Historical Sites of Madinah Munawwarah-FORMER JEWISH TRIBES AROUND MADINA

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Many Jewish scholars clearly knew the physical features and other signs pertaining to coming of Prophet Mohammed (SAS) since it was described in the old testament (Torah) very precisely. Some of these Jewish tribes had migrated from Syria to Madina to wait for Prophet Mohammed (SAS) and be proud to be his followers. When Prophet Mohammed (SAS) migrated to Madina, the Jews recognized him but refused to accept him as a Prophet, since he happened to be a descendent of Ishmael (AS) and not Isaac (AS).

When Prophet Mohammed (SAS) migrated to Madina, he established a tiny Islamic State there. He made a treaty or an agreement with the neighboring powerful Jewish tribes. Some of the clauses of this treaty were as follows:

1.  Jews will not fight against Muslims.

2.  Jews will not help any group who invades the Muslims.

3. If any group attack the Jews, the Muslims will help the Jews.

These Jewish tribes had established themselves about two and half kilometer from Madina close to Quba community. They were rich and powerful and owned many gardens. They had built many fortresses for their protection. The ruins of their castles and fortresses can be seen even now.


From Masjid Nabawi go South on Qurban Street (also known as Amir Abdul Mohsin Road). Past the first traffic light near Juma mosque. Also pass the second traffic light, which is on Hijra road leading to Quba Mosque. Continue traveling outward on Qurban till you reach the third traffic light. This is the intersection of Middle Ring Road and Qurban Street. If you turn right at this intersection, you will see the ruins of Banu Nadir.

By the way, if you continue traveling more outward on Qurban Street till you reach the Second Ring Road of Madina you will come across a black mountain situated outside this Second Ring Road. It is called Banu Quraiza mountain. A rich Jewish tribe called Banu Quraiza occupied the area between present Madina Hospital and Banu Quraiza Mountain. A brief history of this tribe will also be described in this article.




The leader of Banu Nadir was Kaab Bin Ashraf. He and his tribe was always busy inciting and helping the enemies of Islam. He was openly acting against the treaty between the Jews and the Muslims. For example, Kaab bin Ashraf went to Makkah with a delegation of forty persons after the Battle of Ohud. He excited, the leaders of Quraish against Muslims. The idolaters ask him, “Is religion of the Muslims better than ours?” Although Kaab bin Ashraf was from the People of the Book. He said to the idolaters, Your religion is better than Muslims”. Al-Nisa # 51                                                             

“Have you not seen those who were given a portion of the Scripture? They believe in false deities and Taught and say to the disbelievers that they are better guided as regards the way than the believers (Muslims). “

That is why Allah (SWT) says in Quran that Jews sell even their religion for petty worldly gains.

Idolaters and Kaab bin Ashraf’s delegation put their chests against Kabah and swore that they will keep fighting against the Muslims even if one of them is left.

This conspiracy was revealed to the Prophet (SAS) by Jibreel (AS). Hence the Prophet (SAS) ordered one of his Companions to kill Kaab bin Ashraf. Mohammed bin Muslima (AS) accomplished this task. Second example is even more terrifying. One time the Prophet (SAS) visited Banu Nadir. They considered it a golden chance to kill him. They asked the Prophet (SAS) to sit under the shade of a wall. It was planned to throw a big stone from the top of the wall to kill Prophet Mohammed (SAS). Allah (SWT) informed the Prophet (SAS) about their plan. The Prophet (SAS) left them suddenly and saved his life.

The Prophet (SAS) informed Banu Nadir that they had broken the treaty between them. The Prophet (SAS) said to them,

“I give you ten days to leave this place. Go any where you like.”

The head of the hypocrites, Abdullah bin Obey, said to them,

“Don’t leave this area. I shall help you with my two thousand followers.”

 As a result of this Banu Nadir locked themselves in a fortress and defied the Prophet (SAS).The Prophet (SAS) and his Companions laid a siege of the fortress of Banu Nadir. The hypocrites did not come to help Banu Nadir. Allah (SWT) has given their example in Al-Hashr # 16

Like Satan, when he says to man: “Disbelieve in Allah.” But when (man) disbelieves in Allah, Satan says: “I am free of you, I fear Allah, the Lord of all universes!”

The Companions cut down some trees and burnt others to annoy Banu Nadir. Finally Banu Nadir got frustrated and agreed to leave this area. The Prophet (SAS) permitted them to take as much belongings with them as they could. Some of them went to Syria and others settled in Khaibar. They took with them even the doors and window planks of their houses to satisfy their worldly greed. There are lessons in it for every sensible person. Al-Hashr # 2

“He it is Who drove out the disbelievers among the people of the Scripture from their homes at the first gathering. You did not think that they would get out. And they thought that their fortresses would defend them from Allah! But Allah’s (torments) reached them from a place whereof they expected it not, and He cast terror into their hearts so that they destroyed their own dwellings with their own hands and the hands of the believers. Then take admonition, O you with eyes (to see). “

We should bear the following points in our minds.

When Banu Nadir broke the treaty repeatedly the Prophet (SAS) did not order to kill them. He asked them only to leave this city to get rid of their mischief.

The Prophet (SAS) gave them ten days to make preparations for this transition.

The Prophet (SAS) permitted them to take with them as much as they could.

A few trees were cut and burnt to annoy them and to force them out of the fortress. However, the fortress was not put to fire as modern nations do.

This shows how Muslims honored the human rights of even their worst enemies. It is totally contrary to the human rights observed by modern nations.



Banu Quraiza was another rich and powerful Jewish tribe settled near Madina and was anxiously waiting for Prophet Mohammed (SAS). They knew the time, place and features of the Prophet from Torah. They used to brag to others that they will be the first to follow this Prophet and with his support they will be able to crush down all their enemies. When Prophet Mohammed (SAS) came with guidance, they flatly refused it and opposed the Prophet (SAS) tooth and nail.

 Al-Baqarah # 89  

“And when there came to them, a Book from Allah confirming what is with them, although aforetime they had invoked, Allah in order to gain victory over those who disbelieved, then when there came to them that which they had recognised, they disbelieved in it. So let the Curse of Allah be on the disbelievers. “

Prophet Mohammed (SAS) had made a treaty with Banu Quraiza as mentioned earlier. Leader of Banu Nadir, Hai bin Akhtab, went to the leader of Banu Quraiza, Kaab bin Asad and tried to seek his support in the Battle of Ahzab. After some reluctance Banu Quraiza also joined Ahzab. This breaking of their agreement grieved and worried the Prophet (SAS) a lot since Banu Quraiza could have attacked the Muslim women and children in Madina while men were in the battlefield of Ahzab. Quran mentioned this by stating that the enemies came from above you and from below you. Above means Banu Quraiza and below means the other groups gathered in the battlefield.

 “When they came upon you from above you and from below you, “Al-Ahzab #10

With the help of Allah (SWT) the Muslims won the Battle of Ahzab and they returned to Madina. This conquest took place during Zul Qada of fifth Hijra.

As mentioned in Bukhari and narrated by Aisha (RUH), the Prophet (SAS) had just arrived home and took a bath. Jibreel (AS) came to the Prophet (SAS) and said,

 “You have put off your arms while we (the angels) are still in battle uniforms. So you should come with us to attack and punish Banu Quraiza.”

By the way this site of meeting of the Prophet (SAS) and Jibreel (AS) is marked by the window on the eastern wall of the mosque with following verse written on it.

Allah sends His Salat on the Prophet, and also His angles.

“O you who believe! Send your Salat on him, and greet him with the Islamic way of greeting.  “Al-Ahzab # 56

It should be noted that with various expansions of the Prophet’s mosque, the eastern wall of the mosque and hence this window has been moved a little bit eastward.

The Prophet (SAS) announced to his followers to reach the territory of Banu Quraiza before Salat-ul -Asr. The tired and worn-out followers eagerly obeyed the Prophet (SAS). Banu Quraiza locked themselves up in their lofty fortress. According to Ibn Hasham, this siege lasted for twenty-five days. During the siege, the leader of Banu Quraiza, Kaab bin Asad, made the following three proposals to his tribe:

“All of you should accept Islam and follow Mohammed (SAS). I swear that you know deep in your hearts that he is on the true path. It is nothing new. It is clearly written in your Bible. If you follow this suggestion you will not only safeguard your persons and properties but you will also be successful on the Day of Judgment. Alternatively, you kill your wives and children with your own hands and then fight the Muslims with full determination to your last. Thirdly, attack the Muslims on Saturday. Muslims know that it is forbidden for us to fight on Saturdays. Hence you catch them unprepared and uninformed.

The Jews said to their leader, “

“We will not accept the first proposal under any circumstances since we are not willing to follow any book other than Torah. Secondly why should we kill our innocent wives and children? Third proposal is against Torah and our religion. Hence none of them is acceptable to us.”

          In the meanwhile Allah (SWT) induced fear in their hearts too. All Jews came out of the fortress under the influence of this fear and left their fate in the hands of the Prophet (SAS).

“And those of the people of the Scripture who backed them, Allah brought them down from their forts and cast terror into their hearts, a group you killed, and a group you made captives. And He caused you to inherit their lands, and their houses, and their riches, and a land which you had not trodden. And Allah is Able to do all things. “ Al-Ahzab # 26-27

Notice that in the above verses Allah (SWT) not only reminded Muslims about His help, bounties and blessings, but also gave glad tidings of future conquest.

The Prophet (SAS) authorized Saad bin Maaz (RU) to decide the fate of Banu Quraiza. Jews were always very clever. They requested the Prophet (SAS) to replace Saad bin Maaz (RU) by Abu Lubabah (RU). They expected more sympathy from Abu Lubabah (RU) since he owned some property in that area. The Prophet (SAS) agreed.

The Jews started crying when they met Abu Lubabah (RU). They asked him,

“What will be our fate if we come out of the fort?”

Abu Lubabah (RU) put his finger on his throat indicating that they will be killed.

Abu Lubabah (RU) suddenly realized that it was a secret of the Prophet (SAS), which he disclosed. He went back to the Prophet’s Mosque and tied himself up with a tree due to the shame for letting the secret out. The Prophet (SAS) learnt about it and said,

“If he had come to me directly, I would have prayed for him. Now he should wait till Allah (SWT) accepts his repentance.”

Abu Lubabah (RU) tied himself up there for seven days till Allah (SWT) accepted his repentance. By the way there is column in the Prophet’s Mosque at this site and is generally known as Abu Lubaba column or repentance column. Quran mentioned this situation in Al-Anfal # 27-28.                         

“O you who believe! Betray not Allah and His Messenger, nor betray knowingly things entrusted to you. And know that your possessions and your children are but a trial and that surely with Allah is a mighty reward. “

Finally Saad bin Maaz (RU) gave his verdict about Banu Quraiza. He said,

“Men should be killed and women and children should be taken prisoners.”

Banu Quraiza deserved this since they broke the promises and they tried their best to harm the Muslims by helping the enemy secretly and openly. They also provided a great deal of arms and ammunition to enemies of Islam. Now Muslims received lot of booty of this rich Jewish tribe as mentioned in Al-Ahzab # 26-27 above. The Prophet (SAS) distributed it among the participants of this battle.

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