Hadith of the Twelve Successors

The hadith of the twelve successors, or twelve caliphs (Arabic: حديث الاثني عشر خليفة, translit. ḥadīth al-ithnā ‘ashar khalīfah) is an Islamic prophecy, attributed to Muhammad. It is perhaps most popular among Twelver Shiites, as they affirm the prophecy was fulfilled by the Twelve Imams. According to the prophecy there will reign twelve caliphs—presumably the first being crowned upon the Prophet's death—and after which the Caliphate would either cease to exist or lose significant political influence. It is stated that all twelve caliphs will be from the tribe of Quraysh.

Another interpretation is that the prophecy was fulfilled by the Rashidun Caliphs.[1] Some commentators, such as Ibn Kathir and Ibn Taymiyya, link this hadith with the biblical account of Moses and his twelve deputies.[2][3][4][5]

See also


  1. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on May 11, 2013. Retrieved January 24, 2013.
  2. Tarikh ibn Kathir 250
  3. Tarikh ibn Kathir, volume 6, p. 249-250
  4. Tarikh ibn Kathir, 6:248; Kanz al-Ummal, 13:27; Al-Haskani, Shawahid al-Tanzil, 1:455, Tradition No. 626.
  5. Musnad Ahmad ibn Hanbal v1 p398 and p406; Mustadrak al-Hakim, 4:501; Al-Dhahabi, Talkhis al-Mustadrak 4:501. I; Ibn Hajar Asqalani, Fath al-Bari 16:339; #Ali ibn Abu Bakr al-Haythami, Majma al-Zawa'id 5:190; Ibn Hajar Al-Haythami, Al-Sawa'iq al-Muhriqa, vol 12; Suyuti, Tarikh al-Khulafa, Vol 10; Jami' al-Saghir 1:75; Kanz al-Ummal, 13:27

External links

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