Feb 7, 2008

Famous Swords: Zulfiqar

Ali ibn Abi Talib was the cousin and son-in-law of Muhammad and was raised in his household. When Muhammad reported that he had received a divine revelation, Ali, then only about nine or ten years old, believed him and professed Islam. He was the first male to accept Islam. For the ten years that Muhammad led the community in Medina, Ali was extremely active in his service, leading parties of warriors on battles, and carrying messages and orders. Muslims greatly respect Ali for his knowledge, belief, honesty, his unbending devotion to Islam, his deep loyalty to Muhammad, his equal treatment of all Muslims and his generosity in forgiving his defeated enemies.

By most accounts, Muhammad presented Zulfiqar to a young Ali at the Battle of Uhud. During the battle, Ali struck one of the fiercest adversaries, breaking both his helmet and his shield. Seeing this, Muhammad was reported to have said "La fatà illa Ali, la saif illa Zulfiqar" meaning "There is no hero but Ali, and no sword except Zulfiqar". This is widely engraved on weapons and has become a battle cry for some Muslims.

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