According to accounts on the origin of Arabs, Arabs are of three types:

1- Arab al-baida, the ancient Arabs that disappeared, such as Thamud etc.
2- Arab al-Ariba, the original Arabs descended from Qahtan. Qahtan was the father of the Himyarites or the Arabs of Yemen.
3- Arab al-mustariba or the arabized Arabs, the Arabs of the Hijaz, are also known as Arabs by tongue and were people that became Arab. Isma'il (pbuh) was from this category and so was an Arab by tongue. Likewise the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), by being a descendant of Adnan, orginates from this group.
(source: The Life of the Prophet Muhammad, seerah tape set - H Yusuf )

Most consider that all Arabs are divided into two strains, those of Qahtan and those of Adnan. Those of Qahtan consist of two peoples: Saba' and Hadramawt.
Those of Adnan are also from two peoples: Rabi'a and Mudar, the two sons of Nizar bin Ma'ad bin Adnan.
(source: The Life of the Prophet Muhammad, Vol. I - Ibn Kathir)

Thus the genealogy tree displays the lineage of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) back to Adnan.


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