The only wives of the Holy Prophet PBUH who bore his children were Hazrat Khadija and Maria Qibtia. He had two sons and four daughters from his first wife Hazrat Khadija.
The eldest son of the Holy Prophet PBUH was Qasim who was born in Makkah, eleven years before the conferment of Prophethood. The Prophet PBUH loved him very much and liked to be called Abul Qasim. He lived for two years. The second son was named Tahir also known as Abdullah. He was born in Makkah after the conferment of Prophethood. He lived for less than two years. After the death of his second son, the pagans taunted the Holy Prophet PBUH and said that he was ‘abtar’ i.e., one without a male issue to carry on his name. At this Allah revealed Surah Kausar to console the Prophet PBUH that not he, but his enemies were abtar.
The Holy Prophet’s PBUH third son, Ibrahim, was born in Madinah in the 8th year of Hijrat to Maria Qibtia. The child was given to foster parents who lived in the neighbourhood of Madinah. The Prophet PBUH often visited their house to see his son. Ibrahim died while still an infant. According to Anas, when Ibrahim was dying, tears began to fall from Allah’s Messenger eyes, he said,
“The eyes weep and the heart grieves, but we say only what our Lord is pleased with and we are grieved over being separated from you, Ibrahim.” (Bukhari, Muslim)
It so happened that there was a solar eclipse on the day on which Ibrahim died and some people thought that it was due to the death of Ibrahim. On hearing this, the Prophet PBUH addressed the people and said that the eclipses of the sun and the moon do not occur due to the deaths or births of human beings.
The daughters of the Holy Prophet PBUH were all born in Makkah. His eldest daughter and second child after Qasim was Zainab. She was married to her mother’s nephew Abul Aas. She embraced Islam, but was left in Makkah when the Holy Prophet PBUH migrated to Madinah. Her husband was not a Muslim and fought against the Muslims in the Battle of Badr, He was brought as a captive before the Holy Prophet PBUH For his ransom, Zainab sent a necklace that had been given to her by her mother. The Prophet PBUH returned the necklace and released Abul Aas on the condition that he would send Zainab to Madinah, which he did. About three years later, he came to Madinah and embraced Islam. Zainab died in 8 A.H. as a result of a wound inflicted upon her, by an enemy of Islam, while she was migrating to Madinah. The Prophet PBUH performed her funeral prayer.
She had two children, a son named Ali and a daughter Umama, who in later years, became the second wife of Hazrat Ali, after the death of Hazrat Fatima.
The Prophet’s PBUH second daughter Ruqayya was born three years after the birth of Zainab. She was married to Utba, son of Abu Lahab. When the Prophet PBUH declared his mission, Abu Lahab became his enemy and asked his Son to divorce Ruqayya, which he did.
Ruqayya was then married to Hazrat Usman. Both of them migrated to Abyssinia where she gave birth to a son, Abdullah, who died when he was six years old. They came back to Makkah in the tenth year of Prophethood. A few years later, she migrated to Madinah with her husband. She fell ill and died in 2 A.H. at the time of Battle of Badr.
Umm-e-Kulsum was the third daughter of the Holy Prophet PBUH, She was first married to Utaiba son oft Abu Lahab. When the Holy Prophet PBUH declared his mission, Abu Lahab became his enemy and asked his son to divorce Umm-e-Kulsum, which he did.
She migrated to Madinah with her stepmother Hazrat Sawdah. After the death of her sister Ruqayya, she was married to Hazrat Usman. She died in 9 A.H. while her father and husband were away on the Tabuk Expedition. She did not leave behind any children.
The Holy Prophet’s PBUH youngest daughter was Fatima, who was born five years before Prophethood. She migrated to Madinah with her stepmother Hazrat Sawdah. In 2 A.H., she was married to the Prophet’s PBUH cousin, Hazrat Ali who did not marry another woman during her lifetime. Like other Muhajirin, they too, faced extreme poverty.
She had three sons, Hasan, who was born in 3 A.H. Hussain born in 4 A.H. and Mohsin, who died in childhood, and two daughters, Umm-e-Kulsum and Zainab.
During the last days of his illness Hazrat Fatima visited the Holy Prophet PBUH. He whispered something into her ear that made her cry. He again whispered
something to her after which she smiled. Later, when someone asked her the reason of her weeping and smiling. she said that she had wept because the Prophet PBUH told her about his impending death, but when he told her that she would be the first one from his family to join him in Paradise, she Smiled. (Tirmizi)
She died in 11 A.H. just six months after her father’s death, Hazrat Fatima is also known as ‘Zahra’ or the shining one. The Holy Prophet PBUH had special affection for Hazrat Fatima. He always stood up when she came to him. Whenever, he went on a journey, he parted form her last of all, and when he returned, he would visit her first.
It is reported that the Holy Prophet PBUH said: “Fatima is a part of me; whoever hurts her, hurts me and whoever holds malice against her, holds malice against me.” (Agreed upon)
Once, when the Holy Prophet PBUH was sitting with Hazrat Ali and Hazrat Fatima, Hazrat Ali asked him: “O Allah’s Messenger! Is Fatima dearer to you than I or am I dearer to you than her? The Prophet PBUH replied: “She is dearer to me than you and you are dearer to me than her”. (Allama Shibli Naumani: Seerat-un-Nabi, Vol l1)
Once a person went to Hazrat Aisha and asked her:
“Who among the people is dearest to the Messenger of Allah?”
She replied: “Fatima.” and when he asked: “Who among men?”
She said: “Her husband” (Tirmizi)
Hazrat Fatima would often be near her father during his stressful moments. When the people of Makkah threw dirt at him, she would wash his head. She washed his clothes when his uncle Abu Lahab threw sheep’s entrails on him while he was praying in the Ka’abah. After the battle of Uhad she tended to his Wounds.
Some sects among the Muslims specially Shias hold her in very high respect. They regard her as the model of womanhood and believe that after judgement, she will secure entry into Paradise for her supporters. Her status as the mother of Imam Hassan and Hussain and through them as the ancestor of the line of Imams is very high.
Hasan and Hussain
The grandsons of the Holy Prophet PBUH, Hazrat Hassan and Hussain were born to his daughter, Hazrat Fatima. The Holy Prophet PBUH” loved his grandsons very much and often used to play with them. There are reports of the Prophet PBUH allowing Hassan and Hussain to climb on his back while he was prostrating in prayer and interrupting his sermon to come down from the pulpit to pick them up as they tripped over their long shirts.
Anas said that when Allah’s messenger was asked which member of his family was dearest to him, he replied: “Hassan and Hussain.” (Tirmizi)
He used to say to Hazrat Fatima, “Call my two sons to me”, and then he would cuddle them. (Tirmizi)