Being Versed in Arabic
Explaining his retention during childhood and his later study of the Arabic language, Imaam Shaafi’ says: “When our Ustaad would teach anyone any word I would remember the word and after becoming baaligh I went to the Bedouins. There I learnt vocabulary and classical Arabic from the Huthail tribe in three years.”
The degree of importance being versed in Arabic vocabulary and the Arabic language for understanding the correct meanings and the thrust of the Qur’aan and Hadeeth can be adequately gauged from the above statement of Imaam Shaafi’ (Rahmatullahi alaih). In spite of being from the Quraish tribe and of Arab blood, look how Imaam Shaafi’ (Rahmatullahi alaih) achieved perfection in Arabic!
Imaam Muhammad Bin Al-Hasan Ash-Shaibaani, the step-father of Imaam Shaafi’ said: “I received thirty thousand Dinars as inheritance. Half of it I spent in learning Arabic vocabulary and literature. The other half I spent in studying Fiqh and Hadeeth.” (Bulooghul Amaani of Shaikh Muhammad Zaahid Al-Kowthari, p.6)