Explained: Age of Aisha At Marriage with Prophet Muhammad

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The Prophet, 53 married Aisha when she was six years old and he consummated his marriage when she was nine years old. Other sources differ on the age of marriage, but agree that the marriage was not consummated at the time of the marriage contract.

New Delhi (ABC Live India):  The controversial remarks made by the spokespersons of the ruling party over Prophet Muhammad marriage with his third wife Aisha(minor) has created an uncalled geopolitical burden for India recently.

 The ABC Research Team keeping close watch over this issue refers an article based upon information available online for readers so that they can understand the truth and make opinion accordingly.

Aisha was born in Mecca in c. 613 or early 614. She was the daughter of Abu Bakr and Umm Ruman, two most trusted companions of Prophet Muhammad and except this information on Prophet third wife Aisha there are no historical sources available about Aisha's childhood years.   

Age of Aisha at Marriage

Aisha's age at the time of her marriage is frequently mentioned in Islamic literature. According to John Esposito; Aisha was married to Muhammad in Mecca in 624 CE, after Hegira to Medina and the Battle of Badr. Several scholars interpret this to indicate that she reached puberty at this age, although her age at the time is the subject of dispute.

Sahih al-Bukhari's hadith says "that the Prophet, 53 married Aisha when she was six years old and he consummated his marriage when she was nine years old. Other sources differ on the age of marriage, but agree that the marriage was not consummated at the time of the marriage contract.

Aisha's age at marriage has been a source of controversy and debate, and some historians, scholars, and writers have revisited the previously accepted timeline of her life. Some writers have calculated Aisha's age based on details found in some biographies, eschewing the traditionally-accepted ahadith. One hadith recorded in the works of some medieval scholars, including al-Dhahabi,states that Aisha's older sister Asma was ten years older than her. This has been combined with information about Asma's age at the time of her death and used to suggest that Aisha was over thirteen at the time of her marriage. Gibril Haddad criticizes this approach as relying on a single narrator, and notes that a hadith from the same narrator gives a broader range for the age difference between the sisters. Using reports on the birth year of Fatimah as a reference point, the Lahore Ahmadiyya Movement scholar Muhammad Ali has estimated that Aisha was over ten years old at the time of marriage and over fifteen at the time of its consummation.

Noting the references to Aisha's age as either nine or ten at the age of consummation, American historian Denise Spellberg states that "these specific references to the bride's age reinforce Aisha's pre-menarcheal status and, implicitly, her virginity”. She notes that Aisha herself seemed to promote the fact that she was a virgin before her marriage to Muhammad, as a way to distinguish herself from his other, non-virginal wives. This was of great importance to those who supported Aisha's position in the debate of the succession to Muhammad. These supporters considered that as Muhammad's only virgin wife, Aisha was divinely intended for him, and therefore the most credible regarding the debate.

Source : The sources of this Article are Wikipedia and other references 

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