Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies


The Transmission of Tirmidhī's Jāmi‘

James Robson

Abū ‘Īsā Muḥammad b. ‘Īsā b. Sawra b. Shaddād b. al-Ḍaḥḥāk al-Sulamī al-Būghī al-Tirmidhī is famous for bis collection of traditions which is one of the six books now generally recognized by Sunnīs. He is reported to have said that his grandfather belonged to Marw, but removed from there in the time of Al-Laith b. Sayyār to Tinnidh, a town on the north bank of the Āmū Daryā. Like many others Tirmidhī travelled in pursuit of learning, and heard traditions from numerous Khurāsānīs, ‘Irāqīs, and Ḥijāzīs. He was a pupil of Bukhārī, and also heard traditions from some of Bukhārī's shaikhs, such as Qutaiba b. Sa‘īd al-Baghlānī (d. 240), ‘Alī b. Ḥujr al-Marwazī (d. 244), Abū Kuraib Muḥammad b. al-‘Alā’ al-Kūfī (161–248), and Muḥammad b. Bashshār al-Baṣrī (167–252).4 An interesting story is told to illustrate his power of committing traditions to memory. On the way to Mecca he met a shaikh from whose traditions he had copied out two juz’.