Jami at-Tirmidhi is a collection of hadith compiled by Imam Abu Isa Muhammad at-Tirmidhi. His collection is unanimously considered to be one of the six canonical collections of hadith (Kutub as-Sittah) of the Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad (صلى الله عليه و سلم).
Jami’ at-Tirmidhi , Al-Jaami' al-Kabeer.
He is Abu Isa Muhammad ibn Isa ibn Sawrah ibn Musa ibn al Dahhak al-Sulami at-Tirmidhi (209-279 AH/824–892 AD). Imam at-Tirmidhi was born in the year 209 A.H. during the reign of the Abbasid Khalifa Ma'mun al-Rashid. The Abbasid Caliphate, despite its brilliant contributions to Islam, brought along with it many problems. Greek philosophy had a free flow into the Islamic world. This was fully sanctioned by the government until eventually it declared the Mutazila school of thought as the state religion. Anyone who opposed the Mutazila school of thought would be opposing the state. With the influence of Greek philosophy among the people, many Muslims began attempting to reconcile between (this brand of) reason and revelation. As a result many deviations were introduced and many innocent and weak Muslims were led away from Allah (Glory be to Him) and His Prophet (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace). Many scholars of Islam had come to the fore in order to defend the Shariah. Forgeries and interpolations in Hadith by rulers who wished to fulfill their personal motives were common. In the first century Umar bin Abdul Aziz (May Allah have mercy on Him) initiated a movement for the compilation of the hadith of the Prophet (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) as there was a fear of them being lost. A number of scholars of Islam undertook this task, six among them stand taller than the rest. One of the six was Imam Abu Isa Muhammed ibn Isa at-Tirmidhi.
It contains roughly 4400 hadith (with repetitions) in 46 books.
According to the commentators of Al-Jami, Imam Tirmidhi maintained the following conditions throughout the compilation of his book:
1. He never narrated hadith from those who fabricated hadith.
2. Tahir Muqaddisi mentions that al-Jami` ut-Tirmidhi contains four types of hadith
[a] Those ahadith that conform with the conditions of al-Bukhari and Muslim.
[b] Those ahadith that conform with the conditions of Abu Dawud and Nasa'i.
[c] Those ahadith that have certain discrepancies either in the sanad or matan.
[d] Those weak hadith that some fuqaha have relied on.
3. Imam Tirmidhi accepts a hadith which is narrated with the word `Ann provided both the narrators are contemporaries.
4. After mentioning a weak hadith, he explains the state of its weakness.
5. A mursal hadith is accepted by Imam Tirmidhi when a chain of narrators which is not broken supports it.
The status of Jami at-Tirmidhi is among the six authentic books of hadith. It has been categorized as fifth amongst the six most authentic books of hadith. According to the most preferred opinion, Sahih Al Bukhari enjoys the highest status, followed by Sahih Al Muslim, Abu Dawud, Nasai, Tirmidhi and Ibn Majah respectively. Haji Khalifa in al-Kashf al-Dhunoon has categorized Tirmidhi in third position. Al-Dhahabi has written that Tirmidhi in actual fact should be holding the third position, but due to him bringing weak narrators like Kalbi and Masloob its status has dropped. However, looking at the manner in which he set out his book it seems that Haji Khalifa's opinion is best.