The ruling concerning the engagement with an unveiled woman | The official website of Sheikh Muhammad Ali FERKUS
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Monday 11 Dhu Al-Hijjah 1445 H - June 17, 2024 G

Fatwa n° 513

Category: Fatwas about Family - Marriage Contract - Engagement

The ruling concerning the engagement
with an unveiled woman


Is it permissible for me to engage with a woman who performs the prayers but she is unveiled. I plan to make her wear the veil (Jilbâb) after the marriage? What would you advise me? May Allah bless you.



All praise is due to Allah, the Lord of the Worlds. Peace and blessing be upon whom Allah sent as a mercy to the Worlds, upon his Family, his Companions and his Brothers until the Day of Resurrection:


Performing prayer must be a reason leading the person to be straightforward and honest. The Prophet صلّى الله عليه وسلّم said: “The first thing the human will be asked about in the Day of Resurrection is his prayer; if it was well performed then all his work is well but if it was performed in a bad way then all his work is bad(1).

Anyone whose prayer does not prevent him from obscenity and evil; his deeds are incomplete. Being unveiled is one of obscenity’s facets, and Allah سبحانه وتعالى ordered people not to display their ‘Awra (2) when He عزّ وجلّ said:

﴿ يَٰبَنِيٓ ءَادَمَ خُذُواْ زِينَتَكُمۡ عِندَ كُلِّ مَسۡجِدٖ ﴾ [الأعراف: 31].

The meaning of the verse:

Ô Children of Adam! Take your adornment while praying  ﴿[Al-A‘râf: 31].

He  سبحانه وتعالىalso said:

﴿ يَٰبَنِيٓ ءَادَمَ قَدۡ أَنزَلۡنَا عَلَيۡكُمۡ لِبَاسٗا يُوَٰرِي سَوۡءَٰتِكُمۡ وَرِيشٗاۖ وَلِبَاسُ ٱلتَّقۡوَىٰ ذَٰلِكَ خَيۡرٞۚ ذَٰلِكَ مِنۡ ءَايَٰتِ ٱللَّهِ لَعَلَّهُمۡ يَذَّكَّرُونَ ٢٦ يَٰبَنِيٓ ءَادَمَ لَا يَفۡتِنَنَّكُمُ ٱلشَّيۡطَٰنُ كَمَآ أَخۡرَجَ أَبَوَيۡكُم مِّنَ ٱلۡجَنَّةِ يَنزِعُ عَنۡهُمَا لِبَاسَهُمَا لِيُرِيَهُمَا سَوۡءَٰتِهِمَآۚ إِنَّهُۥ يَرَىٰكُمۡ هُوَ وَقَبِيلُهُۥ مِنۡ حَيۡثُ لَا تَرَوۡنَهُمۡۗ إِنَّا جَعَلۡنَا ٱلشَّيَٰطِينَ أَوۡلِيَآءَ لِلَّذِينَ لَا يُؤۡمِنُونَ ٢٧ وَإِذَا فَعَلُواْ فَٰحِشَةٗ قَالُواْ وَجَدۡنَا عَلَيۡهَآ ءَابَآءَنَا وَٱللَّهُ أَمَرَنَا بِهَاۗ قُلۡ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ لَا يَأۡمُرُ بِٱلۡفَحۡشَآءِۖ أَتَقُولُونَ عَلَى ٱللَّهِ مَا لَا تَعۡلَمُونَ ٢٨ ﴾ [الأعراف].

The meaning of the verse:

Ô Children of Adam! We have bestowed raiment upon you to cover yourselves (screen your private parts) and as an adornment; and the raiment of righteousness, that is better. Such are among the proofs of Allah, that they may remember. Ô Children of Adam! Let not Satan deceive you, as he got your parents -Adam and Eve- out of Paradise, stripping them of their raiment, to show them their private parts. Verily, he and his soldiers see you from where you cannot see them. Verily, we made the devils protectors and helpers for those who believe not. And when they commit an evil deed, they say: “We found our fathers doing it, and Allah has commanded it on us”. Say: “Nay, Allah never commands evil deed. Do you say of Allah what you know not  ﴿[Al-A‘râf: 26-27-28].

During the Ignorance Era, people used to go round the Ka‘bah in naked state. Hence, displaying one’s private parts is generally regarded as obscenity. Allah ordered women to cover their bodies. He عزّ وجلّ said:

﴿ وَقَرۡنَ فِي بُيُوتِكُنَّ وَلَا تَبَرَّجۡنَ تَبَرُّجَ ٱلۡجَٰهِلِيَّةِ ٱلۡأُولَىٰۖ ﴾ [الأحزاب: 33].

The meaning of the verse:

And stay in your houses, and not display yourselves like that of times of ignorance ﴿ [Al-Ahzâb: 33].

He  سبحانه وتعالىsaid also:

﴿ يَٰٓأَيُّهَا ٱلنَّبِيُّ قُل لِّأَزۡوَٰجِكَ وَبَنَاتِكَ وَنِسَآءِ ٱلۡمُؤۡمِنِينَ يُدۡنِينَ عَلَيۡهِنَّ مِن جَلَٰبِيبِهِنَّۚ ﴾ [الأحزاب: 59].

The meaning of the verse:

Ô Prophet! Tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to draw their Jalâbîb (veils) all over their bodies  ﴿ [Al-Ahzâb: 59].

With this in mind, if a woman does not act in accordance with religious texts that command to wear the veil and cover her body and whose prayer is not positively reflected on her behavior as regards quitting obscenity and evil deeds, we do not advise to betroth such a woman.On the other hand, we are quite certain that after marrying her, he will not be able to change her as he wants her to be. Therefore, the scholars have -basically- agreed on the principle that: “Pushing [the evil] has precedence over remedying it”. Moreover, it is better to leave her rather than marrying her then divorcing or separating from her afterwards for she does not obey her husband’s order. What is feared is worse than all this; he may be influenced by this woman and he will, as a result, comply with her in her passion. Consequently, he will fall into her trap and get influenced by her temptations. The outcome is that he will approve of the evil deed after it became a good deed to him. And Allah is The Most Besought for help.


The perfect knowledge belongs to Allah عزَّ وجلَّ; and our last prayer is all the praises and thanks are to Allah, the Lord of the Worlds, and prayers of Allah are to Muhammad and his Family, Companions and Brothers until the Day of Resurrection.


Algiers on: Rajab the 20th, 1427 H

Corresponding to August the 14th, 2006 G.


(1) Reported in such a wording by At-Tabarânî in “Al-Mu‘jam Al-Awsat” (1859) and by Al-Maqdişî in “Al-Ahâdîth Al-Mukhtâra” (2579) from the hadith of Anas رضي الله عنه. This hadith is judged authentic by Al-Albânî in “Sahîh Al-Jâmi‘ ” (2573) and in “As-Silsila As-Sahîha” (1358).

(2) For woman, all her body is ‘Awra except her face and her hands, and she is not allowed to uncover her ‘Awra before strangers (men that are not Mahram). Translator’s note.