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Who Was Shaddad: Arab King Who Made Heaven on Earth

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Shaddād (Arabic شدّاد), also known as Shaddād bin ‘Ad, was believed to be the king of the lost Arabian city of Iram of the Pillars, an account of which is mentioned in Sura 89 of the Qur’an. Various sources suggest Shaddad was the son of Ad/Aad (عاد), the son of Shem (سام), the son of Noah (نوح).

His story is found in the 277th through 279th nights of the Tales of the Arabian Nights (The Book of One Thousand and One Nights).

Brothers Shaddīd (شديد) and Shaddād are said to have reigned in turn over the 1,000 Adite tribes, each consisting of several thousand men. It is said Shaddad brutally subdued all Arabia and Iraq. Many Arab writers tell of an expedition of Shaddād that caused the Canaanite migration, their settling in Syria, and the Shepherd invasion of Egypt.

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According to the Quran, Iram of the Pillars was a city of occult worshippers of stone idols, who defied the warnings of the prophet Hud. To punish them, God sent a drought. But the people would not repent, so they were destroyed by a furious wind, from which only Hud and a few believers emerged.

It is mentioned in the books of Tafseer (Quran interpretation) and history that Shaddaad ibn ʻAad was the one who built the city of Iram.

Al-Baydhaawi may Allah have mercy upon him wrote:

“It is said that King ʻAad had two sons, Shadeed and Shaddaad. After the death of ʻAad, they succeeded him and gained such power that the east and the west yielded to them. Shadeed died first, and Shaddaad became the foremost ruler of the world. He heard the description of Paradise, the inlaid rubies and pearls and other bounties; so he constructed a paradise in the desert of ʻAden to resemble the Paradise of Allaah and called it Iram. When the construction process ended, he set out towards it with his people. When he was only at a distance of a day and night from it, Allaah sent a Sayhah (scream or violent sound) from the heavens that destroyed them all, and neither Shaddaad nor any of his company set eyes on the city.”

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You see that this story is just a tale that is told, and its authenticity cannot be verified. Do not concern yourself with it since knowing about it is of no benefit and having no knowledge of it is of no harm.
Allah knows best.

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