Shafi'i, Abu 'Abd Allah (Muhammad ibn Idris) al- biographical name
(born , 767, Arabiadied Jan. 20, 820, Al-Fustat, Egypt) Muslim legal scholar and founder of the Shafi'iyyah school of law. A distant relative of Muhammad, he was brought up in poverty in Mecca and studied with Islamic scholars across Arabia and the Levant. His great contribution was the creation of a synthesis of Islamic legal thought that put into coherent form many familiar but unsystematized ideas. He dealt primarily with the identification of the sources of Islamic law and their application to contemporary events. His book, the Risalah (c. 817), earned him the title father of Muslim jurisprudence.
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