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Sources - Hadith

Qur'an Hadith Science of sources

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Lesson 25
Classifications

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Main Points

Hadith classifications

1-   Collections according to chains of transmission (Musnad): The Hadiths of each Companion were collected separately, whether they were rigorously authenticated, well-authenticated, or weak. The most famous of such collections are of: Abu Dawud At-Tayalisi, Imam Ahmad, Al-Bazzar, Abu Ya`la, and Al-Hamidi.

2-   Lexical collections (Majami`): These Hadiths were collected according to the names of Companions, the author’s Shaykhs, or countries, and then classified in alphabetical order. The most famous of such collections are of At-Tabarani: Al-Kabir (Companions’ lines), Al-Awsat and As-Saghir (Shaykhs’ names).

3-   Collections according to subjects (Jami`): These Hadiths were classified according to religious subjects. The most famous and authentic of them are: Al-Bukhari, Imam Muslim, and At-Tirmidhi (although the latter includes some non-authentic Hadiths).

4-   Collections according to subjects of Fiqh:

a) As-Sunan (Traditions): These comprise the subjects of Fiqh only and are restricted to traceable Hadiths; e.g., Sunan of Abu Dawud, An-Nasa’i, Ibn Majah, Ash-Shafi`i, Ad-Darimi, Al-Bayhaqi, Ad-Daraqutni.

b) Al-Muwatta’: They are also classified according to subjects of Fiqh, but include arrested and discontinuous Hadiths besides the traceable Hadiths; e.g. Al-Muwatta’ by Imam Malik.

c) Subject collections: for specific subjects.