Ordering the Ranks for Battle
the muslim force reached uhud toward the morning. they crossed the valleys and ascended over dunes. muhammad ordered his companions in rows and placed fifty archers on the side of the mountain. fearing that the enemy might surprise the muslims from the rear, he ordered the archers to protect that side under all circumstances. specifically, he commanded them never to leave their place regardless of whether the muslims plunged into the enemy camp and won, or fell in their places at the hand of the enemy. should the enemy cavalry charge, it was the duty of the archers to repel that charge with arrows. he commanded everyone not to begin the fight except on his command, but he ordered the archers to attack the enemy on sight and before he reached muslim ranks.
quraysh, too, ordered its forces in rows, placing khalid ibn al walid on the right and `ikrimah ibn abu jahl on the left. they gave the command to `abd al uzza talhah ibn abu talhah. the women were running back and forth between the lines of the fighters striking their drums and tamburines and, led by hind, daughter of `utbah and wife of abu sufyan, sang: