Nick Names of Imam Ali Ibn Husain (a.s.)


As for the nick names of Imam Sajjad (peace be on him), they show his good inclinations, his excellent qualities, his noble morals, his obedience and worship to Allah. The following are some of them:

Zainul Aabedin

His grandfather Allah’s Apostle (May Allah bless him and his holy progeny) gave him this nick name, namely Zainul Aabedin or the Ornament of the worshippers, as we have already mentioned. The Imām (peace be on him) was given this nick name because of he worshipped Allah abundantly.1 He is known and famous for this nick name, which has become his name. No one before or after him has been given this nick name. Indeed he is the ornament of the worshippers and pride of those who obey Allah, the Glorified.


Sayyed al-Aabedin

Among his prominent nick names is Sayyed al- Aabedin or the Lord of the worshippers, for he yield to Allah and obeyed Him, and no one worshipped Allah as he did except his grandfather, the Commander of the faithful (peace be on him).

1 Tahzeeb al-Tahzeeb, vol. 7, p. 306; Shazarāt al-Zahab, vol. 1, p. 104

Zus Safanaat

He was given the nick name of Zus Safanaat or the one with calluses because something like the calluses of the camel appeared on the parts on which he prostrated.2 Imām Abū Ja‘far al-Bāqir (peace be on him) said:

“My father had prominent marks on the places on which he prostrated, and he cut them twice a year: (He) cut five calluses every time, so he was called Zus Safanaat (the one with calluses).”3

In another narration it is said that he collected his calluses in a bag and asked his children to bury them with him.


Among his holy nick names for which he is famous is al-Sajjaad4 or the one who constantly prostrated himself in prayer. He prostrated himself in prayer to Allah and obeyed him more than the people did. Imām Abū Ja‘far al-Bāqir (peace be on him) talked about the constant prostration of his father, saying:

“When Ali ibn al-Husain mentioned Allah’s

  • Subh al-A’shā, 1, p. 452; Bahr al-Ansāb, p. 25; Tohfat al-Rāghib, p. 13
  • Elal al-Sharaae, 88; Behaar al-Anwaar, vol. 46, p. 6; Wasaael al-Shiah, vol. 4, p. 977
  • Elal al-Sharaae, 88

O soul that art at rest! Return to your Lord, well-pleased (with him), well-pleasing (Him), So enter among My servants, And enter into My garden.

favors toward him, he prostrated himself in prayer. (When he) read a verse with prostration of the Book of Allah, the Great and Almighty, he prostrated himself in prayer. When Allah drove away from him a misfortune which he was afraid of, he prostrated himself in prayer. (When he) finished his obligatory prayers, he prostrated himself in prayer. The marks of prostration were prominent on the parts on which he prostrated, so he was called al- Sajjād.”1

Ibn Hammād composed a poem about the constant prostration and worship of the Imām. The following are some lines of the poem:

The monk of ahl al-Bayt was and is still given the nick name of al-Sajjād because of his worship. He spent his days fasting, to turn to Allah in repentance, and he passed his night with night prayer. Therefore, who is strong enough to perform his knowledge and his faithfulness, and who is strong enough to perform his piety and worship?2


He was given the nick name of al-Zaki or the pure one because Allah purified him, as He took away uncleanness from his grandfathers and purified them completely.


Among his holy nick names for which he is famous is al-Ameen or the trusted one.3 He was ideal for this noble quality, so he (peace be on him) said: “If the killer of my father deposited with me the sword with which he killed him, I would give it to him.”

  • Wasaael al-Shiah, 4, p. 977; Elal al-Sharaae, p. 88
  • Al-Manaaqib
  • Ibn al-Sabbāgh, Al-Fusool al-Mohimma, 187; Bahr al- Ansaab, p. 52; Noor al-Absaar, p. 137

Ibn al-Kheyaratayn

Another of his holy nick names for which he is famous is Ibn al-Kheyaratayn or the son of the best two. He was proud of this nick name and said: “I am the son of the best two.” He referred to the words of his grandfather, Allah’s Apostle (may Allah bless him and his family) who said:

“Allah, the Glorified, has the best two from among His servants, so His best one from among the Arabs is Hāshim and from among non-Arabs is the Persians.”4

Al-Shabbrāwi ascribed to him these lines in which he has shown his pride of this nick name: The choice of Allah among men is my father after my grandfather, and I am the son of the best two. Silver was formed from gold, therefore I am the silver, the son of the two golden ones. Who has a grandfather like my grandfather or (father) like my father from mankind? I am the son of the two moons. Fātima the chaste is my mother, and my father is the one who destroyed the unbelievers at Badr and Hunayn, and who took part at the battle of Uhud, which quenched the thirst of one of the two armies.5

I (the author) firmly believe that these lines do not belong to Imām Zainun Aabedin (peace be upon him), rather they belong to his father, for they are clear in showing this.

These are some of his nick names, other nick names have been mentioned for him.6 They show his excellent qualities and his great inclinations.

  • Al-Mubarrad, al-Kaamil, 1, p. 222; Ibn Khallakaan, Wafayaat al-Aayaan, vol. 2, p. 429
  • Al-Ithaaf be Hubb al-Ashraaf, 49
  • Naasekh al-Tawaarikh