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In Islam, the tradition or collection of traditions attributed to the Prophet Muhammad that include his sayings, acts, and approval or disapproval of things. Hadith is revered by Muslims as a major source of religious law and moral guidance. It consists of two parts: the oral law itself and the isnad, or chain of authorities who passed it down to posterity. The various collections of Hadith provide the major source for studying the development of Islam in its first few centuries.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on Hadith, visit Britannica.com.
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