Marriage in Islam

legal contract between a man and a woman of their free wills
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In Islam, marriage (Arabic: نِكَاح‎, romanized: Nikāḥ) is a legal contract between a man and a woman. Both the groom and the bride are to consent to the marriage of their own free wills. A formal, binding contract - verbal or on paper - is considered integral to a religiously valid Islamic marriage, and outlines the rights and responsibilities of the groom and bride. There must be two Muslim witnesses of the marriage contract. Divorce in Islam can take a variety of forms, some executed by a husband personally and some executed by a religious court on behalf of a plaintiff wife who is successful in her legal divorce petition for valid cause.

QuranEdit

  • Men are in charge of women, because Allah hath made the one of them to excel the other, and because they spend of their property (for the support of women).
    • Quran (IV. 34)
  • The adulterer may marry only an adulteress or an idolatress; and adulteress may marry only an adulterer or an idolater. True believers are forbidden such marriages.
    • Quran Surah 24: ayat 3.
  • Wed not idolatresses till they believe; for lo! a believing bondwoman is better than an idolatress though she please you; and give not your daughters in marriage to idolaters till they believe, for lo! a believing slave is better than an idolater though he please you. These invite unto the Fire, and Allah inviteth unto the Garden, and unto forgiveness by His grace, and expoundeth His revelations to mankind that haply they may reme
    • Quran 2:221
  • Your wives are as a tilth unto you; so approach your tilth when or how ye will; but do some good act for your souls beforehand; and fear Allah. And know that ye are to meet Him (in the Hereafter), and give (these) good tidings to those who believe.
    • Quran 2:223
  • If ye fear that ye shall not be able to deal justly with the orphans, Marry women of your choice, Two or three or four; but if ye fear that ye shall not be able to deal justly (with them), then only one, or (a captive) that your right hands possess.
    • Quran 4:3

AhadithEdit

Kutub al-SittahEdit

Sunan Ibn MajahEdit

  • It was narrated from Abu Hurairah that: the Messenger of Allah said: “No woman should arrange the marriage of another woman, and no woman should arrange her own marriage. The adulteress is the one who arranges her own marriage.” (Sahih)
    • Sunan Ibn Majah 3:9:1882
  • t was narrated from Aishah that : the Messenger of Allah said: “Any woman whose marriage is not arranged by her guardian, her marriage is invalid, her marriage is invalid, her marriage is invalid. If (the man) has had intercourse with her, then the Mahr belongs to her in return for his intimacy with her. And if there is any dispute then the ruler is the guardian of the one who does not have a guardian.” (Sahih)
    • Sunan Ibn Majah 3:9:1879
  • It was narrated from Abu Hurairah that: the Prophet said: “A woman may be married for four things: Her wealth, her lineage, her beauty or for her religion. Choose the religious, may your hands be rubbed with dust (i.e., may you prosper).” (Sahih)
    • Sunan Ibn Majah 3:9:1858
  • It was narrated that Ash'ath bin Qais said: "I was a guest (at the home) of 'Umar one night, and in the middle of the night he went and hit his wife, and I separated them. When he went to bed he said to me: 'O Ash'ath, learn from me something that I heard from the Messenger of Allah" A man should not be asked why he beats his wife, and do not go to sleep until you have prayed the Witr."' And I forgot the third thing." (Hasan)
    • Sunan Ibn Majah 3:9:1986
  • It was narrated that: Abdullah bin Abu Awfa said” When Muadh bin Jabal came from Sham, he prostrated to the Prophet who said: 'What is this, O Muadh?' He said: 'I went to Sham and saw them prostrating their bishops and patricians and I wanted to do that for you.' The messenger of Allah said: 'Do not do that. If I were to command anyone to prostrate to anyone other than Allah, I would have commanded women to prostrate to their husbands. By the one in who hand is the soul of Muhammad! No woman can fulfill her duty towards Allah until she fulfills her duty towards her husband. If he asks her (for intimacy) even if she is on her camel saddle, she should not refuse.' “(Hasan)
    • Sunan Ibn Majah 3:9:1853
    • Reported by Abu Dawood, Ahmad, Tirmizi, Ibn Magah and Ibn Haban.
  • It was narrated from Abu Hurairah that: the Messenger of Allah said: “No woman should arrange the marriage of another woman, and no woman should arrange her own marriage. The adulteress is the one who arranges her own marriage.” (Sahih)
    • Sunan Ibn Majah 3:9:1882
  • It was narrated that Iyas bin 'Abdullah bin Abu Dhubab said: "The Prophet said: 'Do not beat the female slaves of Allah.' Then 'Umar came to the Prophet and said: 'O Messenger of Allah, the woman have become bold towards their husbands? So order the beating of them,' and they were beaten. Then many women went around to the family of Muhammad,. The next day he said: 'Last night seventy women came to the family of Muhammad, each woman complaining about her husband. You will not find that those are the best of you.' " (Sahih)
    • Sunan Ibn Majah 3:9:1985

Sahih MuslimEdit

  • He (Muhammad b. Qais) then reported that it was 'A'isha who had narrated this: Should I not narrate to you about myself and about the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him)? We said: Yes. She said: When it was my turn for Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) to spend the night with me, he turned his side, put on his mantle and took off his shoes and placed them near his feet, and spread the corner of his shawl on his bed and then lay down till he thought that I had gone to sleep. He took hold of his mantle slowly and put on the shoes slowly, and opened the door and went out and then closed it lightly. I covered my head, put on my veil and tightened my waist wrapper, and then went out following his steps till he reached Baqi'. He stood there and he stood for a long time. He then lifted his hands three times, and then returned and I also returned. He hastened his steps and I also hastened my steps. He ran and I too ran. He came (to the house) and I also came (to the house). I, however, preceded him and I entered (the house), and as I lay down in the bed, he (the Holy Prophet) entered the (house), and said: Why is it, O 'A'isha, that you are out of breath? I said: There is nothing. He said: Tell me or the Subtle and the Aware would inform me. I said: Messenger of Allah, may my father and mother be ransom for you, and then I told him (the whole story). He said: Was it the darkness (of your shadow) that I saw in front of me? I said: Yes. He struck me on the chest which caused me pain, and then said: Did you think that Allah and His Apostle would deal unjustly with you?..."
    • Sahih Muslim 4:2127
  • Humaid b. 'Abd al-Rahman b. 'Auf reported that his mother Umm Kulthum daughter of 'Uqba b. Abu Mu'ait, and she was one amongst the first emigrants who pledged allegiance to Allah's Apostle (may peace be upon him), as saying that she heard Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) as saying: A liar is not one who tries to bring reconciliation amongst people and speaks good (in order to avert dispute), or he conveys good. Ibn Shihab said he did not hear that exemption was granted in anything what the people speak as lie but in three cases: in battle, for bringing reconciliation amongst persons and the narration of the words of the husband to his wife, and the narration of the words of a wife to her husband (in a twisted form in order to bring reconciliation between them).
    • Sahih Muslim 32:6303

Sunan Abu DawudEdit

  • Narrated Umar ibn al-Khattab: The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: A man will not be asked as to why he beat his wife.
    • Sunan Abu Dawud 11:2142
  • Narrated Abdullah ibn AbuDhubab: Iyas ibn Abdullah ibn AbuDhubab reported the Apostle of Allah (peace be upon him) as saying: Do not beat Allah's handmaidens, but when Umar came to the Apostle of Allah (peace be upon him) and said: Women have become emboldened towards their husbands, he (the Prophet) gave permission to beat them. Then many women came round the family of the Apostle of Allah (peace be upon him) complaining against their husbands. So the Apostle of Allah (peace be upon him) said: Many women have gone round Muhammad's family complaining against their husbands. They are not the best among you.
    • Sunan Abu Dawud 11:2141

Muwatta Imam MalikEdit

  • Malik said, "The mourning of a young girl who has not yet had a menstrual period takes the same form as the mourning of one who has had a period. She avoids what a mature woman avoids if her husband dies."
    • Al-Muwatta 29:108
  • The prophet of Allah said: When a man calls his wife to satisfy his desire, let her come to him though she is occupied at the oven.
    • Mishkat al-Masabih Book I, Section 'Duties of husband and wife', Hadith No. 61
  • Iyas b. Abdullah reported God's messenger as saying, "Do not beat God's handmaidens;" but when `Umar came to God's messenger and said, "The women have become emboldened towards their husbands," he gave licence to beat them. Then many women went round God's messenger's family complaining of their husbands, and he said, "Many women have gone around complaining of their husbands. Those are not the best among you." Abu Dawud, Ibn Majah, and Darimi transmitted it.
    • Mishkat Al-Masabih: Volume 2, page 692

Sahih BukhariEdit

  • حَدَّثَنَا مُعَاذُ بْنُ فَضَالَةَ، حَدَّثَنَا هِشَامٌ، عَنْ يَحْيَى، عَنْ أَبِي سَلَمَةَ، أَنَّ أَبَا
    هُرَيْرَةَ، حَدَّثَهُمْ أَنَّ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ ‏"‏ لاَ تُنْكَحُ الأَيِّمُ حَتَّىتُسْتَأْمَرَ وَلاَ تُنْكَحُ الْبِكْرُ حَتَّى تُسْتَأْذَنَ ‏"‏‏.‏ قَالُوا يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ وَكَيْفَ إِذْنُهَا
    قَالَ ‏"‏ أَنْ تَسْكُتَ ‏"‏‏.‏
  • حَدَّثَنَا عَمْرُو بْنُ الرَّبِيعِ بْنِ طَارِقٍ، قَالَ أَخْبَرَنَا اللَّيْثُ، عَنِ ابْنِ أَبِي
    مُلَيْكَةَ، عَنْ أَبِي عَمْرٍو، مَوْلَى عَائِشَةَ عَنْ عَائِشَةَ، أَنَّهَا قَالَتْ يَا رَسُولَ
    اللَّهِ إِنَّ الْبِكْرَ تَسْتَحِي‏.‏ قَالَ ‏ "‏ رِضَاهَا صَمْتُهَا ‏"‏‏.
  • حَدَّثَنَا إِسْمَاعِيلُ، قَالَ حَدَّثَنِي مَالِكٌ، عَنْ عَبْدِ الرَّحْمَنِ بْنِ الْقَاسِمِ، عَنْ
    أَبِيهِ، عَنْ عَبْدِ الرَّحْمَنِ، وَمُجَمِّعٍ، ابْنَىْ يَزِيدَ بْنِ جَارِيَةَ عَنْ خَنْسَاءَ بِنْتِ
    خِذَامٍ الأَنْصَارِيَّةِ، أَنَّ أَبَاهَا، زَوَّجَهَا وَهْىَ ثَيِّبٌ، فَكَرِهَتْ ذَلِكَ فَأَتَتْ
    رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم فَرَدَّ نِكَاحَهُ‏.‏
  • Narrated Abu Usaid: We went out with the Prophet to a garden called Ash-Shaut till we reached two walls between which we sat down. The Prophet said, "Sit here," and went in (the garden). The Jauniyya (a lady from Bani Jaun) had been brought and lodged in a house in a date-palm garden in the home of Umaima bint An-Nu'man bin Sharahil, and her wet nurse was with her. When the Prophet entered upon her, he said to her, "Give me yourself (in marriage) as a gift." She said, "Can a princess give herself in marriage to an ordinary man?" The Prophet raised his hand to pat her so that she might become tranquil. She said, "I seek refuge with Allah from you." He said, "You have sought refuge with One Who gives refuge. Then the Prophet came out to us and said, "O Abu Usaid! Give her two white linen dresses to wear and let her go back to her family." Narrated Sahl and Abu Usaid: The Prophet married Umaima bint Sharahil, and when she was brought to him, he stretched his hand towards her. It seemed that she disliked that, whereupon the Prophet ordered Abu Usaid to prepare her and to provide her with two white linen dresses. (See Hadith No. 541).
    • Sahih Bukhari 7:63:182
  • Narrated 'Aisha: I asked the Prophet, "O Allah's Apostle! Should the women be asked for their consent to their marriage?" He said, "Yes." I said, "A virgin, if asked, feels shy and keeps quiet." He said, "Her silence means her consent."
    • Sahih Bukhari 9:85:79
  • Narrated Jabir bin 'Abdullah: I was accompanying the Prophet on a journey and was riding a slow camel that was lagging behind the others. The Prophet passed by me and asked, "Who is this?" I replied, "Jabir bin 'Abdullah." He asked, "What is the matter, (why are you late)?" I replied, "I am riding a slow camel." He asked, "Do you have a stick?" I replied in the affirmative. He said, "Give it to me." When I gave it to him, he beat the camel and rebuked it. Then that camel surpassed the others thenceforth. The Prophet said, "Sell it to me." I replied, "It is (a gift) for you, O Allah's Apostle." He said, "Sell it to me. I have bought it for four Dinars (gold pieces) and you can keep on riding it till Medina." When we approached Medina, I started going (towards my house). The Prophet said, "Where are you going?" I Sad, "I have married a widow." He said, "Why have you not married a virgin to fondle with each other?" I said, "My father died and left daughters, so I decided to marry a widow (an experienced woman) (to look after them)." He said, "Well done." When we reached Medina, Allah's Apostle said, "O Bilal, pay him (the price of the camel) and give him extra money." Bilal gave me four Dinars and one Qirat extra. (A sub-narrator said): Jabir added, "The extra Qirat of Allah's Apostle never parted from me." The Qirat was always in Jabir bin 'Abdullah's purse.
    • Sahih Bukhari 3:38:504
  • Narrated Jabir bin Abdullah: While we were returning from a Ghazwa (Holy Battle) with the Prophet, I started driving my camel fast, as it was a lazy camel A rider came behind me and pricked my camel with a spear he had with him, and then my camel started running as fast as the best camel you may see. Behold! The rider was the Prophet himself. He said, 'What makes you in such a hurry?" I replied, I am newly married " He said, "Did you marry a virgin or a matron? I replied, "A matron." He said, "Why didn't you marry a young girl so that you may play with her and she with you?" When we were about to enter (Medina), the Prophet said, "Wait so that you may enter (Medina) at night so that the lady of unkempt hair may comb her hair and the one whose husband has been absent may shave her pubic region.
    • Sahih Bukhari 7:62:16
  • Narrated Jabir bin 'Abdullah: When I got married, Allah's Apostle said to me, "What type of lady have you married?" I replied, "I have married a matron' He said, "Why, don't you have a liking for the virgins and for fondling them?" Jabir also said: Allah's Apostle said, "Why didn't you marry a young girl so that you might play with her and she with you?'
    • Sahih Bukhari 7:62:17

Mishkat al-MasabihEdit

  • Had I ordered anybody to prostrate before any one, I would have ordered women to prostrate before their husbands on account of men's rights over the women ordained by Allah.
    • Mishkat al-Masabih Section 'Duties of husband and wife', Hadith No. 70

QuotesEdit

  • A man should marry four wives: A Persian to have some one to talk to; a Khurasani woman for his housework; a Hindu for nursing his children; a woman from Mawaraun nahr, or Transoxiana, to have some one to whip as a warning to the other three.
    • Ain-i-Akbari by Abul Fazl, trans. by H. Blochmann. I, 327. Quoted from Lal, K. S. (1994). Muslim slave system in medieval India. New Delhi: Aditya Prakashan. Chapter 7. Also cited in Herklot, Islam in India, 85-86.
  • There is the Islamic view of marriage. Apologists of Islam, ever so anxious to show how progressive and avant-garde and modern their religion has always been, never tire of saying: In Islam marriage is not a sacrament, it is just a contract. Woman, as we shall see when we turn to the Quran and the Hadis, is just an ‘affliction’ that man has to suffer; she is just a field that he may irrigate or not irrigate as it pleases him; at best she is one of the things that Allah has created for him to enjoy; when on top of all this marriage is but a contract specifying the terms on which he may enjoy the thing—the mehr, as Ram Swarup reminds us being literally the ‘wages’ or ‘hire’ for using the woman—the ulema naturally visit all the consequences on the woman. The husband has but to enjoy the woman, and when he tires of her can just cast her off paying her the nominal maintenance, and the mehr which had been agreed to in the contract. And Allah, in His mercy, has not put these latter at anyonerous level. The minimum mutah, the consolatory gift, we learn, is one pair of clothes and the maximum is one slave or slave girl. The maintenance is to be board and lodging for just three months. And while it is fashionable nowadays to fix the mehr at poetically grandiloquent levels, it is just as fixed a practice to have the wife agree to forego it on the nuptial night itself. [...] The Quran (2.241) explicitly says, ‘Those of you who die leaving surviving widows shall bequeath to their widows provisions for a year without (their) being turned out.’ In direct contravention to this the compendium of Islamic law, the Hidayah, states, ‘Maintenance is not due to a woman after her husband’s decease...’ The Imamia goes even further to say, ‘A widow has no right to maintenance even though she be pregnant.’
    • Arun Shourie - The World of Fatwas Or The Sharia in Action (2012, Harper Collins)

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