Top 5 Classical Islamic Books

Top 5 Classical Islamic Books

Classical Islamic books give their readers enlightened knowledge, Muslim scholars of the past have always understood how Islam was meant to be understood i.e. Islam is practical and that there is no need to delve into matters that are of no use or hypothetical situations.

Islam has always been at the forefront of academia, although the teachings of Islam are practical, i.e. whatever you learn from Islam you can implement in your life and improve it.

There have been multitudes of books from classical times that are and always will be relevant today. Authors such as Al-Ghazali, Ibn Kathir, At-Tabari to mention only a few have written books that surpass many modern literature.

Here I’ll list the top five Classical Islamic books that everyone should read. I don’t claim that this is THE top 5, but only what i think is my top five. Let me know what you think by leaving comments.

Tafseer of the Quran by Ibn Kathir

This is by far one of the most used exegesis of the Quran written by the great Ibn Kathir, this classical masterpiece has now been translated into many languages and is accessible to all. The tafseer of the Quran enables the readers into far greater insight of the meanings of the text inside the Quran. Thus making this one of the best classical islamic books to read.

Buy Tafsir Ibn Kathir (10 Volumes; Abridged)

The Forty Hadith by Imam Nawawi

The Great Shafi’i Jurist, Imam Al-Nawawi wrote excellent books which serve simple purposes just like all other great books. The Forty Hadith of Imam Nawawi, was one of the first 40 hadith compilations of essential ahadith for all Muslims. Although it is named forty hadith it actually contains 42 ahadith, it also contains traditions that are simple to understand.

Buy An-Nawawi’s Forty Hadith

Riyadh-us-Saleheen by Imam Nawawi

Another fine example of great classical Islamic Books, Riyadh us Saleheen is a compilation of around 1900 traditions from the collections of Bukhari and Muslim.

The traditions are arranged into different topics and each topic starts with a related verse from the Holy Quran.

Buy Riyad-us-Saliheen (2 Volumes)

Al-Aqidah Al Wasatiyah by Sheikh al Islam Ibn Taymiyyah

The term Aqidah was not used at the time of the Prophet (pbuh) or his companions (ra). It was very simple how they understood Islam and the existence of God.

Buy Sharh Al-Aqeedat-il-Wasatiyah

Perhaps a lot more intense and for the more learned student of knowledge, the commentary of the Al-Aqidah al Wasatiyah seeks to clarify and summorise the creed of the Muslims.

Thanks for reading, please let me know your thoughts by leaving comments.


By |October 15th, 2012|Literature|8 Comments

About the Author:

A Computing teacher by profession Abu teaches children aged 11-18. His background is in Computer Science. Currently writing for Top Islamic blog as the main editor. His passion is to disseminate computing and Islamic concepts to the willing ... Connect on Facebook.


  1. Shah alam 20/10/2012 at 9:11 pm - Reply

    They certainly are excellent books from the past which are relevant even now. I haven’t read all of them but I know of them, thanks for the post.

  2. ladycooks (@ladycooks) 31/12/2012 at 6:12 pm - Reply

    Assalaamu alaikom wa’rahmatullahi wa’barakatohu. There may be links to view these books online…I would be interested to see. Jazak Allahu khayrun for sharing information! Ameen.

    • Abu Zainab 03/01/2013 at 5:49 pm - Reply

      Wa alaikum Salam, thank you for your comment and suggestion I will try and find those links for you. Barak Allah feekum

  3. Darussalam Publishers 10/09/2014 at 10:07 am - Reply

    It is great that you are taking good initiatives to spread the right message of islam. If you to get most authentic books, e-books and Apps on different channels about Islam covering vast topics like Quran, Hadees, Biography of Prophet, Social Values, Economic matters and others. Please visit the website and download your desired Books and Apps:

  4. osdd 16/06/2015 at 6:38 pm - Reply

    there’s only 4…

  5. Ali Mohammed 13/02/2016 at 6:48 pm - Reply

    may ALLAH increase your knowledge

  6. Mustapha. 08/05/2016 at 9:53 pm - Reply

    Look at your actions for you will be judged by the Sunna and not the actions of anyone else. Allah says, “So ascribe not purity to yourselves.” Remember the hadith, “Allah commands the believers with what he commands the Messengers.”

  7. Islamic speeches 22/06/2017 at 7:33 am - Reply

    May Allah reward for sharing such kind of knowledge of Islam, that is also enhancing knowledge of people and their practice for seeking right path of Islam. Allah may bless you for all righteous things you wish.

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