Sumayyah bint Khayyat (RA) an African woman (by most accounts Ethiopian) was the first martyr in Islam. She was the seventh person to embrace Islam and is one of the foremost greatest women companions. Sumayyah (RA), along with her husband Yasir ibn Amir (RA) and son Ammar were amongst the earliest converts.
Although her husband, Yasir (RA) was martyred before her eyes, Quraysh pagans failed to convert Sumayyah (RA). After torturing her for a long period of time, Abu Jahl stabbed her with his spear, causing her to attain martyrdom.
Sumayyah bint Khayyat (RA) is remembered for her strength, courage, and faith in a period when the Muslims were heavily persecuted.
LEARN MORE | In recognition of international women’s month we invite you to learn more about Sumayyah bint Khayyat (RA). “The Firsts” featuring Ustadah Zainab is video series produced by Muslimah Media Watch about brilliant women in Islam who have paved the way.
About Muslimah Media Watch
Muslimah Media Watch is a forum where we, as Muslim women, can critique how our images appear in the media and popular culture. Although we are of different nationalities, sects, races, etc., we have something important in common: we’re tired of seeing ourselves portrayed by the media in ways that are one-dimensional and misleading.
landing page photo credit: Tsering Topgyal