The Mālikī (Arabic: مالكي‎) school is one of the four major madhhab of Islamic jurisprudence within Sunni Islam.[2] It was founded by Malik ibn Anas in the 8th century. The Maliki school of jurisprudence relies on the Quran and hadiths as primary sources. Unlike other Islamic fiqhs, Maliki fiqh also considers the consensus of the people of Medina to be a valid source of Islamic law.[3]

The Maliki madhhab is one of the largest group of Sunni Muslims, comparable to the Shafi`i madhhab in adherents, but smaller than the Hanafi madhhab.[1][4] Sharia based on Maliki doctrine is predominantly found in North Africa (excluding northern and eastern Egypt), West Africa, Chad, Sudan, Kuwait, Bahrain,[5] the Emirate of Dubai (UAE), and in northeastern parts of Saudi Arabia.[1]

In the medieval era, the Maliki school was also found in parts of Europe under Islamic rule, particularly Islamic Spain and the Emirate of Sicily.[6] A major historical center of Maliki teaching, from the 9th to 11th centuries, was in the Mosque of Uqba of Tunisia.[7][8]

Madhhab Map3
Sharia based on Maliki school (in teal) is the predominant Sunni school in North Africa, West Africa and parts of central eastern Arabian peninsula.[1]


Although Malik ibn Anas was himself a native of Medina, his school faced fierce competition for followers in the Muslim east, with the Shafi'i, Hanbali, and Zahiri schools all enjoying more success than Malik's school.[9] It was eventually the Hanafi school, however, that earned official government favor from the Abbasids.

The Malikis enjoyed considerably more success in Africa, and for a while in Spain and Sicily. Under the Umayyads and their remnants, the Maliki school was promoted as the official state code of law, and Maliki judges had free rein over religious practices; in return, the Malikis were expected to support and legitimize the government's right to power.[10] This dominance in Spanish Andalus from the Umayyads up to the Almoravids continued, with Islamic law in the region dominated by the opinions of Malik and his students. The Sunnah and Hadith, or prophetic tradition in Islam, played lesser roles as Maliki jurists viewed both with suspicion, and few were well versed in either.[11] The Almoravids eventually gave way to the predominantly-Zahiri Almohads, at which point Malikis were tolerated at times but lost official favor. With the Reconquista, the Iberian Peninsula was lost to the Muslims in totality.

Although Al-Andalus was eventually lost, the Maliki has been able to retain its dominance throughout North and West Africa to this day. Additionally, the school has traditionally been the preferred school in the small Arab States of the Persian Gulf (Bahrain, Kuwait and Dubai). While the majority of Saudi Arabia follows Hanbali laws, the country's Eastern Province has been known as a Maliki stronghold for centuries.[1]


Maliki school's sources for Sharia are hierarchically prioritized as follows: Quran and then trustworthy Hadiths (sayings, customs and actions of Muhammad); if these sources were ambiguous on an issue, then `Amal (customs and practices of the people of Medina), followed by consensus of the Sahabah (the companions of Muhammad), then individual's opinion from the Sahabah, Qiyas (analogy), Istislah (interest and welfare of Islam and Muslims), and finally Urf (custom of people throughout the Muslim world if it did not contradict the hierarchically higher sources of Sharia).[2]

The Mālikī school primarily derives from the work of Malik ibn Anas, particularly the Muwatta Imam Malik, also known as Al-Muwatta. The Muwaṭṭa relies on Sahih Hadiths, includes Malik ibn Anas' commentary, but it is so complete that it is considered in Maliki school to be a sound hadith in itself.[3] Mālik included the practices of the people of Medina and where the practices are in compliance with or in variance with the hadiths reported. This is because Mālik regarded the practices of Medina (the first three generations) to be a superior proof of the "living" sunnah than isolated, although sound, hadiths. Mālik was particularly scrupulous about authenticating his sources when he did appeal to them, however, and his comparatively small collection of aḥādith, known as al-Muwaṭṭah (or, The Straight Path).[3]

Mosque of Oqba Courtyard, Kairouan
The Great Mosque of Kairouan (also called the Mosque of Uqba or Mosque of Oqba) had the reputation, since the 9th century, of being one of the most important centers of the Maliki school.[12] The Great Mosque of Kairouan is situated in the city of Kairouan in Tunisia.

The second source, the Al-Mudawwana, is the collaborator work of Mālik's longtime student, Ibn Qāsim and his mujtahid student, Sahnun. The Mudawwanah consists of the notes of Ibn Qāsim from his sessions of learning with Mālik and answers to legal questions raised by Saḥnūn in which Ibn Qāsim quotes from Mālik, and where no notes existed, his own legal reasoning based upon the principles he learned from Mālik. These two books, i.e. the Muwaṭṭah and Mudawwanah, along with other primary books taken from other prominent students of Mālik, would find their way into the Mukhtaṣar Khalīl, which would form the basis for the later Mālikī madhhab.

Maliki school is most closely related to the Hanafi school, and the difference between them is more of a degree, rather than nature.[13] However, unlike Hanafi school, Maliki school does not assign as much weight to analogy, but derives its rulings from pragmatism using the principles of istislah (public interest) wherever the Quran and Sahih Hadiths do not provide explicit guidance.[13]

Notable differences from other schools

The Maliki school differs from the other Sunni schools of law most notably in the sources it uses for derivation of rulings. Like all Sunni schools of Sharia, the Maliki school uses the Qur'an as primary source, followed by the sayings, customs/traditions and practices of Muhammad, transmitted as hadiths. In the Mālikī school, said tradition includes not only what was recorded in hadiths, but also the legal rulings of the four rightly guided caliphs – especially Umar.

Malik bin Anas himself also accepted binding consensus and analogical reasoning along with the majority of Sunni jurists, though with conditions. Consensus was only accepted as a valid source of law if it was drawn from the first generation of Muslims in general, or the first, second or third generations from Medina, while analogy was only accepted as valid as a last resort when an answer was not found in other sources.[14][15] Malik was reported to have only actually used analogy himself one time, which he regretted on his deathbed.

Notable Mālikīs

Contemporary Malikis

See also


  1. ^ a b c d Jurisprudence and Law – Islam Reorienting the Veil, University of North Carolina (2009)
  2. ^ a b Hisham M. Ramadan (2006), Understanding Islamic Law: From Classical to Contemporary, Rowman Altamira, ISBN 978-0759109919, pp. 26–27
  3. ^ a b c Vincent J. Cornell (2006), Voices of Islam, ISBN 978-0275987336, pp 160
  4. ^ Abdullah Saeed (2008), The Qur'an: An Introduction, Routledge, ISBN 978-0415421256, pp. 16–18
  5. ^ "International Religious Freedom (2000)".
  6. ^ Bernard Lewis (2001), The Muslim Discovery of Europe, WW Norton, ISBN 978-0393321654, p. 67
  7. ^ Wilfrid Scawen Blunt and Riad Nourallah, The future of Islam, Routledge, 2002, page 199
  8. ^ Ira Marvin Lapidus, A history of Islamic societies, Cambridge University Press, 2002, page 308
  9. ^ Camilla Adang, This Day I have Perfected Your Religion For You: A Zahiri Conception of Religious Authority, pg. 17. Taken from Speaking for Islam: Religious Authorities in Muslim Societies. Ed. Gudrun Krämer and Sabine Schmidtke. Leiden: Brill Publishers, 2006.
  10. ^ Maribel Fierro, Proto-Malikis, Malikis and Reformed Malikis in al-Andalus, pg. 61. Taken from The Islamic School of Law: Evolution, Devolution and Progress. Eds. Peri Bearman, Rudolph Peters and Frank E. Vogel. Cambridge, Massachusetts, 2005.
  11. ^ Fierro, "The Introduction of Hadith in al-Andalus (2nd/8th - 3rd/9th centuries)," pg. 68–93. Der Islam, vol. 66, 1989.
  12. ^ Roland Anthony Oliver and Anthony Atmore, Medieval Africa, 1250–1800, Cambridge University Press, 2001, page 36
  13. ^ a b Jamal Nasir (1990), The Islamic Law of Personal Status, Brill Academic, ISBN 978-1853332807, pp. 16–17
  14. ^ Mansoor Moaddel, Islamic Modernism, Nationalism, and Fundamentalism: Episode and Discourse, pg. 32. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2005.
  15. ^ Reuben Levy, Introduction to the Sociology of Islam, pg. 237, 239 and 245. London: Williams and Norgate, 1931–1933.

Further reading

External links

'Ali ibn al-'Abbas al-Majusi

'Ali ibn al-'Abbas al-Majusi (Persian: علی بن عباس مجوسی‎; died 982–994), also known as Masoudi, or Latinized as Haly Abbas, was a Persian physician and psychologist from the Islamic Golden Age, most famous for the Kitab al-Maliki or Complete Book of the Medical Art, his textbook on medicine and psychology.

Abu al-Walid al-Baji

Abu al-Walid al-Baji (or Sulayman ibn Khalaf ibn Sa`d or Sa`dun ibn Ayyub, al-Qadi Abu al-Walid al-Tujaybi al-Andalusi al-Qurtubi al-Baji al-Tamimi al-Dhahabi al-Maliki) (1013–1081) was a famous Maliki scholar and poet from Beja, Al-Andalus.Al-Baji worked at various times as a watchman and a goldsmith to support himself. He was a contemporary of the jurist Ibn Hazm. He died in 1081.


Imam Abu 'Abdullah Al-Qurtubi or Abu 'Abdullah Muhammad ibn Ahmad ibn Abu Bakr al-Ansari al-Qurtubi (Arabic: أبو عبدالله القرطبي‎) was a famous mufassir, muhaddith and faqih scholar from Cordoba of Maliki origin. He is most famous for his commentary of the Quran, Tafsir al-Qurtubi.

Al Maliki I Government

The first government of Iraq led by Nouri al-Maliki took office on May 20, 2006 following approval by the members of the Iraqi National Assembly. This followed the general election in December 2005. The government succeeded the Iraqi Transitional Government which had continued in office in a caretaker capacity until the new government was formed and confirmed.

Ali ibn Ziyad

Ali ibn Ziyad at-Tarabulsi al-Tunisi al-'Absi (d. 799 CE) (183 AH) (Arabic: علي بن زياد الطرابلسي التونسي العبسي‎), more commonly referred to in Islamic scholarship as Ali ibn Ziyad or Imam al-Tarabulsi, was an 8th-century CE Tunisian Muslim jurist from Tripoli. Ibn Ziyad was an important early scholar of the Maliki school of Islamic jurisprudence (fiqh) and a companion of Imam Malik. Ali ibn Ziyad was responsible for bringing the Muwatta of Imam Malik to Ifriqiya. He died in 799 CE and is buried in the remains of the Silsila Cemetery in the Qasba quarter of Tunis's medina (old-town).

Ibn 'Abd al-Barr

Yusuf ibn Abdallah ibn Mohammed ibn Abd al-Barr, Abu Umar al-Namari al-Andalusi al-Qurtubi al-Maliki, commonly known as Ibn Abd-al-Barr (Arabic: ابن عبدالبر‎) was an eleventh-century Maliki judge and scholar in Lisbon. He died in December 2, 1071(1071-12-02) (aged 93).

Ibn Ghazi al-Miknasi

Abu Abdallah Muhammad b. Ahmad b. Muhammad Ibn Ghazi al-'Utmani al-Miknasi (1437–1513) was a Moroccan scholar in the field of history, Islamic law, Arabic philology and mathematics. He was born in Meknes from banu uthman, a clan in the Berber kutama tribe, but spent his life in Fez. Ibn Ghazi wrote a three-volume history of Meknes and a commentary to the treatise of Ibn al-Banna, Munyat al-hussab. For an explanation of his work, Ibn Ghazi wrote another treatise (about 300 pages long) titled Bughyat al-tulab fi sharh munyat al-hussab ("The desire of students for an explanation of the calculator's craving"). He included sections on arithmetic and algebraic methods.

He is also the author of Kulliyat, a short work on legal questions and judgements in the Maliki madhab.

Ibn Juzayy

Muhammad ibn Ahmad ibn Juzayy al-Kalbi al-Gharnati (in Arabic, محمد ابن احمد ابن جزي الكلبي الغرناطي) was a scholar, writer of poetry, history, and law from Al-Andalus. He is mainly known as the writer to whom Ibn Battuta dictated an account of his travels. He is also the author of the tafsir al-Tashil li Ulum al-Tanzil (This is his father's (Abu al-Qasim) tafsir). Ibn Juzayy was the son of Abú-l-Qásim Muhammad Ibn Juzayy (the panegyrist of Abú-l-Hayyáy Yúsuf of Granada) who died in the Battle of Rio Salado in 1340.Ibn Juzayy wrote the Rihla of Ibn Battuta in 1352-55. It is clear that he copied passages from previous works such as the description of Medina from the Rihla of Ibn Jubayr and the description of Palestine by Mohammed al-Abdari al-Hihi.His father, Imām Abū al-Qāsim Muḥammad ibn Aḥmad ibn Juzayy al-Kalbī al-Gharnāṭī al-Mālikī (693/1294 – 741/1340), wrote many religious works such as his al-Qawanin al-Fiqhiyyah or "The Laws of Jurisprudence" a comparative manual of the jurisprudence of the four Sunni madhhabs (Maliki, Hanafi, Shafi`i, Hanbali) with emphasis on the Maliki school and notices of the views of the Ẓāhirī school and others. His father is also noted for his tafsir of the Qur'an, his book on legal theory Taqrīb al-Wuṣūl ‘ilā ‘Ilm al-Uṣūl or The Nearest of Paths to the Knowledge of the Fundamentals of Islamic Jurisprudence, which he wrote for his son, as well as his treatise on Sufism based on the Qur'an, The Refinement of the Hearts. It is a mistake to say that one of Abū al-Qāsim ibn Juzayy's teachers was Ibn Rushd al-Ḥafīd (the grandson) Averroes (1126 – 1198), the author of Bidāyat al-Mujtahid and grandson of Abu Al-Walid Muhammad bin Rushd al-Jadd (the grandfather) (d. 1126), the noted Maliki Qadi.

He died in Fez in 1357 two years after the completion of the Rihla of Ibn Battuta.

Islam and masturbation

There are varying opinions, on the permissibility of masturbation (Arabic: استمناء‎, translit. istimnā’). It is considered haram (forbidden) according to Sunni schools Maliki and Shafi, as well as in Shi'ite jurisprudence.


A madhhab (Arabic: مذهب‎ maḏhab, IPA: [ˈmaðhab], "way to act"; pl. مذاهب maḏāhib, [maˈðaːhɪb]) is a school of thought within fiqh (Islamic jurisprudence).

The major Sunni madhhabs are Hanafi, Maliki, Shafi'i and Hanbali. They emerged in the ninth and tenth centuries CE and by the twelfth century almost all jurists aligned themselves with a particular madhhab. These four schools recognize each other's validity and they have interacted in legal debate over the centuries. Rulings of these schools are followed across the Muslim world without exclusive regional restrictions, but they each came to dominate in different parts of the world. For example, the Maliki school is predominant in North and West Africa; the Hanafi school in South and Central Asia; the Shafi'i school in East Africa and Southeast Asia; and the Hanbali school in North and Central Arabia. The first centuries of Islam also witnessed a number of short-lived Sunni madhhabs. The Zahiri school, which is commonly identified as extinct, continues to exert influence over legal thought. The development of Shia legal schools occurred along the lines of theological differences and resulted in formation of the Twelver, Zaidi and Ismaili madhhabs, whose differences from Sunni legal schools are roughly of the same order as the differences among Sunni schools. The Ibadi legal school, distinct from Sunni and Shia madhhabs, is predominant in Oman.The transformations of Islamic legal institutions in the modern era have had profound implications for the madhhab system. With the spread of codified state laws in the Muslim world, the influence of the madhhabs beyond personal ritual practice depends on the status accorded to them within the national legal system. State law codification commonly drew on rulings from multiple madhhabs, and legal professionals trained in modern law schools have largely replaced traditional ulema as interpreters of the resulting laws. In the 20th century many Islamic jurists began to assert their intellectual independence from traditional madhhabs.The Amman Message, which was endorsed in 2005 by prominent Islamic scholars around the world, recognized four Sunni schools (Hanafi, Maliki, Shafi'i, Hanbali), two Shia schools (Ja'fari, Zaidi), the Ibadi school and the Zahiri school.

Maliki Osman

Dr Mohamad Maliki bin Osman (Jawi: محمد مالكي بن عثمان; born 19 July 1965) is a Singaporean politician. A member of the governing People's Action Party (PAP), he is the Mayor of the South East District of Singapore, and since October 2015, a Senior Minister of State at the Ministry of Defence and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He has been a Member of Parliament (MP) since 2001, representing the Group Representation Constituencies (GRCs) of Sembawang (2001–2011) and East Coast (since 2011).

Maulana Malik Ibrahim State Islamic University Malang

Maulana Malik Ibrahim Islamic State University Malang (Indonesian: Universitas Islam Negeri Maulana Malik Ibrahim Malang, often UIN Malang or UIN Maliki) is an islamic public university in Malang, Indonesia. As a state-operated university, it participates in the SNMPTN admissions system.

One of the three state universities and many others in the city, it was originally founded as a branch of the Sunan Ampel State Islamic University Surabaya in 1965. It later separated into its own organization in 1997, and was formally made a university in 2004.

Muhammad Alawi al-Maliki

Muhammad Alawi al-Maliki (1944–2004) was a Sunni (Sufi) Islamic scholar from Saudi Arabia.


Məlikli (also, Mälikli, Maniklou, Maniklu, and Maniklyu) is a village in the Agdam Rayon of Azerbaijan.

Nouri al-Maliki

Nouri Kamil Mohammed Hasan al-Maliki (Arabic: نوري كامل محمد حسن المالكي‎; born 20 June 1950), also known as Jawad al-Maliki (جواد المالكي) or Abu Esraa (أبو إسراء), is an Iraqi politician who was Prime Minister of Iraq from 2006 to 2014. He is secretary-general of the Islamic Dawa Party and a Vice President of Iraq.

Al-Maliki began his political career as a Shia dissident under Saddam Hussein's regime in the late 1970s and rose to prominence after he fled a death sentence into exile for 24 years. During his time abroad, he became a senior leader of the Islamic Dawa Party, coordinated the activities of anti-Saddam guerrillas and built relationships with Iranian and Syrian officials whose help he sought in overthrowing Saddam. Al-Maliki worked closely with United States and coalition forces in Iraq following their departure by the end of 2011.

Al-Maliki and his government succeeded the Iraqi Transitional Government. His first Cabinet was approved by the National Assembly and sworn in on 20 May 2006. His second Cabinet, in which he also held the positions of acting Interior Minister, acting Defense Minister, and acting National Security Minister, was approved on 21 December 2010. In the wake of a string of defeats during the Northern Iraq Offensive, United States officials said that al-Maliki should give up his premiership. On 14 August 2014, he announced his resignation as Prime Minister of Iraq. In September 2014, al-Maliki was elected as one of three Vice Presidents, an office he still holds despite attempts to abolish the post.

Prime Minister of Iraq

The Prime Minister of Iraq is the head of government of Iraq. The Prime Minister was originally an appointed office, subsidiary to the head of state, and the nominal leader of the Iraqi parliament. Under the newly adopted constitution the Prime Minister is the country's active executive authority. Nouri al-Maliki (formerly Jawad al-Maliki) was selected to be Prime Minister on 21 April 2006. On 14 August 2014, al-Maliki agreed to step down as prime minister of Iraq to allow Haider al-Abadi to take his place. On 25 October 2018, Adil Abdul-Mahdi was sworn into office five months after the 2018 elections.

Qadi 'Abd al-Wahhab

Qadi 'Abd al-Wahhab (973 – 1035CE) (362 AH – 422 AH ), also known as Qadi Abdul Wahhab and Qadi 'Abd al-Wahhab al-Maliki was an important Iraqi jurist in the Maliki school. He was a seminal figure of the now extinct Iraqi School of the Maliki madhab. Qadi 'Abd al-Wahhab is also remembered for his knowledge of Arabic literature and poetry. He is known by the title Qadi meaning judge in Arabic, as he was a prominent judge in Abbasid Siirt and Badra. He is best known for his work at-Talqin on Maliki fiqh which is still studied today, particularly for its recording of the positions of the Iraqi school of the Maliki madhab.

Riyad al-Maliki

Riyad al-Maliki (Arabic: رياض المالكي‎) is former Minister of Information, government spokesperson, and Foreign Affairs Minister of the Palestinian National Authority in its 12th government, and resumed office as Foreign Affairs Minister in the current 13th government.

Shah Maleki

Shah Maleki (Persian: شاه ملكي‎, also Romanized as Shāh Malekī, Shāh Molkī, and Shāh Malakī; also known as Chāh Malakī and Shāh Mālīkī) is a village in Dorudfaraman Rural District, in the Central District of Kermanshah County, Kermanshah Province, Iran. At the 2006 census, its population was 483, in 101 families.

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