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Abu Dawud Sulaymān ibn al-Ash‘ath al-Azdi as-Sijistani Arabic: أبو داود سليمان بن الأشعث الأزدي السجستاني‎), commonly known simply as Abu Dawud, was a Persian scholar of prophetic hadith who compiled the third of the six "canonical" hadith collections recognized by Sunni Muslims, the Sunan Abu Dāwūd.

Abu Dawud Sulayman ibn al-Ash‘ath al-Azdi al-Sijistani
أبو داود السجستاني.png
Abu Dawud's name in the style of Arabic calligraphy
Born817–18 CE
Died889 CE
EraIslamic golden age
DenominationSunni Islam
Main interest(s)ḥadīth and fiqh
Notable work(s)Sunan Abī Dāwūd
Muslim leader


Abu Dawud was born in Sistan, eastern Iran (then-Persia) and died in 889 in Basra. Many scholars believe he was born in Baluchistan now part of Iran and Pakistan and later moved to Khorasan. Widely traveled among scholars of hadith, he went to Iraq, Egypt, Syria, Hijaz, Tihamah, Nishapur, and Merv among other places in order to collect hadith. He was primarily interested in fiqh, and as a result his collection focused largely on legal hadith. Out of about 500,000 hadith, he chose 4,800 for inclusion in his work.

School of thought and QuotesEdit

Imam Abu Dawud was a follower of Hanbali although some have consider him Shafi.[2]

Imam Abu Dawud himself has stated: "From this book of mine four (4) Hadith are sufficient for an intelligent and insightful person.[3] They are:

  • Deeds are to be judged only by intentions.[4]
  • Part of a man's good observance of Islam is that he leaves alone that which does not concern him.
  • None of you can be a believer unless you love for your brother that which you love for yourself.
  • The permitted (halal) is clear, and the forbidden (haram) is clear, between these two are doubtful matters. Whosoever abstains from these doubtful matters has saved his religion."


He wrote some 21 books in total. Some of the most prominent are:

  • Sunan Abu Dāwūd, containing some 4,800 hadith, is his principal work. These are usually numbered after the edition of Muhammad Muhyi al-Din `Abd al-Hamid (Cairo: Matba`at Mustafa Muhammad, 1354/1935), where 5,274 are distinguished. He indicated that all the hadith in his collection were authenticated (sahih) unless specifically marked as unauthenticated (ḍaʿīf). Some Islamic scholars (such as Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani) believe a number of the unmarked ones to be ḍaʿīf as well.
  • In another work, Kitab al-Marāsīl, he lists 600 mursal hadith which, after extensive background investigation, he concludes are nonetheless sahih.
  • Risālat Abu Dāwūd ilā Ahli Makkah; his letter to the inhabitants of Makkah describing his Sunan Abu Dāwūd.[5]

Early Islam scholarsEdit

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Al-Bastawī, ʻAbd al-ʻAlīm ʻAbd al-ʻAẓīm (1990). Al-Imām al-Jūzajānī wa-manhajuhu fi al-jarḥ wa-al-taʻdīl. Maktabat Dār al-Ṭaḥāwī. p. 9.
  2. ^
  3. ^ "Imam Abu Dawud". Retrieved 2016-02-21.
  4. ^ Shahih Al Bukhari, Imam Al Bukthari, Vol.1 Book 1 Hadith 1
  5. ^ Translation of the Risālah by Abū Dāwūd Archived August 19, 2009, at the Wayback Machine

External LinksEdit