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What animal does ‘namir’ refer to?

Question

وَلَا تَصْحَبُ الْمَلَائِكَةُ رُفْقَةً فِيهَا جِلْدُ نَمِرٍ

Does نمر mean leopard or tiger?

Answer

Translation

Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam) said: “The angels do not accompany any group of travellers that have with them the skin of a namir.”

 

Explanation

The word namir is explained to be a predatory cat that; has a fierce rivalry with the lion – despite its smaller size, is able to cover long distances in a single leap and whose skin is covered in black dots.

(Sharh Ibn Raslan, Hadith: 4129)

 

The linguists explain numrah to be a pattern of spots, and the reason that the cat is named after it because of its spotted skin. (Lisanul Arab; Al Qamusul Muhit; Tajul ‘Arus)

 

From the above, it would seem that the word namir would better describe a leopard than a tiger. It is important to note than the prohibition of wearing the skin or hide of a predatory animal is not necessarily exclusive to the leopard, as Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam) prohibited us from wearing the skins of all predatory animals.

(Sunan Abi Dawud, Hadith: 4131)

 

Please do confirm the fiqh of these Hadiths with a reputable, Mufti/Darul Ifta.

 

 

And Allah Ta’ala Knows best.

 

Approved by: Moulana Muhammad Abasoomar