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 AlKafi 806



Assalamualaikum wrm.wbt.,

A friend of mine told me that an illegitimate child is an ajnabi woman to her father. Thus, it is permissible for them to get married. My question; isn’t the awrah of an adopted daughter who has been nursed by a woman, fulfilling its conditions, the husband of the wife is also considered as the child’s mahram or milk-father of the child? Thus, in the case of an illegitimate child, where the biological mother married the biological father and has nursed the child, then the biological father as well as the child’s siblings from the marriage are all considered as the child’s mahram. Is my understanding correct?


Waalaikumussalam wrm. wbt.

Alhamdulillah, praise and thanks to Allah for the countless blessings He has blessed us all with. Blessings and salutations to the Prophet Muhammad PBUH, his wives, his family, companions and all those that follow his teachings to the day of judgement.

We have discussed the issue of naming an illegitimate child after the man who is the cause of the child’s birth or the child’s biological father in Bayan Linnas Series 106: The Issue of Naming “bin/binti Abdullah” for an Illegitimate child by the Court of Appeals. According to madhhab al-Syafie, an illegitimate child is not considered as the child of her biological father and thus it is permissible for her to marry her biological father although this is makruh (undesirable). Other madhhab such as madhhab Abu Hanifah ruled the marriage between an illegitimate child with her biological father although they are not considered as father and daughter. Refer al-Mu`amad fi al-Fiqh al-Syafie (4/29) by Syeikh Muhammad al-Zuhaili; al-Majmu` Syarh al-Muhadzdzab (16/222).

It should be known that the permissibility of marriage with the biological father happens due to the invalidity of the child’s status as the lineage of the biological father. However, if there are other prohibition for the marriage whether through nursing or musaharah (marriage), then there are exceptions as the following:

  • If an illegitimate child is nursed by a woman while the woman has a husband, then the child will be the milk-child of the man on the factor of Labn al-Fahl (Male milk). Refer al-Mu`tamad(4/34). According to Syafi’yyah scholars, the milk of a woman which is a result of pregnancy from a valid marriage to a guy, then her milk will prohibit the baby girl that she nursed from marrying her husband. However, if the milk is a result of another marriage or fornication, then it does not prohibit it. Refer al-Majmu`(18/222).
  • If a woman has a milk child then the woman decided to marry a man, then the man will also become the mahram to the child after he had intercourse with the woman after marrying her. This is named as prohibition through musaharah and nursing. The daughter is known as al-Rabibah bil al-Rada’. Refer al-Mu`tamad(4/35).
  • Furthermore, if an illegitimate child of which the mother is connected through lineage with the child through wiladah (birth), then she marries a man, then the man is the step father of the child after he had intercourse with the mother in a valid marriage. This is named as prohibition through musaharah (marriage). Refer al-Mu`tamad (4/32).

Thus, the original ruling for an illegitimate child with her biological father is an ajnabi. However, on the factor of nursing and marriage, it can prohibit marriage between them. While for sons born from the marriage, they are also mahram with the illegitimate child due to nasab (siblings from the same mother). Hopefully, this explanation will benefit us all.