One of the hidden elderly scholarly gems in the city of Mecca is Shaykh Abdul Qadir Dabwan, someone I have had the fortune to visit for several years now since coming to know of him. It occurred to me on a visit to Mecca several years ago to ask about the students of the great Shaykh Abdullah al-Lahji, someone who I (and numerous others) love dearly for his phenomenal commentary on the Shamail. When I asked our teacher Shaykh Khalid al-Turkestani about students of Shaykh al-Lahji, he replied, “The senior most living student in Mecca is Shaykh Abdul Qadir Dabwan, he has an itr shop near the Haram belonging to the Abdul Qadir Qurashi chain, more than this I do not know as I don’t have a contact number for him.” This information was sufficient for me, and after the process of elimination and visiting a number of itr shops around the Haram al-Makki by the grace of Allah (Most High) I managed to locate Shaykh Abdul Qadir’s shop. One of the texts he gifted me was the 40 hadith collection of his teacher written for the students of the Sawlatiyyah school. Please find below a pdf of a translation of this text alongside explanatory footnotes I compiled for the aid of teachers. This text received a small private print of 100 copies in 2011 from the Karima al-Marwaziyya Foundation and was studied in High Wycombe in the Ramadan of that year.
From the blurb of the first edition is the following:
Shaykh Abdullah bin Saeed al-Lahji was born in Hadramawt, Yemen in 1343 Hijri. He studied extensively with a number of scholars in his native Yemen before coming to Makkah to perform Hajj in 1374 Hijri. He stayed for a year and in 1377 Hijri moved permanently to Makkah where he resided until he passed away in 1410 Hijri aged 67 years old.
During his time in Makkah he taught in the historic Al-Sawlatiyyahschool for 23 years as well as being honoured with teaching in the Masjid al-Haram.
Shaykh al-Lahji had a number of students, but is perhaps best known in scholarly circles for his amazing handwritten 2,200 page, four volume commentary on Qadi Yusuf al-Nabhani’s work on the Prophetic Shamail.
These 40 hadith were compiled by him for students of the Sawlatiyyah school, and was published during his lifetime. We hope this text will also be of benefit to English speaking students.
Please find below a downloadable pdf of our publication of the Bayquniyyah poem on hadith terminology along with the notes of Shaykh Hasan al-Mashat (1899-1980), one the recent great Maliki Ashari scholars of Mecca (picture above). Alhumdulillah we were able to pass on this work to some of the students of Shaykh Hasan who are still living in the sacred city and who read extensively with him and benefited from his tarbiyah. We hope this work is of use and benefit to students of the sacred sciences.