Rafed English

To the Heaven

The horrible scenes that Lady Zaynab had to witness did not depart her for even a single moment; her eyes were always teary and her words were only wailing for her brother and the martyrs, She used to cry the names of her brothers, sons, and nephews, and then she would be unconscious. This state turned her into a soulless, feeble body waiting for death, which would be the only relief. She was waiting for death so as to complain to her grandfather and parents about what she had seen. Thus, diseases began to attack her and she had to stay in bed for long time suffering agonies of diseases. Even in her last sparks of life, the scenes of Karbala' and Damascus were present before her eyes. However, death attacked her while her tongue was glorifying the Almighty Lord Who will take revenge upon those who wronged her.
She departed this life on Sunday, the fifteenth of Rajab, 62 AH at the age of fifty-seven.1


Historians have had various opinions about the burial place of Lady Zaynab; some have defined al-Baqi in Medina. This opinion is not acceptable, because if she was buried there she would have a special tomb just like the others who were buried there. It is probable that she, like her mother, asked to be buried at night so that none would know about the place of her grave.

A good group of historians have decided that she died in a small village in Damascus and was buried there. They recorded that she immigrated to Syria when Medina had been befallen by a disastrous famine due to which 'Abdullah ibn Ja'far left for Syria.

It seems that the story of this famine is baseless since most of the historians and narrators have never referred to such an incident during that period. Besides, 'Abdullah ibn Ja'far was so rich that he would not be influenced by such a famine, and that he was too generous to leave his people in such a famine and immigrate to her center of his enemies. At any rate, it is widespread that Lady Zaynab was buried in Damascus and there is now a handsome shrine pilgrimaged by thousands of people every day, seeking the blessing and mercy of Almighty Allah, just like the holy shrine of Imam al-Husayn.

Another good number of historians have recorded that Lady Zaynab was buried in Egypt.1 For all Egyptians, this is an unquestionable fact,and her handsome shrine there is one of the most significant signs Egypt. About Lady Zaynab's immigration to Egypt, historians have recorded tha following :

In Medina, Lady Zaynab began to rally the publics against the ruling authorities and the unjust Umayyad State. As a result, people of Medina rebelled and formed armed forces to face the ruling authorities. As a reply, Yazid sent a heavy army commanded by the criminal Muslim ibn Aqabah to kill the rebels and civilians so harshly and mercilessly. He even turned them into slaves for Yazid.
Fearing the activities of Lady Zaynab, the ruler of Medina wrote to Yazid about her danger. The tyrant wrote back that he should banish her to any country she would choose. First of all, Lady Zaynab refused, but Zaynab daughter of 'Aqil, her cousin, could convince her to leave for the good of religion. She hence opted for Egypt. In this (final) journey, she was accompanied by her nieces Fatimah and Sukaynah daughters of Imam al-Husayn. They arrived in Egypt on the last days of Dhu'l-Hijjah, and were received hospitably by the ruler of Egypt, Maslamah ibn Mukhallad al-Ansari who offered Lady Zaynab to reside in his own house in al-Hamra', and she lived there for eleven months and fifteen days. On Sundays, 15th of Rajab, 62 A.H., Lady Zaynab departed life and was buried in that house. There is now a handsome shrine carrying her name and teaching all generatons the meanings of real humanity and defense of freedom and belief.2

In his book entitled al-Tarikh, Ibn Asakir records:

"Lady Zaynab resided in Egypt where she died and was buried. The lady buried in Damascus is her sister, Zaynab al-Wusta."

The Egyptians as well as the other Muslim throughout the globe pilgrimage to the holy shrine everyday especially on the occasion of her death. They, including scholars and religious people, crowd around the shrine seeking the Lord's blessings and mercy through the intercession of Lady Zaynab. Rulers of Egypt, such as Kafur al-Akhshidi, Ahmad ibn Tawlawn, and al-Dafir-bi-Nasrillah also had the honor to visit the holy shrine. with the beginning the month of Rajab, people from everywhere gather around the holy shrine reciting the Holy Book of Allah and other Du'as.

some of them, furthermore, reside there to the half of the month.

A many reconstructions and reformations all over history have been made to the holy shrine at the hands of virtuous kings and leaders of Egypt, such as, Fakhruddin Tha'lb al-Ja'fari, 'Ali Pasha al-Wazir (in 956 AH), and Abdul-Rahman Katkhada (in 1174 AH). In 1212 AH, Uthman al-Muradi reconstructed the shrine, but he had to stop when the French occupied the country. In 1326 AH, Yusuf Pasha carried on the reconstructions and dated his words through some poetic verses written on a tablet of marble. Abyhow, the final touches were at the hands of Muhammad 'Ali Pasha reconstructed other faces. The operation was completed in 1304 AH.

Every country or place in which Lady Zaynab resided has all right to take pride in this Lady who has been the honor of Islam and All Muslims.

At any rate, Lady zaynab's place is the heart of each and every fact-finder. She has been too great to be contained by any tomb, and one's deed depends upon his/her intent.


1- This saying is agreed by the following scholars: Ibn 'Askir in al-Tarikhal-Kabir, Ibn Tawlawn in al-Risalah al-Zaynabiyyah, al-Sha'rani in Lawqih al-Anwar, Muhammad Sabban in Is'af al-Raghibin, al-Shabalnaji in Nur al-Absar, al-Shabrawi in al-Ithaf, Hasan al-Adwi in Mashariq al-Anwar, al-Mannawi in al-Tabaqat, Jalaluddin al-Sayuti in al-Risalah al-Zaynabiyyah, al-Ajhuri in Musalsal Ashura, and many others.

2- See Is'af al-Raghibin 196, al-Shamrani, Lawaqih al-Anwar 23, al-Ithaf bi Hubb al-Ashraf 93, and Masahriq al-Anwar,100.

Adopted from the book : "Lady Zaynab" by : "Ansariyan Publications"

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