(Ummu Kulthoom, the daughter of Faatimah [radhiyallahu ‘anhuma] – Part Three)

Ummu Kulthoom (radhiyallahu ‘anha) once sent perfume, drinking utensils and small vanity cases with a messenger to the Queen of Rome (without the knowledge of ‘Umar [radhiyallahu ‘anhu]). On receiving the gifts, the Queen gathered the women of her court and announced, “These gifts are from the Queen of the Arabs who is the daughter of their Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam).” She then replied to the gesture by sending gifts of her own – among which was a stunning necklace – to Ummu Kulthoom (radhiyallahu ‘anha).

When the messenger arrived in the presence of ‘Umar (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) bearing the gifts sent by the Roman Queen, ‘Umar (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) came to know of what had transpired and thus immediately called up a council meeting announcing, “Verily there will be no good in any of my matters if they are decided without consultation (mashurah). Ummu Kulthoom (radhiyallahu ‘anha) sent gifts to the Roman Queen due to which the Roman Queen, in return, sent her gifts. Advise me as to what should be done.” When they heard of the situation, they all expressed the opinion that the gifts sent by the Roman Queen rightfully belonged to Ummu Kulthoom (radhiyallahu ‘anha).

‘Umar (radhiyallahu ‘anhu), however, was not satisfied. He objected and said, “What about the messenger she used? He is employed and paid by the Muslims (and she used the messenger for her personal errand).” ‘Umar (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) therefore had all the gifts deposited into the public treasury and only gave Ummu Kulthoom (radhiyallahu ‘anha) the amount of wealth that she had given the Roman Queen.

(Tareekh Tabari vol. 5, pg. 259)


1. ‘Umar (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) was very cautious regarding the wealth and other assets that belonged to the Muslims and would avoid using them for his personal needs. Similarly, we should be mindful of using things that do not belong to us without the permission of the owner. We should also be careful to avoid abusing and misusing things that are meant for public usage.

2. If the husband corrects his wife, she should accept the rectification instead of becoming upset. She should understand that he wants her to improve and is only correcting her because he wants the best for her.