His father was the Commander of the faithful (Amir al-mu’minin), ‘Ali b.
Abu Talib. His mother was the mistress of the women of the worlds,
Fatima the daughter of the Apostle of Allah, may Allah bless him and his
He was born in Medina on the night of the middle day of the month of
Ramadan, in the year 3 A.H. He was the eldest son.
When al-Hasan was born, the Prophet, may Allah bless him and his
family, took him. Then the Prophet said the adhan (call to prayer) in al Hasan’s right ear, and said the iqama (words similar to the adhan) in his
left ear. Then he sacrificed a ram for him (in the ceremony of `aqiqa).
Then he shaved his hair. He (i.e., the Prophet) gave silver equal to his
hair. So the weight of al-Hasan’s hair was a dirham and some of silver.
Then he ordered his hair to perfumed. So the `aqiqa and giving alms as
equal as the weight of hair have become Sunna (an act of the Prophet).
The Prophet named him Hasan. People did not know such a name in
the pre- Islamic period. Also he gave him Kunya (i.e., the name by which
an Arab is usually referred to and which refers to him as the father of
someone, usually his eldest son) as Abu Muhammad. Al-Hasan had no
Kunya other than this (Abu Muhammad).
al-Sibt, al-Sayyid, al-Zaki, al-Mujtaba, al-Taqi.
Al-Hasan married Umm Ishaq bint (the daughter of) Talha b. `Ubayd
Allah, Hafsa bint (the daughter of) ‘Abd al-Rahman b. Abu Bakr, Hind
bint (the daughter of) Suhayl b. `Amru, and Ju’da bint (the daughter of )al-Ash’ath b. Qays.
Al-Hasan had fifteen children, both male and female: Zayd, al-Hasan,
`Amru, al-Qasim, `Abd Allah, `Abd al-Rahman, al-Hasan al-Athram, and
Talha, Umm al-Hasan, Umm al-Husayn, Fatima, Umm Salama,
Ruqayya, Umm `Abd Allah, and Fatima.
No one was more like the Apostle of Allah, may Allah bless him and
his family, than al-Hasan b. ‘Ali, peace be on him, in form, manner, and
In this manner the describers have described al-Hasan and said: “He
(al-Hasan) had a white, reddish face. He had black eyes, smooth cheeks,
thick beard, and curly, plentiful hair. His neck was as white as a jug of
silver. His body was good. He had large shoulders, and big fleshy bones.
He was of medium height; neither long nor short. He was handsome; the
best of all people in face.
Al-Hasan, peace be on him, was as the poet said:
When some handsomeness creeps into the insights of imaginations,
He (al-Hasan) has the special share.
His forehead from under his forelock is like
The full moon that illuminates the dark night.
His ambergris and musk is far above the perfume of
The people of the earth, so he is the heavenly perfume.
Ibn Sa’d said: “Al-Hasan and al-Husayn used to dye black.”
Wasil b. `Ata’ said: “Al-Hasan b. ‘Ali, peace be on them, had the visage
of prophets and the glory of kings.”