Shaykh Al-Albani has Ijaza in hadith from the late Allamah
Shaykh Muhammad Raghib at-Tabaagh with whom he studied hadith sciences, gaining authority to transmit from him.
The Shaykh himself refers to this Ijaza in Mukhtasar al-Uluw (p.72) and in Tahdir as-Sajid (p.63). He has a further Ijaza
from Shaykh Bahjatul Baitaar(through whom his isnad stretches back to Imaam Ahmad Rahimahullaah). These are mentioned in the book Hayat Al-Albani (the Life of Al-Albani) by Muhammad ash-Shaibaani.
This sort of Ijaza is given only to those who have excelled in hadith and can be trusted to accurately convey a hadith. A
copy of the Ijaza is in the possession of his student, Ali Hassan al-Halabi. So it is not correct to say that the Shaykh is
self-taught from books, without authority and without Ijaza.
Whilst we are on the subject,
I think it would not be out of place here to mention a few snippets from Shaykh Al-Albani's life and career to further emphasise
his great standing in the field of hadith science as well as the respect shown to him by other scholars. One cannot really
do the subject justice in one or two brief emails, however, I hope the readers will find this information both encouraging
 Shaykh Al-Albani was born
in 1914 in Ashkodera, the former capital of Albania.
 His first shaykh was his
father, Al-Haaj Nuh Najjatee, who himself had completed Shariah studies in Istanbul, returning
to Albania as one of its Hanafi scholars.
Under his father's guidance, Shaykh Al-Albani studied Qur'an, tajwid, Arabic language as well as Hanafi fiqh.
 He further studied Hanafi
fiqh and Arabic language under Shaykh Sa'eed al-Burhan.
 He would attend the lectures
of Imam Abdul-Fattaah Abu Ghuddah and Shaykh
 The Shaykh met the late
hadith master, Ahmad Shakir, with whom he participated in knowledge based discussions
on hadith and its research.
 He met the late Indian
hadith scholar, Shaykh Abdul-Samad Sharf ad-Deen, who himself had referenced
the hadith to the first volume of An-Nasa'ee's Sunan al-Kubra as well as Al-Mizzi's monumental Tuhfatul-Ashraf, and they continued
to exchange letters on matters of knowledge. In one such letter, Shaykh Abdul-Samad
expressed his belief that Shaykh Al-Albani was the greatest hadith scholar of the time.
 In recognition of his knowledge
of hadith, he was commissioned as far back as 1955 by the Faculty of Shariah at Damascus
University to carry out detailed analysis and research into hadith related
to buying and selling and other business related transactions.
 Shaykh Al-Albani began
his formal work in the field of hadith by transcribing Al-Hafidh al-Iraqi's monumental Al-Mughni 'an Hamlil Asfar, being a
study of the various hadith and narrations contained in Al-Ghazali's famous Ihya Ulum ad-Din. This work alone contains some
 The Shaykh was famous for
attending the Zahiriyyah library in Damascus, and was eventually
given his own set of keys due to his frequent and lengthy study there. On one such occasion, an important folio was missing
from a manuscript in use by the Shaykh and this led Shaykh Al-Albani to painstakingly catalogue all the hadith manuscripts
in the library in an endeavour to locate the missing folio. Consequently, he gained in-depth knowledge of 1000s of hadith
manuscripts, something that was attested to years later by Dr. Muhammad Mustafa Azami
in the introduction to Studies in Early Hadith Literature where he said: 'I wish to express my gratitude to Shaikh Nasir al-Din al-Albani, who placed his extensive knowledge of rare manuscripts
at my disposal.'
 Shaykh Al-Albani would
sometimes mention his extreme poverty during his early life. He said he would be reduced to picking up scraps of paper from
the street, often discarded wedding cards, and use them to write his hadith notes on. Often, he would purchase scrap paper
in bulk from the rubbish dump and take it home to use.
 He would correspond with
numerous scholars, particularly those from India and Pakistan, discussing matters related to hadith and the religion in general,
including Shaykh Muhammad Zamzami from Morocco and Ubaydullah Rahman, the author of Mirqat al-Mafatih Sharh Mushkila al-Masabih.
 His skill in hadith is
attested to by a host of qualified scholars, past and present, including Dr. Amin al-Misri,
head of Islamic Studies at Madinah University who considered himself to be one of the Shaykh's students; also Dr. Subhi as-Salah, former head of Hadith Sciences at the University of Damascus; Dr. Ahmad al-Asaal, head of Islamic Studies at Riyadh University; the late Pakistani
hadith scholar, Allamah Badiudeen Shah as-Sindee; Shaykh Muhammad Tayyib Awkeej, former head of Tafsir and Hadith at the University of Ankarah in Turkey; not
to mention the likes of Shaykh Ibn Baz, Ibn al-Uthaymeen, Muqbil ibn Hadee and
many others in later times.
 After a number of his
works appeared in print, the Shaykh was chosen to teach hadith at the new Islamic University of Madinah for three years from
1381 to 1383H where he was also a member of University board. After this he returned to his former studies and work in the
Zahiriyyah library. His love for Madinah University
is evidenced by the fact that he bequeathed his entire personal library to the University.
 He would hold study circles
twice a week whilst in Damascus which were attended by numerous
students and university lecturers. In this way, the Shaykh completed instruction in the following classical and modern works:
Fathul-Majid of Abdur-Rahman
ibn Husain ibn Muhamamd ibn Abdul-Wahhab
Rawdah an-Nadiyah of Siddiq Hasan Khan
Minhaj al-Islamiyyah of Muhammad Asad
al-Fiqh of Al-Khallal
Mustalah at-Tarikh of Asad Rustum
Al-Halal wa al-Haram fil-Islam of Yusuf al-Qardawi
of Sayyid Sabiq
Bath al-Hathith of Ahmad Shakir
wa at-Tarhib of Al-Hafidh al-Mundhiri
on Imam an-Nawawi
Al-Imam fi Ahadith al-Ahqam of Ibn Daqeeq al-Eid
 After carrying out an
analysis of the hadith in Ibn Khuzaymah's Sahih, the Indian hadith scholar, Muhamamd Mustafa
Azami (head of Hadith Science in Makkah), chose Shaykh Al-Albani to verify and re-check his analysis and the work
is currently published in 4 volumes containing both their comments. This is an indication of the level of trust placed in
Shaykh Al-Albani's hadith ability by other scholars.
 In their edition of the
well known hadith compilation, Mishkat al-Masabih, the Maktaba al-Islamee publishing house requested Shaykh Al-Albani to edit
the work before publication.The publisher wrote in the introduction: 'We
requested that the great hadith scholar, Shaykh Muhammad Nasir ad-Deen al-Albani, should help us in the checking of Mishkat
and take responsibility for adding footnotes for any ahadith needing them, and researching and reproducing their sources and
authenticity where needed, and correcting any deficiences'
 The Shaykhs printed works,
mainly in the field of hadith and its sciences, number some 112 books. I personally have 17 of these books and these alone
run into 45 volumes! He left behind him in manuscript form at least a further 70 works.
 It is recorded on one
occasion (and this incident is available on two tape cassettes - his students were in the habit of recording his teaching
sessions), that a man visited Shaykh Al-Albani in his home in Jordan
claiming to be a prophet! How would we have reacted when faced with such a situation? Shaykh Al-Albani sat the man down and
discussed his claims at length (as I said, covering two tape cassettes) and in the end the visitor made tawba from his claim
and all present, including the Shaykh, were overcome with tears. In fact, how often is Shaykh Al-Albani heard on tape bursting
into tears when speaking about Allah, His Messenger and the affairs of the Muslims?
 On another occasion (and
I was told this by a Shaykh who was present in the gathering) he was visited by three men all claiming that Shaykh Al-Albani
was a kafir. When it came time to pray they refused to pray behind him, saying it is not possible for a kafir to lead the
prayer. The Shaykh accepted this, saying that in his eyes the three of them were Muslims so one of them should lead the prayer.
Afterwards, they discussed their differences at length and when it came time for the following prayer, all three men insisted
on praying behind Shaykh Al-Albani!
 During the course of his
life the Shaykh has researched and commented on over 30,000 individual chains of transmission (isnad) for countless hadith,
having spent 60 years in the study of the books of the Sunnah and being in the company of, and in contact with, its scholars.
 His students are many
and include many Shaykhs of the present day amongst them:
Shaykh Hamdee 'Abdul-Majeed,
Shaykh Muhammad 'Eed 'Abbaasee, Dr. 'Umar Sulaymaan al-Ashqar, Shaykh Muhammad lbraheem Shaqrah, Shaykh Muqbil ibn Haadee
al-Waadi'ee, Shaykh 'Alee Khushshaan, Shaykh Muhammad Jameel Zaynoo, Shaykh 'Abdur-Rahmaan Abdus-Samad, Shaykh 'Alee Hasan
'Abdul-Hameed al-Halabee, Shaykh Saleem al-Hilaalee.
The Shaykh passed away on Saturday 22 Jumaadaa ath-Thaaniyah 1420 A.H. / 2 October 1999 C.E. He was
87 years of age. May Allaah (Subhaanahu wa Ta'aala) have Mercy upon his soul and grant him Firdous al ‘alaa.