Compiled by Imam Imaduddin Abul-Fida Ismail Ibn Kathir
Hardback 576 Pages
Published by Darussalam
Translator: Rashad Ahmad Azami
From the back cover:
In this book, the stories of the prophets have been compiled from ‘Al-Bidayah wan-Nihayah’ (The Beginning and the End) which is a great work of the famous Muslim exegete and historian Ibn Kathir and has a prominent place in the Islamic literature. The stories of the prophets and all the events in their lives have been supported by the Qur’anic Verses and the Sunnah (traditions) of the Prophet (S). Wherever it was necessary, other sources have also been reported for the sake of historical accounts, but on such places a comparative study has been made to prove the authenticity of the sources. Ibn Kathir has reproduced the views and interpretations of all the great exegetes of the Qur’an of his time. The systemic narratives of the Stories of the Prophets have been written in chronological order which renders a historical style to the book.
Allah the Most Exalted says in the Qur’an:
- “We are relating unto you the most beautiful of stories in that what We have revealed to you from the Qur’an, though before it you were from among those who were not aware of them.” ( 12:3 )
- “We have indeed sent aforetime Messengers before you, of them there are some whose stories We have related to you, and whose stories We have not related to you…” ( 40:78 )
- “We relate to you the important news of their story in truth…” ( 18:13 )
- “And all that We relate to you of these stories of the Messengers, We strengthen with them your heart. Through them there come to you the truth as well as admonition and reminder to all those who believe.” ( 11:120 )
- “There is, indeed, in their stories lessons for people endowed with understanding. It is not any invented tale, but a confirmation of what went before it, and a detailed exposition of all things, and a guide and a mercy to the people who believe.” ( 12:111 )
- “…so relate the stories, perhaps they may reflect.” ( 7:176 )
About Imam Ibn Kathir
He was Hafidh Abul Fida Ismail ibn Abi Hafs Shihabuddin Omar ibn Kathir ibn Daw ibn Kathir in Zar` the Quraishite – originally from Busra (Syria) – and raised in Damascus. He followed the Shafi`ee school of thought. Ibn Kathir was born in the year 701 AH in an area called Majdal, near Busra, west of Damascus. His father died when he was only four years old and was taken in by his brother and moved to Damascus in 706. Here, he learned from great scholars such as Ibn Asakir, Ishaq ibn Yahya al-Amudi and the great Ibn Taymiyyah who was extremely close to him. He also studied under various other sheikhs who gave him permission in fiqh and Hadith. He made many academic contributions to Islamic sciences.
Al-Hafiz Ibn hajar Al-Asqalani said,”Ibn Kathir lost his sight just before his life ended. He died in Damascus in 774A.H. May Allah grant him Mercy and make him amongst the residents of Jannah (Heavenly Garden)