Imam Shaafai, the founder of the Shaafai school of thought, was a well travelled scholar and a magnificent teacher. While a youth, he was considered the king of experts in Arabic linguistics. He later achieved mastery in the study of the Quran, Hadith (sayings of the Prophet) and Islamic jurisprudence. His main contribution is his highly original work in determining the bases and guidelines for the principles of jurisprudence. In this he integrated the knowledge of Madinah’s traditionalists with the insights of Iraq’s rationalists.He had a superb memory and extraordinary intellect, often astounding those around him with the brilliance of his insights. His work was and has been much appreciated in the Muslim world, and he is one of the most famous scholars in Muslim history. The Shaafai school of thought is dominant in Egypt, Saudi Arabia and southeast Asia.