Hadrat Zainab (R.A.A.) was the daughter of Abu Salama (R.A.A.) and the niece of the Holy Prophet (S.A.W.). She was born in Medina in the year 3 A.H. Her mother was Umm Salama (R.A.A.). After death of Hadrat Abu Salama bin Abdul Asad Makhzoomi (R.A.A.), Hadrat Umm Salama was married to the Holy Prophet (S.A.W.) in the year 4 A.H. Hadrat Umm Salama was a very shy woman. After marriage with the Holy Prophet (S.A.W.), whenever he (S.A.W.) came to her she used to take baby Zainab in her arms and start breast feeding. Seeing her in that state, the Holy Prophet (S.A.W.) used to go back. This state of affair continued for quite some time. The Holy Prophet (S.A.W.) had great affection for little Zainab, since she was his step daughter as well as niece.
When Hadrat Zainab (R.A.A.) grew up, she was married to Hadrat Abdullah bin Zam'a who was the nephew of Umm Salama (R.A.A.). Their marriage was blessed with six sons and three daughters. Hadrat Zainab (R.A.A.) was brought up and educated by the Holy Prophet (S.A.W.), therefore, she was a very cultured and learned woman. Many prominent Muslim Scholars used to learn from her the Islamic Jurisprudence. In fact, she was a well known jurist of her time. Hadrat Abu Raafe' (R.A.A.) has remarked, "Whenever I have made a mention of the women jurists of Medina, I have always remembered Hadrat Zainab bint Abu Salama (R.A.A.). She was pious and devoted Muslim lady and one of the most respectable companions of the Holy Prophet.
Hadrat Zainab (R.A.A.) has also certain Ahadith. Those who have quoted Ahadith through her, include Hadrat Zainul Abedin (R.A.A.) and 'Urwah bin Zubair (R.A.A.).
In the year 63 A.H. Hadrat Zainab (R.A.A.) faced a very shocking incident. Her two sons: Yazeed bin Abdullah (R.A.A.) and Kaseer bin Abdullah (R.A.A.) were martyred in the incident of Hirrah, when Banu Umayyad's forces let loose the terror and looted the Medina. When their dead bodies were brought home, she remarked, "A great calamity has befallen me. One of my sons fought in the battle and was martyred. But the other one was inactive, was slain in the house." After this incident, Hadrat Zainab (R.A.A.) passed rest of her life resigned to The Almighty's Will.
This valiant woman of Islam and renowned companion of the Holy Prophet (S.A.W.) passed away in the year 64 A.H. She was buried in Jannatul Baqi.
The Islamic Bulletin
P.O. Box 410186, San Francisco, CA 94141-0186