ʿAbdullāh b. ʿUmar – Allāh be pleased with them – said:
A man from [the tribe of] the Anṣār once came to me during the caliphate of ʿUthmān. He spoke to me and I realised he wanted me to fault ʿUthmān; he spoke at length and he had some heaviness in his speech and could not finish speaking quickly. When he had finished, I said to him, “We used to say, while the Messenger of Allāh ﷺ was still alive, the best of the Ummah of the Messenger of Allāh after him is Abū Bakr, then ʿUmar, then ʿUthmān. And by Allāh, we do not know that ʿUthmān has ever killed anyone without right or committed any major sin; but it is an issue of this wealth [with you people]: if he gives you, you are happy, and if he gives to his kin, you are angry. You only want to be like the Persians and Romans, who leave no leader of theirs without killing him.”
Then his eyes filled with tears and he said, “O Allāh, we do not want this.”
Imām Aḥmad, Faḍāʾil Al-Ṣaḥābah, article 64, except for the last sentence. Shaykh Waṣīyullāh ʿAbbās graded its chain of transmission ṣaḥīḥ in his study of the work.
The last sentence about the crying is in the Masāʾil of Ibn Hāniʾ 2:171.
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