Abdulla Surname: A Middle-Eastern Legacy

by Mark

The surname Abdulla is a transliteration of an Arabic given name, combining the words Abd and Allah. Together they mean ‘servant of God’ or ‘God’s slave’. The name of the Prophet Mohammad’s father was Abdullah. This is a favourite name for those of the Islamic faith, as it honours Allah their god and communicates the humility of the faithful. Arabic Jews and Christians also go by the name of Abdullah or Abdulla; as the name of their god in Arabic is referred to as Allah.

Abd Alla ibn Rawahah was the famous general in the Battle of Mut’ah fought in 629 CE; and was one of Mohammed’s companions. Abd Allah ibn al Muttalib, was, as mentioned, Mohammed’s father. Abd Alla ibn Mas’ud was another companion of the Prophet. Abd Allah ibn Ubayy was a leading light of Medina and contemporary of Mohammeds. Abdallah al-Adil was the Caliph of Morocco from 1224-1227 CE. Abdulla (Timurid) ruled the Timurid Empire and lived 1410 to 1451. More recently, Sheik Abdullah (1905-1982) was the Prime Minister of Kashmir. Abdullah of Saudi Arabia (1924-2015) was its king. Abdullah II is the current king of Jordan.

Abdulla Surname: A Middle-Eastern Legacy

There are soccer playing Abdullahs all over the Middle East, American baseball playing and grid iron playing Abdullas, Canadian wrestlers, and writers from Bosnia all called Abdullah. There are Israeli rabbis who go by the name Abdullah, Turkish academics, and Iraqi rabbis called Abdullah. Husain Abdullah has recently retired after seven seasons with the Kansas City Chiefs and the Minnesota Vikings in the NFL in America. After five concussions he has now benefited from the NFL’s new concussion protocol. The greater medical scrutiny on players who receive head injuries is a consequence of the reports about players suffering serious long term brain injuries from their time in the game. Abdulla took a year off from the game and when he returned he made adjustments to his tackling technique to avoid being hit in the head and risking concussion. He is a devout Muslim and loved playing American football, but values his long term health.

In Australia, a whole family of Abdullahs settled in Herbert, Queensland at the turn of the twentieth century. Dana Abdulla has been living and working in Sydney for many years in the furniture business. From old world to new worlds the Abdullas have made their mark across the board in so many varied and exciting industries.