The Prophet Marries Hazrat Juwayriyah

Hazrat Juwayriyah was the daughter of Harith b. Abi Dirar, the leader of the Sons of Mustaliq tribe. She was one of the captives of the Expedition of Muraysi. Her husband, Musafi b. Safwan, was one of the most ferocious enemies of the Prophet. When he was killed during the battle, Juwayriyah was widowed.

When the captives were distributed among the mujahids, Juwayriyah was given to Thabit b. Qays and his cousin.[1]

Juwayriyah made an agreement with Thabit b. Qays to be left free.[2] If she paid the ransom that was determined, she would be released. However, she could not afford it. Therefore, she applied to the Prophet and asked his help to pay for her ransom.

The Messenger of God said to her, “Is there not anything better than that for you?”

Juwayriyah, who was asked such an unexpected question, was surprised. What could be better than having her freedom and returning to her parents and country?

After a momentary hesitation, she said, “O Messenger of God! What is better than my freedom?”

The Prophet said, “Freeing you by paying your ransom and accepting you as my wife.”

Juwayriyah was astonished. She would be released and would attain such a great honor. For a moment, she began to think. She remembered her dream a few days before they came to the land of the Prophet. The moon had entered her dress by virtually walking from Madinah.[3] After a momentary surprise, she became very happy. She answered the offer of the Prophet as follows:

“O Messenger of God! If you grant me this honor, there cannot be anything better than it.”[4]

Harith b. Abi Dirar Becomes a Muslim

Harith b. Abi Dirar, Juwayriyah’s father, had set off toward Madinah with camels in order to save his daughter. When he reached the valley of Aqiq, he looked at his camels. He could not want to give two of them; so he hid them in a secluded place in the valley between two mountains. Then, he went to the presence of the Prophet. He said,

“O Muhammad! You held my daughter captive. These camels are her ransom.”

The Messenger of God said, “Why did you not bring the two camels you hid in Aqiq between two mountains?”

Harith was astonished. Nobody knew that he had hid his camels there. It was senseless to wait any longer. He immediately said, “I witness that there is no god but Allah; you are definitely the Messenger of God! I swear by God that nobody but God knew what I had done.” He embraced Islam together with his two sons and the people of his tribe that were together with him there.[5]

The Prophet Pays the Ransom for Juwayriyah

The Messenger of God sent somebody to Thabit b. Qays and explained him the situation. He wanted Juwayriyah from him. Thabit b. Qays said, without hesitation, “May my father and mother be sacrificed for you O Messenger of God! I gave her to you”

The Messenger of God paid the ransom for Juwayriyah and surrendered her to her father. 

Juwayriyah Marries the Prophet

The Prophet asked Juwayriyah’s father, Harith b. Dirar, to give Juwayriyah, who became a Muslim, to him as his wife. Harith agreed. 

The Prophet gave four hundred dirhams as mahr and married Juwayriyah.[6]

When the Companions saw that the Prophet married Juwayriyah, they freed all of the slaves by saying, “The relatives of the wife of the Prophet should not be kept as slaves.” There were one hundred women among those captives.

Therefore, Hazrat Aisha said,

“I have never known any woman better and holier than Juwayriyah for her tribe.”[7]

Indeed, Juwayriyah was a very fortunate woman. She was a captive but in one day, she became the wife of the Prophet and saved the captives of her tribe.

Many people from Sons of Mustaliq who heard that the Prophet accepted Juwayriyah as his wife were very impressed by his courage and generosity; they went to Madinah and embraced Islam.

There were many reasons behind the marriages of the Prophet. In this marriage, there was a social reason. It was to make hearts love him and Islam, to bring tribes together as relatives and to make them help him and Islam. As it is known, when a person marries someone from a tribe, a relationship between that person and that tribe occurs; naturally, this makes them help that person.  

Thus, that was the aim of the Messenger of God in marrying Juwayriyah. As it is seen, he succeeded in it. 

The Real Name of Juwayriyah

The real name of Juwayriyah was “Barra”. The Messenger of God did not like that name and changed it with Juwayriyah, which means a small woman.[8]

Juwayriyah had endless taqwa (fear of God). He treated the poor and the needy compassionately and mercifully. She did not eat or drink but fed others.

Once the Messenger of God went to her room and asked, “Is there anything to eat?”

Juwayriyah said, “No O Messenger of God! There is nothing to eat with me. There was only a sheep bone; I gave it to our woman slave.”[9]

Juwayriyah died in the 57th year of the Migration. She was buried in the Cemetery of Baqi.


[1]Ibn Hisham, Sirah, Vol. 3, p. 307; Ibn Sa’d, Tabaqat, Vol. 8, p. 116.

[2]The agreement between a slave and his/her owner by paying a certain amount of money to be released.

[3]Ibn Kathir, Sirah, Vol. 3, p. 303.

[4]Ibn Hisham, ibid, Vol. 3, p. 307; Ibn Sa’d, ibid, Vol. 8, p. 117.

[5]Ibn Hisham, ibid, Vol. 3, p. 308.

[6]Ibn Hisham, ibid, Vol. 3, p. 308.

[7]Ibn Hisham, ibid, Vol. 3, p. 308; Ibn Sa’d, ibid, Vol. 8, p. 177.

[8]Ibn Sa’d, ibid, Vol. 8, p. 118.

[9]Ahmad Ibn Hanbal, Musnad, Vol. 6, p. 430.

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