The tradition in Muslim religious literature of gathering collections of forty Hadiths dates as far back as the first century after the Hijrah. Abdullah ibn Mubarak al-Marwazi (Allah have mercy on him) is thought to be the first to have gathered forty Hadith in a collection. Perhaps the most well-known collection is that of Imam an-Nawawi (Allah have mercy on him), which has been translated into English, and on which there are several commentaries.
The practice of gathering forty Hadiths springs from a Hadith, narrated through several Companions, which puts the spiritual rank of religious scholarship within easy reach of the ordinary believer: “Whoever memorises forty narrations for my nation in matters of this religion, Allah will raise him up a scholar and I shall be an intercessor and witness for him on the Day of Rising.”
Allah make us from them.
15 Shaban 1441