Great Contribution of Shi'ites to the Quranic Sciences
Shi'ite Authors on the Quranic Jurisprudence(Ahkam-ul-Quran)
The first person to write on this subject was Muhammad bin Sa'ib al-Kalabi who was a companion of Imam Muhammad Baqir(A.S.). Ibn-un-Nadim counted him among the books written in this connection, a book Ahkam-ul-Quran written by Al-Kalabi. According to his statement he reported from Ibn Abbas. An-Nadim evidently means Muhammad bin Sa'ib and not his son Hisham because it was the former who was a contemporary of Ibn Abbas and reported from him.
As-Suyuti has said in Al-Awa'il,"The first one to write anything on this subject (ahkam-ul-Quran) was Imam Shafi'i". Again according to his own version, Imam Shafi'i died in 204 A.H. when he was 54 years old. This means that Muhammad bin Sa'ib was his senior because he died in 146 A.H. Had Ibn-un-Nadim meant by Al-Kalabi as Hisham, As-Suyuti's statement would not have been correct even in this case because Hisham also died in the same year as Shafi'i i..e 204 A.H. As to Muhammad Bin Sa'ib being a Shi'ite, almost all the exegetists admit this fact. He died in 146 A.H.
Among others from the Shi'ites who wrote about Ahkam-ul-Quran wera the following:
1.'Ibad bin Abbas, the father of Sahib bin 'Ibad. Ibn-un-
Nadim has written in his Al-Fahrist, in connection with the life
of his son that Ibad was a scholarly person and wrote a book on
Ahkam, supporting the ideas of the Mu'tazilites. "This view is
based upon a very common mistake of the writers to mix up
Shi'ism with the Mu'tazilite creed, as has been the case with
Sahib bin 'Ibad and Sayyid Murtada and others. He died
during the fourth century.
2. Qutb-ud-Din Sa'id bin Hibat Ullah Rawandi wrote books
on Ahkam and Fiqh-ul-Quran, which might have been one and
the same thing. He died in 573 A.H.
3.Miqdad bin Abdullah Sayyuri wrote a book on this
subject titled Kanzul 'Irfan Fi Fiqh-il-Quran. He died in 792
4. Mullah Ahmad bin Muhammad al-Ardbili who wrote
Zubdatil Bayan Fi Fiqh-il-Quran, died in 993 A.H.
5. Shaikh Jawad bin Sa'd Ullah al-Kazimi wrote Masalik-ul-'
Afham fi Sharahe Ayat-al-Ahkam. He died during the eleventh
6. Mirza Sayyid Muhammad bin Ali bin Ibrahim Astarabadi was a well-known biographer and also wrote a book in explanation Ayat-ul-Ahkam. He died 1026 A.H.
7. Shaikh Ahmad bin Isma'il an-Najafi wrote a book on this
subject titled as Qala'id-ul-'Iqyan fi Fiqh-il-Quran. He died in
Shi'ite Authors Writing On The Ambiguous (Mutashabihat) Verses Of The Holy Quran
Among such authors is Hamza bin Habit Zayyat al-Kufi who is counted among the seven reciters of the Holy Quran. Ibn-un-Nadim has mentioned his book on Mutashabihat in the Quran. He died in 156 A.H.
According to Suyuti's statement in Al-Itqan, the foremost in this field was Al-Kisa'i, who died in 182 A.H.
Sharif Razi also wrote on this subject. His book "Haqa'iq-ut-Ta'wil Fi Mutashabihit Tanzil" has been mentioned by Ibn Shahr Ashub in Al-Ma'alim. According to another version, its name is Haqa'iq ut-Tanzil Wa Daqa'iq-ut-Ta'wil. This book was completed in 406 A.H. Sharif Radi wrote another book under the title "Al-Muhkam Wal Mutashabeh" which was completed in 433 A.H.
Muhammad bin Ahmad al-Wazir also wrote a book under the title Mutashabihil Quran. He died in 433 A.H.
Rashid-ud-Din Muhammad bin Shahr Ashub Mazandrani also has a book on this subject to his credit. It has been referred to in 'Amalul Aamil. He died in 588 A.H.
Shi'ite Authors On Gharib ul-Quran
The pioneer in this field was Aban Bin Taghlab. Ash-Shaikh has referred to it in Al-Fahrist and has said, "He wrote a book Al-Gharib
fil Quran and documented it with citations from poetry."
An-Najashi has also referred to this book and has mentioned his authorities too.As-Suyuti has said in Al-Awa'il, "The first one to write a book on Gharib-ul-Quran was Abu 'Ubaidah Mu'mir Ibn Al-Muthna. He collected this information from the question which Nafe' bin al-Azraq put to Ibn Abbas."
But the correct position is that it was Aban who took the lead in this connection, because he died in 141 A.H. while Abu 'Ubaidah died in 208 A.H. or later. This means that Aban was senior to him at least by 67 years.It is surprising that Suyuti should say this while he has written in Bughyatul Wi'at that Aban bin Taghlab first wrote on this subject and died in 141 A.H.
Anyway, even if Abu 'Ubaidah had the lead in this respect, he got his information from the questions which Nafe' Bin Al- Azraq put to Ibn Abbas. Hence, the real source is Ibn Abbas and he was one of the prominent Shi'ites, while Abu 'Ubaid had belonged to the Kharjites of As-Saffuriyyah. This has been supported by Al-Jahiz in Kitab-ul-Haywan. It seems that this was the reason why he got his information from the questions of Nafe'. Aban died in 141 A.H.
Mufdil bin Salmah wrote Diya-ul-Qulub on this subject in twenty volumes. He died during the third century.
Abu Bakr Muhammad bin Hasan bin Darid, according to Ibn-un-Nadim and Suyuti, began writing a book on Gharib-ul-Quran but he could not finish it. He died in 321 A.H.
Abul Hasan Ali bin Muhammad al-Adawi Shamshati, has been mentioned by Najashi as having written a book on this subject in addition to others. He died in the beginning of the fourth century.
Shi'ite authors on Causes of Revelation(Asbaab un-Nuzuul)
First one among them is Ibn Abbas. Ibn -un-Nadim has mentioned the books written about the causes of revelation and afterwards has referred to the book written by 'Akramah through Ibn Abbas. He died in 67 A.H.
According to Najashi, Muhammad bin Khalid al-Barqi wrote Kitab-ut-Tanzil wat Ta'bir. He died by the end of the second century.
Ibrahim bin Muhammad bin Sa'id Thaqafi wrote a book about those verses which were revealed in connection with Amirul Mu'minin Ali(A.S.). This has been mentioned by Shaikh in Al-Fahrist and by An-Najashi. He died in 283 A.H.
Abdul Aziz bin Yahya al-Jaludi, according to An-Najashi, wrote a book about the veses of the Holy Quran connected with Ali bin Abi Talib as well as Kitab-ut-Tanzil which he based upon the reports of Ibn Abbas. He died in 330 A.H.
Muhammad bin Abbas, who is known as Ibn-ul-Jahham, as An-Najashi has said, wrote a book about those verses of the Holy Quran which were revealed in connection with Ahlul Bayt(A.S.). He had a book of his in which he gave in those verses which were connected with the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) and his family. He had another book explaining those verses which were revealed in connection with the Shi'ites and those about their enemies. He died during the fourth century.
Shi'ite Authors On "Naasikh and Mansukh"
The pioneer in this field was Abdur-Rahman al-Asamm al-Masma'i al-Basri. An-Najashi has referred to his book Kitab-un-Nasikh Wal Mansukh and has also quoted his authorities. He died in mid-second century.
Next comes Abul Hasan Daram bin Qabisah bin Nehshal bin Majma' Tamimi Sarmi, who according to An-Najashi compiled a book on the subject. He died in the late second century.
Ibn ul-Kalabi has been mentioned by Ibn un-Nadim as an author in this field while counting the books written on this subject. It is evident that his statement either refers to Muhammad bin Sa'id who died in 146 A.H. or his son Hisham who died in 206 A.H.
Hasan bin Ali Faddal also wrote a book on 'Nasikh and Mansukh' according to An-Najashi. He died in 224 A.H.
Similarly Ahmad bin Muhammad bin Isa al-Ash'ari al-Qummi has been mentioned by An-Najashi as an author of a similar book. He has also given his authorities. He died during the third century.
It is said that according to Suyuti, the first person to write on this subject was Abu 'Ubaid al-Qasim bin Salam who died in 224 A.H. Although Al-Masma'i and Ad-Darmi were senior to him and Ibn Faddal as well as Al-Ash'ari were his contemporaries.
Ali bin Ibrahim bin Hashim al-Qummi has been mentioned by Ash-Shaikh in his An-Fahrist and An-Najashi as having written a book on Nasikh and Mansukh. He died either in the late third century or the beginning of the fourth.
Muhammad bin Abbas, commonly known as Ibn Jahham is included in the Al-Fahrist of Ash-Shaikh as a Writer of a book on the subject under discussion. He died during the fourth century.
According to An-Najashi, Abdul Aziz bin Yahya al-Jaludi wrote a book on Nasikh and Mansukh on the basis of information from Ibn Abbas. He died after 330 A.H.
Shi'ite Writers On The Parts of Holy Quran
Among them was Hamza bin Habib Zayyat who wrote Asba'-ul-Quran. He died in 156 A.H. similarly, Ali bin Hamza al-Kisa'i is also reported to have written such a book. Ibn-un-Nadim has mentioned about of them while writing about the book written on this subject. He died in 179 A.H.
Shi'ite Writers On The Number of Quranic Verses
Following authors in this field have been mentioned by Ibn un-Nadim in his Al-Fahrist:
a) Ibn Abbas who wrote abut the number of verses
revealed in Madinah;
b) Hamze Zayyat who wrote Kitab-ul-'Adad;
c) Al-Kisa'i wrote two books, namely Kitab-ul-Adad and
Shi'tie Authors on The Meanings Of Holy Quran
In Al-Fahrist of Ibn-un-Nadim and Kashf-uz-Zunun, a mention has been made of the books written about the 'meaning' of the Quran. It is evident that by meaning , that refer to different stories, tales, injunctions, preachings, illustrations etc. which have occurred in the Holy Quran along with their explanation and commentary.
It therefore refers to an exegesis of the Holy Quran but from the point of view of these particular aspects of meaning. It aims at such contents which may be difficult to understand and which need explanation. The example of such a work is Ma'anil Akhbar written by As-Saduq and mentioned by Ibn Nadim among the books written on this subject. He has referred to about twenty different books. Among these are:
a) Kitab-ur-Radd ' Ala Man Nafal Majaz Minal Quran:
c) Diya-ul-Qulub Fi Ma'anil Quran wa Gharibihi wa
d) Riyadat-ul-Alsinah Fi I'rab-il-Quran wa Ma'anihi;
e) Ma'anil Quran wa Tafsirihi wa Mushkilihi.
He guides in arriving at the real and fundamental meaning because all kinds of transferred meanings, replies, strange expressions, difficult phrases etc. which are found in the Holy Quran lead to a difficulty in understanding. We also come to this conclusion from the fact that the author of Kashfuz Zunun mentions the meanings of poetry and books written about it. His aim in doing this is to tell about the various forms of poetry-eulogy, elegy, satire, lyrics, emotional poetry etc.
It is therefore quite evident that when we talk about the 'meanings' of the Holy Quran, we have this types of meaning in our mind. The author of Kashfuz Zunun has mentioned one book written by Qatrab, among those dealing with the contents of the Holy Quran and its connotative inferences. He says that the readers depend on this book.' This statement might have been given in relation to reading and recitation only or different modes of recitation with reference to different types of meaning.
He has also mentioned another book by Ibrahim bin As-Sariy and has said that his couplets explained by As-Sairafiy. It indicates to that this book might be about the explanation of verses in relation to their various levels of meaning. Hence, it could be treated in both ways.
Among the Shi'ite authors dealing with meanings or contents of the Holy Quran is Aban bin Taghlab. Ibn-un-Nadim has referred to him in his Al-Fahrist as one of the Shi'ite scholars, jurists and traditionalists, and has said that he wrote a book about the finer shades of meaning in the Quran. He died in 141 A.H.
Ibn-un-Nadim has also said about Ali bin Hamza al-Kisa'i that he wrote a book on the subject. He died in either 189 or 182 or 183 A.H.
Another Shi'ite author who wrote a book on this subject is Muhammad bin Hasan bin Abi Sarah Rawasi. This is supported by Bughyatul Wi'at as well as Al-Fahrist of Ibn Nadim. The latter has mentioned his book among those written on the subject under reference and has said it is reported and quoted up to this time. He died during the second century.
Al-Fara' Nahwi, whose full name is Yahya bin Ziyad Dailami al-Kufim, has been admitted to be a Shi'ite according to the anthor of Riyad ul-'Ulama as well as by Sayyid Mahdi Bahr-ul-Ulum Tabataba'i in his biographical dictionary. Ibn-un-Nadim has mentioned him while writing about the authors on this subject and has said that he wrote it Umar Bin Bakir. At another place Ibn Nadim says that it had four volumes. Similarly Suyuti has said in Bughyatul Wi'at that Al-Fara' wrote a book on the meanings of the Holy Quran. He died in 207 A.H.
Muhammad bin Yazid al-Mubrad Nahwi is another author mentioned in Bughyatul Wi'at who wrote a book on Ma'anil Quran. He died in 285 A.H.
Muhammad bin Ahmad Abul Fadl al-Ja'fi al- Kufi commonly known as Sabuni has been mentioned by An-Najashi who has said that he wrote a book in which he explained the meanings of the Holy Quran and named various kinds of its meanings. He died in 300 A.H.
Muhammad Bin al-Hasan Shaibani Shaikh-al- Mufid wrote a book titled Nehj-ul-Bayan 'Ann Kashfe Ma'anil Quran. He described sixty various kinds of Quranic knowledge and dedicated it to Al-Musta-nsir Al-Abbasi. Sayyid Murtada quotes from his book in his Kitab ul-Muhkam Wal Mutashabeh, as well as Kitab-ush-Shi'ah and Funu'n-ul-Islam. As to Hasan bin Muhammad Shaibani, he was probably his father. He died in the late fourth century.
Sharif Razi Muhammad bin al-Husain al-Muswi has been referred to in Ma'alim-ul-'Ulama' as having written a book in the subject which can hardly find a comparison. He died in 406 A.H.
Shi'ite Authors writing About Maqtuu' And Mawsuul In The Holy Quran
Among such authors who wrote on the above-mentioned subject was Hamza bin Habib Zayyat. Ibn-un-Nadim has him as an author while writing about the book on this subject. He died in 156 A.H.
Similarly Ali bin Hamza al-Kisa'i has been mentioned among the authors on Maqtu' and Mawsul of the Holy Quran, by Ibn-un-Nadim. He died in 189A.H.
Total number of books mentioned by Ibn-un-Nadim on this subject is three, namely those written by Hamza bin Habib, Al-Kisa'i and Abdullah bin Aamir al-Yahsabi. Out of these three, two are Shi'ites as mentioned above.
Shi'ite Authors writing about the Waqf and Ibtidaa' in the Holy Quran
It is evident that this topic is connected with the Maqtu' and Mawsul; only the words are changed. Writing about the books written on this subject, Ibn-un-Nadim has mentioned the following authors:
a) Kitabl-Waqf Wal Ibtidaa' by Hamza.
b) Kitabul-Waqf Wal Ibtida' by Al-Farra'.
c) Kitabul-Waqf Wal-Ibtida' by Ibn Sa'dan.
Writing a note on Ar-Rawasi, Ibn-un-Nadim has mentioned that he wrote two books on this subjest. These are:
a) Kitabul-Waqf Wal-Ibtida' Al-Kabir.
b) Kitabul-Waqf Wal Ibtida' As-Saghir.
An-Najashi has also testified that Ar-Rawasi wrote a book on the subject.All these writers were Shi'ites.