I have some questions regarding the revelation of An-Nisa 3, in particular the part where it is said

…marry those that please you of women, two or three or four…

Was this revealed before or after Al-'Ahzab 52? In other words, is there evidence that the prophet Muhammad married any more women (i.e. more than four) even after the revelation of An-Nisa 3?

1 Answer 1


An-Nisa (04:03) was a general injunction and was revealed after the Battle of Uhuh. Due to seventy casualties, the issue of fostering the orphans was risen. The Qur'an suggested the Muslims to marry their mothers to solve this issue. After its revelation the Prophet married three women:

  1. Hafsa
  2. Zaynab bint Khuzayma

The husbands of both were martyred in the Battle of Uhud. The Prophet couldn't marry another woman because now he had four wives. However, after a few months Zaynab passed away. So, he decided to support another widow.

  1. Umm Salama - her husband died of the injuries he sustained in Uhud

To abolish the Arab norm that a person couldn't marry a divorcee of his adopted son the Qur'an asked the Prophet to marry Zaynab bint Jahsh (33:37) and at the same time revealed the law specific to the Prophet (33:50-52).

To answer your specific question: An-Nisa 03 was revealed before Al-Ahzab 52.

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