Sa'd b. al-Harth al-Ansari

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Sa'd b. al-Harth al-Ansari
Martyrs of Karbala.jpg
Native nameسَعد بن الحَرث (الحارِث) الأنصاری
Full NameSa'd b. Harath (Harith) b. Salama al-Ansari al-Ajlani al-Kufi
Companion ofImam al-Hussain
Wellknown RelativesAbu l-Hutuf b. al-Harth al-Ansari (brother)
Place(s) of ResidenceKufa
Cause of
Martyred in the Battle of Karbala
Burial PlaceKarbala
ActivitiesBeing one of Khawarij and participating in the Battle of Nahrawan

Sa'd b. al-Harth al-Ansari (Arabic:سَعد بن الحَرث (الحارِث) الأنصاری) (martyrdom 61/680) was martyred in the Battle of Karbala. On the day of Ashura, Sa'd was in the army of 'Umar b. Sa'd, when he heard Imam Hussian's call of help. He then changed his allegiance and began to defend Imam Hussain.

Battle of Karbala[edit | edit source]

In the Army of Kufa[edit | edit source]

Sa'd was born into a family from Khazraj tribe. It is reported that Sa'd and his brother, Abu al-Hutuf b. al-Harth al-Ansari, were among the Khawarij in Battle of Nahrawan and had come from Kufa with the army of 'Umar b. Sa'd to fight with Imam Hussain.

Helping Imam Hussain[edit | edit source]

Sa'd's transformation happened during the afternoon of Ashura. After all the companions of Imam were martyred, Imam Hussain called, "Oh, isn't there any helper to help us? Oh, isn't there any defender to defend the family of the Prophet?" Women and children in the tents of Imam Hussain heard the call of Imam and began crying.

When Sa'd and his brother, Abu l-Hutuf, heart the cries of the woman and children, they shouted the slogan of Khawarij, "No rule, but God's and no obedience to the one who has disobeyed Him", and then declared that "Hussain was son of the daughter of the Prophet, the intercession of whom for ourselves we wish on the Day of Judgment. How can we fight him while he is in such a state, has no helper, and stands alone in the desert of Karbala, asking for help?"

They turned against 'Umar b. Sa'd's army and unsheathed their swords. Sa'd and his brother killed many soldiers until they too were martyred.

However, another source narrates the story in a slightly different manner. It is said that after the martyrdom of Imam Hussain and when they heard cries of women, they attacked the army of 'Umar b. Sa'd and were martyred.

Debates Over the Authenticity of the Report[edit | edit source]

Muhaqqiq Shushtari raised doubts about the authenticity of this report. In his view, given the negative attitude of Khawarij about helping governments as well as the famous slogan of "No rule, but God's", it is improbable that they have helped Imam Hussain.

In contrast, some argue that they were probably forced to accompany the army of Kufa. However, witnessing the cruelty of the army of 'Umar b. Sa'd toward the family of the Prophet and the oppression of the Imam and his family turned their hearts toward Imam Hussain, similar to Hurr b. Yazid al-Riyahi.

References[edit | edit source]