Women in Islam – Safiyyah bint Huyaye – Part 1

This story is about a lady the prophet SAW said is the daughter of a prophet, her uncle is a prophet and the wife of a prophet. This story is about Safiyyah bint Huyaye.

Safiyyah was the favorite daughter of Huyaye ibn Akhtab, the chieftain of the Jewish tribe of Banu Nadheer in Medina. She was first married to Salam ibn Mashkam but they separated on grounds of incompatibility. She then married Kananah ibn Haqeeq who was killed in the Battle of Khaibar, and Safiyyah was taken as a prisoner of war.

Then companion Dahyah Kalbi asked the prophet SAW for a slave girl, and the prophet allowed him to choose Safiyyah. But the other companions insisted that since Safiyyah is the chieftain’s daughter, then the prophet SAW should keep her. The prophet SAW did as they suggested, but instead he rather freed Safiyyah and married her.

Safiyyah recalls when the prophet SAW first arrived in Medina and her father and uncle went to see him. Safiyyah says they both came back tired, fed up and disappointed that they didn’t even pay attention to her presence. She heard her uncle asking her father is this was the same man. Her father swore by God that he was the same man. Safiyyah’s uncle was so shocked that he asked the same question again, and her father confirmed that he is the same man. Once #Safiyyah’s uncle heard her father’s confirmation that this was the last of the messengers, he asked him what they’ll do. And Safiyyah’s father replied to her uncle very firmly that they would always treat this man as a foe! And Safiyyah heard it all!

Time passed and the Muslims were prevented from entering Mecca, and they rather signed the Hudaibiyah Treaty. The news spread like wildfire in the Arab Peninsula that the Muslims were forced to sign an unfair treaty. And when the news reached the Jews in Khaibar they decided it was the appropriate moment to attack Medina. The Jews of Khaibar invited all the Jews in the Arab Peninsula to join forces with them.

And when the prophet SAW heard about Khaibar’s war preparations, he ordered the same 1,400 people to get ready. Those were the same 1,400 companions who were at Hudaibiyah with him and they arrived to Khaibar at night. But the prophet SAW would never attack his enemy at night in order to take them unawares, so they just camped there.

Soon after Fajr, Khaibar woke up and saw the Muslim army at their doorstep, and the prophet SAW ordered the attack. At the Muslim’s attack, the Jews ran away and at this sight the prophet SAW called out “Allah is Great, Khaibar is deserted, Khaibar is broken, Khaibar is destroyed and ruined”.

Safiyyah’s father was killed in the battle, she was taken as a war prisoner, then as we said the prophet freed & married her.

To be continued in sha’ Allah in Part 2…