Abu Hafs Umar al-Nasafi – Wikipedia

Najm ad-Dīn Abū Ḥafṣ ‘Umar ibn Muḥammad an-Nasafī (Arabic: نجم الدين أبو حفص عمر بن محمد النسفي‎; 1067–1142) was a Muslim jurist, theologian, mufassir, muhaddith and historian. A Persian scholar born in present-day Uzbekistan, he wrote mostly in Arabic.

He authored around 100 books in Hanafi jurisprudence, theology, Quran exegesis, Hadith and history.


  • Al-‘Aqa’id al-Nasafiyya (Arabic: العقائد النسفية) or ‘Aqa’id al-Nasafi (Arabic: عقائد النسفي) is his most celebrated work in Kalam, which alongside Al-Fiqh Al-Akbar (Arabic: الفقه الأکبر) of Abu Hanifa and Al-‘Aqeedah al-Tahawiyya (Arabic: العقيدة الطحاوية) of Abu Ja’far al-Tahawi is one of the three seminal works in Sunni Islamic creed. By 17th century, more than fifty commentaries were written on this work, of which the most famous is al-Taftazani’s commentary named Sharh ‘Aqaid al-Nasafi (Arabic: شرح عقائد النسفي).
Abu Hafs al-Nasafi wrote the Al-‘Aqaid as a direct summary of Al-Tamhid le Qawa’id al-Tawhid (Arabic: التمهيد لقواعد التوحيد) the famous book by his own teacher Abu al-Mu’in al-Nasafi.[2]
While a few Arabic sources have shown skepticism in attributing this work to Abu Hafs al-Nasafi, a recently discovered manuscript of the Persian version of the work confirms the authorship of the work for Abu Hafs al-Nasafi. The Persian version of the work, titled Bayan-e Itiqad-e Ahl-e Sunnat wa Jama’at (Persian: بیان اعتقاد اهل سنت و جماعت), is reported on the authority of Al-Nasafi’s most famous student, Burhan al-Din al-Marghinani, the author of Al-Hidayah. Al-Marghinani explains in the preface of the treatise that Abu Hafs a-Nasafi wrote this work per request made by Ahmad Sanjar, the Seljuk ruler and Sultan, when he visited Samarqand in 535 AH or 1140 CE.[2]
Al-Marghinani explains that that one of Sultan Sanjar’s rulers who was the ruler of Sistan and was accompanying the Sultan, asked the scholars of Samarqand to write a treatise on the creed of Ahl al-Sunnah so that “no one in Sistan could speak against it”. Presumably, Sistan was dominated by the Karramiyya and Hanbali sects who were advocating for anthropomorphism. In response to this request, the scholars of Samarqand asked Abu Hafs al-Nasafi to write the treatise, and they all put their signatures at the end of the document. Among the scholars present in the gathering with Sultan Sanjar was Shaikh al-Islam Abd al-Hameed al-Ismandi al-Samarqandi (the author of the published book titled Tariqah al-Khilaf fi al-Fiqh). Al-Marghinani writes in the preface of the manuscript that he took a copy of the treatise and run it again with Al-Nasafi for final review.[2]

Quranic sciences[edit]

  • Tafsir-e Nasafi (Persian: تفسیر نسفی) is a Persian translation of the Quran in rhymed prose. It is considered to be the third oldest full translation of Quran in Persian language, and the only translation of Quran in rhymed prose.
  • Al-Akmal al-Atwal fi Tafsir al-Quran (Arabic: الأکمل الأطول في تفسير القرآن) was a voluminous work in tafsir, written prior to Al-Taysir fi al-Tafsir.
  • Risalah fi al-Khata’ fi Qira’at al-Qur’an (Arabic: رسالة في الخطأ في قرائة القرآن) or Zillah al-Qari (Arabic: زلة القارئ), published in 2017 by Dar ‘Amar.


  • Manzumah fi al-Khilafyat (Arabic: منظومة في الخلافيات) is a book in the form of poetry, consisting of 2669 verses, explaining the differences in the views of Abu Hanifa and his students, namely Abu Yusuf, Muhammad al-Shaybani and Zufur, on legal rules, as well as the differences between Abu Hanifa and Al-Shafii and Malik ibn Anas. The book was published in 2010 Beirut.
Over ten commentaries have been written on this work, the most celebrated one being that of Abu al-Barakat al-Nasafi titled Al-Muasaffa, published in 2020 by Dar al-Noor.
  • Hasr al-Masa’il wa Qasr al-Dala’il (Arabic: حصر المسائل وقصر الدلائل) is a commentary on Manzumah fi al-Khilafyat with detailed exposition of the reasons (adillah) for each legal rule. The book is published by Dar al-Fajr in 2020.
  • Tilbah al-Talabah fi al-Istilahat al-Fiqhiyya (Arabic: طلبة الطلبة في الإصطلاحات الفقهية) is an acclaimed textbook used over centuries in Hanafi schools and has been published multiple times in recent years.
  • Manzumah al-Jame’ al-Saghir (Arabic: منظومة الجامع الصغير) in which Al-Nasafi turned Muhammad Shaibani’s seminal work (Al-Jame’ Al-Saghir) into poetry consisting of 81 verses.
  • Sharh Madar al-Usul (Arabic: شرحُ مَدارِ الأصول) – a commentary on Al-Karkhi’s seminal work in Usul al-Fiqh.

Biographical history[edit]


He studied under prominent scholars such as Fakhr al-Islam al-Bazdawi, Abu al-Yusr al-Bazdawi, and Abu al-Mu’in al-Nasafi.


Burhan al-Din al-Marghinani, the author of Al-Hidayah, was his most famous student.

See also[edit]


External links[edit]