Which group of people are referred to as the ‘Golden chain of narrators’ and why were they given such an exclusive title?
This title is used to show the great stature of the narrators in a particular chain. It famously refers to the following chain, due to the very high calibre of narrators therein;
Imam Ahmad ibn Hambal, from Imam Shafi’i, from Imam Malik, from Imam Nafi’ from Sayyiduna ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Umar (radiyallahu’anhuma).
(Tadribur Rawi, vol.1pg.219)
The above is the popular and widely accepted ‘Golden chain’. Hafiz ibn Hajar (rahimahullah) has gathered the narrations that he could find reported with this chain into a booklet.
There are other chains that were also given such a title. See one example in the footnotes of My Honourable Teacher; Al-‘Allamatul Muhaddith, Shaykh Muhammad ‘Awwamah (hafizahullah) on Tadribur Rawi, vol.2 pg.234.
And Allah Ta’ala Knows best,
Answered by: Moulana Muhammad Abasoomar