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Shaykh Abu al-Aswad ad-Du’ali (r.a.)

بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

Shaykh Abu al-Aswad ad-Du’ali (r.a.), 603-688 CE, was a close companion of ‘Ali ibn Abi Thalib (k.w.).  He was a grammarian and a poet.  He was the first to place dots, ashkal, on the Arabic letters and the first to write on Arabic linguistics.  It has been said that Shaykh Abu al-Aswad ad-Du’ali (r.a.) was the first grammarian of the Arabic language.

Imam Abu al-Faraj Muhammad ibn Ishaq an-Nadim (r.a.), author of Kitab al-Fihrist said, “Most scholars agree that grammar was taken from Abu al-Aswad ad-Du’ali, and that he took it from the Khalifah, ‘Ali.”

This is also the opinion of the famous language specialist, Shaykh Abu ‘Ubaydah (r.a.).  The lexicographer, Imam al-Zubaydi (r.a.) said about Shaykh Abu al-Aswad (r.a.), “He was the first to establish the science of the Arabic language, to lay down its methods and to establish its rules.”[read]

Source: A Muslim Convert Once More: Shaykh Abu al-Aswad ad-Du’ali (r.a.)