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Omar

The meaning of «omar»

Omar (English: /ˈoʊmɑːr/; c. 583/584 CE – 3 November 644 CE), also spelled Umar (English: /ˈuːmɑːr/; Arabic: عمر بن الخطاب‎; ʿUmar ibn al-Khaṭṭāb, pronounced [ˈʕomɑr-,ˈʕʊmɑr ɪbn alxɑtˤˈtˤɑːb], "Umar, Son of Al-Khattab"), was the second Rashidun caliph. He was one of the most powerful and influential Muslim caliphs in history.[7] He was a senior companion and father-in-law of the Islamic prophet Muhammad. He succeeded Abu Bakr (632–634) as the second caliph of the Rashidun Caliphate on 23 August 634. He was an expert Muslim jurist known for his pious and just nature, which earned him the epithet Al-Farooq ("the one who distinguishes (between right and wrong)"). He is sometimes referred to as Omar I by historians of early Islam, since a later Umayyad caliph, Umar II, also bore that name.

Under Omar, the caliphate expanded at an unprecedented rate, ruling the Sasanian Empire and more than two-thirds of the Byzantine Empire.[8] His attacks against the Sasanian Empire resulted in the conquest of Persia in less than two years (642–644). According to Jewish tradition, Omar set aside the Christian ban on Jews and allowed them into Jerusalem and to worship.[9] Omar was assassinated by the Persian slave Abu Lu'lu'a (also known as Piruz Nahavandi) in 644 CE.

Omar is revered in the Sunni tradition as a great ruler and paragon of Islamic virtues,[10] and some hadiths identify him as the second greatest of the Sahabah after Abu Bakr.[11][12] He is viewed negatively in the Shia tradition.[13]

Omar was born in Mecca to the Banu Adi clan, which was responsible for arbitration among the tribes.[14] His father was Khattab ibn Nufayl and his mother was Hantama bint Hisham, from the tribe of Banu Makhzum. In his youth he used to tend to his father's camels in the plains near Mecca. His merchant father was famed for his intelligence among his tribe.[15] Omar himself said: "My father, Al-Khattab was a ruthless man. He used to make me work hard; if I didn't work he used to beat me and he used to work me to exhaustion."[16]

Despite literacy being uncommon in pre-Islamic Arabia, Omar learned to read and write in his youth. Though not a poet himself, he developed a love for poetry and literature.[17] According to the tradition of Quraish, while still in his teenage years, Omar learned martial arts, horse riding and wrestling. He was tall, physically powerful and a renowned wrestler.[17][18] He was also a gifted orator who succeeded his father as an arbitrator among the tribes.[19]

Omar became a merchant and made several journeys to Rome and Persia, where he is said to have met various scholars and analyzed Roman and Persian societies. As a merchant he was unsuccessful.[17][20] Like others around him, Omar was fond of drinking in his pre-Islamic days.[21]

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