He is Ahmad bin Abdul Halim bin Abdus Salam bin Abdullah bin Abu Qasim ibn Taymiyyah al-Harrarii Taqi ad-Din Abu al-Abbas bin Shihab ad-Din. He was born in Harran, an old city within the Arabian Peninsula between Syria and Iraq, on the tenth or the twelfth of the month Rabi ul-Awwal in the year 661AH. He and his family were later forced to flee to Damascus due to the occupation by the Tartars.
He came from a family of scholars, his father and grandfather were both scholars as were three of his brothers: Abdur Rahman, Abdullah and his half-brother, Muhammad.
During his early studies of Islam, he never ceased to amaze his teachers at the strength of his memory, keen intelligence and depth of understanding.
It is said that he was first allowed to give legal verdicts at the age of nineteen and he began teaching at Dar al-Hadith as-Sukriyyah at the age of twenty-two. He became famous for his knowledge of Hadith, indeed he was a Hafiz (Hadith Master), and for his knowledge of the Quran and its related sciences, he impressed all with his circles on tafsir.
He also attained expertise in Usul al-Fiqh and Fiqh, knowledge of the differences of opinions present amongst the scholars, writing, mathematics, history, astronomy and medicine. Many of the scholars of his time testified that he had attained the rank of Mujtahid.