Eleven Wives of the Prophet Muhammad

Why did Prophet Muhammed (ﷺ) have eleven wives while Shari’ah allows only four wives for a man?

The Prophet (ﷺ) played a vital role in the establishment of the Shari’ah as a whole and often conducted his affairs as a means of teaching and educating people. With this said, the Prophet (ﷺ) was also not a regular man in that Allah honoured him with Prophet Hood and certain privileges were granted for purposes of fulfilling his mission. The permission for him to marry more than the legislated four was not at all related to fulfilling sexual desire, but rather to allow him to establish strategic ties with various tribes and demonstrate how a man may marry to take care of women in dire need (widows, destitute, etc.) The success of his mission partially depended on strong tribal alliances and this was established through marriage of his. Allah, in His infinite wisdom and knowledge, ordained a maximum of four as the most a man can accommodate and afford justice.


Derived from Dr Daud Abdullah’s explanation of the Prophet’s (ﷺ)  household in The Sealed Nectar, Mubarakpuri, p. 261

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