Wisdom Of Nabi (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam)’s Polygamous Marriages


Allah Ta’ala has given certain privileges only to Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) which are mentioned in Chapter 33 vs 50-51. Among other privileges one was having more than four wives simultaneously. Allah Ta’ala says, ‘Oh Nabi (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) we have made permissible for you your wives.’ (Ahzaab 33-50). The polygamous marriages of Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) to more than four wives simultaneously should be viewed as obeying the order of Allah Ta’ala to do so. It was not merely a means of fulfilling his carnal desires as many people allege. The Arab environment was infested with many evils among which was adultery and fornication. Despite living in such an environment, he never indulged in this evil act. His modesty was so popular among his people that when the Prophet (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) claimed prophet hood, his people made every effort to disgrace him by accusing him of being a poet, practising witchcraft, of being insane, etc. However, nobody ever accused him of any act of immodesty.

The Prophet (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) was very handsome and attractive. Many beautiful women from honourable families even proposed marriage to Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) but he declined. Instead, when he was only 25 years of age he married a widow who had children from her previous marriage. Considering the fact that he was the most handsome person that Allah Ta’ala has created, many women desired him in marriage. Had he followed his desires, there was no obstacle for him to do so. In his youth, he could have had many many beautiful women, but he married a widow 15 years his senior. He lived with her for 25 years and she bore all the children of Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) except one. When Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) was 50 years of age, Hadhrat Khadija (Radhiyallahu Anha) passed away. Those 25 years of Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam)’s marriage was a monogamous one.

The polygamous marriage was only after he attained the age of 50.



He married Hadhrat Sawdah and Aaisha (Radhiyallahu Anhuma). Sawda (Radhiyallahu Anha) lived with him immediately but Aaisha (Radhiyallahu

Anha) came to live with him in the year 2 AH. when he was approximately 54 years of age.

55 YEARS (3 AH.)

He married Hadhrat Hafsa (Radhiyallahu Anha). After a few months, he married Hadhrat Zaynab bin Khuzaymah (Radhiyallahu Anha) who lived with him for only 3 or 18 months (as recorded in different narrations) before she passed away.

56 YEARS (4 AH.)

He married Umme Salma (Radhiallaahu Anha)

57 YEARS (5 AH.)

He married Zaynab (Radhiyallahu Anha)

58 YEARS (6 AH)

He married Hadhrat Juwayriyah (Radhiyallahu Anha)

59 YEARS (7 AH.)

First he married Umme Habibah then Safiyyah then Maymoonah (Radhiyallahu

Anhuma) in one year.


From the above explanation, it is clear that Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam)’s marriage was a monogamous one till he was 50 years. His polygamous marriages, mostly to widows were after the age of 50 with the command of Allah Ta’ala. Had Nabi (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) followed his carnal desires, he would have married all virgins and changed them in short periods of time. Since the polygamous marriages of Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) was by the order of Allah, therefore, the wisdom of that order cannot be questioned nor comprehended. However, according to our limited understanding, the wisdom underlying the polygamous marriages of Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) was:

Since Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) came as a teacher to mankind, there are many avenues of a person’s domestic life which had to be conveyed to the Ummah. It was the many wives of Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) who had the knowledge of these aspects and fulfilled their responsibility by conveying the teachings of Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi

Wasallam) to the Ummah. Consider the following:


Aaisha (Radhiyallahu Anha) alone narrated approximately 2210 Ahaadith with regard to different laws, character, etiquettes, etc. The narrations of Hadhrat Umme Salma (Radhiyallahu Anhu) totals up to 378.

Hafiz ibn Qayyim (Rahmatulla Alayh) mentions that if the Fataawa of Hadhrat Umme Salma

(RA) had to be gathered which she gave after the demise of Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam), then the need would arise to compile an entire book. The total students of Aaisha (Radhiyallahu Anha) are approximately 200 and she taught Deeni knowledge for 48 years consecutively after the demise of Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam).

The mission of Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) was to convert people and propagate Islam. By marrying one woman, her entire tribe had accepted Islam. This was done by virtue of marrying that woman.


Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) had to transform the evils of the society by practice. The people shunned marrying widows especially if they already had children from their previous husbands. Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) married a widow and thereby changed the wrong ideology of the people. Likewise, he reformed the society that abused the orphans by caring for the orphans of the women he married.

These are but just a few reasons behind the wisdom of the Holy Prophet (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam)’s polygamous marriages.