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One cause for the child being masculine or feminine

Answered according to Hanafi Fiqh by

I’ve heard that there is a Hadith that indicates something to the effect that a child will resemble the parent who first achieved climax during coitus. Is this true and from an authentic source?

I’ve since heard others suggest that it relates to gender of baby and not physical resemblance.



There are two issues here;

a) What causes the resemblance?

b) What causes the gender selection?

Both these have been mentioned in authentic Hadiths.


a) Sayyidatuna ‘Aishah (radiyallahu’anha) reported that Nabi (sallallahu’alayhi wasallam) mentioned:

When the woman precedes the man in climax, the child resembles his maternal family. When the man precedes the woman, the child resembles his paternal side.

(Sahih Muslim, Hadith: 713. Also see Fathul Bari, Hadith: 3938 for other similar narrations)


b) Sayyiduna Thawban (radiyallahu’anhu) reports that Rasulullah (sallallahu’alayhi wasallam) said -as part of a lengthy Hadith-

When the man and woman copulate, and the man’s semen dominates [is more than] the semen of the woman, the child is born a male, with Allah’s command. When the woman’s semen dominates the man’s, then the child is born a female, by the command of Allah.

(Sahih Muslim, Hadith: 714)


Hafiz Ibn Hajar (rahimahullah) explains that one Hadith shows when the resemblance is caused, and the other illustrates when the gender is selected.

In short, when the semen of one partner is more, that affects the gender, and when the climax is reached earlier, that affects the resemblance of features, irrespective of the gender.

(Fathul Bari, Hadith: 3938)

And Allah Ta’ala Knows best,

Answered by: Moulana Muhammad Abasoomar

Checked by: Moulana Haroon Abasoomar

This answer was collected from The answers were either answered or checked by Moulana Haroon Abasoomar (rahimahullah) who was a Shaykhul Hadith in South Africa, or by his son, Moulana Muhammad Abasoomer (hafizahullah), who is a Hadith specialist. 

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