(493 words)

(a.), a term with different meanings (cf. Lisān al-Arab, xx. 289 sqq.) of which the following may be mentioned:

a. Tutor, trustee, helper. In this sense the word is used in the Ḳurʾān, Sūra xlvii. 12: “God is the mawlā of the faithful, the unbelievers have no mawlā” (cf. sūra iii. 143; vi. 62; viii. 41; ix. 51; xxii. 78; lxvi. 2). In the same sense mawlā is used in the S̲h̲īʿite tradition, in which Muḥammad calls ʿAlī the mawlā of those whose mawlā he is himself. According to the author of the Lisān, mawlā has the sense of walī in this tradition, which is connected with G̲h̲adīr al-Ḵh̲umm [q.…

Cite this page
Wensinck, A. J., “Mawlā”, in: Encyclopaedia of Islam, First Edition (1913-1936), Edited by M. Th. Houtsma, T.W. Arnold, R. Basset, R. Hartmann. Consulted online on 13 December 2018 <>
First published online: 2012
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004082656, 1913-1936

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