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What mahr did the prophet give when he used to marry?

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Islamic researcher, graduated from Al-Azhar University, Islamic Studies in the English language. I also studied at Temple University in the US.
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In a Nutshell:
The Prophet (saw) used to pay 500 dirhams, which equals 1,487.5 gm of silver (at $0.50/g this is around $744).


Juristic Analysis

The Prophet (saw) used to give about 500 dirhams.

Abu Salamah ibn Abd ar-Rahman narrated:

سَأَلْتُ عَائِشَةَ زَوْجَ النَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم كَمْ كَانَ صَدَاقُ رَسُولِ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَتْ كَانَ صَدَاقُهُ لأَزْوَاجِهِ ثِنْتَىْ عَشْرَةَ أُوقِيَّةً وَنَشًّا ‏.‏ قَالَتْ أَتَدْرِي مَا النَّشُّ قَالَ قُلْتُ لاَ ‏.‏ قَالَتْ نِصْفُ أُوقِيَّةٍ ‏.‏ فَتِلْكَ خَمْسُمِائَةِ دِرْهَمٍ فَهَذَا صَدَاقُ رَسُولِ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم لأَزْوَاجِهِ‏.‏
"I asked A'isha, the wife of Allah's Messenger (saw): What is the amount of dowry of Allah's Messenger (saw)?
She said: It was twelve uqiyas and one nash.
She said: Do you know what is al-nash? I said: No.

She said: It is half of uqiya, and it amounts to five hundred dirhams, and that was the dowry given by Allah's Messenger (saw) to his wives." (Sahih Muslim 1426)

Classical scholars continue this tradition and dislike asking the groom to give more than what the Prophet (saw) used to give.

It was narrated Umar ibn al-Khattab (ra) said:

لاَ تُغَالُوا صَدَاقَ النِّسَاءِ فَإِنَّهَا لَوْ كَانَتْ مَكْرُمَةً فِي الدُّنْيَا أَوْ تَقْوًى عِنْدَ اللَّهِ كَانَ أَوْلاَكُمْ وَأَحَقَّكُمْ بِهَا مُحَمَّدٌ ـ صلى الله عليه وسلم ـ مَا أَصْدَقَ امْرَأَةً مِنْ نِسَائِهِ وَلاَ أُصْدِقَتِ امْرَأَةٌ مِنْ بَنَاتِهِ أَكْثَرَ مِنِ اثْنَتَىْ عَشْرَةَ أُوقِيَّةً وَإِنَّ الرَّجُلَ لَيُثَقِّلُ صَدَقَةَ امْرَأَتِهِ حَتَّى يَكُونَ لَهَا عَدَاوَةٌ فِي نَفْسِهِ وَيَقُولُ قَدْ كَلِفْتُ إِلَيْكِ عَلَقَ الْقِرْبَةِ أَوْ عَرَقَ الْقِرْبَةِ

"Do not go to extremes with regard to the dowries of women, for if that were a sign of honour and dignity in this world or a sign of taqwa before Allah, then Muhammad (saw) would have done that before you.
But he did not give any of his wives and none of his daughters was given more than twelve uqiyas.
A man may increase dowry until he feels resentment against her and says: "You cost me everything I own," or, "You caused me a great deal of hardship." (Ibn Majah 1886)

The second-century jurist, Imam Shafi'i, the founder of the Shafi'i madhab, said:

ٍوالقَصْدُ فِي الصَدَاقِ أَحَبُ إِلَيْنَا وَأَسْتَحِبُ أَنْ لَا يُزَادُ فِي المَهْرِ عَلَى مَا أَصْدَقَ رَسُولُ اللهِ ﷺ نِسَاءَهُ وَبَنَاتَه وَذَلِكَ خُمْسَمائَةَ دِرْهَم
"The modesty in dowry is preferred according to us. It is recommended the dowry should not exceed what the Prophet (saw) gave to his wives and (was given) to his daughters which is 500 dirhams." (Shafi'i, al-'Umm, Vol. 5, p. 63)

The dirham weighs about 2.975g - for 500 dirhams that make 1,487.5g of silver. That amounts to around $714.

Conclusion

The Prophet (saw) used to pay 500 dirhams, which is around 1,487.5 gm of silver.


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