The Expedition Of Uyainah Bin Hisn (Banu Tamim)

The Expedition Of Uyainah Bin Hisn (Banu Tamim)

Mohamad Mostafa Nassar


A Platoon was sent to deal with hostile Banu Tamim tribe. The Banu Tamim refused to pay tax , which was a crime against the state. This tax which is called ‘Jizya’ is levied on non-Muslims who were under the protection of the Muslim rule. This kind of compulsory tax was also levied on Muslims, Muslims themselves had to pay similar tax called ‘Zakat’.

Before the platoon was sent out, a tax collector went to them to pay what was due, they refused and threatened to kill him. In some other sources they report that they actively fought against the Muslims.


“Bisr b. Sufyan set out about the sadaqa of the Banu Ka’b; some said, rather it was Nu’aym b. Abdullah al-Nahham al-Adawi who went to them. When he arrived, the Banu Juhaym of the Banu Tamim, and the Banu Amr b. Jundub b. al-Utayr b. Amr b. Tamim had alighted in their districts, and were drinking with them [Banu Ka’b] at their pool in Dhat al-Ashtat. Some say he found them at Usfan.

He ordered the gathering of the cattle of the Khuza’a in order to take the sadaqa from them. He said: The Khuza’a collected the sadaqa from every region, but the Banu Tamim refused and said, ‘What is this? … YOU MOBLIZIE, WEAR ARMOR, AND DRAW THE SWORD.’

But the Khuza’a said, ‘We are a people who follow the religion of Islam. This sadaqa is from our religion. ‘The Tamim said, ‘By God, he will never take a camel from it!’

When the tax collector saw them, HE FLED FROM THEM AND DEPARTED TURNING AWAY, FOR HE WAS AFRAID OF THEM. Islam, at that time, had not embraced the Bedioun. … The Messenger of God used to command the tax collector to take the excess from them and leave the value of their property.

The tax collector arrived before the Prophet, and informed him of the news. He said, ‘O Messenger of God, I was with three groups, and the Khuza’a jumped on the Tamim and expelled them from their quarter, saying, ‘If not for your relationship you would never reach your land.

Misery will surely come to us from ENMITY OF MUHAMMED, and upon yourselves when you confront the messengers of the Messenger of God, pushing them away from collecting the tax of our property. So they set out returing to their land.’

The Messenger of God said, ‘Who is for those people who did WHAT THEY INTENTED THE LAND of the Banu Sulaym. So they set out in their tracks until he found them turning from al-Suqya towards the land of Banu SUlaym in Sahra. They had alighted and were grazing their cattle.

Not one was left behind in the houses except the women and small group. When they saw the group they turned and took eleven from them, and they found in the residence of the women, eleven women and thrty youths and they carried them to Medina. …” [1]

Muhammad Husayn Haykal:

“The tribes welcomed the collectors and remitted to them the amounts due wholeheartedly with the exceptions of a branch of the tribe of Banu Tamim and another of Banu al Mustaliq which refused to pay.

While the collector, Uyaynah Ibn Hisn, was in the neighbourhood making collections, a branch of Banu Tamim, called Banu al Anbar, JUMPED UPON HIM WITH THEIR ARROWS AND SWORDS AND THREW HIM OUT OF THEIR TERRITORY EVEN BEFORE HE HAD ASKED TEM TO REMIT THEIR DUE.

When Uyaynah Ibn Hisn told the news to Muhammad, he was sent right back at the head of fifty riders to re-establish order. Uyaynah launched a surprise attack against the Banu al Anbar, captured over fifty men, women and children, and seized some of their wealth.

The Prophet received the captives and the seized properties and kept them in Madinah. Some of the Banu Tamim had been comverted to Islam a long time before and had fought alongside the Prophet in the battles of Makkah and Hunayn while others were still unconverted.

When these Muslims knew what their relatives, the Banu al-Anbar, had done and what had happened to them, they sent a delegation of notables to seek the Prophet.

They asked for an audience in the Mosque of Madinah calling out to the Prophet so much that he decided not to see them. Soon, however, the time of prayer arrived and Utarid Ibn Hajib called the Prophet to leade the worship in the mosque as was his custom. After prayer, the delegation approached the Prophet and related to him what Uyaynah had done wth their people.

They took especial pains to remind him of his comradeship in arms with those of them who had joined Islam as well as of their high esteem among the Arabs. They then said to him, ‘We have come here in order to compete with your followers in poetic eloquence and rhetoric.

Would you plase permit our poet to recite some of his poems for you?’ Utarid Ibn Hajib, their orator, rose and delivered his speech. When he finished, alZabriqan Ibn Badr, their other poet, rose and recited his eulogy in verse, whereupon Hassan Ibn Thabit responded in verse also.

When this contest was ended, al Aqra Ibn Habis said, ‘I swear that this man (i.e., Muhammad) is surely going to win, for his orator is more eloquent and his poet more poetic than ours. Indeed, the voices of the Muslims are higher than our voices. …

When the Banu Mustaliq saw the tax collectors run away, they feared the consequences and immediately sent word to the Prophet explaining to him that the zakat collector has nothing to fear from their quarter and that the whole affair with Banu al-Anbar was a regrettable misunderstanding.” [2]

Dr. Shawqi Abu Khalil:

Uyainah set out with fifty horsemen to go to Banu Tamim, who were between As-Saqiya and the land of the Banu Tamim. They took some of them captive, but the Messenger of Allah showed mercy and let them go.” [3]

Talib Jaleel:

“Zakat and Jizya collection – Buraidah ibn al-Hasib went to the Aslam and Ghafaar tribes; Amr Ibn al- Aas to Fizara tribe; al-Ala ibn al-Hadrami to Bahrain. When Banu Tamim refused to pay Jizya Uyaina bin Hisn al-Fazari was despatched at the head of fifty horsemen in al-Muharram, 9H. 

Prior to this they were also encouraging others to stop payment of Jizya. The skirmish which followed led to capture of some of their people and eventual conversion of them to Islaam after a compedition of oratory and poetry.” [4]

Safi al-Rahman Mubarakfuri:

In Muharram, 9 A.H., the news reached Madinah that Banu Tameem were INCITING VARIOUS TRIBES TO REFUSE TO PAY JIZIYAH (a tax levied on non-Muslims living under Muslim rule), so the Prophet sent a squadron of fifty men under Uyayna bin Hisn Fazari to their stronghold. There in the desert, Uyayna captured eleven men from Banu Tameem and twenty-one of their women and children and brought them to Madinah.

A delegation of ten chieftains from banu Tameem came hastily to Madinah. Conscious of their inability to match the Muslims militarily, the chieftains asked for a poetry contest to determine whose poets had the most eloquent speech.

The challenge was accepted. Atarad bin Hajib of the Banu Tameem delivered a speech. He was answered by Thabit bin Qays from the Muslim side. Then Banu Tameem sent their poet Zabargan bin Badr to recite some verses.

The Muslim poet Hassan bin Thabit countered with a recitation of his own poetry until Banu Tameem finally conceded defeat. So moved were they by what they had heard from Hassan bin Thabit that they embraced Islam. The Prophet then returned their captives and sent them home with gifts for their people. In this way, one more obdurate enemy melted before the sublime truth of Islam.” [5]


[1] The Life of Muhammad: Al-Waqidi’s Kitab Al-Maghazi [Translator: Rizwi Faizer] page 477
[2] The Life of Muhammad By Muhammad Husayn Haykal page 428 – 429
[3] Atlas Al-sirah Al-Nabawiyah – Atlas On The Prophet’s Biography Places, Nations, Landmarks, By Dr. Shawqi Abu Khalil, page 235
[4] Notes On Entering Deen Completely: Success, Ummah, Renewal By Talib Jaleel, page 512
[5] When The Moon Split: by Safi al-Rahman Mubarakfuri, page 268 – 269