Allâh’s Messenger ﷺ implants the Spirit of Bravery among his Armed Forces
Allâh’s Messengerﷺ forbade the Muslims to start the fight without having an order from him. He, then, wore two armors – a front armor and a back one. He urged his Companions to fight and stimulated them to show stamina and firmness at fight. He started to instill the spirit of boldness and bravery in them. To arouse his Companions and in order to stand fast in the fight, he took a sharp sword, held it in his hand and called out unto his Companions and said:
“Who is ready to take this sword and give it its proper due?” Many set out to take it. Some of them were Hazrat Ali bin Abi Talib. AzZubair bin Al-Awwam and ‘Umar bin Al-Khattab Radiallahu anhoo. But it was granted to none. Abu Dujanah Sammak bin Kharshah inquired: “O Messenger of Allâhﷺ, what is its due?” The Prophetﷺ said:
“It is to strike the enemy’s faces with it till it was bent.” So, Abu Dujanah said: “O Messenger of Allâhﷺ I will take it. along with its due.” and he was given the sword. Abu Dujanah was a man of courage who used to swagger at war. He had a red band which he wore round his head. Whenever he was wore it everybody knew that he was determined to fight to death. Therefore as soon as Abu Dujanah took the Prophet’s ﷺ sword, he banded his head and started walking proudly among the fighters. Allah’s Messenger ﷺwatching him said:
“This is a sort of walking that Allâh hates except in such a situation.”
The Positioning of the Makkan Army
The idolaters applied a system of rows in the mobilization of their army. The general leadership of the army was entrusted to Abu Sufyan Sakhr bin Harb, who would be in the center-position of the army. Khalid bin Al-Walid was on the right wing; whereas ‘Ikrimah, the son of Abu Jahl was on the left. Safwan bin Umaiyah was in charge of infantry men. The archers were under the command of ‘Abdullah bin Abi Rabi’ah. As for the standard, a squad of Bani ‘Abdud-Dar was in charge to bear it. Thus was the distribution of the posts of the army ever since ‘Abd Manaf had already assigned them. This assignment had been inherited from Qusai bin Kilab – as we have previously pointed out earlier in this book. No one had the right to compete with them for it. It was consistent with their traditions that they inherited from their ancestors. Abu Sufyan, the general leader, reminded his men – the standardbearers – of what had happened to the Quraish on the Day of Badr when their standard-bearer, An-Nadr bin Al-Harith, was captured. In an attempt to evoke their anger and enmity to the Muslims he said: “O Bani ‘Abdud-Dar! You have been assigned bearers of our standard and you know that the standard is the first thing that the enemy attacks. Should it fall, we fall down too. Therefore, I say. either you guarantee its safety or leave it for us, and we will certainly suffice you that task.” Abu Sufyan’s attempt seemed to be fruitful. For his speech made Bani ‘Abdud-Dar so extremely angry that they threatened him and almost attacked him for that. Addressing him, they said: “You want us to deliver you the custodianship of the standard? Tomorrow when we fight them, you will witness our deeds.” As a matter of fact, they fought bravely and remained firm in defense of the standard till they were all killed.
Political Strategies of Quraish
A little time before the break out of the battle, the Quraish made some efforts to sow the seeds of discord and dispute among the Muslims. First, Abu Sufyan sent to the Helpers a message saying: *Leave us alone to fight our cousins and do not interfere. If
you stand aside, we will not fight you; for fighting you is not a target of ours.” But that attempt proved to be fruitless. What could such a wicked scheme do to those whose Faith was as solid and firm as mountains?! The Helpers reply was undoubtedly disappointing and contrary to Abu Sufyan’s expectations. The zero hour was due. The two parties drew nearer. Not losing any hope by the first failure, Quraish made another attempt, for the same goal but now with the assistance of a traitor called Abu *Amir Al-Fasiq, whose name was ‘Abd ‘Amr bin Saifi. He was called a monk, but Allâh’s Messenger ﷺnicknamed him Al-Fasiq (i.e.. evildoer, dissolute). As he was the head of Aws in Al-Jahiliyah, he could not tolerate Islam when it came. He announced his enmity to Allâh’s Messengerﷺ content in public. He left Madinah for the Quraishites in Makkah to rally them against Allâh’s Messengerﷺ and to urge them to start the fight against him. He claimed that he was obeyed and esteemed by his people and that as soon as they saw him come they would join him immediately. So he went to the slaves of the people of Makkah and the miscellaneous tribe members among the Muslims. He called out unto his people, until they recognized him and said: “O kinfolk of Aws! I am Abu ‘Amir.” Their reply was: “No eyes of anybody shall be comforted by viewing you, O Fasiq.” Hearing them say so, he said: “My people must have been afflicted by an evil after my departure.” Therefore when the fight broke out, he fought them fiercely and pelted his people with stones. That was the second attempt of Quraish to sow the seeds of discord among people of Faith. This, however, revealed the great terror that was cast in the hearts of the Quraishites in spite of their supremacy in number and equipment.
The Effort of the Quraishite Women in exciting the Zeal of the Men
The Quraishi women participated in the battle led by the wife of
Abu Sufyan, Hind bint ‘Utbah. They wandered among the rows of the idolaters, striking on their Duffs,’) encouraging the men to fight, inflaming the emotions of heroes, lancers, swordsmen and brave fighters. At one time they addressed the standard-bearers:
“O Bani ‘Abdud-Dar! O home defenders,
Strike with your sharp swords …” And at another time they would be singing:
“If you fight (bravely), we will embrace And unfold mats to welcome you. But if you flee from the battlefield, we leave you, Desert you and no more love you.”
The two part.es approached very close to each another. The phases of fight started. The first fighter was the standard-bearer Talhah bin Abi Talhah Al-‘Abdari. He was one of the bravest men among the Quraish fighters. The Muslims nicknamed him the ram of the battalion.’ He came forth riding a camel and challenged the Muslims to a duel. Everyone refrained from fighting him due to his bravery; but Az-Zubair bin Al-‘Awwam auto advanced for the fight. He did not give the ‘Ram’ any chance to fight but fell on him like a lion on his camel’s back, pulled him down to the ground and slaughtered him with his sword. Allâh’s Messenger ﷺwho was watching that wonderful incident exclaimed: Aliâhu Akbar, i.e., ‘Allâh is the Greatest’; and the Muslims exclaimed Allâhu Akbar too. He praised Az-Zubair as he said:
“Every Prophet has a disciple and my disciple is Az Zubair.”
The Fighting that Centered around the Standard-Bearer
Soon the battle started and the fight of the two parties grew fierce
everywhere on the battlefield. The strain of the fight was centered round the carriers of the standard. After the death of their leader Talhah bin Abi Talhah, Banu ‘Abdud-Dar alternated the mission successively. Talhah’s brother, ‘Uthman, ran forward and seized the standard which lay by the lifeless body of his brother, chanting: “The standard-bearer has the right to dye its shaft in blood, till it be beaten in his hand.” Hazrat Hamzah bin ‘AbdulMuttalib Radiallahu anhoo attacked and dealt him a blow that cut his arm and shoulder and went down to his navel to uncover his lung. The standard was raised up again by Abu Sa’d bin Abi Talhah; but ‘Asim bin Thabit bin Abul-Aqlah struck him killing him. His brother Kilab bin Talhah bin Abi Talhah followed him, picked up the banner and raised it; but Az-Zubair bin Al-‘Awwam event is attacked him and managed to kill him. Their brother Al-Jallas bin Talhah bin Abi Talhah lifted the banner up but Talhah bin ‘Ubaidullah stabbed him to death. They also said that it was ‘Asim bin Thabit cu tot who managed to deal a terminal blow to him. All those five people who were killed around and in defense of the standard, belonged to one house, the house of Abi Talhah ‘Abdullah bin ‘Uthman bin ‘Abdud-Dar. Another man from Bani ‘Abdud-Dar, called Artat bin Sharhabil carried the standard but he also was killed by ‘HazratAli bin Abi Talib AlaihisSalam. Then it was Shuraih bin Qariz who was killed by Quzman – he was a hypocrite who fought for prestige only, not in defense of Islam. Abu Zaid ‘Amr bin ‘Abd Manaf Al-‘Abdari took the standard but he was killed by Quzman too. A son of Sharhabil bin Hashim Al-‘Abdari hoisted it again and was also killed by Quzman. So, we see that ten fighters of Bani ‘Abdud-Dar – the standardbearers were killed. Seeing that none of ‘Abdud-Dar survived to carry
the standard, an Abyssinian slave of theirs – called Sawab – came to raise it. The slave showed more admirable sorts of bravery and firmness than his former masters. Sawab went on fighting till his hand was cut off. So he knelt down and embraced the banner, leant it against his chest and neck lest it should fall to the ground.
He remained fighting steadily until he was killed. In the meanwhile he did not stop saying: “O Allâh, have I been excused?” After the death of the slave Sawab, the standard fell down to the ground, and remained there as there was no one to
The Other Clashes
While the force of the battle centered around the standard, bitter fighting was going on everywhere on the battlefield. The spirit of Faith overwhelmed the Muslims’ ranks; so they rushed among the idolaters as if they had been an outbreak of a destructive flood that overflowed and knocked down all dams and barriers standing in its way. “I seek death, I seek death.” That was their announced motto on the Day of Uhud. Abu Dujanah recognized by the red band worn round his head, came forth, fighting with the sword of Allâh’s Messenger ﷺcareer
. He was determined to fulfill its due at all costs. He killed all the idolaters that stood on his way, splitting and dispersing their ranks. Az-Zubair bin Al-‘Awwamen said: “I was upset when Allâh’s Messengerﷺ refused to give me the sword but gave it to Abu Dujanah. I said to myself: ‘I am his paternal cousin the cousin of his aunt Safiyah a Quraishite, besides, I was the first who demanded it and yet he favored him to me. By Allâh, I will watch how he behaves with it.’ So I followed him. I saw him take out his red band and wrap it around his head. Seeing him like that, the Helpers said, ‘Abu Dujanah has worn the band of death.’ Then he set out saying loudly: ‘I am the one whom my intiñate friend made a covenant with. when we were under the palm trees on the mountain side. The covenant that we made was that I should not fight at the rear. But fight at the front heroically with the sword of Allâh and His Messengerﷺ.’ No one stood in the way of Abu Dujanah but he was killed. There was a man among the idolaters whose only objective was to finish
off the wounded Muslims. During the fight Abu Dujanah drew near that man; so I prayed to Allâh that they might engage in fight. They in fact did and exchanged two sword-strokes. The idolater struck Abu Dujanah, but he escaped it and it pierced into his leather shield. The idolater’s sword now stuck to it, Abu Dujanah struck him with the sword and killed him.””) Into the thick of the battle, he rushed to kill a person who was inciting the enemy to fight the Muslims. Upon this the person shrieked and lo! it was a woman. Abu Dujanah spared her saying: ‘I respect the Prophet’s ﷺsword too much to use it on a woman.’ The woman was Hind bint “Utbah.”
Describing the same incident, Az-Zubair bin Al-‘Awwam said: “I saw Abu Dujanah raising a sword directly over Hind bint ‘Utbah’s head, then he moved it. I said to myself: ‘Allâh and His Messengerﷺ know best.’ (i.e., know why he acted like that).” Hazrat Hamzah bin ‘Abdul-Muttalib Radiallahu anhoo displayed wonderful acts of bravery against the overwhelming odds which stood unparallel and created worry and confusion in the disbelieving army. Heroes dispersed off his way as if they had been tree-leaves blown away by strong wind. In addition to his effective contribution to the destruction of the idolaters who stood in defense of the standard. he was even of much greater effect at fighting against men of bravery and distinguished horsemen. It was Allâh’s Will that he be Shaheed when he was at the top. He was not killed in a face-toface fight on the battlefield – in the normal way by which heroes die but rather stealthily assassinated as was the custom of killing generous and noble men that were impossible to kill in an honorable face to face fight.
The Shahdat of Asadullah (the Lion of Allah)Hazrat Hamzah bin ‘Abdul-Muttalib Radiallahu anhoo
Hamzah’s assassin, Wahshi bin Harb, described how he killed Hazrat
Hamzah it. He said: “I was a slave working for Jubair bin Mut’im, whose paternal uncle Tu’aimah bin ‘Adi was injured at the battle of Badr. So, when the Quraish marched to Uhud, Jubair said to me: “If you kill Hazrat Hamzah, the uncle of Prophetﷺ, stealthily, you shall be manumitted.’ So I marched with the people to Uhud. And I am an Abyssinian man who is an expert with the Abyssinian spear. So, when the two parties fought, I set out seeking Hamzah. I saw him amidst people fighting. He was like a white and black striped camel, striking severely with his sword and no one could stand in his way. By Allâh! When I was getting ready and trying to seize the fit opportunity to spear him, hiding sometimes behind a tree or a rock hoping that he might draw nearer and be within range – at that moment I caught sight of Siba’ bin ‘Abdul-‘Uzza going closer towards him. When Hamzah observed him, he said: ‘Come on! O son of the clitoris-cutter,’ for his mother used to be a circumciser. Then he struck one strong stroke that could hardly miss his head. Then I balanced my spear and shook it till I was content with it, then I speared him and it went down into his stomach and issued out between his legs. He attempted moving towards me but he was overcome by his wound. I left him there with the spear in his entrails till he died. Then I came to him. pulled out my spear and returned to the place of the camp
stayed there and did not go out, for he was the only one I sought. I killed him only to free myself. So, as soon as I got back to Makkah, I became a free man.”
Bringing the Situation under Control
Although the death of Asadullah. Lion of Allâh and His Messenger Hamzaﷺh bin ‘Abdul-Muttalib was a great loss, the Muslims maintained full control over the whole situation on the battlefield. On that day, Abu Bakr, ‘Umar bin Al-Khattab, ‘Ali bin Abi Talib, Az-Zubair bin Al-‘Awwam, Mus’ab bin ‘Umair.Talhah bin ‘Ubaidullah, ‘Abdullah bin Jahsh, Sa’d bin Ar-Rabi’ and Anas bin An-Nadr site and others – all of them fought so fiercely, effectively and efficiently that they broke the strong will of the idolaters and scattered them.