1505) contributed a History of the Caliphs and many biographical pieces.
- One task of the early caliphs was to find an outlet for the restless fighting spirit.
The Shiite caliphs of Egypt were by this time the playthings of contending viziers, as the Sunnite caliphs of Bagdad had long been the puppets of Turkish sultans or amirs; and in 1164 Amalric I.
The attempt was futile, Bagdad was besieged and taken, and from that time until their final downfall the Abbasid caliphs were mere puppets, while the real rulers were successively the Turkish guard, the Buyids and the Seljuks.
The first explorer to enter the sacred Hejaz with a definite scientific object was the Spaniard, Badia y aeblich, who, under the name of Ali Bey and claiming to be the last representative of the Abbasid Caliphs, arrived at Jidda in 1807, and performed the pilgrimage to Mecca.
Had the simplicity and religious severity of the first four caliphs continued in their successors, the fate of poetry would have been hard.
On the death of Mowaffaq in 891 the Egyptian governor was able to renew peaceful relations with the caliphs, and receive fresh confirmation in his possessions for thirty years.
Astarabad owes its origin to Yazid ibn Mohallab, who occupied the province early in the 8th century for Suleiman, the seventh of the Omayyad caliphs (715-717), and was destroyed by Timur (Tamerlane) in 1384.
Persia, and, though nominally provincial governors under the suzerainty of the caliphs of Bagdad, succeeded in a very short time in establishing an almost independent rule over Transoxiana and the greater part of Persia.
He next turned against the Mameluke rulers of Egypt, crushed them, and entering Cairo as conqueror (1517), obtained from the last of the Abbasid caliphs,' Motawakkil, the title of caliph (q.v.) ' After the fall of the caliphs of Bagdad (1258), descendants of the Abbasids took refuge in Cairo and enjoyed a purely titular authority under the protection of the Egyptian rulers.
But during all this period the caliphs continued to be the religious heads of Islam and their residence its capital.
Wellsted, City of the Caliphs; A.
Abu Bekr (632-634), the first of these caliphs, was a man of simple life and profound faith.
Yet so long as the caliphs lived in Medina, the capital of Arabia was the capital of the expanding Arabian empire.
The caliphs were chosen there, and there the rules for the administration were framed.
Madaini's History of the Caliphs is the best, if not the oldest, published before Tabari; but this book is known only by the excerpts given by later writers, particularly Baladhuri and Tabari.
894), wrote on the Abbasid caliphs and was drawn on by Tabari.
The town is enclosed by nearly square brick walls, flanked by massive round towers, dating from the time of the caliphs, but now falling into decay.
It became the seat of the Ayyubite sultan Saladin in 1184; was bequeathed in 1233 to the caliphs of Bagdad; was plundered by the Mongols in 1236 and in 1393 by Timur, and was taken in 1732 by the Persians under Nadir Shah.
His ancestors had also ruled in Egypt as caliphs of the BeniFatimites for a number of years, at a period coeval with the Crusades.
In the 10th century it suffered severely, being repeatedly pillaged in the wars of the Fatimite caliphs Al-Qaim and Abu Tahir Ismail el Mansur with the Sunnite leader Abu Yazid and the Zenata Berbers.
It became a bone of contention between the various Syrian dynasties and the caliphs first of Damascus, then of Egypt, and in 748 was sacked with great slaughter.
Abu Bekr and his three (or four) immediate successors are known as the "perfect" caliphs; after them the title was borne by the thirteen Omayyad caliphs of Damascus, and subsequently by the thirty-seven Abbasid caliphs of Bagdad whose dynasty fell before the Turks in 1258.
There were titular caliphs of Abbasid descent in Egypt from that date till 1517 when the last caliph was captured by Selim I.
There is indeed a tradition that a written collection (diwan) existed in the family of an-Nu ` man, the last Lakhmid king, containing a number of poems by the Fuhul, or most eminent poets of the pagan time, and especially by those who had praised the princes of the house, and that this collection passed into the possession of the Omayyad caliphs of the house of Marwan; to this, if the tradition is to be believed, al-Mufaddal probably had access.
The date of al-Mufaddal's birth is unknown; but he lived for many years under the caliphs of the Omayyad line until their overthrow by the 'Abbasids in 749.
In the general confusion of the caliphate produced by the change of dynasty, Africa had fallen into the hands of local rulers, formerly amirs or lieutenants of the Omayyad caliphs, but now aiming at independence.
It became a question between Amalric and Nureddin, which of the two should control the discordant viziers, who vied with one another for the control of the decadent caliphs of Egypt.
This put the caliphs fatally at the mercy of their guards.
Beyond the eastern wall of the city are the splendid mausolea erroneously known to Europeans as the tombs of the caliphs; they really are tombs of the Circassian or Burji Mamelukes, a race extinguished by Mehemet Ali.
The numismatic collection, as regards the period of the caliphs and later dynasties, is one of the richest in the world.
Reynolds-Ball, Cairo: the City of the Caliphs (Boston, U.S.A., 1897); Prisse d'Avennes, L' Art arabe d'apres les monuments du Caire (Paris, 1847); P. Ravaisse, L'Histoire et la topographie du Caire d'apres Makrizi (Paris, 1887); E.
915 for larger, weights~ The greater number are, however, small weights for testing gold and silver coins of later caliphs from A.D.
The Ayyubites were followed by the Mameluke dynasties, usually classified as Bal~ri from 1252-1382, and Burji from 1382-1517; these sovereigns were nominally under the suzerainty of Abbasid caliphs, who were in reality instruments of the Mameluke sultans, and resided at Cairo.
(b) Fatimite Caliphs, 357567 (9691171).
The period between the rise of the Abbasids and the quasi-independent dynasties of Egypt was marked by much religious persecution, occasioned by the fanaticism of some of the caliphs, the victims being generally Moslem sectarians.
The policy of these caliphs also led to severe measures being taken against any members of the Alid family or adherents of their cause who were to be found in Egypt.
On the death of Ahmads father-in-law in the same year, when Egypt was given in fief to the caliphs brother Mowaffaq (famous for his defeat of the Zanj), Ahmad secured himself in his post by extensive bribery at headquarters; and in the following year the administration of the Syri,an frontier was conferred on him as well.
He was succeeded by his son Khomarflya, then twenty years of age, who immediately after his accession had to deal with an attempt on the part of the caliph to recover Syria; this attempt failed chiefly through dissensions between the caliphs officers, but partly through the ability of Khomgruyas general, who succeeded in winning a battle after his master had run away from the field.
Under the early caliphs the Arabs divided Syria into the following military districts (gonds).
The old rgime was not restored without an attempt made by an adherent of the TulUnids to reconquer Egypt ostensibly for their benefit, and for a time the caliphs viceroy had to quit the capital.
At the death of Unjur in 961 his brother AbuI-I~iasan AlI was made viceroy with the caliphs consent by KfUr, who continued to govern for his chief as before.
Hamdgn got possession of Cairo, and at the end of 1068 plundered the caliphs palace; the valuable library which had been begun by IJakim was pillaged, and an accidental fire caused great destruction.
The viziers offices were given to one of the caliphs creatures, Mahommed b.
The caliphs personal government appears to have been incompetent, and to have been marked by extortions and other arbitrary measures.
The last of the Fg~imite caliphs was not quite twenty-one years old at the time of his death.
Neither Koran nor Sunna distinguishes between temporal and spiritual powers, and no such distinction was known as long as the caliphs acted in all things as successors of the prophets and heads of the community of the faithful.
The theologians tried to uphold the orthodox theory by declaring the sultanate to be subordinate to the imamate or sovereignty of the caliphs, and dependent on the latter especially in all religious matters; but their artificial theories have never modified facts.
The various dynasties of sultans (Buyids, Ghaznevids, Seljuks, and finally the Mongols) never paid heed to the caliphs, and at length abolished them; but the fall of the theocracy only increased the influence of the clergy, the expounders and practical administrators of that legislation of Koran and Sunna which had become part of the life of the Mahommedan world.
ABBASIDS, the name generally given to the caliphs of Bagdad, the second of the two great dynasties of the Mahommedan empire.
Province after province renounced the authority of the caliphs, who were merely lay figures, and finally Hulagu, the Mongol chief, burned Bagdad (Feb.
The contentions between the Abbasid and Fatimite caliphs continued till 1072, when Palestine suffered its next invasion.
The history of the Mahommedan rulers in the East who bore the title of caliph falls naturally into three main divisions: - (a) The first four caliphs, the immediate successors of Mahomet; (b) The Omayyad caliphs; (c) The Abbasid caliphs.
To these three groups the present article is confined; for the Western caliphs, see Spain: History (and minor articles such as Almohades, Almoravides); for the Egyptian caliphs see Egypt: History (§ Mahommedan) and Fatimites.
- THE First Four Caliphs After the death of Mahomet the question arose who was to be his "representative."
We thus see how the power of the house of Omayya developed itself, and how there arose against it an opposition, which led in the first place to the murder of Othman and the Caliphate of Ali, and furthermore, during the whole period of the Omayyad caliphs, repeatedly to dangerous outbreaks, culminating in the great catastrophe which placed the Abbasids on the throne.
Haroun-al-Raschid (Aaron the Just) was the greatest of all the caliphs of Bagdad.