Abu Ishaq al-Shatibi

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Imam Abu Ishaq al-Shatibi was an Andalusian Sunni Islamic legal scholar following the Maliki madhab. He died 1388 (8th Shabaan 790 H) in Granada. Imam Shatibi's full name was "Ibrahim bin Mosa bin Muhammad al-Shatibi al-Gharnati". His family's descent was from the Banu Lakhm. His Kuniyat was "Abu Ishaq" and his surnames were "Al-Lakhmi", "Al-Gharnati", "Al-Maliki" and "As-Shatibi". The date and place of his birth are unknown. However, one of his surnames, "As-Shatibi", points to the city Xàtiva, which indicates that he was a descendant of the migrants from that town.

His teachers

His teachers include well known scholars of their times:

  1. Imam ibn al-Fakhar al-Abeeri
  2. Abu al-Qasim Al-Satti
  3. Imam Abu Abdullah al-tilmasani
  4. Imam Abu Abdullah al-Maqri
  5. Shaikh Abu Saeed bin Lab
  6. Imam Jaleel bin Marzooq
  7. Abu Ali Mansoor bin Mohammed al-Zidawi
  8. Abu Abdullah al-Bilnasi
  9. Abu Jafar al-Shoqoori
  10. Abu Al-Abbas al-Qabbab
  11. Abu Adullah al-Hafaar

His Books

He learned from very prominent scholars of his time. He became master in Arabic language and Ijtihad and research at a very early age. He used to discuss various topics with his teachers before arriving to any conclusion.

  1. Al-Aitesaam This famous book of Imam Shatibi is the ultimate encyclopedia on the topic of defining religious innovations. It consists of 10 chapters. The introduction is written by Syed Rasheed Radha Al-Misri. This mammoth book was published by Dar al-Kutb Al-Arabiya (Qairo 1331H / 1913 AC).
  2. Al-Muwafaqaat fi Usool al-Sharia This is also one of Imam Shatibi's best known books. It is on the topic of Usul al-fiqh - Islamic Jurisprudence and Maqasid Al-Sharia (higher objectives). It was published by Dawlat Al-Tunisia (1302 H Tunisia) in four volumes (translated and published into English as The Reconciliation of the Fundamentals of Islamic Law).
  3. Shara ala al-Khutasa This book is about Elm-Nahu.
  4. Al-Itifaq fi Elm al-Ishtiqaq This book was on the topic of Elm-Sarf, but it was lost during his life.
  5. Kitab al-Majalis This book included commentary on Sahih Bukhari book al-Kitab Al-Biyooh.
  6. Kitab Al-ifidaat wa Al-inshadaat This book included two volumes on Literature.


  • Muhammad Khalid Masud, Islamic Legal Philosophy: A Study of Abu Ishaq al-Shatibi's Life and Thought, McGill University 1977
  • Dr. Ahmad Raysuni, Imam Shatibi's Theory of the Higher Objectives and Intents of Islamic Law translated by Nancy Roberts, publisher IIIT.
  • Wael B. Hallaq, A History of Islamic Legal Theories, Cambridge 1997, Ch. 5.
  • The Shatibi Center, The Life of Al-Imam Ash-Shatibi, shatibionline.com