Sahih Bukhari

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Sahih Bukhari (Arabic: صحيح البخاري sahīh al-bukhāri) is a collection of sayings and deeds of Prophet Muhammad, compiled by the hadith compiler Imam Muhammad al-Bukhari (194 AH (809 CE) - 265 AH (878 CE)). Sahih Bukhari is considered to be the first of the six authentic books of hadith by Sunni Muslims. The collection contains a total of 9,082 hadith, 2,602 without repetition.[1]


What was included

Al-Bukhari did not claim that what he left out were the spurious, nor that there were no authentic traditions outside his collection. On the contrary he said, "I only included in my book al-Jami` those that were authentic, and I left out many more authentic traditions than this to avoid unnecessary length." He had no intention of collecting all the authentic traditions. He only wanted to compile a manual of hadith, according to the wishes of his Shaikh Ishaq b. Rahwaih, and his function is quite clear from the title of his book al-Jami` al-Musnad al-Sahih al-Mukhtasar min umur Rasul Allah wa Sunanhi wa ayyamih. The word al-Mukhtasar, 'epitome', itself explains that al-Bukhari did not make any attempt at a comprehensive collection.[2]

Bukharis statement on his collection

he said, I heard as-Sa`dani say, I heard some of our companions say, Muhammad Ibn Isma`il said: I selected/published [the content of] this book - meaning the Sahih book - from about 600,000 hadiths/reports. Abu Sa`d al-Malini informed us that `Abdullah Ibn `Udayy informed us: I heard al-Hasan Ibn al-Husayn al-Bukhari say: "I have not included in my book al-Jami` but what is authentic, and I left out among the authentic what I could not get hold of."[3]

This means that there was NOT 600,000 ahadith i.e seperate Narrations of bodies of text, but that there where 2,000 odd narrations, which are duplicated due to a seperate chain of transmission Isnad. In the Science of Hadith the same text with ten chains of transmission is regarded not as one hadith but as ten hadith, despite the fact that the text attached to each chain is the same in every case.

Professor Mustafa Al-Azami explains Now it is clear when traditionalists give enormous numbers for the traditions, they mean channels and sources of their transmission , and do not mean real numbers of hadith [4]

See also


  1. Sadeghi, B.; Andreas Goerke, Dr. Christopher Melchert (August, 1995 -- modified periodically). A Selective Bibliography of Hadith Studies. Retrieved on January 12, 2008.
  2. M. M. al-Azami, Studies In Early Hadith Literature, 1992, American Trust Publications: Indianapolis (USA), pp. 305-306.
  3. Abi Bakr Ahmad Ibn `Ali al-Khatib al-Baghdadi, Tarikh Baghdad Aw Madinah as-Salam, 1931 (1349 AH), Volume II, Maktabat al-Khanji, Cairo & Al-Maktabah al-`Arabiyyah, Baghdad and Matba'at as-S'adah near the State Department, Cairo, pp. 8-9.
  4. ibid., p. 306

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