Rafed English

Yazid expressed pleasure at killing Imam al-Husayn (as)

Adapted from: "The Uprising of Ashura and Responses to Doubts" by: "‘Ali Asghar Ridwani"

When we pay careful attention to diverse historical documents, it becomes clear that Yazid was very happy with killing al-Husayn (as). There are many historical documents which provide evidence beyond doubt that Yazid was pleased with what had transpired. We also have to pay attention to the hadith which says, “Anyone who is pleased with an action of a group of people is one of those people.” Let us now refer to some evidence to prove our assertion.

1. While talking to Nu‘man ibn Bashir, Yazid said, “Praise Allah because He has killed al-Husayn.”45

2. Ya‘qubi writes, “Yazid was in his garden when the news that Imam al-Husayn had been killed was brought to him. He shouted out aloud, ‘Allah-u Akbar!’”46

3. When the captives were brought to Sham, Yazid ibn Mu‘awiyah called the elders of Sham to come and congratulate him for the victory.47

4. Maqrizi and other historians have recounted that when ‘Ubayd Allah ibn Ziyad placed the head of Imam al-Husayn ibn ‘Ali (as) before Yazid ibn Mu‘awiyah, he started hitting Imam al-Husayn’s (as) teeth with a rod. He was doing this while reciting poetry. Then, he gave orders that Imam al-Husayn’s (as) head should be hung in the palace for three days.48

Many Sunni scholars have opposed Yazid due to his pleasure at killing Imam al-Husayn (as), and even cursed him.

5. Suyuti narrates, “May Allah curse al-Husayn’s (as) killers. May Allah curse Ibn Ziyad and Yazid.”49

6. Some people asked al-Jawzi what his opinion was regarding cursing Yazid. He answered, “Ahmad ibn Hanbal permitted cursing him, and we say that we do not like Yazid because of what he did to the son of the Prophet’s daughter (as) and because he sent the Prophet’s (S) Household in a state of captivity to Sham aboard camel litter.”50

7. Dhahabi says, “Yazid was a cruel and hardhearted man. He used to drink wine and commit forbidden acts [munkarat]. His reign began with killing al-Husayn ibn ‘Ali and ended with the event of Harrah.”51

8. Ibn Khaldun recounts the killing of Imam al-Husayn (as) thus, “Without doubt, Imam al-Husayn was killed by Yazid. Killing Imam al-Husayn (as) is an action that underscores Yazid’s immoral nature. In this event, al-Husayn is a martyr in Allah’s way.”52


45. Khwarazmi, Maqtal al-Imam al-Husayn (as), vol. 2, p. 59.

46. Tarikh Ya‘qubi, vol. 2, p. 222.

47. Al-Bidayah wa al-Nihayah, vol. 8, p. 197; Siyr A‘lam al-Nubala’, vol. 3, p. 309.

48. Maqrizi, Al-Khitat, vol. 2, p. 289; Siyr A‘lam al-Nubala’, vol. 3, p. 319.

49. Tarikh al-Khulafa’, p. 207.

50. Mir’at al-Zaman, vol. 8, p. 496; Sawa‘iq al-Muhriqah, vol. 2, p. 634.

51. Shadharat al-Dhahab, vol. 1, p. 69.

52. The Introduction of Ibn Khaldun, p. 181.


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