Rabīʿ al-Awwal (Arabic: ربيع الأوّل, rabī‘u ’l-awwal) is the third month in the Islamic calendar. The name Rabī‘ al-awwal means “the first [month] or beginning of spring”, referring to its position in the pre-Islamic Arabian calendar.
During this month, many Muslims celebrate Mawlid – the birthday of the Islamic prophet, Muhammad. Although the exact date is unknown, Sunni Muslims believe the date of birth of Muhammad to have been on the twelfth of this month, whereas Shia Muslims believe him to have been born on the dawn of the seventeenth day.
Muhammad himself never celebrated the mawlid; instead he encouraged Muslims to fast on Mondays of every week due to his birthday being “on a Monday”.