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By Josef W. Meri

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Abu Hanifa himself did not leave behind substantial works on religious law, but his legal thought may be reconstructed from the writings of his students. His best-known students were al-Shaybani (d. 189/749–750) and Abu Yusuf (d. 192/798), who have preserved Abu Hanifa’s doctrines and opinions in their works. From these works it becomes apparent that Abu Hanifa’s legal thought was based to a considerable degree on his personal opinions (ra’y) and that his conclusions were derived through legal reasoning (qiyas).

In contrast with older Muslim coins, which were based on Byzantine models, ‘Abd al-Malik’s coins were devoid of pictorial images and included Qur’anic phrases instead. The remarkable uniformity of these coins demonstrates the degree to which ‘Abd al-Malik centralized the control of minting money. His coins remained the model for coins throughout the Umayyad and ‘Abbasid periods. In addition, ‘Abd al-Malik began the long process of establishing Arabic as the standard administrative language of the realm and invested heavily in agricultural development, particularly in Iraq and the Hijaz.

Art. ’’ The Encyclopaedia of Islam, New Edition, ed. H. Gibb et al. Leiden and London, 1960. Vol. 1, 109–11. ABU HANIFA AL-NU‘MAN Abu Hanifa al-Nu‘man b. Thabit b. Zuta, theologian and jurist, is the eponymous founder of the Hanafi legal school. He was born in Kufa circa AH 80/699 CE and died in 150/767 in a prison in Baghdad at the age of 70. His grandfather Zuta is said to have been brought over from Kabul to Kufa, where he settled after being set free. There are not many details available about Abu Hanifa’s life in Kufa.

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