Abu Sa’ood

 — Abu Sa’ood —

-Name of the Mufassir:

He is Abu Sa’ood, Muhammad ibn Muhammad ibn Mustafaa, al-‘Imaadi, al-Hanafi. He was a respected judge and mufti in the Ottoman Empire, in addition to teaching lessons and authoring enduring works such as this tafsir. He died in the year 982Ah/1574CE.

-Name of the Book:

Irshaad al-‘Aql al-Saleem ilaa Mazaayaa al-Kitaab al-Kareem [إرشاد العقل السليم إلى مزايا الكتاب الكريم]

-General Description of the Book:

This work is regarded as the essential work in the field of Qur’anic balaaghah (linguistic rhetoric and eloquence). Abu Sa’ood drew of the previous works of al-Zamakhshari and al-Baydhawi in this field, but set his work apart with his own expertise and his mentioning of benefits which were not found in previous works. For this reason, his work has become widespread among the scholars.


The author is Ash’ari in ‘aqeedah, meaning that he interprets Allah’s names and attributes in a manner contrary to their apparent meaning and contrary to the understanding of the salaf. Despite drawing heavily of al-Zamakhshari’s al-Kashshaaf, his work does not contain any of his Mu’tazilah doctrine and only mentions Mu’tazilah beliefs in order to warn against them.

-Stance regarding Fiqh (legal) Rulings:

Abu Sa’ood did not devote much attention to fiqh issues in his tafsir. He would briefly discuss the issues without going into detail.

-Stance regarding Qiraa’aat (different recitations):

The various qiraa’aat are only mentioned in cases where they elucidate the meaning of the ayah.

Abu Sa’ood consistently drew attention to similar wordings and slight differences of phrasing between various ayaat throughout his tafsir.

-Stance regarding Israa’eeliyyaat (Judaeo-Christian traditions):

Abu Sa’ood was very sparse in his inclusion of Israa’eeliyyaat narrations in his tafsir. In the few cases where he did mention them, he would preface them with language such as “it is said” or “it is narrated” in order to indicate their weakness. Despite this care, Abu Sa’ood would mention a number of fabricated ahaadeeth regarding the virtues of the various chapters of the Qur’an at the end of every surah.

-Stance regarding poetry, linguistic analysis, grammar, etc.:

This work pays special attention to Balaaghah (linguistic rhetoric) and the inimitable nature of the Qur’anic language. He drew heavily on the previous valuable works of al-Zamakhshari and al-Baydhawi in this field, but his work is distinguished for its exceptional treatment of balaaghah and including benefits not found in previous works. His work demonstrates intimate knowledge of the subtle meanings of the Qur’anic language. Abu Sa’ood also delves into issues of grammar in this work, mentioning the statements of previous scholars and weighing their respective merits.


القول المختصر المبين في مناهج المفسرين لمحمد بن حمد الحمود النجدي

التفسير والمفسرين لمحمد حسين الدهبي

التيسير لمعرفة المشهور من أسانيد و كتب التفسير

Back to Mufassir Profiles Index

See also: Advice Regarding the Books of Tafsir with Distorted ‘Aqeedah