Christian-Muslim Relations 600 - 1500

Get access Subject: Middle East and Islamic Studies
General Editor: David Thomas, Alex Mallett
Associate Editors: Juan Pedro Monferrer-Sala, Johannes Pahlitzsch, Barbara Roggema, Mark Swanson, Herman Teule and John Tolan
Christian-Muslim Relations, a Bibliographical History Online is a general online history of relations between the faiths. It covers the period from 600 to 1500, when encounters took place through the extended Mediterranean basin and are recorded in Syriac, Arabic, Greek, Latin and other languages. Christian Muslim Relations Online comprises introductory essays on the treatment of Christians in the Qur’an, Qur’an commentaries, biographies of the Prophet, Hadith and Sunni law, and of Muslims in canon law, and the main body of more than two hundred detailed entries on all the works recorded, whether surviving or lost.

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(320 words)

Author(s): Echevarria, Ana
Binjinsiyus, Vincentius the Priest Date of Birth: Unknown Place of Birth: Unknown Date of Death: Unknown; fl. 1048-50 Place of Death: Unknown Biography Vincentius was a Christian priest who worked in al-Andalus under a number of powerful ecclesiastical patrons. As a canonist, he was a member of the Mozarabic intellectual elite. The few details known about his life come from the work he compiled for a certain bishop, ‘Abd al-Malik (possibly of Seville). According to this, he travelled around several dioceses translatin…

Vincent of Beauvais

(939 words)

Author(s): Frunzeanu, Eduard
Vincent de Beauvais Date of Birth: About 1190 Place of Birth: Uncertain Date of Death: About 1264 Place of Death: Uncertain Biography Few details about the life of Vincent of Beauvais are known; the only certain information concerns the period 1243-63. He joined the Dominican order at the end of the 1220s. In 1243 he met King Louis IX through the abbot of Royaumont, and in 1244 presented him with an incomplete version of what was to become the Speculum historiale. In 1246 he became lector at the Cistercian Abbey of Royaumont, an institution founded by the king himself, where, ac…

 Vita Eulogii

(271 words)

Author(s): Wolf, Kenneth B.
Life of Eulogius Paul Alvarus (Albar, Alvaro) Date: 854 Original Language: Latin Description This is a hagiographical treatment of the life and death of Eulogius of Cordova, Alvarus' friend and co-apologist for the so-called 'martyrs of Cordova'. Eulogius was executed by the Muslim authorities on 11 March 859, for harboring a female convert from Islam to Christianity and encouraging her apostasy. Alvarus followed the well-established conventions of the passiones, which described the deaths of Christian martyrs of the Roman period. Significance Though written with a typically…

 Vita Euthymii

(1,030 words)

Author(s): Krönung, Bettina
The Life of Euthymius, patriarch of Constantinople Life of Euthymius, patriarch of Constantinople Date: 920s or soon after 932 Original Language: Greek Description The work is a hagiographical biography of Euthymius, who was born in 843 in Seleukeia (Isauria), was patriarch of Constantinople from 907 to 912, and died in 917. The single preserved manuscript of the vita, which is now lost, was fragmentary: the first chapters, up to the reign of Leo VI (886), including the title page, as well as an extensive passage about the last years of Euthymius’ patr…

 Vita Iohannis abbatis Gorziensis

(1,380 words)

Author(s): Frassetto, Michael
Life of John abbot of Gorze John of St Arnoul Date: 978-84 Original Language: Latin Description The subject of the Vita, John of Gorze (c. 900-74), was an important monastic reformer and abbot in Lorraine. He was born at Vandières, south of Metz in the Moselle valley, to a wealthy landowner. He was sent to study first at a school in Metz and then at the Benedictine monastery of St Mihiel. In 933, he was appointed with six others to reform the monastery of Gorze. John introduced important reforms at the monastery, w…

 Vita Machometi

(446 words)

Author(s): Tolan, John
Life of Muḥammad Adelphus Date: Probably early 12th century Original Language: Latin Description Adelphus’ text is a brief and very polemical narration of the life of Muḥammad. He opens his narrative by affirming that he frequently heard the Saracens invoke Muḥammad, ‘calling on him and worshiping him as a god’. This piques his curiosity, and he asks ‘a little Greek man’ to tell him about Muḥammad and the Saracens; it is hence a Byzantine polemical version of the Prophet’s life that Aldelpus relates. ‘Machom…

 Vita Mahometi

(989 words)

Author(s): Valcarcel, V.
Life of Muḥammad Vita Mahometi Date: 1221-22 Original Language: Latin Description The Vita Mahometi is a short work, in Valcárcel’s critical edition only three pages long, a total of 119 lines. The author explains at the start that his intention is to show that Muḥammad was not a Christian, as many think, and he argues that Muḥammad was not a prophet, that the religion he founded was false, a compilation from many sources and impure, and that his true intention was to use his teaching as an instrument of political domination. The work can be divided into the following sections: 1. Muḥ…

Vita Mahometi

(524 words)

Author(s): Valcarcel, V.
Unknown author; possibly named Pedro Date of Birth: Possibly the last third of the 12th century Place of Birth: Unknown; possibly in the north of Aragon Date of Death: Unknown; before 1250 Place of Death: Unknown Biography Nothing certain is known about this author. But if it is accepted that he wrote the Tractatus contra Iudaeos as well as the Vita Mahometi (on this point, see below), both contained together in MS Uncastillo, Collegiate Church of Santa Maria 10, then, since the Tractatus makes the declaration ‘ Ergo ego sum qui eri fui vocatus Hebreus, hodie Petrus’ (‘Thus I am one who ye…

 Vita Mahumeti

(908 words)

Author(s): Tolan, John
Life of Muḥammad Embrico of Mainz Date: Probably first quarter of the 12th century Original Language: Latin Description The Vita Mahumeti is a polemical life of Muḥammad in 1,149 rhymed leonine hexameters. It relates how a nameless heretical magus, feigning piety, comes to Libya where he meets Mammutius, young slave to the governor, and trains him in the arts of magic and deception. The two secretly murder the governor, then have Mammutius marry the governor’s widow. Through a series of tricks and bogus miracles, t…

 Vita Sancti Isidori

(2,298 words)

Author(s): Henriet, P.
Life of St Isidore Vita Sancti Isidori Date: Uncertain; late 12th to early 13th century Original Language: Latin Description The Vita Sancti Isidori (BHL 4486) is a complex text which, without the passage on Muḥammad (see below), occupies some 20 pages in the folio edition of Acta sanctorum. Incorporated into the narrative is a complete series of documents: letters of Isidore, more or less authentic, a Lamentum poenitentiae (7th century?), a Visigothic epitaph, and a hymn in honor of the saint. The author knows the Obitus of Redemptus (7th century) and the Adbreviatio Sancti Brauli de Vi…

Vita Sancti Isidori

(53 words)

Author(s): Henriet, P.
Unknown author Date of Birth: Uncertain; mid-12th century Place of Birth: Unknown; possibly Leon Date of Death: Uncertain; early or mid-13th century Place of Death: Unknown; probably Leon Biography - Primary Sources of Information - Secondary Sources of Information - Works on Christian-Muslim Relations Vita Sancti Isidori P. Henriet

 Vkayabanut‘iwn Amēnawagi Derǰanc‘woy

(731 words)

Author(s): Cowe, S. Peter
'Martyrology of Amēnawag Derǰanc‘i' Yovhannēs vardapet Date: 1335 Original Language: Armenian Description The account focuses on an altercation that arose between Amēnawag, a simple Armenian peasant from the village of Kaṙnberdak in the district of Derǰan near Erzurum, and a local Muslim to whom he owed some money, when the latter pressed the former to discharge his debt and impounded his pack animal as a guarantee of payment. Amēnawag countered that it was better for his brother to take charge of the anima…

 Vkayabanut‘iwn Awagi Salmastec‘woy

(677 words)

Author(s): Cowe, S. Peter
'Martyrology of Awag Salmastec‘i' Martyrology of Awag Salmastec‘i Date: 1390 Original Language: Armenian Description The work is an account of the martyrdom of the Christian Armenian leather worker Awag, originally of Salmast, who had been apprenticed there under a Muslim master around the mid-14th century and subsequently relocated to Bitlis some 30 years later, perhaps to escape Timur-i Leng’s devastating campaigns in the region. It is also significant that Armenians were the majority population in the city. There, he was charged by a …

 Vkayabanut‘iwn Grigori Baluec‘woy, Simēoni ew Kirakosi

(1,072 words)

Author(s): Cowe, S. Peter
'Martyrology of Grigor Baluec‘i, Simēon, and Kirakos' Dawit‘ erēc‘ Baluec‘i Date: About 1290 Original Language: Armenian Description The work centers on the figure of Grigor Baluec‘i from central Anatolia, who, after studying for the priesthood, was married for two years. However, on his wife’s untimely death, he decided to gain a higher theological education further east, studying with the illustrious scholar Vardan Arewelc‘i in the monastery of Xor Virap for six years (probably in the 1260s). On obtaining his license to preach and teach as a celibate vardapet he returned to his …

 Vkayabanut‘iwn Grigori episkoposi Karnec‘woy

(917 words)

Author(s): Cowe, S. Peter
'Martyrology of Bishop Grigor of Karin (Erzurum)' Martyrology of Bishop Grigor of Karin (Erzurum) Date: Approximately 1321 Original Language: Armenian Description The account situates the martyrdom within the broader context of Christian-Muslim relations in the Ilkhanate after the leaders’ adoption of Islam and the new social and financial burdens this placed upon the Christian community, as well as peremptory attacks on their churches and monasteries. It then treats the anti-Christian activities of Timurtash, the M…

 Vkayabanut‘iwn Mirak‘ay Tawrizec‘woy

(1,209 words)

Author(s): Cowe, S. Peter
'Martyrology of Mirak‘ Tawrizec‘i' Martyrology of Mirak‘ Tawrizec‘i Date: About 1486 Original Language: Armenian Description The text presents the figure of Mirak‘ T‘awrižec‘i, an upstanding Christian Armenian magnate of Tabriz and generous benefactor, who frequently functioned as an intercessor for his co-religionists, first at the Qara Quyunlu and then Aq Quyunlu court, of which various examples are given. During the reign of the Aq Quyunlu ruler Y‘aqub (1479/80-90/91), one of his courtiers, Mēhti, grew increasingly influential and felt empowered to …

 Vkayabanut‘iwn Step‘annosi vardapeti ew Petrosi kahanayi Xizanc‘woy

(1,009 words)

Author(s): Cowe, S. Peter
'Martyrology of Step‘annos the vardapet and Petros the priest of Xizan' Aṙak‘el Bałišec‘i Date: 6 August, 1424 Original Language: Armenian Description The narrative highlights the collective dimension of religious identity within the community of faith and the impact that change in individual affiliation carries within that setting. Its protagonists are two Armenian clerics, the married priest Petros, himself son of a priest, from Xizan/Hizan, a city on the western shore of Lake Van with a thriving Armenian populati…

 Vkayabanut‘iwn Step‘annosi xostovanołi ark‘episkoposi Tat‘ewu, k‘eṙordwoy iwroy ew mōrełbōrordwoy norin

(1,080 words)

Author(s): Cowe, S. Peter
'Martyrology of the Confessor Step‘annos, Archbishop of Tat‘ew, his nephew, and his cousin' Martyrology of the Confessor Step‘annos Date: About 1483 Original Language: Armenian Description The work raises the issue of the limits of Christian hierarchical jurisdiction under Muslim rule, presenting the case of the confessor Step‘annos, archbishop of Tat‘ew, of noble family, who intervened in the case of a monk from his monastery who had fallen in love with a girl in a local village and had approached the qadi in a nearby …

 Vkayabanut‘iwn Step‘anosi ark‘episkoposi Sebastac‘woy

(798 words)

Author(s): Cowe, S. Peter
'Martyrology of Archbishop Step‘anos Sebastac‘i' Martyrology of Archbishop Step‘anos Sebastac‘i Date: About 1387 Original Language: Armenian Description This work depicts the retaliation of Burhān al-Dīn, the Danishmend q āḍī of Sebastia, against conspirators among his troops, who were planning an abortive revolt against his harsh rule in the aftermath of his killing the previous ruler of the city and ensconcing himself in power there. This scenario serves as the backdrop for his onslaught against the important local Armen…

 Vkayabanut‘iwn T‘amaray Mokac‘woy

(737 words)

Author(s): Cowe, S. Peter
'Martyrology of T‘amar Mokac‘i' Martyrology of T‘amar Mokac‘i Date: 1397 Original Language: Armenian Description The work tells the tale of the attractive Christian Armenian woman, T‘amar, also known as Gohar, of the region of Mok‘s to the south-west of Lake Van. Her beauty rendered her the object of the unwanted affections of a local Kurd, who planned to kill her husband T‘uma and make her his own. On learning of his scheme, T‘amar and T‘uma moved their family to the island of Ałt‘amar, where they lived for …
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