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Al-Thaʿlabīyya (Arabic:الثَعلَبيَّة) is a place on the way of Mecca to Kufa. Imam al-Husayn (a) met Abu Harra al-Azudi in al-Tha'labiyya on the way to Karbala before continuing his journey to Shuquq. According to some narrations Imam al-Husayn (a) was informed in al-Tha'labiyya about the martyrdom of Muslim b. Aqil. Aqa Buzurg Tihrani stated that Ibn A'lam al-'Alavi al-Husayni passed away there in 375/985-986.


Location and Appellation

Al-Tha'labiyya is a place between Shuquq and Khuzaymiya. Dawiju'i provides water supplies for the area which is located one mile off al-Tha'labiyya. Hamd al-Sabil ponds are near this region neighboring sand desert which reaches Khuzaymiya.

Two reasons have been mentioned on choosing designation of this region: 1) Tha'labat b. 'Amr has settled there; 2) Tha'labat b. Dudan b. Asad was the first one who excavated in this region. Al-Tha'labiyya is 29 mile off Butlan and 32 mile off Khuzaymiya. The distance between Mecca to al-Tha'labiyya is one third of the distance between Mecca to Kufa. 'Abd al-A'la b. 'Amir al-Tha'labi is said to have lived there. Muhammad b. al-Hanafiyya and Sa'id b. Jubayr have narrated from him.


According to Ibn A'tham al-Kufi, Imam al-Husayn (a) had a dream in al-Tha'labiyya, and he informed others about martyrdom of himself as well as his companions. 'Ali al-Akbar b. al-Husayn expressed the famous sentence here: "When we are right, we don’t fear death". However according to some sources, there is belief that this conversation between Imam al-Husayn (a) and his son, Ali al-Akbar, took place in the Palace of Banu Muqatil or its neighboring region.

Based on a number of sources, Imam al-Husayn (a) was informed about martyrdom of Muslim b. 'Aqil and Hani b. 'Urwa in al-Tha'labiyya. While some sources said that the news was broken to him in Zurud, Qadisiyya or Qatqatana.

Some historians stated that Ibn A'lam al-'Alavi al-Husayni passed away on his way back from Hajj in 375/985-986. Qafti stated that Ibn A'lam passed away in 'Usayla.

Imam al-Husayn's (a) Conversation with Abu Harra al-Azudi

Abu Harra al-Azdi asked Imam al-Husayn (a) for the reason of his journey: "Oh, the son of Prophet Muhammad (s) why did you leave Mecca and Medina?" Imam replied:

"Umayyads took my property and I was patient. They cursed me and my parents and I was patient. They wanted to kill me, so I escaped. By God, I know that I will be killed by a group of aggressors and God will cover them with cloak of humiliation and will make them dominated by sharp swords of those who will humiliate them; worse than those who were dominated by the Queen of Sheba."


  • The material for this article is mainly taken from ثعلبیه in Farsi WikiShia.