Encyclopedia of Jews in the Islamic World

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Kaʽb al-Aḥbār
(430 words)

Kaʽb al-Aḥbār (d. ca. 652), an early Yemenite Jewish convert to Islam, is widely credited in Islamic sources as a major source of Isrā’īliyyāt (Israelite tales). Scholars have posited that the name Kaʽb al-Aḥbār is the Arabic transcription of Jacob or ‘Aqiba he-ḥaver, either an honorific or a title indicating a scholar in a yeshiva. There is little concrete information about Kaʽb’s life or the circumstances of his conversion. According to Muslim traditions, he arrived in Medina during the caliphate of ʽUmar ibn al-Khaṭṭāb (r. 634–644) and became one of his closest advisers. …

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Shari Lowin, “Kaʽb al-Aḥbār”, in: Encyclopedia of Jews in the Islamic World, Executive Editor Norman A. Stillman. Consulted online on 24 March 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1878-9781_ejiw_SIM_0012450>
First published online: 2010

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