Sahih Bukhari | Volume 5 | Hadith Number 185

Narrated by Ibn 'Abbas
The first event of Qasama in the Pre-Islamic period of ignorance was practiced by us (i.e. Banu Hashim). A man from Banu Hashim was employed by a Quraishi man from another branch-family. The (Hashimi) labourer set out with the Quraishi driving his camels. There passed by him another man from Banu Hashim. The leather rope of the latter's bag had broken so he said to the labourer, "Will you help me by giving me a rope in order to tie the handle of my bag lest the camels should run away from me?" The labourer gave him a rope and the latter tied his bag with it. When the caravan halted, all the camels' legs were tied with their fetters except one camel. The employer asked the labourer, "Why, from among all the camels has this camel not been fettered?" He replied, "There is no fetter for it." The Quraishi asked, "Where is its fetter?" and hit the labourer with a stick that caused his death (later on Just before his death) a man from Yemen passed by him. The labourer asked (him), "Will you go for the pilgrimage?" He replied, "I do not think I will attend it, but perhaps I will attend it." The (Hashimi) labourer said, "Will you please convey a message for me once in your life?" The other man said, "yes." The labourer wrote: 'When you attend the pilgrimage, call the family of Quraish, and if they respond to you, call the family of Banu Hashim, and if they respond to you, ask about Abu Talib and tell him that so-and-so has killed me for a fetter." Then the labourer expired. When the employer reached (Mecca), Abu Talib visited him and asked, "What has happened to our companion?" He said, "He became ill and I looked after him nicely (but he died) and I buried him." Then Abu Talib said, "The deceased deserved this from you." After some time, the messenger whom the labourer has asked to convey the message, reached during the pilgrimage season. He called, "O the family of Quraish!" The people replied, "This is Quraish." Then he called, "O the family of Banu Hashim!" Again the people replied,

This is Banu Hashim." He asked, "Who is Abu Talib?" The people replied, "This is Abu Talib." He said, "'So-and-so has asked me to convey a message to you that so-and-so has killed him for a fetter (of a camel)." Then Abu Talib went to the (Quraishi) killer and said to him, "Choose one of three alternatives: (i) If you wish, give us one-hundred camels because you have murdered our companion, (ii) or if you wish, fifty of your men should take an oath that you have not murdered our companion, and if you do not accept this, (iii) we will kill you in Qisas." The killer went to his people and they said, "We will take an oath." Then a woman from Banu Hashim who was married to one of them (i.e. the Quraishis) and had given birth to a child from him, came to Abu Talib and said, "O Abu Talib! I wish that my son from among the fifty men, should be excused from this oath, and that he should not take the oath where the oath-taking is carried on." Abu Talib excused him. Then another man from them came (to Abu Talib) and said, "O Abu Talib! You want fifty persons to take an oath instead of giving a hundred camels, and that means each man has to give two camels (in case he does not take an oath). So there are two camels I would like you to accept from me and excuse me from taking an oath where the oaths are taken. Abu Talib accepted them from him. Then 48 men came and took the oath. Ibn 'Abbas further said:) By Him in Whose Hand my life is, before the end of that year, none of those 48 persons remained alive.