Islamic history states that the Zamzam Well was revealed to Hagar (Hājar), the second wife of Ibrahim (Abraham) and mother of Ishmael. By the instruction of God, Abraham left his wife and son at a spot in the desert and walked away. She was desperately seeking water for her infant son, but she could not find any, as Mecca is located in a hot dry valley with few sources of water. Hagar ran seven times back and forth in the scorching heat between the two hills of Safa and Marwah, looking for water. Getting thirstier by the second, the infant Ishmael scraped the land with his feet, where suddenly water sprang out. There are other versions of the story involving God sending his angel, Gabriel (Jibra'il), who kicked the ground with his heel or wing(depending on which version of the story) and the water rose.
The name of the well comes from the phrase Zomë Zomë, meaning "stop," was a command repeated by Hagar during her attempt to contain the spring water.
|Modern water dispensers at Zam Zam well|
|An old entrance to the underground well of Zam Zam, closed as of 2003. Kaabah can be seen in the background. An older Ottoman era minbar can also be seen to the right.|
|Source of Zam Zam well, water entering the well from the stony horizon||Saudi Geological Survey|
|The Building over the well of Zam Zam circa 1940 CE.|
|Latest Update: October 13, 2016|