Will you narrate the incident of Hz. Uthman's marrying Umm Kulthum, the daughter of the Prophet?

The Details of the Question

Will you narrate the incident of Hz. Uthman's marrying Umm Kulthum, the daughter of the Prophet?

The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

There is no narrating stating that Allah wanted Hz. Uthman to marry Umm Kulthum. The narrations in the books of Islamic history regarding the issue are as follows:

- Umm Kulthum, the daughter of the Messenger of Allah married to Utayba b. Abu Lahab but their marriage reception had not been held yet. The Prophet’s daughter Ruqayya married to Abu Lahab’s other son Utba and their marriage reception had not been held yet either. When the Prophet (pbuh) was given the duty of prophethood and the chapter of Lahab was sent down, Abu Lahab addressed his sons as follows:  

“If you do not divorce Muhammad’s daughters, I will never be with you again.” Their mother, who was Harb b. Umayya’s daughter said to them,

“Divorce both daughters of Muhammad because they went astray like their father.” Thereupon, they divorced the daughters of the Prophet (pbuh). When Utayba divorced Umm Kulthum, he said to the Messenger of Allah,

“I deny your religion and have divorced your daughter. I will not come to you from now on and I do not want you to come to me.” Then, he attacked the Prophet (pbuh) and tore his shirt. Utayba was about to go to Damascus on business at that time. The Prophet (pbuh) looked at his face and said,

“I want Allah to send a dog to attack you.” Then, Utayba set off with Qurayshi merchants and arrived at a place called Zarqa. When they arrived there, a lion started to walk around them. Utyaba shouted,  

I swear by Allah that this lion will kill me because of the curse of Muhammad. Ibn Abi Kabsha (Muhammad) is in Makkah but he is my murderer.” The lion left after walking around them a few times. They slept by placing Utayba in the middle of them. The lion returned, passed through them and crushed Utayba’s head with his claws.  

* * *

Hz. Uthman married Ruqayya first. After her death, he married Umm Kulthum. (see Haythami, 6/18)

Hz. Uthman did not take part in the Battle of Badr with the permission of the Messenger of Allah (pbuh) because Ruqayya, his wife, was very ill. Ruqayya died when the army was in Badr. She was buried when the good news that Muslims had won a victory arrived in Madinah. Although he did not take part in the Battle of Badr, the Messenger of Allah (pbuh) regarded him as one of the participants and gave his share from the booty. (Usdul-Ghaba, 3/586; Suyuti, Tarikhul-Khulafa, p. 165; H. I. Hasan, Tarikhul-Islam, 1/256)

Hz. Uthman took part in all of the wars against the polytheists and the enemies of Islam except the Battle of Badr.

After the death of Ruqayya, the Messenger of Allah (pbuh) married his other daughter Umm Kulthum off to Hz. Uthamn. When Umm Kulthum died, the Messenger of Allah (pbuh) said,  

"If I had forty daughters, I would marry them off to Uthman one by one until none of them left."

He also said to Hz. Uthman, "If I had another daughter, I would definitely marry her off to you. (Usdul-Ghaba, ibid)

Hz. Uthman was given the nickname, “Dhun-Nurayn” meaning the owner of two lights because she married two daughters of the Messenger of Allah (pbuh). The Messenger of Allah (pbuh) appointed him as his deputy in Madinah during the Expeditions of Dhatur-Riqa and Ghatafan. (Suyuti, ibid, 165)

* * *

Hz. Hafsa, who had been born before the Messenger of Allah was given the duty of prophethood, married Khunays b. Hudhayfa. When Khunays died, Hafsa became a widow. 

Hz. Umar asked Hz. Uthman politely to marry his daughter; when Uthman did not give a positive answer, he asked Hz. Abu Bakr. However, he did not give a positive or negative answer.

Feeling sorry after those talks, Hz. Umar went to the Messenger of Allah and told him what had happened. When the Prophet noticed the hearty wish of Hz. Umar, he did not want to leave him sad and said, “Shall I tell you the name of a better son-in-law than Uthman for you and a better father-in-law than you for Uthman?” Hz. Umar said, “Yes, O Messenger of Allah!” The Messenger of Allah said, “You marry your daughter Hafsa off to me and I will marry my daughter Umm Kulthum to Uthman!” Hz. Umar was pleased by this offer very much and accepted it at once. Thus, the Prophet included Hz. Hafsa among her clean wives and married his daughter Umm Kulthum off to Hz. Uthman. Hz. Uthman had been married to Ruqayya, the daughter of the Prophet that died later. When he married Umm Kulthum, he was given the nickname, “Dhun-Nurayn (the Owner of Two Lights)”. (Ibn Sa'd, Tabaqat, 8/81-83)

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