How did Abu Lahab, the ferocious enemy of Islam, die?

The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

Abu Lahab had not participated in the expedition of Badr and stayed in Makkah, sending Asi b. Hisham instead of him.

When the Qurayshi army was defeated by the Islamic army and returned to Makkah, Abu Lahab called Abu Sufyan b. Harith and said to him, “O my nephew! What happened in Badr? Tell me”

Abu Sufyan b. Harith said,

“By Allah, we were completely defeated when we faced them. They killed some of us and took some of us captives. However, I cannot blame or condemn people because we saw a regiment of cavalries on dapple grey horses; it was impossible to fight against them!”

Meanwhile, Umm Fadl, the wife of Hazrat Abbas and Abu Rafi, his slave, were there, too. Abu Rafi said, “By Allah, the cavalries you saw were angels!” Abu Lahab got very angry and slapped Abu Rafi severely; then, he started to beat him by swooping down on him.

Umm Fadl was moved and said, “You are beating a poor slave because his master is not here!” Then, she hit the head of Abu Lahab with a tent pole.

Abu Lahab was wounded and left that place in a terrible situation.

He got very ill due to his sorrow and grief. He died a week later without being accounted for his severe enmity against the Messenger of Allah and Muslims in this world. 

His sons kept his dead body for two or three days. The dead body started to stink. Nobody wanted to approach him because they were afraid that they would be infected.

One day, a Qurayshi man said to his sons, “Woe on you! Shame on you! Your father’s dead body is in your house but you do not go near him.”

They said, “We are afraid of his disease!” The man said, “Come on! I will help you.” They went to the house. However, it was impossible to approach him. They neither washed nor touched his dead body. They sprinkled some water on the dead body. Then, they dragged it to the upper part of Makkah and buried the body there. Then, they covered it with stones.1

1. Tabaqat, 4/74; Tabari, 2/288.

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