Umm Ayman

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Barakah (Arabic: بَـرَكَـة‎) the daughter of Tha'alaba bin Amr, known as Umme Aymen (Arabic: أمّ أيمن‎), was the Second Mother of the Prophet of Islam, she was an Abyssinian slave girl of Abdullah ibn Abdul-Muttalib, or his wife Aminah. Since the death of Aminah, Umme Aymen looked after her son, that is the Islamic Nabī (Arabic: نَـبِي‎, Prophet) Muhammad, until he had grown up. Later Muhammad freed her, but she fondly served Muhammad and his family for a long time, especially by being present in the battles of Uhud and Khaybar. Muhammad introduced her as a heavenly woman.[citation needed]

Parentage and general description[edit]

Barakah the daughter of Tha'alaba bin Amr was Abyssinian.[1] She became Muhammad's slave after the death of Abdullah and Aminah.[2]

Caring of Muhammad in childhood[edit]

Since Aminah died in Al-Abwa, Barakah looked after Muhammad, before his entrance to Makkah (Arabic: مَـكَّـة‎, Mecca).[3] and afterwards for a long time,[4] until he grew up.[5] Abdul-Muttalib ibn Hashim, Muhammad's paternal grandfather, had told her not to neglect his grandson, especially as Ahl al-Kiṫâb (Arabic: أَهـل الـكِـتـاب‎, People of the Book) thought that he would be a prophet of the nation.[6]

Marriage and children[edit]

When Muhammad married Khadija, he arranged for Barakah's freedom and marriage to a Khazrajite companion of his named "Ubayd ibn Zaid." Barakah bore a son named Ayman, and thus was she known as "Umm Ayman" ("Mother of Ayman").[7] Shortly thereafter, her husband was killed in the Battle of Khaybar.[8] In addition his son was killed in Battle of Hunayn.[9]

Muhammad's adopted son Zayd ibn Harithah married Barakah. They had a son named Usama who was to be one of the future leaders of Islam.[10]


After Muhammad declared his Prophethood, Umm Ayman became one of his first followers. Later, she migrated to Medina.[11]

Participation in battles[edit]

Umm Ayman was present at the Battle of Uhud. She fetched water for the soldiers and helped treat the injured. She also accompanied Muhammad in the Battle of Khaybar.[12]

In the battle of Uhud, many men ran away toward Medina after rumor of the death of Muhammad. Umm Ayman sprinkled dust on the face of some fugitives, gave them a spindle and told them: "give me your sword and [you] spin spindle." Then she went toward the battlefield along with several women.[13] Subsequently, she was injured by an arrow which Hebban bin Araqa, an enemy soldier, shot at her.[14]

Relationship with others[edit]

Muhammad was fond of Umm Ayman, and even calling her mother.[15] Several hadiths describe Muhammad's esteem for her.[16] He visited Umm Ayman at her house, and after him, Caliphs Abu Bakr and Umar did the same.[17] In some hadith sources there is a chapter about the virtues of Umm Ayman.[18] She is also praised in Shi'ite sources.[19]

A few ahadith have been narrated from her.[20] Those such as Anas ibn Malik, Abu Yazid Madani and Hanash bin Abdullah San'any have narrated from her.[21]

Umme Ayman was one of the witness for FADAK property which was bequeathed to Fatima by her Father "the Prophet of Islam"


The exact date of Umm Ayman's death is not clear. Some have suggested that she died approximately five months after Muhammad's death.[22] But according to ibn Sa'd,[23] she was alive in the early days of the caliphate of Uthman.[24]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Zuhri, p 177; al-Tabarani, vol. 25, p. 86
  2. ^ Ibn Sa`d, vol. 8, p. 223; Baladhuri, vol.1, p. 96
  3. ^ Ibn Qutaybah, p. 150
  4. ^ Baladhuri, vol.1, p.472
  5. ^ Ibn Hajar, al-Ithaba, vol.8, p. 380
  6. ^ ibn Kathir, al-Bidayah wa al-Nihayah, vol. 2, p. 343
  7. ^ Ibn Sa`d, vol. 8, p. 223; Ibn Sa`d, vol. 4, p. 61
  8. ^ Sadeqi Ardestani, Ahmad (1998). Zanane daneshmand wa ravi hadith=the learned and narratar women‌. Qom. p. 3.
  9. ^ mahallati, vol.2, p. 26
  10. ^ Baladhuri, vol.1, p.96
  11. ^ Baladhuri, vol. 1, p. 269
  12. ^ Al-Waqidi, vol.1, p. 241, 250, vol.2, p. 685; Ibn Sa`d, vol. 8, p. 225; Baladhuri, vol. 1, p.
  13. ^ Bahr al-Ulum, MuhammadAli, translate by Muhammad Ali Amini,(1979), Woman of early Islam, Hekmat
  14. ^ Ibn Athir, Ali (2009). al-Kamil fi al-Tarikh. vol. 2. Beirut: Dar Ihya al-Turath al-Arabi. p. 160.
  15. ^ Ibn Sa`d, vol. 8, p. 223
  16. ^ Ibn Sa`d, vol. 8, p. 223-226; Al-Dhahabi, vol. 2, p. 224
  17. ^ Muslim ibn al-Hajjaj, vol. 2, p. 1907; Ibn Majah, vol. 2, p. 523-524; ibn Abd al-Birr, vol. 4, p. 1794
  18. ^ Muslim ibn al-Hajjaj, vol. 2, p. 1907-1908
  19. ^ Al-Kulayni, vol. 2, p. 405; Ibn Babawayh, p. 76
  20. ^ Ahmad ibn Hanbal, vol. 2, p. 421; al-Tabarani, vol. 25, p. 87-91; Ibn Majah, vol. 2, p. 1107
  21. ^ Ibn Hajar, vol. 12, p. 459
  22. ^ al-Tabarani, vol. 25, p. 86; quoted from Zuhri
  23. ^ Ibn Sa`d, vol. 8, p. 226
  24. ^ al-Tabarani, vol. 25, p. 86; Al-Dhahabi, vol.2, p. 227


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