Muhammad (مُحَمَّد) was an Arab religious, social, and political leader and the founder of Islam. According to Islamic doctrine, he was a prophet, sent to preach and confirm the monotheistic teachings of Adam, Abraham, Moses, Jesus, and other prophets. He is believed to be the final prophet of God in all the main branches of Islam, though some modern denominations diverge from this belief. Muhammad united Arabia into a single Muslim polity, with the Quran as well as his teachings and practices forming the basis of Islamic religious belief.
Prophet Muhammad Timeline
Muhammad is bornMecca, Saudi Arabia
Muhammad, the son of 'Abdullah ibn 'Abd al-Muttalib ibn Hashim and his wife Aminah, was born in 570 CE, approximately, in the city of Mecca in the Arabian Peninsula. He was a member of the family of Banu Hashim, a respected branch of the prestigious and influential Quraysh tribe.
OrphanhoodMecca, Saudi Arabia
Muhammad marries KhadijahMecca, Saudi Arabia
Around the age of twenty five, Muhammad was employed as the caretaker of the mercantile activities of Khadijah, a distinguished Quraysh lady of 40 years of age. Khadijah entrusted a friend named Nafisa to approach Muhammad and ask if he would consider marrying. When Muhammad hesitated because he had no money to support a wife, Nafisa asked if he would consider marriage to a woman who had the means to provide for herself. Muhammad agreed to meet with Khadijah, and after this meeting they consulted their respective uncles. The uncles agreed to the marriage, and Muhammad's uncles accompanied him to make a formal proposal to Khadijah. Khadijah's uncle accepted the proposal, and the marriage took place.
Black StoneKaaba, Mecca, Saudi Arabia
According to a narration collected by historian Ibn Ishaq, Muhammad was involved with a well-known story about setting the Black Stone in place in the wall of the Kaaba in 605 CE. The Black Stone, a sacred object, was removed during renovations to the Kaaba. The Meccan leaders could not agree which clan should return the Black Stone to its place. They decided to ask the next man who comes through the gate to make that decision; that man was the 35-year-old Muhammad. This event happened five years before the first revelation by Gabriel to him. He asked for a cloth and laid the Black Stone in its center. The clan leaders held the corners of the cloth and together carried the Black Stone to the right spot, then Muhammad laid the stone, satisfying the honor of all.
First VisionCave Hira, Mount Jabal al-Nour
Muhammad began to preach to the publicMecca, Saudi Arabia
According to Muslim tradition, Muhammad's wife Khadija was the first to believe he was a prophet. She was followed by Muhammad's ten-year-old cousin Ali ibn Abi Talib, close friend Abu Bakr, and adopted son Zaid. Around 613, Muhammad began to preach to the public (Quran 26:214). Most Meccans ignored and mocked him, though a few became his followers. There were three main groups of early converts to Islam: younger brothers and sons of great merchants; people who had fallen out of the first rank in their tribe or failed to attain it; and the weak, mostly unprotected foreigners.
Persecution of MuslimsMecca, Saudi Arabia
As his followers increased, Muhammad became a threat to the local tribes and rulers of the city, whose wealth rested upon the Ka'aba, the focal point of Meccan religious life that Muhammad threatened to overthrow. Tradition records at great length the persecution and ill-treatment towards Muhammad and his followers. Sumayyah bint Khayyat, a slave of a prominent Meccan leader Abu Jahl, is famous as the first martyr of Islam; killed with a spear by her master when she refused to give up her faith. Bilal, another Muslim slave, was tortured by Umayyah ibn Khalaf who placed a heavy rock on his chest to force his conversion.
Migration to AbyssiniaAksum, Ethiopia
Year of SorrowMecca, Saudi Arabia
In the Islamic tradition, the Year of Sorrow ( عام الحزن) is the Hijri year in which Muhammad's wife Khadijah and his uncle and protector Abu Talib died. The year approximately coincided with 619 CE or the tenth year after Muhammad's first revelation.
Isra and Mi'rajAl-Aqsa Mosque, Jerusalem, Isr
Islamic tradition states that in 620, Muhammad experienced the Isra and Mi'raj, a miraculous night-long journey said to have occurred with the angel Gabriel. At the journey's beginning, the Isra, he is said to have traveled from Mecca on a winged steed to "the farthest mosque." Later, during the Mi'raj, Muhammad is said to have toured heaven and hell, and spoke with earlier prophets, such as Abraham, Moses, and Jesus. Ibn Ishaq, author of the first biography of Muhammad, presents the event as a spiritual experience; later historians, such as Al-Tabari and Ibn Kathir, present it as a physical journey.
Some western scholars? hold that the Isra and Mi'raj journey traveled through the heavens from the sacred enclosure at Mecca to the celestial al-Baytu l-Maʿmur (heavenly prototype of the Kaaba); later traditions indicate Muhammad's journey as having been from Mecca to Jerusalem.
Hegira and the start of the Islamic calendarMedina, Saudi Arabia
Battle of BadrBattle of Badr, Saudia Arabia
Muhammad took keen interest in capturing Meccan caravans after his migration to Medina, seeing it as repayment for his people, the Muhajirun. A few days before the battle, when he learnt of a Makkan caravan returning from the Levant led by Abu Sufyan ibn Harb, Muhammad gathered a small expeditionary force to capture it. Though outnumbered more than three to one, the Muslims won the battle, killing at least forty-five Meccans with fourteen Muslims dead. They also succeeded in killing many Meccan leaders, including Abu Jahl. The Muslim victory strengthened Muhammad's position; Medinans eagerly joined his future expeditions and tribes outside Medina openly allied with Muhammad. The battle marked the beginning of the six-year war between Muhammad and his tribe.
Battle of UhudMount Uhud, Saudi Arabia
The Battle of Uhud (غَزْوَة أُحُد) was fought on Saturday, 23 March 625 AD in the valley north of Mount Uhud. The Qurayshi Meccans, led by Abu Sufyan ibn Harb, commanded an army of 3,000 men toward Muhammad's stronghold in Medina. The battle was the only battle throughout the Muslim–Quraish War in which the Muslims did not manage to defeat their enemy and it came just nine months after the Battle of Badr.
Battle of the Trenchnear Medina, Saudi Arabia
The Battle of the Trench (غزوة الخندق) was a 27-day-long defence by Muslims of Yathrib (now Medina) from Arab and Jewish tribes. The strength of the confederate armies is estimated around 10,000 men with six hundred horses and some camels, while the Medinan defenders numbered 3,000. In the siege of Medina, the Meccans exerted the available strength to destroy the Muslim community. The failure resulted in a significant loss of prestige; their trade with Syria vanished.
Treaty of HudaybiyyahMedina, Saudi Arabia
The Treaty of Hudaybiyyah was a pivotal treaty between Muhammad, representing the state of Medina, and the Qurayshi tribe of Mecca in January 628. After the signing of the treaty, the Quraysh of Mecca no longer considered Muhammad to be a rebel or a fugitive from Mecca. It helped to decrease tension between the two cities, affirmed peace for a period of 10 years , and authorised Muhammad's followers to return the following year in a peaceful pilgrimage, later known as The First Pilgrimage.
Muhammad conquers MeccaMecca, Saudi Arabia
The truce of Hudaybiyyah was enforced for two years until a tribal killing caused an issue. After this event, Muhammad sent a message to Mecca with three conditions, asking them to accept one of them. These were: either the Meccans would pay blood money for the slain among the Khuza'ah tribe, they disavow themselves of the Banu Bakr, or they should declare the truce of Hudaybiyyah null. The Meccans replied that they accepted the last condition. Muhammad marched on Mecca with 10,000 Muslim converts. He enters the city peacefully, and eventually all its citizens accept Islam. The prophet clears the idols and images out of the Kaaba and rededicates it to the worship of God alone. The conquest marked the end of the wars between the followers of Muhammad and the Quraysh tribe.
Conquest of ArabiaHunain, Saudi Arabia
Following the conquest of Mecca, Muhammad was alarmed by a military threat from the confederate tribes of Hawazin who were raising an army double the size of Muhammad's. The Banu Hawazin were old enemies of the Meccans. They were joined by the Banu Thaqif (inhabiting the city of Ta'if) who adopted an anti-Meccan policy due to the decline of the prestige of Meccans. Muhammad defeated the Hawazin and Thaqif tribes in the Battle of Hunayn.
Expedition of TabukExpedition of Tabuk, Saudi Ara
Muhammad and his forces marched northwards to Tabuk, near the Gulf of Aqaba in October 630. It was his largest and last military expedition. After arriving at Tabuk and camping there, Muhammad's army prepared to face the Byzantine invasion. Muhammad spent twenty days at Tabuk, scouting the area, making alliances with local chiefs. With no sign of the Byzantine army, he decided to return to Medina. Though Muhammad did not encounter a Byzantine army at Tabuk, according to the Oxford Encyclopedia of the Islamic World, "this show of force demonstrated his intention to challenge the Byzantines for control of the northern part of the caravan route from Mecca to Syria".
Death of MuhammadMedina, Saudi Arabia
Muhammad dies after a prolonged illness on Monday, 8 June 632, in Medina, at the age of 62 or 63, in the house of his wife Aisha. The Muslim community elects his father-in-law and close associate, Abu Bakr, as caliph, or successor.
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Abu Talib ibn Abd al-Muttalib
The prophet Muhammad
Khadija bint Khuwaylid
- A.C. Brown, Jonathan (2011). Muhammad: A Very Short Introduction. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-955928-2.
- Guillaume, Alfred (1955). The Life of Muhammad: A translation of Ibn Ishaq's Sirat Rasul Allah. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-636033-1
- Hamidullah, Muhammad (1998). The Life and Work of the Prophet of Islam. Islamabad: Islamic Research Institute. ISBN 978-969-8413-00-2
- Lings, Martin (1983). Muhammad: His Life Based on the Earliest Sources. Islamic Texts Society. ISBN 978-0-946621-33-0. US edn. by Inner Traditions International, Ltd.
- Peters, Francis Edward (1994). Muhammad and the Origins of Islam. SUNY Press. ISBN 978-0-7914-1876-
- Rubin, Uri (1995). The Eye of the Beholder: The Life of Muhammad as Viewed by the Early Muslims (A Textual Analysis). Darwin Press. ISBN 978-0-87850-110-6.