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Harmala b. Kahil al-Asadi

Harmala b. Kahil al-Asadi
Murderer of Ali al-Asghar
Full Name Harmala b. Kahil al-Asadi
Lineage Banu Asad
Death After al-Mukhtar uprising
Cause of Death He was killed by al-Mukhtar
Era Yazid b. Mu'awiyya, Umayyad Dynesty
Known for Killing 'Abd Allah b. al-Husayn and 'Abd Allah b. al-Hasan
Activities Participating in the Event of Karbala

Ḥarmala b. Kāhil al-Asadī (Arabic: حرملة بن کاهل الأسدي) is one of the most hated figures among Shi'a due to his actions during the Event of Karbala. On the Day of 'Ashura' he was one of the archers of 'Umar b. Sa'd's army. He killed 'Abd Allah b. al-Husayn and 'Abd Allah b. al-Hasan and was involved in martyrdom of 'Abbas b. 'Ali. After al-Mukhtar's uprising, he was captured and killed by al-Mukhtar's order.



Harmala was from the tribe of Banu Asad. There is no report about his birth and life before the Event of 'Ashura' in historical sources. In some sources his name is recorded as Harmala b. Kahin. He was killed in al-Mukhtar's uprising.

Day of 'Ashura'

On the Day of 'Ashura', Harmala was one of the archers of 'Umar b. Sa'd's army. He killed 'Abd Allah b. al-Husayn ('Ali al-Asghar), Imam al-Husayn's infant, on his father's arms. It is also reported that he killed 'Abd Allah b. al-Hasan. He was also involved in martyrdom of 'Abbas b. 'Ali and carried his pure head to Kufa. Ibn Athir mentioned him as the murderer of Abu Bakr b. al-Hasan.

In Hadith

He was cursed in Ziyarah al-Nahiyya al-Muqaddasa.

Minhal b. 'Amr reported that after performing hajj, he went to Medina and visited Imam al-Sajjad (a). Asking about al-Mukhtar's uprising and the retribution of the killers of Karbala, Imam (a) asked him about Harmala; when Imam knew that he was alive, Imam (a) said:

Likewise, after his visit of Imam al-Sajjad (a), Bishr b. Ghalib al-Asadi has reported Imam al-Sajjad (a) cursed Harmala.

Harmala as shown in Mukhtarnama TV series. In the scene he is throwing an arrow toward 'Abd Allah b. al-Husayn.


Harmala was captured in al-Mukhtar's uprising. According to Mukhtar's order, his hands and legs were cut and then he was burned in fire.

When Minhal b. 'Amr returned from Medina to Kufa and saw the scenes of punishing and killing of Harmala, he informed al-Mukhtar about his visit with Imam al-Sajjad (s) and what Imam has said about Harmala. Having heard that, al-Mukhtar performed Sajdat al-Shukr (prostration to thank God) as he saw that Imam's curse was accomplished by his hands.

See Also