ABŪ ʿAWĀNA YAʿQŪB B. ESḤĀQ B. EBRĀHĪM NĪŠĀBŪRĪ ESFARĀYĪNĪ, a Shafeʿite legal scholar and traditionist. He is credited with introducing the Shafeʿite school in Esfarāyīn, which remained a leading center of Shafeʿism even after the Hanafite maḏhab made serious inroads in Khorasan. Abū ʿAwāna traveled widely throughout the major centers of learning in Iran, Syria, the Yemen, and Egypt, collecting traditions from a number of illustrious scholars. These included the Egyptian scholar, Mozanī (d. 264/877), the foremost disciple of Šāfeʿī, and (according to Sobkī) Moslem b. Ḥaǰǰāǰ (d. 261/875), author of the Ṣaḥīḥ. Among Abū ʿAwāna’s pupils was the traditionist and faqīh, Ṭabarānī (d. 360/971). He died at an advanced age in 316/928 and was buried in Esfarāyīn; the location of his tomb, which attracted visitors for many years, is described in detail by Ebn Ḵallekān.

Abū ʿAwāna was the author of al-Mosnad al-moḵraǰ ʿalā ketāb Moslem b. al-Ḥaǰǰāǰ; the large number of copies or parts of book that still exist in manuscript collections attest to its popularity. The book was printed in Hyderabad in 1362/1942.


Ebn al-ʿEmād, Šaḏarāt al-ḏahab, Cairo, 1350/1931, II, p. 274.

Sobkī, Ṭabaqāt1 II, p. 321.

Ebn Ḵallekān, Būlāq, 1299/1881, II, pp. 407-08.

Sezgin, GAS I, p. 174.

(J. A. Wakin)

Originally Published: December 15, 1983

Last Updated: July 19, 2011

This article is available in print.
Vol. I, Fasc. 3, p. 260

Cite this entry:

J. A. Wakin, “ABŪ ʿAWĀNA,” Encyclopædia Iranica, I/3, p. 260; an updated version is available online at http://www.iranicaonline.org/articles/abu-awana-yaqub-b (accessed on 26 January 2014).