The Death of Abu Jahl
‘abdur-rahman bin ‘awf related the following interesting story in this regard: i was in the thick of the battle when two youths, still seemingly inexperienced in the art of fighting, one on the right and the second on the left. one of them spoke in a secret voice asking me to show him abu jahl. i asked about his intention, to which he replied, that he had a strong desire to engage with him in a combat until either of them was killed. it was something incredible to me. i turned left and the other said something to the same effect and showed a similar desire. i acceded to their earnest pleas and pointed directly at their target. they both rushed swiftly towards the spot, and without a moment’s hesitation struck him simultaneously with their swords and finished him off. they went back to the messenger of allâh [pbuh], each claiming that he had killed abu jahl to the exclusion of the other. the prophet [pbuh] asked if they had wiped the blood off their swords and they answered that they had not. he then examined both swords and assured them that they both had killed him. when the battle concluded, abu jahl’s spoils were given to mu‘adh bin ‘amr bin al-jumuh, because the other mu‘awwadh bin al-‘afrâ’[sahih al-bukhari 1/444,2/568; mishkat 2/352] was later killed in the course of the same battle. at the termination of the battle, the prophet [pbuh] wanted to look for this archenemy of islam, abu jahl. ‘abdullah bin mas‘ud found him on the verge of death breathing his last. he stepped on his neck addressing him: "have you seen how allâh has disgraced you?" the enemy of islam still defiantly answered: "i am not disgraced. i am no more than a man killed by his own people on the battlefield." and then inquired "who has won the battle?" ibn mas‘ud replied "allâh and his messenger." abu jahl then said with a heart full of grudge "you have followed difficult ways, you shepherd!" ibn mas‘ud used to be a shepherd working for the makkan aristocrats.
ibn mas‘ud then cut off his head and took it to the messenger of allâh [pbuh] who, on seeing it, began to entertain allâh’s praise:
"allâh is great, praise is to allâh, who has fulfilled his promise, assisted his servant and defeated the confederates alone."
he then set out to have a look at the corpse. there he said:
"this is the pharaoh of this nation."