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Witr (Arabic: وتر) is an Islamic prayer (salat) that is performed at night after isha'a (night-time prayer) or before fajr (dawn prayer). According to the Hanafi Fiqh, witr prayer is wajib. The status of wajib is very close to that of fard. Witr has an odd number of raka'at prayed in pairs, with the final raka'ah prayed separately. Therefore, as little as one raka'ah can be prayed, and eleven at most.
According to Abdullah ibn Umar, Muhammad said, "The night prayer is offered as two raka'at followed by two raka'at and so on and if anyone is afraid of the approaching dawn (fajr prayer), he should pray one raka'ah and this will be a witr for all the raka'at which he has prayed before."
In a hadith transmitted by Abu Darda, he states that Muhammad enjoined to him three things: to fast three days every month, to offer the witr salat before sleep, and to offer two raka'at sunnah for fajr.
But there are many aḥādīth that show the best time for the witr salat to be at night. If someone fears that he would not be able to awake, or may die in their sleep, then the prayer should be performed before sleeping.
Therefore, he who performs tahajjud (night prayer) regularly should perform witr after tahajjud.
It is recorded that Ali bin Abu Talib said, "The witr prayer is not required like your obligatory prayers but the Prophet would perform the witr prayer and say, 'O you people of the Quran, perform the witr prayer, for Allah is One and He loves the witr."
The literal meaning of witr is "chord of a circle". Considering the whole day as a circle along which all the prayers are located, the maghrib salat is offered at the sunset (beginning of the night). It has an un-paired (odd) number of raka'at. By offering the odd raka'at of witr as the last prayer of the night, a chord is created by pairing these two un-paired raka'ats of each of the maghrib's and witr's.
|Arab World||Arabic||صلاة الوتر (Ṣalāh al-Witr)|
|Iran||Persian||نماز وتر (namaaz vitr)|
|Pakistan, India||Urdu||نماز وتر (Vitr namaaz, vitar namaaz)|
|Albania, Kosovo||Albanian||Namazi i vitri, vitrit|
|Bangladesh, India||Bengali||বিতির (Bitir), বিতর (Bitor)|
|Somalia, Somaliland||Somali||Salaada Witr|
|Southeast Asia||Bahasa Indonesia, Bahasa Melayu, Basa Jawa||Salat witir, Solat witir|
"The witr is not fard like your prescribed prayers. But, it is the sunnah of Allah's Messenger (Sallah Allah alhoui wa salam) who said: Surely Allah is witr (one). He loves witr, so offer the witr, "O people of the Quran!." [Ahmed 652, Abu Dawud 1416, Muslim 1674, Ibn e Majah 1169]