Ascent to Success: Commentary on the Light of Clarity


Maraqi al-Falah Sharh Nur al-Idah (Ascent to success: Commentary on the light of clarity) is a handbook for worship according to the Hanafi legal tradition by Egyptian legal scholar Hasan al-Shurunbulali (1585 or 1586-1659). The work, frequently reprinted, is a comprehensive guide to the rituals prescribed by Abu Hanifa (699−767), the founder of the Hanafi school of Islamic law. Topics such as ritual purity, fasting, and pilgrimage are covered in great detail. Hanafi jurisprudence is the predominant tradition in Central and South Asia, Turkey, and many other regions. Al-Shurunbulali was born in the Nile delta and educated at al-Azhar in Cairo, where he eventually became a prominent teacher.  In this work, Al-Shurunbulali comments on his earlier writing on the same subject entitled Nur al-Izah (Light of clarification). Texts on law and ritual are often accompanied by marginal commentaries, and Maraqi al-Falah is no exception. In this case the commentary is provided by Ahmad ibn Muhammad al-Tahtawi, an early-19th century Hanafi scholar. Al-Tahtawi was born in the Upper Egyptian town of Tahta and educated at al-Azhar. His commentary here is on the same subject as the two other works in this volume. He seems to have had a falling out with certain Hanafi teachers but was eventually restored to their good graces. Historian al-Jabarti mentions that Al-Tahtawi’s father was a Turk, which may account for his inclination towards Hanafi law. The book was printed in Cairo at al-Khayriyah Press established by Muhammad ‘Abd al-Wahid al-Tubi and ‘Umar Husayn al-Khashshab in Khosh ‘Ati Lane in the vicinity of al-Azhar mosque.

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Subject Date

Publication Information

Al-Khayriyah Press, Cairo


Title in Original Language

مراقي الفلاح شرح نور الايضاح

Type of Item

Physical Description

167 pages ; 27 centimeters


  1. Yusuf Ilyan Sarkis, Mu’jam al-Matbu’at al-‘Arabiyah wa-al-Mu’arrabah (Dictionary of Arabic Imprints). (Cairo: Sarkis, 1928).

Last updated: September 18, 2014