Chapter 8While the Qur'ān refers to Abraham and Ishmael in Mecca,
1 it provides no
explanation as to how they arrived there. The traditions found in this chapter
fill out the qur'ānic references by establishing a context for the transition of
our two main protagonists from Syria to the Ḥijāz. Three versions of the
transfer are found repeated often in the sources. Each is told on the authority
of a separate early traditionist: Ibn 'Abbās,
3 and mujāhid.
THE TRANSFER TO MECCA
THE IBN 'ABBĀS VERSIONThe "Ibn 'Abbās" version of the transfer to Mecca is made up of twelve full
5 an additional two which are incomplete,
6 and five fragments referring to one or two motifs from the full story.
7 Nineteen full and partial renditions make up the paradigmatic Ibn 'Abbās version which follows:
|1. ||The narrative takes place subsequent to Sarah's behavior toward Hagar.
Sarah's jealousy of her handmaid after the birth of Ishmael causes conflict
and strife between the two women (8/19).|
|2. || Hagar lets down her dress or soaks the bottom of her dress to hide her
tracks from Sarah (9/19).|
|3. || Abraham gives Hagar and Ishmael a saddlebag of dates and a water skin
(4/19), or a water skin only (8/19).|
|4. || Abraham personally brings Hagar and Ishmael to Mecca (9/19), to the
8 (6/19), or to the location of Zamzam
9 (6/19), and leaves them
under a large tree (9/19)
10 (in all versions Abraham brings them to Mecca without God commanding him to do so and without any supernatural assistance).|
|5. ||After depositing them there, Abraham departs on his return to Syria, and
arrives at Kadā (7/19).
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Book title: Journeys in Holy Lands:The Evolution of the Abraham-Ishmael Legends in Islamic Exegesis.
Contributors: Reuven Firestone - Author.
Publisher: State University of New York Press.
Place of publication: Albany, NY.
Publication year: 1990.
Page number: 63.
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