Banu Tamim

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The tribe of Banu Tamim (Arabic: بـنـو تـمـيـم‎) or Bani Tamim (Arabic: بـني تـمـيـم‎) is one of the main tribes of Arabia.

Today, descendants from the tribe live in the Arabian Peninsula and neighboring countries such as Saudi Arabia, Egypt,[1][2] Iraq, Kuwait, Jordan, Syria, Qatar, Oman, Yemen, Bahrain, Morocco, United Arab Emirates, Iran, Lebanon and Palestine. The word Tamim in Arabic means strong and solid. It can also mean perfection.[3]

Before the advent of Wahhabism there was very little history of Islamic education amongst Banu Tamim in Nejd, much like other Nejdi tribes. Banu Tamim in Nejd were village farmers and traders in contrast to other bedouin tribes surronding them.[4]

History and origin[edit]

The family tree of Banu Tamim is as follows: Tamim son of Mowr son of Ed son of Amr son of Ilyas,son of Mudar[5] son of Nizar, son of Ma'ad (معد), son of Adnan[6] descendant of Ishmael son of Abraham.[7] Tamim is one of the largest of all Arab tribes. The tribe has appeared in the first century, the ancestor of the tribe Tamim ibn Murr, met a disciple of Jesus Christ. The tribe, occupied the sixth century the eastern part of the peninsula before playing an important role with the revelation of Islam. They came into contact with Muhammad in the year VIII of the Hegira, but not immediately converted to Islam. There are hadiths which praise virtually all of the major Arab tribal groups, and to indicate the extent of this praise a few examples are listed here:

Abu Hurayra said: ‘I have continued to love Banu Tamim after I heard three things concerning them from Allah’s Messenger (s.w.s.). “They will be the sternest of my Ummah against the Dajjal; one of them was a captive owned by ‘A’isha, and he said: ‘Free her, for she is a descendent of Ismail;’ and when their zakat came, he said: ‘This is the zakat of a people,’ or ‘of my people’.”’[8])

The tribe traces its lineage to Adnan and Biblical figures Ishmael and Abraham. It has been said that Banu Tamim is the largest Arab tribe. "Had it not been for the coming of Islam, the Tamīm tribe would have consumed the Arabs."

In Nahjul Balagha Letter 18 Ali says: "Remember that bani tamim is such a clan that their star has not set as yet, amongst them if one great man dies there is another to take his place. Remember that after embracing Islam and even during pre-Islamic days these people were never regarded as mean, jealous or covetous. On the contrary, they had a very high status. Besides they have claims of kinship and friendship with us. If we behave kindly, patiently and sympathetically towards them Allah will reward us. But if we ill treat them we shall be sinning."[9]

Lineage and branches[edit]

Banu Tamim are an Adnanite tribe which means they descend from Ishmael through Adnan. Banu Tamim trace their lineage as follows:

Banu Tamim are an extremely large tribe, with four major branches that differentiate them:

They were mostly localized in Najd (Saudi Arabia) in Pre-Islamic times, but have then expanded to all corners of the Arabian Peninsula in pursuit of the Islamic Conquests. Stretching from Morocco to Persia and further to India. The Banu Tamim often hold genealogy in high regard, carefully recording birth and family data (especially in the Arabian Peninsula).


  • Perhaps the best-known of any hadith about a Tamimite, is the hadith of Dhu’l-Khuwaysira related in Sahih al-Bukhari: Abu Sa‘id al-Khudri said:

‘We were once in the presence of Allah’s Messenger while he was dividing the spoils of war. Dhu’l-Khuwaysira, a man of the Tamim tribe, came up to him and said: “Messenger of Allah, be fair!” He replied: “Woe betide you! Who will be fair if I am not? You are lost and disappointed if I am not fair!” And Umar said, “Messenger of Allah! Give me permission to deal with him, so that I can cut off his head!” But he said: “Let him be. And he has companions. One of you would despise his prayer in their company, and his fast in their company. They recite the Qur’an but it goes no further than their collarbones. They pass through religion as an arrow passes through its target.”’ Abu Sa‘id continued: ‘I swear that I was present when Ali ibn Abi Talib fought against them. He ordered that that man be sought out, and he was brought to us.’[10][11][12]

  • The companion and poet Hassan ibn Thabit composed a poem against Banu Tamim in the presence of the Prophet ﷺ .[13] Hassan's ode "completetly humiliated" Banu Tamim by describing the low status of their tribe.[13]


Notable people[edit]

Among the tribe's members are:


  1. ^ "قبيلة بني تميم العريقة - بني تميم". Retrieved 2015-11-27. 
  2. ^ "معلومات عن قبيلة بـني تـميم". Retrieved 2015-11-27. 
  3. ^ Kister, M. J (November 1965). "Mecca and Tamīm (Aspects of Their Relations)". Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient. 8 (2): 113–163. doi:10.2307/3595962. JSTOR 3595962. 
  4. ^ Shahi, Afshin (2013-12-04). The Politics of Truth Management in Saudi Arabia. Routledge. p. 46. ISBN 9781134653195. 
  5. ^ "Genealogy File: Tamim Ibn Murr". Retrieved 2017-02-25. 
  6. ^ The life of Mahomet – William Muir (sir.), Muḥammad (the prophet.). Retrieved 2017-02-25. 
  7. ^ The life of Mahomet By William Muir
  8. ^ (Bukhari, Maghazi, 68.
  9. ^  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  10. ^ Guillaume, Alfred (1955). Sīrat Rasūl Allāh. Oxford University Press. p. 595. 
  11. ^ Bukhari, Manaqib, 25. For the ‘passing through’ see Abu’l-Abbas al-Mubarrad, al-Kamil, chapter on ‘Akhbar al-Khawarij’ published separately by Dar al-Fikr al-Hadith [Beirut, n.d.], pp.23-4: ‘usually when this happens none of the target’s blood remains upon it’
  12. ^ El-Hibri, Tayeb (2010). Parable and Politics in Early Islamic History: The Rashidun Caliphs. Columbia University Press. p. 419. ISBN 9780231150828. 
  13. ^ a b Guillaume, Alfred (1955-01-01). Sīrat Rasūl Allāh. Oxford University Press. 
  14. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2006-05-23. Retrieved 2006-07-20. 
  15. ^ Milla Wa-milla. Department of Middle Eastern Studies, University of Melbourne. 1961.  p.46
  16. ^بني_مر،_أسيوط
  17. ^
  18. ^ al-Rasheed, Madawi (2010). A History of Saudi Arabia. Cambridge University Press. p. 15. ISBN 9780521761284. 

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