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AsSalamu ‘Alaykum

There is a narration which is ‘Ali رضي الله عنه permitting a marriage of a woman without her father giving consent nd giving her mother permission to give consent instead. However, after further research on this narration I have found the complete Isnaad for it in Musannaf ibn abi shaybah:

حَدَّثَنَا أَبُو مُعَاوِيَةَ، عَنِ الشَّيْبَانِيِّ، عَنْ أَبِي قَيْسٍ الْأَوْدِيِّ، عَمَّنْ حَدَّثَهُ، عَنْ عَلِيٍّ، أَنَّهُ «أَجَازَ نِكَاحَ امْرَأَةٍ بِغَيْرِ وَلِيٍّ، أَنْكَحَتْهَا أُمُّهَا بِرِضَاهَا»

In the bold is where I am getting skeptical, because from the apparent this is a Majhool narrator whom Abi Qays narrates from. I don’t know who it could be though, but iirc Abi Qays doesn’t usually narrate from weak people although I could be wrong.

Please help me with the grading of this narration, JazakAllahu khairun

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    – Medi1Saif
    Commented Mar 6 at 12:38

1 Answer 1

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Two different versions via abu Qays in al-Musannaf

Since at least one narrator of this athar is not mentioned it's chain is disconnected (see also Consideration of weak hadiths) since this is not a hadith scholars didn't care to add more information. But if we considered to qualify it similarly as a hadith we have two possibilities:

  • Regarding it as an independent narration: In this case it should be marked as weak since it is disconnected.
  • Regarding it in context with similar narratives in that case it could have some support or be regarded as a part of more reliable report.

For option 2: you'll find in the same source that the story was also reported with a connected chain where her mother and maternal uncle agree to the marriage and further adding the interpretations of scholars to make his point clearer:

يحيى بن آدم، قال: نا سفيان، عن أبي قيس، عن هزيل، قال: رفعت إلى علي امرأة زوجها خالها، قال: «فأجاز علي النكاح» قال: وقال سفيان: «لا يجوز، لأنه غير ولي». وقال علي بن صالح: «هو جائز، لأن عليا حين أجازه كان بمنزلة الولي» (Source)
Yahya bin Adam said: It was narrated by Sufyan, on the authority of Abu Qais, on the authority of Huzayl, he said: A woman brought her husband to Ali, her uncle, he said: “So Ali permitted the marriage.” He said: “It is not permissible, because he is not a guardian.” Ali ibn Saleh said: “It is permissible because when Ali permitted it, he was in the position of a guardian.”

This narration explains the one you've mentioned better. Sufyan here is Sufyan a-Thawri, who's a known scholar and hafidh.

Al-Bayhaqi's verdict on the report's authenticity
Note that al-Bayhaqi mentioned several instances (see here, here and here) of this report in his as-Sunnan al-Kubra concluding that this athar is weak since, all the deviating narratives were transmitted via abu Qays who's a disputed narrator and further it was reported by different instances from 'Ali that he made clear the necessity of a wali, all the corresponding reports have been compiled by him before citing this deviation of abu Qays (see all reports from here to here).

On ibn Shayba's concept in his al-Mosannaf

The concept of ibn abi Shabah in his al-Mosannaf is generally as follows (I'm basically translating from the information showed by an editor of the book see here):

  1. He starts usually each topic with a strong hadith that covers the topic in best case starting with sahih ahadith, then hassan then mashhur narratives.
  2. Then (or if 1. is not available) he'd cite ahadith that have issues, such as mursal, munqati' or alike.
  3. Then he'd start citing athars of sahabah either ordered based on their rank or amount of hadith narrations.
  4. Then he'd start citing statements or verdicts of tabi'yn based on their date of death.
  5. Then he'd cite ahadith which are attributed to the Prophet () (marfu') but have some kinds of issues.

Note that he might not follow this concept everywhere.

Nevertheless, in our case, he started the topic after citing some evidence for the "Case of a woman who got married without a guardian في المرأة إذا تزوجت بغير ولي" with an athar of 'Omar ibn al-Khattab about a woman who was married by a person who is not her guardian and he ('Omar) punished both the wrong wali and the married people and separated them (see here) followed by verdicts of tabi'yn first those of ibn al-Mussayib and al-Hassan al-Basri who said they need to be separated while al-Qassim ibn Muhammad said if the Guardian later accepted and reject if he declined... Then followed by the case of "Those who accepted it" in which your athar was mentioned, this topic starts with an athar of 'Ali which includes two unknown narrators (see here) as stated by the editor.

About ibn Shayba's own opinion on the topic

Note that the story quoted above was used by the hanafis as one of the evidences to support a woman to marry without a guardian as stated by ibn Mawdud al-Mosili in al-Ikhtiyar li ta'alil al-Mukhtar (see here):

وروي أن امرأة زوجت بنتها برضاها، فجاء الأولياء وخاصموها إلى علي - رضي الله عنه -، فأجاز النكاح. وهذا دليل الانعقاد بعبارة النساء، وأنه أجاز النكاح بغير ولي
It was narrated that a woman married off her daughter with her consent, then the guardians and disputed with her and raised the topic to Ali' - may Allah be pleased with him - and he permitted the marriage. This is evidence of the contract being concluded in the words of women, and that it permitted marriage without a guardian...

However, checking the view of ibn Shaybah shown his al-Musannaf we find a whole chapter refuting some views of abu Hanifa among them the "Case of marriage without a guardian مسألة النكاح بغير ولي" which he introduced by citing the known but not indisputable hadith:

Any woman whose marriage is not arranged by her guardian, her marriage is invalid three times

followed by

“There is no marriage without a guardian.”

(See here and in the following pages)

Abu Qays as a narrator

Even if Abu Qays is a narrator of Sahih al-Bukahri and the four Sunan, Muslim didn't narrate from him in his sahih. Al-Bukhari mentioned only two ahadith via abu Qays (one was with repetition in another chapter) in both cases this hadith was only a quoted as a backup for more reliable narrations on the whole only 6 of his ahadith (what is meant here the hadith content not counting their routes) were compiled in the 9 most accepted books of sunni hadith. Some authorities accepted his narration among them Yaha ibn Ma'yn, al-'Ijli and ibn Hebban and some didn't or regarded him as a rather weak, lenient muhaddith or even author of manaakeer or strangenesses among them were the imams Ahmad and ibn abi Hathim beside al-Baaji, al-'Uqayli and ibn al-Jawzi who quoted him in their books among weak narrators. Note that even those scholars who regarded him as trustful reject his narration via Huzayl, which mentions wiping over socks instead of leather socks as is mentioned by any narrator except him This hadith was mentioned by imam an-Nasa-i (one of those who regarded him as an acceptable narrator) as follows (hadith exists in sunah.com as https://sunnah.com/nasai:125b but seemingly can't be displayed without this trick):

It was narrated from Al-Mughirah Ibn Shu'bah that the Messenger of Allah ﷺ wiped upon the two cloth socks and the two sandals.
الْمُغِيرَةِ بْنِ شُعْبَةَ، أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم مَسَحَ عَلَى الْجَوْرَبَيْنِ وَالنَّعْلَيْنِ ‏.

‏ قَالَ أَبُو عَبْدِ الرَّحْمَنِ مَا نَعْلَمُ أَحَدًا تَابَعَ أَبَا قَيْسٍ عَلَى هَذِهِ الرِّوَايَةِ وَالصَّحِيحُ عَنِ الْمُغِيرَةِ أَنَّ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم مَسَحَ عَلَى الْخُفَّيْنِ ‏.‏ أَخْبَرَنَا إِسْحَاقُ بْنُ إِبْرَاهِيمَ، حَدَّثَنَا وَكِيعٌ، أَنْبَأَنَا سُفْيَانُ، عَنْ أَبِي قَيْسٍ، عَنْ هُزَيْلِ بْنِ شُرَحْبِيلَ، عَنِ الْمُغِيرَةِ بْنِ شُعْبَةَ، أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم مَسَحَ عَلَى الْجَوْرَبَيْنِ وَالنَّعْلَيْنِ ‏.‏ قَالَ أَبُو عَبْدِ الرَّحْمَنِ مَا نَعْلَمُ أَحَدًا تَابَعَ أَبَا قَيْسٍ عَلَى هَذِهِ الرِّوَايَةِ وَالصَّحِيحُ عَنِ الْمُغِيرَةِ أَنَّ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم مَسَحَ عَلَى الْخُفَّيْنِ ‏.‏

Please find here my translation of the Arabic text including some inline explanation:

أَخْبَرَنَا إِسْحَاقُ بْنُ إِبْرَاهِيمَ، حَدَّثَنَا وَكِيعٌ، أَنْبَأَنَا سُفْيَانُ، عَنْ أَبِي قَيْسٍ، عَنْ هُزَيْلِ بْنِ شُرَحْبِيلَ، عَنِ الْمُغِيرَةِ بْنِ شُعْبَةَ، أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم مَسَحَ عَلَى الْجَوْرَبَيْنِ وَالنَّعْلَيْنِ
Ishaq ibn Ibrahim informed us, Waki' told us, Sufyan told us, on the authority of Abu Qais, on the authority of Huzayl bin Sharahbeel, on the authority of al-Mughirah ibn Shu’bah, The Messenger of Allah, may Allah's prayers and blessings be upon him, wiped over the cloth socks and sandals.
قَالَ أَبُو عَبْدِ الرَّحْمَنِ مَا نَعْلَمُ أَحَدًا تَابَعَ أَبَا قَيْسٍ عَلَى هَذِهِ الرِّوَايَةِ وَالصَّحِيحُ عَنِ الْمُغِيرَةِ أَنَّ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم مَسَحَ عَلَى الْخُفَّيْنِ ‏.‏
Abu 'Abdarrahman (an-Nasa-i) said: We do not know of anyone who followed abu Qays on this narration. What is true on the authority of al-Mughirah, is that the Prophet, may Allah's prayers and blessings be upon him, wiped over the leather socks.

This hadith was the reason for 'Abdurrahmen ibn Mahdi and Yahya ibn Sa'id al-Qattan to reject his narrations, ibn al-Mubarak even questioned Sufyan a-Thawri about it and got the answer: "None else, but him came with this wording, maybe he mixed something". And this is a rather light deviation in a hadith which was narrated via abu Qays. There are a couple of worse narratives that look like fabrications.

Some speculation on the deviation between both reports

We could further speculate if a-Shaybani أبو إسحاق الشيباني(a Tabi'y who lived till ~140 a.H.) -as identified in the 2nd and third narratives of al-Bayhaqi- is the one who forgot abu Qays's teacher's name or abu Mu'awiya (a-Darir 113 a.H. - 194 a.H.) or did abu Qays really not name him? Maybe they were later students of him and he -still speculating- was a forgetful old man? Unfortunately, none of the authors of 'ilm ar-Rijal I've found mentioning him (al-Mizzi and ibn Hajar) said more they've only counted his students and teachers both were mainly Kufi scholars and some statements on his qualities if taken into account while ignoring the trustful statements of other scholars would rather qualify him as a man who is not a good memorizer of hadith... As for abu Ishaaq his reputation is mainly good, while, abu Mu'awiya was considered from the Murji'a and not as trustworthy if he was reporting from other than al-'Aamash.

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  • I have some inquiries: 1. Wasn’t the al-Shaybaani mentioned, Muhammad Ash-Shaybaani? Muhammad Ash-Shaybaani as mentioned in Musnad Abu Hanifa used to narrate from عبد الرحمن بن ثروان (also called Abu Qays). 2. Could it be that Ibn Abi Shaybah who compiled the book couldn’t find the name of the sheikh? 3. Didn’t Abu Qays usually narrate from good narrators anyway? And is there no chance we can find the missing narrator?
    – Mabsaqi
    Commented Mar 6 at 15:43
  • @Mabsaqi 1. I don't get your point, a-Shaybani in the narrator chain is referred to as abu Ishaaq, I'm not aware of the content of Musnad abu Hanifa, which is a disputed book regarding it correct attribution to the author himself. 2. & 3. I'd say no, ibn abi Shaybah reported both reports and since abu Qays is best known as a narrator of Huzayl ibn Sharahbeel it would be easy for him to correct that, but the scientific accuracy made him compile the report as he heard it. Abu Qays is not a "big" hadith narrator, it is known that he had several teachers, but he didn't report much as a narrator.
    – Medi1Saif
    Commented Mar 7 at 7:21
  • 1. Could you share where it refers to him as abu ishaaq in the narration i cited i might have skipped it 2. Hmm, okay, i’ll see more to this 3. Regarding the narration u cited couldn’t it have been referring to another event that occured asw? Bcs the story is kind of different. JazakAllahu khairun
    – Mabsaqi
    Commented Mar 7 at 11:02
  • 1. this is my own ijtihad by checking students of abu Qays and abu Ishaaq a-Shaybani is the only person who met him, and lived at the right time. 3. it could be, but the chapter of ibn abi Shaybah's al-Mosannaf shows 3 main lines: women who married without the wali's consent and the waly later accepted it, women who were forced and were asked if the consent and still refused and the marriage was declared void. There are also statements of scholars who accepted a marriage without a wali, but these needs further insight. The hanafis counted the version I've displayed as a support for their view.
    – Medi1Saif
    Commented Mar 7 at 11:58
  • @Mabsaqi note that your question is addressed in the post your other questions should be asked maybe asked elsewhere I have no time for extensive detailed discussions and you should consider registration on the site for more privileges.
    – Medi1Saif
    Commented Mar 7 at 15:44

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