Isma'il ibn Jafar

Ismāʿīl ibn Jaʿfar al-Mubārak (Arabic: إسماعيل بن جعفر‎; c. born: 719 AD, Medina - died circa 762 AD, Medina) was the eldest son of Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq. He is also known as Isma'il Al-Ãraj ibn Ja'far (اسماعيل الاعرج ابن جعفر الصادق).[1][2][3][4] Following Ja'far's death, the Shia community split between those who would become the Twelver Shia and those who believed that the Imamate passed to Ja'far's son, Isma'il; the Isma'ili branch of Shia Islam is accordingly named for Isma'il.[5] According to both the Nizari and Mustaali Shia sects, he is the rightful successor of the sixth Imam, Jafar al-Sadiq, and the seventh Imam.

Isma'il ibn Ja'far
(إسمعيل الديباج بن جعفر الصادق (رحمه الله.png
Born103 AH
(approximately 722 C.E)
Died138 AH
(approximately 762 C.E)
Resting placeAl-Baqi' Madina Saudi Arabia
Other namesAbu Muhammad, Isma'il Al-A"raj
Known forElder son of Ja'far al-Sadiq, sixth Ismāʿīlī Imām, Syed
Titleaz-Azbab-i-Itlaq (Absolute lord), Al-Wafi, Al-aa"raj
PredecessorJa'far al-Sadiq According to Isma'ili Shia
SuccessorMuhammad ibn Isma'il According to Isma'ili Shia
ChildrenMuhammad ibn Isma'il, Ali ibn Isma'il, Fatima
RelativesMusa al-Kadhim



Isma'il was born in Shawwal 100 AH/719 C.E. He was the eldest son of Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq. His mother, Fatima bint al-Hussain'l-Athram bin al-Hasan bin Ali, was the first wife of Ja'far al-Sadiq. He was the brother of Abdullah al-Aftah.

Isma'ili sources say that, after the age of seven, as his father's designated successor, Isma'il was kept apart from his siblings, limited in his contact with the public, with his father taking personal responsibility for his education. Given his father's reputation as a scholar and the number of distinguished students who sought out his tuition, Isma'il would have received excellent training. It is said that whenever Ja'far was ill and unable to fulfill his duties as Imam, he deputized Isma'il, although his role was restricted to the confines of the home.

According to Daftary, Isma'il may have taken part in an anti-Abbasid plot in 755 and identified with the more activist, or militant Shi'a (some of whom split off as the Zaydis). He may have been summoned to the Caliph's court with others to face charges but was spared execution, unlike some of his fellow plotters.[citation needed]

To protect him from persecution, his father sent him into hiding and publicly declared him deceased. The majority Twelver groups argue that Isma'il actually died during his father's Imamate in the year 138 AH/756 C.E.

In about 762, Isma'il may have left Medina for Basra, although this is disputed. He is said to have had a full grasp of the esoteric truth, the inner message of Islam. He was succeeded by his son, Muhammad, as the 8th Isma'ili Imam, who was about 22 at the time. Some Isma'ilis believe that Muhammad bin Isma'il became "hidden" and will return as the Mahdi, to establish universal peace and justice.

According to Daftary, Isma'il may have led a revolt against the Abbasids in 815, "and died shortly afterwards".[citation needed] He probably lived in "southwestern Persia ... from where he dispatched his own Dais to adjoining areas".[citation needed]

Burial placeEdit

According to some Isma'ili sources, Isma'il ibn Ja'far is buried in Salamiyah, a city located in Syria.[6] Other sources point to Al-Baqi' Madina as his burial place.[7] Twelver Shia's and Sunni Muslims sources have contradicted this, stating that he was buried in Al-Baqi' Medina, the holy Islamic city located in Hijaz.[8][9][10][11][12][13]

The Ismāʿīlī–Ithnaʿasheri schismEdit

The Isma'ili acknowledge Isma'il as the seventh Imam, after his father, Ja'far.[14] whereas Twelver Shia Muslims acknowledge Musa al-Kadhim as Ja'far's successor.[15][16][17][18][19][20]

Isma'ili sources deny the death of Isma'il in the life of his father,[6] Shia and Sunni Muslims don't deny it.[21][22][23][24][25] Tree showing Ismaili Imam placed below.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ بصوته, مقولات السيد فضل الله. "موسوعة الإمام جعفر بن محمد ( الصادق ) عليه السلام - موقع الميزان". Retrieved 2017-02-27.
  2. ^ "موقع يازهراء س سيرة الإمام جعفر أبن محمد الصادق عليه الســـــــــلام". Retrieved 2017-02-27.
  3. ^ "الإمام جعفر الصادق عليه السلام". Retrieved 2017-02-27.
  4. ^ "كتاب(الروض المعطار في تشجير تحفة الأزهار وزلال الأنهار في نسب الأئمة الأطهار)". (in Arabic). Retrieved 2017-02-27.
  5. ^ John Norman Hollister (1979). The Shi'a of India. Oriental Books Reprint Corp. : [exclusively distributed by Munshiram Manoharla]. Retrieved 8 February 2011.
  6. ^ a b Gnostic, Ismaili. "Who Succeeded Imam Jafar al-Sadiq? Seven Proofs for the Imamat of Imam Ismail ibn Jafar". Ismaili Gnosis. Retrieved 2016-04-11.
  7. ^ "Burial Places of Imams - Dawoodi Bohra Forum". Retrieved 2016-04-11.
  8. ^ "Criminal silence on the Baqee destruction reason behind Muslim problems; Moosavi on 8 Shawwal | Jafariya News Network". Retrieved 2016-04-11.
  9. ^ "Ziarat of Hazrat Ismail bin Imam Jafar Sadiq (as)". Retrieved 2016-04-11.
  10. ^ "SAUDI ARABIA - ZIARAAT & INFORMATION". Retrieved 2016-04-11.
  11. ^ "Madinah a-Munawwarah | almiskeenah | Page 4". Retrieved 2016-04-11.
  12. ^ "History of Baqi cemetry in Medina". Retrieved 2016-04-11.
  13. ^ "iClassic". Retrieved 2016-04-11.
  14. ^ "6th Imam Molana Ismail a.s. bin Imam Jaffer Sadik a.s. - Dawoodi Bohra Forum". Retrieved 2016-04-11.
  15. ^ "The Imamate of Imam Musa Kazim (A.S.) || Imam Reza (A.S.) Network". Retrieved 2016-04-11.
  16. ^ "Examining the Ismaili Imams & the Bohras". Alhassanain(p) Network for Heritage and Islamic Thought. 2015-08-08. Retrieved 2016-04-11.
  17. ^ "Biography of ISMAIL IBN JAFAR (¿-762)". Retrieved 2016-04-11.
  18. ^ Tignor, Robert L. (2011-09-12). Egypt: A Short History. Princeton University Press. ISBN 1400839823.
  19. ^ "Al Muntazar - Online Islamic Course, Imam Husain (a.s.) and Imam Mahdi (a.s.)". Retrieved 2016-04-11.
  20. ^ "History of Ismailis". Retrieved 2016-04-11.
  21. ^ Dungersi, Mohammed Raza (1996-01-01). A Brief Biography of Imam Musa bin Jafar (a.s.): al-Kadhim. Bilal Muslim Mission of Tanzania. ISBN 9789976956931.
  22. ^ "Imam Moosa Kazim (a.s.) in the Books of the Ahle Tasannun | Serat Online". Retrieved 2016-04-11.
  23. ^ "The Twelve Successors of the Holy Prophet". Retrieved 2016-04-11.
  24. ^ " - تصوف ايران --- The 7th Imam His Holiness Musa Bin Jafar (AS)- امام موسی کاظم". Retrieved 2016-04-11.
  25. ^ "Farsictionary, English-Persian (Iranian History Glossary) : Imam Jafar Sadegh". Retrieved 2016-04-11.
Isma'il ibn Jafar
of the Ahl al-Bayt
Clan of the Quraish
Born: 122 AH 719 AD Died: …. AH 815…. AD
Shia Islam titles
Preceded by
Ja'far al-Sadiq
7th Imam of Ismailism Succeeded by
Muhammad ibn Ismāʿīl ash-Shākir