Abdul-Mutalleb, the paternal grandfather of Holy Prophet Mohammad (SAWA)
Compiled By: Syed Ali Shahbaz
On 10th of the Islamic month of Rabi al-Awwal, 45 years before Hijra, Abdul-Mutalleb, the paternal grandfather of Prophet Mohammad (SAWA), passed away in Mecca, when the grandson was only 8 years old. He was the leader of the Quraysh tribe descended from Prophet Ishmael, and was known for his eloquence and virtues as a firm monotheist following the creed of his ancestor, Prophet Abraham (AS).
He was in charge of the custodianship of the Holy Ka'ba which he had received through his father, Hashem, and his illustrious forbears. He was the guardian of his grandson, the future Prophet, following the death of the latter's parents, Abdullah and Amena the daughter of Wahb (peace upon them).
Eight years before Abdul-Mutalleb's death, the Ethiopian Christian governor of Yemen, Abraha, had marched on Mecca riding an elephant with the intention of destroying the holy Ka'ba. Abraha's army seized Abdul-Mutalleb's herd of camels on the assumption that this will make him plead for the safety of the Ka'ba. Abdul-Mutalleb, however, only asked for the release of his camel herd, and when Abraha asked him why he does not plead for the Ka'ba, he replied: I am the owner of these camels, and the Ka'ba has its own owner (God); He will take care of its safety. Soon Abraha, his elephant and his army were miraculously attacked by a flock of birds pelting them with pebbles, which routed the formidable forces and reduced them to chewed straw as the holy Qur'an records in Surah Feel.
The Prophet was born in the same year of this divine miracle. On his grandfather’s death, his guardianship was taken over by his loving uncle, Abu Taleb, the consanguineous brother of his father Abdullah.