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The Revolt of Martyr Yahya

Yahya bin Umar bin al-Husayn bin Zayd revolted against the Abbasid government calling for the rights of the oppressed and persecuted people and inviting to establish the rule of Allah in the earth. He was a brave knight far away from the recklessness of the youth. He was not accused of any defect.18 People loved him and were loyal to him because he began his rising by refraining from shedding blood or taking anything from people’s properties. He treated the all with justice and fairness.

The cause of his revolt was for an isolation and misfortune he and others suffered from the Turks during the reign of al-Mutawakkil.19 Groups from the people of Kufa followed him and he revolted with them during the reign of al-Musta’een. The caliph assigned Muhammad bin Tahir to fight Yahya. He marched towards him with a big army. After violent fighting Yahya was martyred and a page from the bright pages of jihad in Islam was folded.

After the martyrdom of Yahya, Muhammad bin Tahir sat in a public meeting to receive congratulations for killing the progeny of the messenger of Allah (SwT). Villains and flatterers showed him joys and delight and congratulated him for the victory of killing the grandson of the messenger of Allah.

Abu Hashim al-Ja’fari went to Muhammad bin Tahir and said to him, ‘O emir, you are delighted for killing a man, who if the messenger of Allah was alive he would be consoled for his death.’
Muhammad bin Tahir became silent and terrible silence prevailed over the meeting.

The captives from Yahya’s companions were taken to Baghdad after receiving too severe harms and torture. Historians says that they were drawn barefoot and whoever of them was late would be killed until the book of al-Musta’een arrived ordering them to be set free and they were set free.20

People became sad for the death of Yahya and wept for him too much. No one was elegized more than him. Many well-known poets elegized him and criticized the Abbasids.

Anyhow, the killing of Yahya was one of the great, shocking events in that age, for by killing him the sanctity of the Prophet (S) was violated whereas Allah, in the Holy Qur'an, had made the love for the Prophet’s progeny as the reward for the Prophet’s efforts in carrying out the mission of Allah.

Notes:

18. Maqatil at-Talibiyin, p. 639
19. Muruj ath-Thahab, vol.4 p.93
20. Maqatil at-Talibiyin, p.p.644

Adapted from: "The Life of Imam ‘Ali al-Hadi, Study and Analysis" by: "Baqir Shareef al-Qurashi"

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