As a continuation of my former questions on the marital relationship between a free and an enslaved person: Which conditions scholars have defined in case of a marriage between a free and a slave spouse? What rulings of polygny apply in the case of a free man marrying a slave girl?.

I have a 3rd question. This time I'd like to concentrate on the marriage between a free woman and a slave. Among the evidences for the permission of such a marriage scholars have quoted the story of the former slave Barira who was freed while her husband Mughith remained a slave, and the prophet () gave her the choice whetehr she might remain married with him or get separated (faskH ... I suppose, but that's not the topic of my question):

Barira's husband was a slave called Mughith, as if I am seeing him now, going behind Barira and weeping with his tears flowing down his beard. The Prophet (ﷺ) said to 'Abbas, "O 'Abbas ! are you not astonished at the love of Mughith for Barira and the hatred of Barira for Mughith?" The Prophet (ﷺ) then said to Barira, "Why don't you return to him?" She said, "O Allah's Messenger (ﷺ)! Do you order me to do so?" He said, "No, I only intercede for him." She said, "I am not in need of him." (See for example in Sahih al-Bukahri)

With the exception of a hadith see here narrated by at-Tirmidhi on which he made a long comment showing that other narrations actually say otherwise all narrations on this topic say that her husband was a slave see for example in Jami' at-Tirmdihi, Sahih Muslim or Sahih al-Bukhari etc. See also on the fact that she was a slave which was set free here and here in Sahih al-Bukhari.

Back to the intended topic and my question(s):

  • Is the story of Barira the only evidence for a marriage between a slave male and free woman? (AS my understanding is that the Qur'an as stated in my earlier question primarily allows the marriage of a free man with a slave, but one might conclude the same for the opposite sexes, so my question is rather looking for evidences from the sunnah in this case or additional references from the Qur'an except with verse 4:25).

    My point is that it sounds very weak to allow a marriage between a free woman and a slave based on the story of a freed slave woman! So I'd like also to know:

  • Is there any fiqh view or hadith interpretation that rejects the story of Barira as an evidence for the permissibility of such marriages?
  • 1
    Marriage of a free woman to a slave would be out of Kufu. 2:221 ولعبد مؤمن خير من مشرك might also count as evidence. – UmH Oct 9 '18 at 9:26
  • @UmH that would certainly be a heavy evidence if it counts! How could I have missed it? You may post it as an answer if it would be counted as such. I've edited the post! – Medi1Saif Oct 9 '18 at 9:40
  • @UmH so far my conclusion from Tafsir books on verse 2:221 actually doesn't seem to reflect that 'Abd and Ammah in that context means more than a servant of Allah. At least none of the scholars has addressed ac onnection between this verse and marriage with a slave spouse. – Medi1Saif Oct 18 '18 at 8:23

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.