Abu Abd ar-Raḥman Aḥmad ibn Shuayb ibn Ali ibn Sīnan al-Nasai was born in 214 Hijri in Khurasan. In those days Khurasan was in Persian empire and now it is Turkmenistan. This region was well known for Islamic learning and most of the Muhadith had built a good foundation of learning from this region. In those days there were circles of Islamic learning known as ‘Halaqas’ and students of Deen used to attend them. One of the teachers of Imam Nasai was Abu Dawood.
Imam Nasai traveled to Hijaz, Kufa, Egypt, Syria, covering most of the centers of Islamic learning. He settled in Egypt as a teacher. He was titled as Hafizul Hadith because he was the most knowledgeable teacher in the field of accuracy in Fiqh and narrators of Hadith in Egypt.
He has written fifteen books and out of them six books are on the Science of Hadith. Sunan al Sughra was a collection of 5270 Hadith, including those repeated. These Hadith were carefully chosen from his own collection- Sunan Al Kubra. It is said that when he presented his collection of Sunan al Kubra to the Governor of Ramla, Palestine, the governor asked him if all the Hadith in his collection were authentic. He replied in negative so the governor suggested him to pick the sahih hadith from it and compile another book and thus Sunan Nasai called Sunan al Sughra.
Imam Nasai, performed Hajj every year and participated even in Jihad as well. Among all the six Muhadith, he got the privilege of martyrdom, he was mob lynched in Ramlah, a town in Palestine by Khwarij who hated Ali ibn Abi Talib and revered Muawiya ibn Sufiyan (Allah be pleased with them both). Imam Dhahabi said that he was buried between Safaa and Marwa.