk:Battle of Mu'tah/draft. Please feel free to contribute to its development or provide feedback. As it stands I have used a second Muslim account that is older than the sealed nectar. I intend to source and see if my copy of lings or something has things to add and use them as well. The layout works on the premise that most of the information available about the battle comes only from muslim accounts, and such most the information available will be from such a POV therefore the article will mostly refer to this POV for information however it will be clearly indicated as such. As when we can find source other accounts we can incorporate them into the article, so far most of the information and details beyond a brief sentence or too seem to only be available from Muslim sources and so they will have to be backbone of this article, beyond various interpretations of this information I am not sure if there is too much add about this battle from other sources to actually create a detailed enough account to contrast with. I have provided links to information available online to both my two books used as muslim sources, and am trying to take this from a disputed one to possibly a GA rating.--Tigeroo 18:49, 14 August 2006 (UTC)

It looks like a good start. We definitely need to find more Western sources... Zora mentions that Watt has written on it. - Merzbow 00:20, 15 August 2006 (UTC)

Since no objections I will soon replace the current article with the new compromise draft version.--Tigeroo 09:21, 23 August 2006 (UTC)


The author of "The Sealed Nectar" stated that the muslim casualties were only 12, and that the Byzantine losses were much higher. As this is not confirmed, I kept unknown in the casualties' box. Sherif9282

Article is pious distortion[edit]

This article has been worked over by Muslim editors anxious to prove that it wasn't really a defeat. Western historians see no problem in calling it such. I worked on one section, removing the rebuttal, the claims that only Muslim historians wrote the truth, etc. I'll work on the rest of the article later. I'm not really done. For one thing, I need to slog through and add all the Arabic diacritics that Donner uses. Zora 03:28, 20 January 2007 (UTC)

Major rewrite[edit]

I rewrote some more; still haven't added diacritics. I discovered that huge swathes of the text were copyvios from WitnessPioneer. There are NO references anywhere in the detailed account per Muslims. I suspect that the account is taken from later, heavily mythologized histories, and that earlier histories, such as Ibn Ishaq, Waqidi, Baladhuri, or Tabari would be be much more sparse. I think we need to break down the currently monolithic "Muslim" account into a multitude of Muslim accounts. Zora 03:58, 30 January 2007 (UTC)


Theodorus i dont think he was in command there not sure completely.3,000 muslims isnt justified clearly.


Can somebody ask the editor of this article show some evidence on how there were only 12 muslim casualties and 20000 byzantine casualties!!!!!!!!!!!!How long do you think it took for an army of 3000 muslims to inflict 20000 worth of men on the byzantine side how can you say that?The next day i come back here and its changed and i see these kind of results.PROVE IT!!!!!!!!!if you cant switch it back even says in the article that with the combined force plus arab allies that it is usually reported as 5,000!!!!!!! —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 06:33, 3 March 2007 (UTC).

Yes, whoever wrote this article probably didnt finish kindergarten, or he'd know this is absolute nonsense. I changed the numbers of troops to show how ridiculous they are, but some muslim behind-the-computer-fundamentalist will probably edit them back again. Its hopeless. Wiki1609 12:46, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

i agree with wiki the muslim sources have proven useless,very useless!.i really dont like have to keep talking to get my point to the editor because he doesnt no how to think of whats write!would somebody want to show me that muslim source saying 20,000!then i will show how wrong it is!

ROFL!!! 12 Muslims casualities? :D What people would do... Armyrifle 23:26, 1 April 2007 (UTC)

LMAO @ the hypocrites. some of the ppl complaining about this battle's article would be/are completely indifferent to the blatant lie/fabrication that is the battle of thermapolaye —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 05:04, 3 May 2007 (UTC).

Editing of numbers and claiming to have a sourced basis[edit]

this is the same type of story herodatus made (aka thermapolaye) —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 04:58, 3 May 2007 (UTC).

Please leave the numbers & casualties as "unknown, muslims claiming x". Saying 15 vs 20,000 casualties is normal because it is "sourced" in some muslim book is ridiculous. I know some people still need to go through the enlightenment but its just irritating to have to revert mindless edits all the time. Jagged85, you cant just say 15 vs 20,000 is what this article should say because you think you have a sourced basis, I cant find any books on most of these Arab-Byzantine battles but this doesnt mean we have to accept muslim numbers. for God's sake, 3,000 muslims vs 200,000 Romans making 15 vs 20,000 casualties would be hard even if the muslims were armed with AK-47's (compare with the Battle of Omdurman).

Wiki1609 12:00, 5 April 2007 (UTC)

Wiki, I never said the Romans had 200,000 soldiers or that they suffered 20,000 casualties. I placed the Roman army at 100,000, the lowest possible estimate we currently know of. The 20,000 casualties figure was added in by an anonymous editor, which I changed back to unknown. If you can find alternative estimates which contradict the Roman army being 100,000, then by all means add it in, but don't remove cited estimates just because you disagree with them, no matter how unbelievable some numbers might be. I feel the same way about some of the numbers given in the Greco-Persian Wars battles, but that doesn't mean I should edit out sourced numbers. Wikipedia is not the place for original research. Jagged 85 23:23, 5 April 2007 (UTC)

Alright, I'll look for some sources that have more reasonable numbers in my free time, frankly I think in this case NOR is a bit of a glitch in the system, allowing things as 15 casualties to remain on this site. Its not so much that I was disagreeing or anything, just that the numbers involved seemed ridiculous, however you are right. I wasnt really aware that everything that has some sourced backup beats 'common sense' per definition in an encyclopedia, but I stand corrected.

Wiki1609 00:04, 6 April 2007 (UTC)

I agree that 15 casualties is quite unrealistic (the actual number must have been somewhere in the hundreds), but it's quite common for primary sources on many battles to exaggerate the numbers. If you do find any other sources pointing to different estimates, feel free to add them. Jagged 85 02:28, 6 April 2007 (UTC)

jagged is unrealistic then you said the numbers must have been in the hundreds why dont you show us estimates of cant so change it!the strength try ecplaining that!

"LMAO @ the hypocrites. some of the ppl complaining about this battle's article would be/are completely indifferent to the blatant lie/fabrication that is the battle of thermapolaye"

Lol even Thermapolaye looks realistic compared to these ridiculous figures... 15 casualties... did the Byzantine consist entirely of blind 10 year olds all with only one arm or something? Seriously... how can an army kill thousands of the enemy and only lose 15 troops- cant you just open your minds and think logically?

Hera52 20:00, 8 July 2007 (UTC)

you are all losing sight of what the article is about. How can you dismiss a cited source as untrue! You werent there, you didnt see the battle. I know it is hard to believe, but does that make it wrong?? On a religious note, muslims believe that in a battle where muslims are fighting for the sake of Allah and are devout in their faith that Angels fight on the muslims side and are only visible by the opposing force. while you may disagree with this because you are not muslim, you do not have a right to say that it is wrong! Please stay on topic because the only sources that we can rely on say 15 casualties versus 20,000 casualties so that is what we have to go on. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:30, 3 March 2008 (UTC)

10-15 thousand only[edit]

The Christian Arabs, who were commanded by Malik bin Zafila, formed themselves into a deep mass confronting the Muslims. Some historians have given their strength as 100,000, while others have doubled that figure. These estimates are clearly mistaken. The enemy probably consisted of between 10 and 15 thousand men. In this battle the Muslims failed to gain a victory. If the enemy had been only twice their strength, they would undoubtedly have thrashed him; and an enemy had to be many times their strength to, inflict a defeat on them. It is largely on this basis that the above estimate of the enemy's strength is made.

Reference number six quotes the following regarding the numbers issue, there's no link to any source, or anyother individuals from that time suggesting such a thing, or even any logical argument other than "they would have been totally beaten". It's a pure opinionated guess by Lieutenant-General A.I. Akram. I don't think it deserves a statement such as:

However, it is probable that these numbers were based on reconnaissance reports and local rumors.

The above should be amended. Faro0485 (talk) 09:31, 5 June 2009 (UTC)


Am I the first to realise the numbers are absolutely crazy? That the 200.000 byzantine soldiers is a distortion made by contemporary muslim writers to whitewash the defeat? Do you think an army of just 3000 men could withstand a battle against an army 66 times bigger? And just losing 12 men? I see some serious PROPAGANDA here.--Knight1993 (talk) 02:56, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

Huge numbers in Arabic are used to show great number, they are not accurate, I am surprised they took them seriously. In Arabic, When I say "This will take a 1000 year", It doesn't mean literal 1000 years, it means a long time. The same with the numbers. When they say "100,000 soldiers", It doesn't literally mean 100,000 soldiers. It means A LOT of soldiers. The only numbers you can be certain of is the Muslim troop number, because they counted themselves to avoid issues when dividing booty.--BelalSaid (talk) 00:21, 14 November 2012 (UTC)

The number does seem highly unlikely. Misdemenor (talk) 05:53, 11 January 2016 (UTC)

One more detail...[edit]

There seems to be a consensus among modern scholars that this battle was a byzantine victory. Even the modern muslim historians and writers agree on this. This is what the article should reflect.--Knight1993 (talk) 03:04, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

I couldn't see such consensus, but the otherwise. In fact, only Donner says that it was byzantine victory. And the attempt to claim that modern muslim historians agreeing on this is comical. And the article does reflect even Donner's view, I think you shouldn't complain.
The point is not that who won on the battlefield. No one would expect comparably tiny Muslim army to defeat numerically superior enemy(even if it, obviously, wasn't 200000 strong, it was far superior). The fact is that Muslim army safely retreated after the battle and wasn't chased after, although Eastern Roman army could easily do it. This was the success of Muslim warriors, they intimidated the byzantines and nailed them to their place. It can be argued that byzantines didn't paid much importance to an arabian raid, then why to muster such a large force to deal with this raid. (talk) 01:03, 11 November 2010 (UTC)

this is an example of wiki propaganda —Preceding unsigned comment added by Ajaxwithbleach (talkcontribs) 10:04, 4 November 2010 (UTC)