Ahmad al-Wafi

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Ahmad al-Wafi
Religion Islam
Other names Abadullah ibn Muhammad
Born Abadullah
179 AH
(approximately 795/796)
Died 212 AH
(approximately 827/828)
Resting place Salamiyah, Syria
Children Muhammad at-Taqi (Ahmed ibn Abadullah)
Senior posting
Title al-Azbab al-Itlaq (Absolute lord), al-Wafi
Religious career
Initiation 212 AH
Post Eighth Isma'ili Imam

Aḥmad al-Wafī (proper name: ʿAbadullāh ibn Muḥammad ibn Ismāʿīl, Arabic: عبد اللّه بن محمد بن إسماعيل‎; born 766-828 CE/149-212 AH in Salamiyah, Syria; Imamate 809-828 CE/193-212 AH) alias ʿAbdallāh ibn Maymūn Al-Qaddāḥ[1][2] is the eighth Isma'ili Imam. He was the son and successor of the seventh Imam, Muhammad ibn Isma'il. [3] He was called al-Wafi "true to his word".

As the Imam, he was the supreme spiritual leader of the Ismaili community from his appointment until his death. The Nizari and Mustaali trace their Imamate lines from him and his descendants who founded the Fatimid Caliphate. For protection against his real Imam position, he was known as "Attar" (due to his profession in drug and medicine). He was succeeded by his son, Muhammad at-Taqi (Ahmed ibn Abadullah).[4] With the death of Ja'far al-Sadiq in 765 (148 AH), Isma'il in 775 (158 AH) and Muhammad in 813 (197 AH), the Isma'ili Imams were impelled to hide; this first occultation lasted from 813-882 (197-268 AH).[5]

The eighth to tenth Ismaili Imams were hidden from the public because of threats from the Abbasid Caliphate and were known by their nicknames. However, the Dawoodi Bohra in their religious text, Taqqarub, claim to have the true names of all 21 imams in sequence including the "hidden" imams: the eighth Imam Abdullah ibn Mohammad (Ahmad al-Wafi), the ninth Imam Ahmed ibn Abadullah (Muhammad at-Taqi), and the tenth Imam Husain ibn Ahmed (Radi Abdullah).[6]

Residence at Salamia, Syria[edit]

As per Ismaili.net [7] residence history of Salamia is as follows:

"The Ismaili dais in search of a new residence for their Imam came to Salamia and inspected the town and approached the owner, Muhammad bin Abdullah bin Saleh, who had transformed the town into a flourishing commercial centre. They told him that there was a Hashimite merchant from Basra who was desirous of settling in the town. He readily accepted and pointed out to them a site along the main street in the market, where existed a house belonging to a certain Abu Farha. The Ismaili dais bought it for their Imam and informed him about it. Wafi Ahmad arrived to his new residence as an ordinary merchant. He soon pulled down the old building and had new ones built in its place; and also built a new wall around it. He also built a tunnel inside his house, leading to the desert, whose length was about 12 miles. Money and treasures were carried on camels to the door of that tunnel at night. The door opened and the camels entered with their loads inside the house."


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Daftary, Farhad (1990). The Isma'ilis: Their History and Doctrines. Cambridge University Press. p. 104. ISBN 978-0-521-42974-0.
  2. ^ "Encyclopædia Iranica, ʿAbdallāh bin Maymūn Al-Qaddāḥ". Archived from the original on 2018-05-16. Retrieved 2018-05-07.
  3. ^ Tabari, 3rd vol., p. 2218
  4. ^ WAFI AHMAD (197-212/813-828)
  5. ^ Achilles des Souza, "Mediation in Islam - an Investigation" (Rome, 1975, p. 35)
  6. ^ Makarem, Sami. "The Hidden Imams of the Ismailis". Quarterly Journal of the American University of Beirut. 21.
  7. ^ http://www.ismaili.net/histoire/history04/history419.html Wafi Ahmad in Salamia
Ahmad al-Wafi
of the Ahl al-Bayt
Clan of the Quraish
Born: 149 AH 766 AD Died: 212 AH 828 AD
Shia Islam titles
Preceded by
Muhammad ibn Ismāʿīl ash-Shākir
8th Imam of Ismailism Succeeded by
Ahmad (al-Taqī Muhammad)