The Famous Shi'ite Exegetists of the Holy Quran
Shi'ite Commentators and Exegetists From Among The Companions
The foremost among them was Imam Ali bin Abi Talib(A.S.), Master of the Shi'ites and their Imam. He collected the Holy Quran and interpreted it that is he arranged it in manner it was revealed. He had a book in which he had mentioned sixty different branches of the sciences connected with the Holy Quran, which in fact is the basis of all the books connected with the Quranic Studies. As-Suyuti has said that he was most referred to from the companions of the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.). Imam Ali bin Abi Talib(A.S.) was martyred in 40 A.H.
Among them is also counted Ibayy Bin Ka'b An-Ansari. As-Suyuti has included him among the ten companions who were confident in
matters connected with Exegesis of the Holy Quran. He died in 30 A.H.
Abdullah Bin Abbas was the first person who dictated to others in this field and he has been quoted by all other exegetists. As-Suyuti has counted from among the ten companions of the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) who got fame in this field. He has also said that the better qualified people after the companions, from among the ten companions of the better qualified people after the companions, from among the Tabi'ites, in respect to the interpretation and explanation of the Holy Quran were the inhabitants of Makkah because they followed Ibn Abbas. Similarly, Ibn-un-Nadim, while mentioning the book written in the field of the exegesis of the Holy Quran,refers to a book by Ibn Abbas. He says that Mujahid quoted from it.Hamid bin Qais has quoted Mujahid,while Warqa' has cited him through Abi Najih. Similarly, Isa Bin Maimun has also cited Mujahid through Abi Najih.
His being a Shi'ite does not add any clarification. He died in 68 A.H.
Shi'ite Exegetists From Tabi'ites and After
Maiham bin Yahya at-Tammar who was a Shi'ite scholastic and speaker in Kufa was a Tabi'ite. Similarly Sa'id Bin Jabir was Tabi'ite. He wrote a book on the explanation of the Quran which is often quoted by other exegetists.
As-Suyuti has treated it to be a thorough and dependable book and has quoted Qitadah the Sa'id was the most informed of the Tabi'ites in matter of Tafsir. Similarly, Ibn-un-Nadim has also mentioned his Tafsir in his Al-Fahrist, while discussing the books written in this field. He does not mention any other Tafsir written before it. The evidence of his being a Shi'ite is given by Allama al-Hilli in al-Khullasah as well as al-Kishi in his Biographical Dictionary.He has also that the only reason of his being killed by Hajjaj was that he was a Shi'ite.He was martyred in 94 A.H.
Abu Saleh Miran al-Basri, a pupil of Ibn Abbas was a Tabi'ite, is counted among the prominent scholars of the Holy Quran. His being
repeatedly quoted by Muhammad Bin As-Sa'ib Al-Kalabi in his exegesis is a proof of his being a Shi'ite. Another evidence to this effect is the trust that al-Mufid has posed in him, in his book Al-Kafi'ah fi Ibtale Tawbat al-Khatiah, after quoting a tradition from his relating to Ibn Abbas. He died after the lapse of the first century hijrah.
Tawus al-Yamani, a pupil of Ibn Abbas, was a Tabi'ite. Ibn Taimiyyah has declared him to be 'the most well-informed of all' in his exegesis, while Ibn Qutaibah has declared him to be Shi'ite. Shaikh Tusi has counted him among the companions of Imam Ali ibn al-Husain(A.S.) and has said that he was always attached to him. He died in 106 A.H.
Among them is Imam Muhammad Baqir(A.S.).Ibn-un-Nadim has mentioned a book of his while writing about the exegesis of the Holy Quran. He has been quoted by Abul Jarud and Ziyad bin al-Mundhir, head of the Zaidite-Jarudite sect.The most dependable Shi'ite writers have quoted him through Abul Jarud. He passed away in 114 A.H.
Jabir bin Yazid al-Ja'fi wrote a book on Tafsir and has been mentioned by An-Najashi and Ash-Shaikh in Fahrist. He died in 127 A.H.
Siddi al-Kabir Isma'il bin Abdur Rahman Abu Muhammad al-Qarashi was a Tabi'ite and was the author of a famous book on Tafsir which has often been quoted by exegetists. As-Suyuti declare his exegesis to be one of the most dependable ones. Similarly, Ibn-un-Nadim has written, while mentioning the exegesis of the Holy Quran, "A book of Tafsir of As-Siidi which we shall discuss Iater on." According to Shaikh Tusi, he was one of the companions of Imam Ali bin al-Husain(A.S.), Imam Muhammad Baqir(A.S.) and Imam Ja'far Sadiq(A.S.).
According to Ansab-us-Samani, he had found the company of the companions of the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) and the authors says, "Isma'il bin Abu Khalid used to say that Siddi was more informed of the Holy Quran than Sha'bi" Ibn Mardawiyyah has described him to be a Hafiz and author of an exegesis. Ibn Hajar has written about him in At-Taqrib that he was truthful but also accused of being inclined towards Shi'ism.
According to Tahdib-ut-Tahdhib, Ibrahim An-Nakh'i passed by As-Siddi while he was explaining the Holy Quran to the people. An-Nakh'i said,"Is not he explaining according to the way of these people (the Shi'ites) ?"
Al-'Ajali has said about him that he was turstworthy, well-informed of the explanation of the Holy Quran and has been oft quoted. He has said also that At-Tabari and Ibn Abi Fatim and others have referred to his explanations in their exegesis. According to what has been said about him in Tahdhib-ut Tahdhib, it appears that he took to extremes in his Shi'ism. It is he about whom you read Ash-Sha'bi's statement. As to Siddi as-Saghir Muhammad, he is of course a non-Shi'ite and reports from Siddi al-Kabir, who died in 127 A.H.
Muhammad bin Sa'ib bin Bashar al-Kufi is a Tabi'i and Kufite scholar of exegesis. His book is well known and many exegetists quote him. Ibn Nadim has mentioned his book while reporting about the books on exegesis of the Holy Quran. Ibn'Adi has written in Al-Kamil that he is well-known for explanation of the Holy Quran. His exegesis is the longest and most comprehensive. Many authentic people have depended on his interpretation and have agreed with him. According to Ansabus-Sam-ani," He was an inhabitant of Kufa and author of an exegesis of the Holy Quran."
He was from among the companions of Imam Zainul Abidin(A.S.) and Imam Muhammad Baqir(A.S.). Ibn Sa'd say that he was well-versed in exegesis, geneology of the Arabs and their usages. As-Saji has said in Tahdib-al-Tahdhib that the tradition reported by him are left out.He died in 146.
Abu Hamza al-Thamali was also a Tabi'ite. Ibn-un-Nadim has mentioned him while writing about his books connected with the exegesis of the Holy Quran. He also says that his name was Thabit bin Dinar and was a companion of Ali (meaning Imam Zain-ul-Abidin). He was among the selected and trustworthy persons and a friend of Abu Ja'far. He died in 150 A.H.
Abu Junadah al-Hasin bin Makhariq as-Saluli was a companion of Imam Ja'far Sadiq(A.S.) and Imam Kazim(A.S.). An-Najashi has said that he was the author of a book on exegesis of the Holy Quran and another on recitation of the Holy Quran. According to Ibn-un-Nadim he was one of the earlier Shi'ites and was the author of a book of exegesis and another book Jame' al-'Ulum. He died about the middle of the second century.
Abu Ali Wahib bin Hafas al-Hariri al-Asadi was a companion of Imam Ja'far Sadiq(A.S.) and Imam Musa Kazim(A.S.). An-Najashi has mentioned a book on exegesis written by him. He also died about the middle of the second century.
Abu Ali al-Hasan bin Faddal was a very close friend of Imam Ali Ar-Reza(A.S.) and as Ibn-un-Nadim has said, was the author of book on exegesis.
Abu Talib Abdulah bin Salat used to take reports from Imam Reza(A.S.). According to An-Najashi, he wrote an exegesis of the Holy Quran. He died in the latter part of the second century.
Muhammad bin Khalid al-Barqi was the author of an exegesis according to An-Najashi who has also reported his authorities with his name. He died in latter part of the second century.
Hisham bin Muhammad as-Sa'ib al-Kalabi has been mentioned by Ibn Nadim among those who were authors of exegesis of the Holy Quran. He says, "It is a book in explanation of the verses which were revealed about different nations". Shaikh Tusi has included him in the companions of Imam Ja'far Sadiq(A.S.). An-Najashi has also supported his being a Shi'ite. Same is the position taken by Adh-Dhahabi in Tadhkiratul-Huffaz and As-Sam'ani in Al-Ansab.
Al-Waqidi, whose full name is Muhammad bin 'Umar al-Aslami, is well-known historian. Ibn-un-Nadim says that he was a Shi'ite of good faith. He also wrote a book At-Targhib Fi 'Ilm-ul-Quran wa Ghalat ur-Rijal. He is usually included among the scholars specializing in history and biography. He died in 207 A.H.
Yunis bin Abdur Rahman, who was an ally of Aal Yaqtin, has been mentioned by An-Najashi as having a book on Tafsir (exegesis) to his credit among other books. He died in 208 A.H.
Ali bin Asbat bin Salim Bayya' Zatiy Abul Hasan al-Muqri al-kufi has been mentioned by An-Najashi as having written a book on exegesis and has also given the names of the authority from whom he gets his information. He died in the beginning of the third century.
Hasan bin Mahbub Sarrad, according to Ibn-un-Nadim wrote an exegesis of the Holy Quran. He died in 224 A.H.
Abu Uthman al-Mazini Bakr bin Muhammad an-Nahwi has been mentioned as a Shi'ite by An-Najashi. According to Bughyat-ul-Wi'at, he wrote a book on the Holy Quran. He died in 248 A.H.
Muhammad bin Mas'ud al-'Ayyashi wrote an exegesis which is well known and titled as Tafsir-ul-'Ayyashi. Ibn-Un-Nadim says that he was from among the Shi'ite-Imamite Jurists. He was unique in his age in his scholarship. Then he names his works which are more than one hundred including an exegesis. He died during the third century.
Farat bin Ibrahim al-Kufi wrote a voluminous exegesis which is very often quoted by scholars. He died about the middle of the third century.
Ali bin Mehzyar al-Ahwazi (Abul Hasan) has, according to An-Najashi an exegesis of the Holy Quran among his works, An-Najashi has also referred to his authorities. Ash-Shaikh has said in his Fahrist that he has 33 books to his credit, like the books of Al-Husain bin Sa'id and include one exegesis too and a book on Huruf-ul-Quran. He died about the middle of the third century.
Husain bin Sa'id bin Hammad al-Ahwazi has been mentioned by Ash-Shaikh as having written an exegesis too. Ibn-un-Nadim has said about him and his brother, Al-Hasan, that in their age they were comparatively of a wider knowledge. He has counted an exegesis among his books. An-Najashi has said about Hasan bin Sa'id that he collaborated with his brother in writing thirty books which increased the fame of his brother. Among these books, there was an exegesis too. He died in the mid-third century.
Hasan bin Khalid al-Barqi was, according to the report of Ibn Shahr Ashub, one of the prominent scholars. Among his books is counted Tafsir-ul-'Askari which spreads over 120 volumes and was dictated to him by Imam Hasan al-Askari(A.S.). He died in the mid-third century.
Ibrahim bin Muhammad bin Sa'id Thaqafi al-Kufi, the author of Kitab-ul-Gharat has been referred to by Ash-Shaikh in his Fahrist as having written an exegesis of the Holy Quran. He has quoted his sources. He died in 283 A.H.
Abu Abdullah Ahmad bin Sabih al-Asadi al-Kufi, according to Ash-Shaikh and An-Najashi, wrote a book of exegesis of the Holy Quran. Both of them have mentioned his sources. He died in the period lying between the last decade of the third and the beginning of the fourth century.
Ali bin Ibrahim bin Hashim al-Qummi wrote a well-known exegesis known as Tafsir Ali Bin Ibrahim. He died about end of third and beginning of the fourth century.
Abu Abdullah Muhammad bin Abbas bin Ali bin Marwan,
commonly known as Ibn-Jahham, according to Al-Fahrist of Ash-Shaikh, wrote voluminous exegesis. He died during the fourth century.
Ali bin al-Husain bin Babuyah al-Qummi, the father of As-Sadduq, has been referred to by An-Najashi and in Al-Fahrist of Ash-Shaikh, as the author of an exegesis. They have given his sources too. He died in 329 A.H.
Abdul Aziz bin Yahya al-Jaludi al-Basri, according to An-Najashi wrote three exegesis, one reported from Imam Ali bin Abi Talib(A.S.), another from Ibn Abbas and still another from various companions of the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.). He died 330 A.H. , probably in 334 or 335 A.H.
Abu Bakr Suli Muhammad bin Yahya, according to Ibn-un-Nadim, left behind him a comprehensive but incomplete book on 'Ilm-ul-Quran'. He died either in 330 or 335 or 336 A.H.
Muhammad bin al-Hasan bin al-Walid was a leader of the inhabitants of Qum and their most prominent figure. He wrote an exegesis which has been mentioned by Ibn-un-Nadim, An-Najashi and Ash-Shaikh in his Al-Fahrist. He died in 343 A.H.
Ahmad bin Muhammad bin al-Husain bin Dawl al-Qummi, as said by An-Najashi wrote one hundred books including an exegesis. He died in 350 A.H.
Muhammad bin Ali bin 'Abdak al-Jurjani has been mentioned as a Shi'ite by Ash-Shaikh, An-Najashi and As-Sam'ani. He wrote an exegesis spreading over ten volumes. He died in 360 A.H.
Sayyid Razi al-Muswi Muhammad bin al-Husain wrote a voluminous exegesis of the Holy Quran, in which he gave the occasions of revelation and interpretation. In this exegesis we find such thing as were never reported and written before. Some parts of this book are available in Iraq, while the original is found in the Central Library of Astan Quds Razavi Mashhad,Iran. From this original was copied the one found in Iraq and then published. The copy which is available at the Central Library of Astan Quds Razavi is very old and was copied from the one on which the author himself has written remarks. This covers from the beginning of Surah Aal 'Imran to the middle Surah An-Nisa', and is the fifth volume of the book. The original was written in 402 A.H. While the copy under reference was made on 21st of Rajab 533. He died young in 406.
Shaikh al-Muhammad bin Muhammad bin an-Nu'man al-Baghdadi who taught Sayyid Murtada and Sayyid Radi, was according to An-Najashi and others, the author of Kitab-ul-Bayan Fi Ta'lif-il Quran. The contents of this are unknown. Some contemporaries have written the name of this book as Kitab-ul-Bayan Fi Anwa'e 'Ulum-il-Quran. His sources are also unknown. He died in 409 A.H.
Sharif Murtada Ali bin al-Husain al-Musavi explained many difficult verses of the Holy Quran in his Amali. He died in 463 A.H.
Shaikh Tusi Muhammad bin al-Hasan, known as Shaikhut Ta'ifah wrote At-Tibyan Fi Tafsir al-Quran.This exegesis is in ten volumes. The author of Majma'-ul-Bayan has taken help from this book as he has himself said. We have seen the complete book in some libraries of Tehran. One copy is available at the Malek Library,Tehran which is the biggest library there having more than 50,000 volumes. This exegesis has been published along with its summary as Mukhtasar-ut-Tibyan. He died in 460 A.H.
Muhammad bin Ibrahim bin Ja'far Abu Abdullah al-Katib Numani is the author of a well-known exegesis titled Tafsir-un-Nu'mani. He died during the fifth century.
Abul Futuh al-Husain bin Ali bin Muhammad bin Ahmad al-Khiza'i Razi Naishapuri is the author of 'Rawd ul-Jinan Fi Tafsir-il-Quran' which is spread over twenty volumes and is written in Persian. He died after the fifth century.
Amin-un-Din Abu Ali al-Hasan Tabrisi is the author of the famous exegesis known as Majma'-ul-Bayan Li 'Ulum-il-Quran which has been published many times in Iran and Lebanon.He was a contemporary to Az-Zamakhshari and compiled his exegesis before he could get information about Al-Kashshaf. When he got information about the latter, he wrote another titled Jawame' ul-Jame' in which he made use of the information given in Al-Kashshaf. This one is also printed. He died in 548 A.H.
Qutub-ud-Din Sa'id bin Hibt Ullah was a pupil of the author of Majma'-ul-Bayan. He wrote a summary of all the exegesis written by that time. This summary is in ten volumes. He also wrote a separate exegesis of the Holy Quran in two volumes. He died in 573 A.H.
Muhammad bin Hasan al-Fattal Naishapuri was the teacher of Ibn Sharr Ashub. He wrote an exegesis known as At-Tanwir Fima'anit Tafsir. He died during the sixth century.
Sayyid Fadl Ullah bin Ali al-Husaini Rawandi is the author Al-Kafi Fit-Tafsir which has been referred to by Muntajib ud-Din and the author of Amal-ul-Aamil. He died during the sixth century.
Amir Ghiyath ud-Din Mansur al-Husaini Shirazi is an ancestor of the author As-Salafah, and himself an author of an exegesis. He died in 948 A.H.
Mulla Husain al-Kashifi as-Sabzwari is the author of Jawahir-ut-Tafsir. He died around 910 A.H.
Maula Ali bin al-Hassan az-Zuwwari wrote a very voluminous exegesis in Persian. He died in the tenth century.
Shaikh Baha-ud-Din Aamili Muhammad bin al-Husain began writing an exegesis known as Mashriq-ush-Shamsain but could not finish it. He died in 1031 A.H.
Mirza Muhammad bin Abdul Husain an-Nasiri at-Tusi al-Isfahani
was a pupil of Sayyid Ali bin Hujjat Ullah Ash-Shulistani. He compiled an exegesis as reported by the Imams and which spread over thirty volumes. He died during the eleventh century.
Muhammad Husain bin Muhammad al-Qummi was the brother of Qadi Sa'id al-Qummi and a pupil of Rajab Ali Tabrizi al-Hakim. He wrote a voluminous exegesis in Persian which indicate the depth of his knowledge. He died by the end of the eleventh century.
Mirza Muhammad al-Mashhadi ibn Muhammad Reza al-Qummi rote an exegesis of the Holy Quran under the title "Kanz-ud-Daqa'iq wa Bahr ul-Ghara'ib". He died in the twelfth century.
Shaikh Muhammad Reza bin Muhammad Amin al-Hamadani is the author of Ad-Durr-un Nazim fi Tafsir-il-Quran al-Karim. The age he lived in could not be ascertained but surely he belonged to the latter period.
Sayyid Hashim bin Sulaiman al-Bahrani is the author of an exegesis titled Al-Burhan Fi Tafsir il-Quran which is in six volumes. He wrote another book related to the explanation and exegesis of the Holy Quran under the title "Kitab-ul-Hadi Wa Diya'in-Nadi" which is in two volumes. He died in 1170 A.H.
Shaikh Jawwad bin Hasan al-Balaghi Najafi was the author of Aala'-ir-Rahman Fi Tafsir-il-Quran. The first volume of this exegesis is published. The death did not give him time to finish. He died in Sha'ban 1352 A.H.
Hasan al-Amin,The Shorter Shi'ite Encyclopaedia