(RE)APPRAISAL OF SOME TECHNICAL TERMS IN HADĪTH SCIENCE

In: Islamic Law and Society

Abstract

After an introduction in which I define some newly-coined technical terms developed in recent hadīth analysis, such as "isnād bundle", "common link", "spiders" and "diving", I argue (307) that Schacht's technical term "common link" may have in the term madār an Arabic equivalent—never recognized as such in Islam—and which, like tafarrada, subsequently, never made it into Muslim hadīth handbooks (311). Next I describe various technical terms that rarely occur as such in Muslim handbooks, to wit, mutābi'āt and shawāhid together with the apposite verb tāba'a. These terms illustrate the "diving" phenomenon (315). The terms tawātur and mutawātir, well-known from Muslim handbooks, are re-appraised in connection with a tradition on one of the Prophet's alleged miracles (322). I then distinguish and define the terms tawātur ma'nawī and tawātur lafzī and point out the overall inapplicability of the term (326) with illustrative examples (332) such as the mash 'alā 'l-khuffayn cluster (335). Following a summary and some conclusions (341) the reader will find a list of Mālik b. Anas' most important "followers" (345).

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