15 Muharram 1434 AH / 29 November 2012 CE

At the termination of a marriage, there is a mandatory waiting period before a woman is permitted to remarry; this is known as *iddat*. Marriage is terminated due to the (1) husband’s death, (2) her being divorced or (3) both. In the first, for the widow, her *iddat* is four months and ten days1
. In the second, for the divorcee, the *iddat* is dependent on her circumstance; consummation and menstruation. In the third, for the divorcee who is widowed whilst in *iddah*, it is whichever wait is lengthier. Note! If the woman was (4) pregnant, giving birth will terminate the *iddat* in all these cases2
.

Expounding on the second case, the divorcee has three scenarios; she is (2a) unconsummated, (2b) non-menstruating, or (2c) menstruating. The first (2a), has no *iddat* for the husband had no opportunity to impregnate3
. The second (2b), be it due to youth or menopause, has an *iddat* of three months 4
. All scenarios thus far are undisputed. The third scenario (2c), which is also the most common, is that of the menstruating divorcee. Her *iddat* is agreed to be three *quru*5
.

The schools are differed in their definition of *quru*. The Ahnaf and Hanabilah declare *quru* to mean *haydh* whilst The Shawafi’ and Malikiyyah proclaim it to mean *tuhar*. *Haydh* is the menstrual bleeding and *tuhar* is the clean period. Hence, the Ahnaf and Hanabilah state that *iddat* is three complete menstrual cycles (*haydh*) and the Shawafi’ and Malikiyyah hold it to be two complete clean periods and the remainder of the first (which may be minute).

### The limit of Haydh and Tuhar

The minimum possible days for a menstruating divorcee differs based on (a) the minimum and maximum days of *haydh* as well (b) the minimum number of days for *tuhar*.

Other than the Hanabilah6
, all the schools assert that the minimum days of *tuhar* are 15 days whilst Hanabilah claim it to be 13 days7
. All are unanimous that *tuhar* has no upper limit.

In terms of the *haydh*, the Ahnaf state that the minimum days are three. The Shawafi’8
and the Hanabilah hold the minimum to be one day and one night (approx. 24 hours). The Malikiyyah 9
claim that *haydh* for *iddat*10
at the minimum should be a day or even half a day. As for the maximum, the Ahnaf declare it to be ten days whilst the rest state it to be 15 days for the menstruating divorcee (2c).

### Minimum iddat

The Ahnaf have two views on the minimum days of *iddat* for a menstruating woman (2c); the Sahibayn state 39 days and Imam Abu Hanifa 60 days. The first take the minimum *haydh* whilst the latter take the maximum. 39 is attained with the following sequence, 3+15+3+15+3, with the three representing the minimum *haydh* and 15 representing minimum *tuhur* whilst Imam Abu Hanifa forwards the sequence, 10+15+10+15+10, with the 10 representing the maximum *haydh*.

The Hanabila like the Ahnaf count iddah with *haydh* but differ on the minimum. They declare the minimum days of iddah to be 29 days. The suggested sequence is 1+13+1+13+1 with 1 representing minimum *haydh* and 13 the minimum *tuhar*.

The Shawafi count the tuhur to determine the *iddat*; the tuhur in which the divorce was given and the two following *tuhar*. Hence, it is possible for her be divorced and the *haydh* to start moments later. They declare the minimum days of iddah to be 32 days11
. So the sequence will follow 0+1+15+1+15 with the zero and 15 representing *tuhar* and 1 representing *haydh*.

The Malikiyyah follow the same procedure as the Shawafi’ for *iddat* in using *tuhar* albeit they assert that the minimum *haydh* can be half a day. So the sequence will be 0+1/2+15+1/2+15 with zero and 15 representing *tuhar* and zero and ½. Hence, the minimum will be a bit under 32 days for a menstruating divorcee.

### Summary

The (2a) unconsummated woman has no *iddat* whilst the (2b) non-menstruating woman has an *iddat* for three months. The minimum *iddat* for the (2c) menstruating woman is 39 or 60 days according to the Sahibayn and Imam Abu Hanifa respectively. The Hanabila assert the minimum *iddat* to be 29 days, the Shawafi’ 32 days and the Malikiyyah a little under 32 days. These are the cases for a (2) divorced woman. As for the (1) widow, the *iddat* is four months and ten days and for the (3) divorced whose ex-husband dies during the *iddat*, it is whichever is later. The *iddat* of (4) the pregnant divorcee will finish upon giving birth.

Allah knows best.

Muhammad Saifur Rahman Nawhami

15 Muharram 1434

29 November 2012

Nawhami, Muhammad Saifur Rahman. (2012). *Ludhyanwi, Rashid Ahmad - d. 1422*. Islamic Studies Bulletin (DIBAJ), Number 2. Available at http://uloom.com/dibaj/article/121129501

- 1وَالَّذِينَ يُتَوَفَّوْنَ مِنكُمْ وَيَذَرُونَ أَزْوَاجًا يَتَرَبَّصْنَ بِأَنفُسِهِنَّ أَرْبَعَةَ أَشْهُرٍ وَعَشْرًا - سورة بقرة:234
- 2وَأُولَاتُ الْأَحْمَالِ أَجَلُهُنَّ أَن يَضَعْنَ حَمْلَهُنَّ - سورة الطلاق:4
- 3A woman is considered consummated if the husband has
*khawat sahihah*i.e. he had the opportunity without any*tibbi*(medical),*tab'i*(natural) and*shar'i*impediments - 4(وَاللَّائِي يَئِسْنَ مِنَ الْمَحِيضِ مِن نِّسَائِكُمْ إِنِ ارْتَبْتُمْ فَعِدَّتُهُنَّ ثَلَاثَةُ أَشْهُرٍ وَاللَّائِي لَمْ يَحِضْنَ - سورة الطلاق:4
- 5وَالْمُطَلَّقَاتُ يَتَرَبَّصْنَ بِأَنفُسِهِنَّ ثَلَاثَةَ قُرُوءٍ - سورة بقرة:228
- 6Zad al-Mustaqani’ of Sharf al-Din Abu al-Naja’ Musa b. Ahmad al-Maqdisi with al-Rawd al-Murabba’. al-Bahuti (d. 1051). 1424. Dar al-Ghadd al-Jadid; al-Mansurah, Egypt.
- 7Ibid
- 8Umdat al-Salik wa Uddat al-Nalik. 1982. Ahmad b. Naqib al-Misri (d. 769). p. 31
- 9Mukhtasar Khalil. 1426/2005. Sh. Khalil b. Is'haq Maliki (d. 767). Dar al-Hadith; Cairo, Egypt.
- 10It should be noted that the Malikite differ on the minimum and maximum days of Haydh based on whether or a not a woman is in iddat. In terms of Ibadah, the minimum haydh is a moment whilst the maximum is dependant on the woman. If she is not pregnant and has no habit it is fifteen days, however, if she has a habit it three days above her habit. If she is less than six months pregnant it is 20 days or else if over six months it is 30 days.
- 11Umdat al-Salik wa Uddat al-Nalik. 1982. Ahmad b. Naqib al-Misri (d. 769). p. 222

Type: Article

Author: M. Saifur Rahman Nawhami

Collection: Dibaj

ID: 121129501

Updated: 23-October-2024