Sawda bint Zam’a (RA)

📅 621 CE

Sawdah was the second woman from Quraish who the Prophet ﷺ married. Before this he ﷺ had remained unmarried for two years after the death of Khadijah, indicating the great love and attachment he had for her. It was around this time that the female companion Khawla bint Hakeem approached the Prophet ﷺ and suggested he ﷺ marry again. She returned with two choices: one virgin and one mature woman. The virgin was Aisha, the daughter of Abu Bakr and the mature woman was Sawdah, a widow from a prestigious clan of Quraish. The Prophet accepted the suggestion of Sawdah who agreed immediately and so they married in 621 CE in the 11th year of prophethood.

Sawdah was of noble lineage but had suffered in her previous marriage. Her previous husband was a drunkard who died on his return from the migration to Abyssinia. She was mature, some historians state 50 years of age, and was very wise. She would sometimes joke with the Prophet that his prostrations during the night prayer were too lengthy, causing her a nosebleed when she followed him.

She died during Umar’s khalifate in 674 CE and lies at rest in Madina.

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