Yahya related to me from Malik from his paternal uncle, Abu Suhayl ibn Malik, that his father said, "I was with Uthman ibn Affan when the iqama was said for the prayer and I was talking to him about being assigned a definite allowance by him. I continued talking to him while he was levelling some small stones with his sandals, and then some men that he had entrusted to straighten the rows came and told him that the rows were straight. He said to me, 'Line up in the row,' and then he said the takbir."
وَحَدَّثَنِي عَنْ مَالِكٍ، عَنْ عَمِّهِ أَبِي سُهَيْلِ بْنِ مَالِكٍ، عَنْ أَبِيهِ، أَنَّهُ قَالَ كُنْتُ مَعَ عُثْمَانَ بْنِ عَفَّانَ فَقَامَتِ الصَّلاَةُ وَأَنَا أُكَلِّمُهُ، فِي أَنْ يَفْرِضَ، لِي فَلَمْ أَزَلْ أُكَلِّمُهُ وَهُوَ يُسَوِّي الْحَصْبَاءَ بِنَعْلَيْهِ حَتَّى جَاءَهُ رِجَالٌ قَدْ كَانَ وَكَلَهُمْ بِتَسْوِيَةِ الصُّفُوفِ . فَأَخْبَرُوهُ أَنَّ الصُّفُوفَ قَدِ اسْتَوَتْ فَقَالَ لِي اسْتَوِ فِي الصَّفِّ . ثُمَّ كَبَّرَ .