Kaʿb b. al-As̲h̲raf
(386 words)

, opponent of Muḥammad at Medina, reckoned to belong to his mother’s clan al-Naḍīr, though his father was an Arab of the Nabhān section of Ṭayyiʾ. He presumably followed the Jewish custom of taking his religion from his mother, but it is doubtful if he was a scholar, as the words in a poem sayyid al-aḥbār (Ibn His̲h̲ām, 659, 12) would imply, if the poem were genuine. Aroused by the deaths of many leading Meccans at Badr, he went to Mecca and used his considerable poetic gifts (he is called faḥl faṣiḥ in K. al-Ag̲h̲ānī ) to incite Ḳurays̲h̲ to fight the Muslims. On his return to Medina he…

Cite this page
Watt, W. Montgomery, “Kaʿb b. al-As̲h̲raf”, in: Encyclopaedia of Islam, Second Edition, Edited by: P. Bearman, Th. Bianquis, C.E. Bosworth, E. van Donzel, W.P. Heinrichs. Consulted online on 12 December 2018 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1573-3912_islam_SIM_3730>
First published online: 2012
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004161214, 1960-2007



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