The Permissibility of the Person in Ihram Covering his Face if Needed

No. 2899 – On the authority of Uthmaan bin ‘Affan Rahiallaahu anhu ‘that the Prophet sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam would cover his face while he was in a state of Ihram.’ Saheeh


On the authority of Abdullaah bin ‘Aamir bin Rabeeh that he saw ‘Uthmaan bin ‘Affan in a village near Madina with his face covered by a deep red coloured, velvet cloth on a summer’s day while he was a Muhrim (in the state of Ihram). Its chain is authentic.

Shaykh Albaani said: ‘So if you know that the chain of narration is authentic, then there is no contradiction between this hadeeth and the report which is Mawqoof (the Isnad only goes back to the Companion) at ‘Uthmaan, as is apparent. This is because there is nothing that conflicts with the acceptability of ‘Uthmaan doing that which it is possible the Messenger sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam did.

This is better (that the hadeeth and the Athr correspond) rather than attributing a mistake to one of the trustworthy narrators simply because ‘Uthmaan did an action that he narrated from the Prophet sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam. Do you not also see that there is no difference between what ad-Daraqutni Rahimullaah noted, saying that the Mawqoof (the Isnad only goes back to the Companion) precedes the Marfoo’ (a narration ascribed to the Prophet), and those who invert the issue saying that the Marfoo’ precedes the Mawqoof.

The truth is that both of them are authentic, so neither of them opposes the other. Indeed there are many Aathar narrated by the Companions, the Tabieen and the diligent Imaams which permit the person in a state of Ihram to cover his face if need be. Ibn Hazm uses these Aathaar as evidence in his book ‘al-Muhalla’ (7/91-93) so as to support the original stance. Al-Bayhaqi also narrated some of these Aathaar (5/54)

This hadeeth does not oppose the saying of the Messenger sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam regarding the person who dies while in a state of Ihram: ‘Wash him with water mixed with Acacia leaves, shroud him in his clothing and do not cover his face or head.’ Narrated by Muslim and other than him and it is narrated in the book ‘al-Irwaa’ (4/198-199). This verdict is specific to the one who dies in a state of Ihram but the hadeeth under discussion is regarding the living, so it (i.e. the ruling) is different.’

Translated by: Abbas Abu Yahya

All Praise belongs to Allaah, may His peace and blessings be upon our final Prophet Muhammad, his family, his companions and all those who follow his guidance

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