Encyclopaedia of Islam, THREE

Get access Subject: Middle East and Islamic Studies
Edited by Kate Fleet, Gudrun Krämer, Denis Matringe, John Nawas and Everett Rowson with a team of more than 20 section editors.

EI-Three is the third edition of Brill’s Encyclopaedia of Islam which sets out the present state of our knowledge of the Islamic World. It is a unique and invaluable reference tool, an essential key to understanding the world of Islam, and the authoritative source not only for the religion, but also for the believers and the countries in which they live.

The Third Edition of the Encyclopaedia of Islam is an entirely new work, with new articles reflecting the great diversity of current scholarship. It is published in five substantial segments each year, both online and in print. The new scope includes comprehensive coverage of Islam in the twentieth century and of Muslim minorities all over the world.

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(720 words)

Author(s): Rippin, Andrew
Aaron is the biblical name for the brother of Moses, who is known as Hārūn b. ʿImrān in the Qurʾān and in Muslim tradition, with the Arabic form of the Hebrew name Aharōn likely resulting from transmission through Syriac in pre-Islamic times. Mentioned by name twenty times in the Qurʾān, revelation of the furqān (“criterion”) is given to him and Moses (Q 21:48; also see 19:53, 7:122, 23:45, 37:114–20 and 20:70; also 26:48, with the phrase “We believe in the Lord of Moses and Aaron”). His name appears within lists of prophetic figures: with Jesus, …
Date: 2019-11-11

Aaron ben Elijah of Nicomedia

(757 words)

Author(s): Frank, Daniel
Aaron ben Elijah of Nicomedia (d. 771/1369) was a Karaite religious philosopher, legal authority, exegete, and poet, active in Constantinople during the mid-eighth/fourteenth century. Biographical details are limited and unreliable. He or his family hailed from Nicomedia (present-day İzmit, Turkey). His teachers included an uncle and his father-in-law, both mentioned in his writings. Aaron relied exclusively on Hebrew sources—both original compositions and translations—but his thought is thoroughly …
Date: 2019-11-11


(355 words)

Author(s): Hobbs, Joseph J.
The ʿAbābda, who live between the Nile Valley and Red Sea coast of Egypt, are the northernmost tribe of the six subgroups of the Beja (Ar. Buja), whose other members are Ummarār, Bishārīn, Hadanduwa, Banī ʿĀmir Beja, and Banī ʿĀmir Tigre. ʿAbābda territory once included all of Egypt's northern Eastern Desert but by 1850 the Maʿāza Bedouin, originally of northwestern Arabia, drove them south to the Qifṭ-Quṣayr road, which still serves as the northern border of ʿAbābda territory. In the south, ʿAbā…
Date: 2019-11-11


(572 words)

Author(s): Kirişçioğlu, M. Fatih
Abaginskiy was the pen-name of Kudrin Arxip Georgiyeviç, a Sakha (Yakut) poet, translator, and member of the writer’s union. An active socialist, he wrote a number of poems that were celebrated because of their original style, and also translated many Russian works into Sakha. He was born in 1907 in the village of Abaga, in the Olekminsky district of Yakutia, in the Russian Empire. In his youth he was a teacher at the village’s schools, but also wrote for the Bolşevik Eder (“Young Bolshevik”) and Belem Buol (“Be Prepared”) newspapers, as well as working for the Yakutia Publicatio…
Date: 2019-11-11

Abān b. ʿUthmān b. ʿAffān

(1,791 words)

Author(s): Athamina, Khalil
Abān b. ʿUthmān b. ʿAffān (d. between 101/719 and 105/723) was the son of the third Rightly Guided Caliph, ʿUthmān b. ʿAffān (r. 23–35/644–55), and an early author of maghāzī, accounts of the military campaigns of the Prophet. He is considered a member of the jīl al-tābiʿīn or Successors (of the Companions of the Prophet), the second generation of the early Muslim community. His mother, Umm ʿAmr, was not of Qurayshī origin; she was descended from the Daws, a subgroup of the Azd tribe, and sources portray her as a silly woman. When his fathe…
Date: 2019-11-11


(1,768 words)

Author(s): Ricklefs, M. C.
Abangan refers to nominal or non-practising Muslims within Javanese society. From about the middle of the nineteenth century, there emerged in Javanese society a category of people who were defined by their failure—in the eyes of the more pious—to behave as proper Muslims. These were the abangan, a term that derives from the “Low Javanese” (ngoko) word abang, meaning the colour red or brown. At the time, the usual terms were bangsa abangan (“the red/brown people”) or wong abangan (“the red/brown people”). In “High Javanese” (krama) the word for red or brown was abrit and these people we…
Date: 2019-11-11

Abān al-Lāḥiqī

(477 words)

Author(s): Seidensticker, Tilman
Abān b. ʿAbd al-Ḥamīd al-Lāḥiqī al-Raqāshī (d. c.200/815) was an Arab poet of the early ʿAbbāsid period. His ancestors are said to have been Jews from Fasā in the province of Fārs. He was born in Basra and later emigrated to Baghdad, where he managed to attach himself to the Barmakids, who made him the official arbiter of poets at their court. As such, he incurred the enmity of other poets: Abū Nuwās wrote a lampoon against Abān in which he accused him of heretical views, obviously without foundation. Both his brother ʿAbdallāh and his son Ḥamdān were also poets. In addition to lampoons of his…
Date: 2019-11-11


(4,755 words)

Author(s): Amitai, Reuven
Abāqā (d. 681/1282) was the eldest son of Hülegü Khān and succeeded him in 663/1265, being the second ruler of the Mongol Īlkhānid dynasty in Iran and the surrounding countries. His name is derived from the Mongol abaγa (“paternal uncle”) and is usually rendered “Abaghā” or “Abāqā” in Arabic and Persian. In his long reign, Abāqā was responsible for the ongoing institutionalisation of the Īlkhānate, its relative internal stability and prosperity, and an active, even aggressive policy vis-à-vis other Mongol states and the Mamlūks to …
Date: 2019-11-11


(377 words)

Author(s): Daryaee, Touraj
Abarqubādh was a ṭassūj (sub-district) in lower Iraq, located east of the Tigris between Wāsiṭ and Baṣra. Its main city was Fasī (Yaʿqūbī, 101). Its name is said to be derived from the Middle Persian Abar-kawad, meaning “Superior is Qubād,” referring to the Sāsānian king Kawādh I (Ar. Kubādh or Pers. Kavād, r. 488–96/499–531), who made administrative reforms in the area (Gyselen, 76). According to Yāqūt (d. 626/1229), Abarqubādh was one of the four ṭassūj of Maysān (Middle Pers. Mēshān, al-Madhār) (Morony, 35), along with Bahman Ardashīr (al-Furāt), Dasht-ī Maysān, an…
Date: 2019-11-11


(514 words)

Author(s): Daryaee, Touraj
Abarqūh is a town first mentioned in the 4th H./10th Century C.E., in the northeastern province of Fārs, belonging to the khurra (district) of Iṣṭakhr (al-Iṣṭakhrī, 96). The road from Isfahan to Shiraz, in the south, went through Abarqūh, both north to Isfahan and east to Yazd. The town was located by hills of ash, which were believed to have been the location of the “Fire of Nimrod,” associated with the story of the burning of Abraham (Ibn Ḥawqal, 291; al-Iṣṭakhrī, 131–2). The town is described as having fair weath…
Date: 2019-11-11


(723 words)

Author(s): Daryaee, Touraj
Abarshahr was the northeastern province (Middle Persian shahr) of Sāsānid and early Islamic Iran. Its principal city was Nīshāpūr (Middle Persian Nēw-Shābuhr, “Brave is Shāpūr”; Arabic Naysābūr), established by Shāpūr I (d. 272 C.E.) (Daryaee, 39). In the Islamic period “Nīshāpūr” replaced “Abarshahr” as the name of the main city. Two etymologies have been advanced for the name of the province. The first derives the name from * Aparn-xšahr (Parthian ’prhštr), “land of the Aparnak or Aparni,” the leading tribe of the Dahae confederation, who established the Parthia…
Date: 2019-11-11

ʿAbāṭa, Muḥammad Ḥasan

(750 words)

Author(s): Hoffman, Valerie J.
Muḥammad Ḥasan ʿAbāṭa (d. 1941) was an Egyptian Ṣūfī and patron saint of Bayt ʿAbāṭa, an Egyptian branch of the Rifāʿiyya, a Ṣūfī order founded in lower Iraq by Aḥmad b. ʿAlī al-Rifāʿī (d. 578/1182). ʿAbāṭa is recognised as a majdhūb (lit. “attracted”, a term referring to an eccentric, ecstatic, and love-maddened mystic). ʿAbāṭa (“stupidity”) is a nickname attributed to Muḥammad Ḥasan because of his foolishness during his years of jadhba (“attraction”), a mental derangement resulting from the shock of mystical revelation. He wore his hair long and in braids and so…
Date: 2019-11-11

Abay Qunanbayuli

(682 words)

Author(s): Kirchner, Mark
Abay Qunanbayuli (Russified as Abaĭ Qūnanbaev) (1845–1904) is considered the first and greatest Kazakh writer and the founder of modern Kazakh literature. He was born in 1845 in the district of Semey (Semipalatinsk) in northeastern Kazakhstan, where he also passed away in 1904. Son of a Kazakh local leader at a time when Russian influence in the internal affairs of Muslim Kazakh cattle breeders steadily increased, Abay Qunanbayuli was educated both in medreses and Russian schools. While serving in the local administration, he became acquainted with Russian dissident…
Date: 2019-11-11

ʿAbbādān (Ābādān)

(1,408 words)

Author(s): Knysh, Alexander D.
ʿAbbādān (modern-day Ābādān) is an island and city in the Shaṭṭ al-ʿArab, in the province of Khūzistān, in southwestern Iran. Located thirty-three miles (fifty-three kilometres) from the head of the Persian Gulf, it constitutes part of the combined delta of the Kārūn, Tigris, and Euphrates rivers, along with their numerous tributaries. The island is forty-two miles long (sixty-eight kilometres) and ranges from two to twelve miles wide (three to nineteen kilometres), although it must have been much…
Date: 2019-11-11

ʿAbbād b. Salmān

(939 words)

Author(s): Mourad, Suleiman A.
Abū Sahl ʿ Abbād b. Salmān (or Sulaymān) b. ʿAlī al-Ṣaymarī was a Muʿtazilī theologian who flourished in Basra in the third/ninth century. His nisba, al-Ṣaymarī, refers to his original home-town of Ṣaymara, near Khūzistān in the Jibāl region. ʿAbbād studied with Hishām al-Fuwaṭī (d. before 218/833), and his theology was part of a trend, started by his teacher, that was later marginalised in Muʿtazilī thought, especially that of Basra. His views can be reconstructed only on the basis of refutations of them in Sunnī and even some Muʿtazilī sources. ʿAbbād categorically rejected anthrop…
Date: 2019-11-11

ʿAbbād b. Ziyād b. Abī Sufyān

(452 words)

Author(s): Keshk, Khaled M. G.
ʿAbbād b. Ziyād b. Abī Sufyān (d. 100/718; sometimes designated by the sources as Ibn Sumayya and other times, but more rarely, as Ibn Abī Sufyān) was one of four sons of Ziyād b. Abīhi (d. 53/673), ʿUbaydallāh (d. 67/686), ʿAbd al-Raḥmān, and Salm (d. 73/692) being the others. All four brothers served as generals or governors under the Sufyānids. It is not certain how old ʿAbbād was at the time of his death in 100/718 (Ibn ʿAsākir, 26:234; al-Dhahabī, 398), but from the following accounts it can be assumed he was at least in his early seventies. In 41/6…
Date: 2019-11-11


(593 words)

Author(s): Ephrat, Daphna
Abū ʿĀṣim Muḥammad b. Aḥmad b. Muḥammad b. ʿAbdallāh b. ʿAbbād al-ʿAbbādī (375–458/985–1066), often called al-Qāḍī l-Harawī, was a Shāfiʿī jurisconsult and judge and a celebrated scholar of his school of law (madhhab) in the first half of the fifth/eleventh century. Born in Herat (hence his nisba al-Harawī), he studied jurisprudence in his hometown, under the judge (qāḍī) Abū Manṣūr al-Azdī, and in Nīshāpūr, under the local judge. In common with other contemporary seekers of religious knowledge, he journeyed far to meet many scholars, studied under th…
Date: 2019-11-11


(2,384 words)

Author(s): Soravia, Bruna
The ʿAbbādids (Banū ʿAbbād) were a dynasty (of Lakhmid stock), which reigned over southwestern al-Andalus—with Seville as its capital—from 417/1027 to 484/1091–2, during the period of the mulūk al-ṭawāʾif (party kings; the singular noun ṭāʾifa, which means literally “party, faction,” refers by extension to each of the small, independent kingdoms that arose in Muslim Spain after the fall of the caliphate of Córdoba in 1031, and “Taifa” is used in English to refer to the era and the dynasties of those kingdoms). The ʿAbbādids desc…
Date: 2019-11-11

ʿAbbāsa bt. al-Mahdī

(923 words)

Author(s): Hamori, Andras P.
ʿAbbāsa bt. al-Mahdī was the half-sister of Hārūn al-Rashīd (Ibn Qutayba, Maʿārif, ed. Tharwat ʿUkāsha, Cairo 1960, 380; Ibn ʿAbd Rabbihi, al-ʿIqd al-farīd, ed. Aḥmad Amīn, Aḥmad al-Zayn, and Ibrāhīm al-Ibyārī, Cairo 1965, 5:115). Beginning with the history of al-Ṭabarī (d. 310/923), her name is linked in chronicles and adab to that of the minister Jaʿfar al-Barmakī, in a story told to explain his and his family’s ruin. Hārūn, it is said, loved the company of both ʿAbbāsa and Jaʿfar, and in order that Jaʿfar might join her at the caliphal plea…
Date: 2019-11-11

al-ʿAbbās b. ʿAbd al-Muṭṭalib

(973 words)

Author(s): Görke, Andreas
Al-ʿAbbās b. ʿAbd al-Muṭṭalib (d. c. 32/653) was an uncle of the prophet Muḥammad and the eponym of the ʿAbbāsid dynasty. al-ʿAbbās was a half-brother of the Prophet's father ʿAbdallāh. His mother was Nutayla bt. Janāb from al-Namir, a tribe of the Rabīʿa confederation. al-ʿAbbās was the youngest son of ʿAbd al-Muṭṭalib and was born two or three years prior to his nephew Muḥammad, i.e., around 567 C.E. He died during the caliphate of ʿUthmān b. ʿAffān (r. 23–35/644–56), aged about 88 (lunar) years. The ʿAbbāsids were descendants of al-ʿAbbās through his son ʿAbdallāh. It is particularly …
Date: 2019-11-11

ʿAbbās b. Abī l-Futūḥ

(1,386 words)

Author(s): Walker, Paul E.
ʿAbbās b. Abī l-Futūḥ b. Tamīm b. Muʿizz b. Bādīs al-Ṣinhājī (d. 549/1154) was wazīr for slightly more than a year, 548–9/1153–4, first under the Fāṭimid caliph al-Ẓāfir (r. 544-9/1149-54), then briefly under his successor, al-Fāʾiz (r. 549-55/1154-60). His father, Abū l-Futūḥ, had been a ranking member of the Zīrid royal family but was suspected of involvement in an attempted assassination of the ruler, his brother Yaḥyā. He was imprisoned, along with his wife, Bullāra, ʿAbbās’s mother, in the Maghrib from 5…
Date: 2019-11-11

al-ʿAbbās b. al-Aḥnaf

(1,252 words)

Author(s): Enderwitz, Susanne
Abū l-Faḍl al-ʿAbbās b. al-Aḥnaf (c. 133–92/750–807) was an author of love poetry in early ʿAbbāsid Iraq. His family belonged to the Arab clan of Ḥanīfa, from the district of Basra, but had emigrated toKhurāsān. His father was buried in Basra in 150/767, when al-ʿAbbās was about seventeen—as we can infer from the report that he died before his sixtieth birthday—perhaps indicating that the family had returned to Iraq, where they owned several houses. We do not know much about the social and material …
Date: 2019-11-11

al-ʿAbbās b. ʿAmr al-Ghanawī

(574 words)

Author(s): Canard, Marius | revised by, ¨ | Gordon, Matthew S.
Al-ʿAbbās b. ʿAmr al-Ghanawī (fl. end of the third century/ninth century) was an ʿAbbāsid commander and governor. The sources say nothing directly about his origins, although Yāqūt describes a “Qaṣr al-ʿAbbās b. ʿAmr al-Ghanawī” (4:359–60), located between Naṣībīn and Sinjār, which lie in Diyār Rabīʿa. He first appears in historical accounts on campaign in 286/899, against tribesmen of the Banū Shaybān in al-Anbār, during the reign of the caliph al-Muʿtaḍid (r. 279–89/892–902), then later against other Arab tribal forces in southern Iraq. The sources know al-ʿAbbās best in re…
Date: 2019-11-11

ʿAbbās b. al-Ḥusayn al-Shīrāzī

(534 words)

Author(s): Hachmeier, Klaus
Abū l-Faḍl ʿAbbās b. al-Ḥusayn al-Shīrāzī (b. 303/915–6, d. 363/973–4) was a leading official and wazīr under the Būyid amīrs Muʿizz al-Dawla and ʿIzz al-Dawla Bakhtīyār in Baghdad. Born in Shīrāz, he was in the entourage of Muʿizz al-Dawla (r. 320–56/932–67) when the latter took Baghdad in 334/945–6. His fortunes rose under the wazīr al-Muhallabī, whose daughter he married in 349/960–1. After al-Muhallabī’s death in Shaʿbān 352/August 963, Abū l-Faḍl and Abū l-Faraj Muḥammad b. al-ʿAbbās b. Fasānjus (d. after 366/977) were jointly charged with th…
Date: 2019-11-11

al-ʿAbbās b. al-Maʾmūn

(935 words)

Author(s): Turner, John P.
Al-ʿAbbās b. al-Maʾmūn (d. 223/838) was the son of the caliph al-Maʾmūn (r. 198–218/813–33) and his concubine, Sundus. It is unclear whether he was ever formally designated heir apparent, but he was positioned to make a claim on the throne when his father died in 218/833. He first appears in al-Ṭabarī, who reports al-Maʾmūn’s reaction to the news of the death of the caliph al-Amīn (r. 193–8/809–13) (3:1065). In 213/828 al-Maʾmūn made al-ʿAbbās governor of the provinces adjoining the Byzantine Empi…
Date: 2019-11-11

al-ʿAbbās b. Mirdās

(526 words)

Author(s): von Grunebaum, Gustav E. | Tamer, Georges
Al-ʿAbbās b. Mirdās b. Abī ʿĀmir (d. between 18/639 and 35/656), of Sulaym, was an Arabian poet of the mukhaḍramūn, the class of pagan poets who died after the proclamation of Islam. A sayyid in his tribe, he won renown as a warrior as well as a poet. The celebrated marāthī poet al-Khansāʾ is said to have been his mother or stepmother. His poetical achievements surpassed those of his brothers and sister, all of whom displayed literary talent. Impelled, so the story goes, by dream experiences or epiphanies in which his family idol, Ḍimār, announ…
Date: 2019-11-11

al-ʿAbbās b. Muḥammad b. ʿAlī

(604 words)

Author(s): Bernheimer, Teresa
Al-ʿAbbās b. Muḥammad b. ʿAlī (b. ʿAbdallāh b. al-ʿAbbās; d. 186/802) was the younger brother of the first two ʿAbbāsid caliphs, al-Saffāḥ (r. 132–6/749–54) and al-Manṣūr (r. 136–58/754–75). Al-ʿAbbās was a prominent figure in the early ʿAbbāsid period and played an important role in the establishment of ʿAbbāsid authority on the Byzantine frontier, helping to retake Malaṭya, a major frontier fort in eastern Anatolia, from the Byzantines in 139/756. He was appointed governor of al-Jazīra and the neighbouring frontier regions (al-thughūr) in 142/759 and led several summer ra…
Date: 2019-11-11

al-ʿAbbās b. al-Walīd b. ʿAbd al-Malik

(594 words)

Author(s): Blankinship, Khalid Yahya
Al-ʿAbbās b. al-Walīd b. ʿAbd al-Malik (d. 132/750) was a famous general of the Umayyad house. He was the eldest son of the caliph al-Walīd b. ʿAbd al-Malik b. Marwān (al-Walīd I, r. 86–96/705–15) and was perhaps born around 65–70/685–690. His career as a commander began alongside the premier Umayyad general, his uncle, Maslama b. ʿAbd al-Malik (d. 121/738) on a summer expedition of the campaign of 88/707 or that of 89/708. The expedition captured Ṭuwāna (Tyana) in Anatolia, setting al-ʿAbbās on his …
Date: 2019-11-11

ʿAbbās Efendī

(796 words)

Author(s): Lawson, Todd
ʿAbbās Efendī (1844–1921), better known especially among Bahāʾīs as ʿAbd al-Bahāʾ (Servant of Bahāʾ), was the tireless and gifted exponent of the religion founded by his father, Bahāʾ Allāh. After his father's death in 1892, ʿAbbās became the leader of the religion, in accordance with his father's written instructions, viz., “Centre of the Covenant” ( markaz-i mīthāq). In Bahāʾī teachings, he is the “perfect exemplar” of the religious life. Born in Tehran, ʿAbbās Efendī assumed, at about the age of 18, the role of chief disciple and secretary to his father, who, …
Date: 2019-11-11

ʿAbbās Ḥilmī I

(803 words)

Author(s): Cuno, Kenneth M.
ʿAbbās Ḥilmī I (1813–54) was viceroy (khedive) of Egypt from 1849 until his death. He was a son of Aḥmad Ṭūsūn Pasha (1783–1816) and a grandson of the founder of the khedival dynasty, Muḥammad ʿAlī Pasha (r. 1805–48), who concerned himself with his grandson’s education and appointed him to a number of military and administrative posts. His was the last generation of princes to receive a purely Ottoman education; younger princes had European tutors and learned French. In the Syrian campaign of 1831–3 h…
Date: 2019-11-11

ʿAbbās Ḥilmī II

(711 words)

Author(s): Gershoni, Israel
ʿAbbās Ḥilmī II (1874–1944), third and last khedive of Egypt, ruled the country from 1892 to 1914. ʿAbbās came to the throne at the age of 18 in January 1892 after his father, Khedive Tawfīq (r. 1879–92), died unexpectedly. Unlike his weak father, considered a puppet of British colonial rule, ʿAbbās strove to restore the original status of the khedive as sovereign ruler, patterned after the model established by his grandfather Ismāʿīl (r. 1863–79), and to assert Egypt's unique status as a semi-aut…
Date: 2019-11-11


(1,386 words)

Author(s): Floor, Willem
The ʿ abbāsī is a four- shāhī silver coin struck by the Ṣafavid ruler of Iran Shāh ʿAbbās I (r. 995–1038/1587–1629) in 995/1587, which dominated Iranian coinage until the middle of the twelfth/eighteenth century. (The shāhī is a Ṣafavid term for a coin equal to 50 dīnārs (golden coin, from Lat. denarius, first struck in 907/1501). The ʿabbāsī came to be known as shāhī-yi ʿabbāsī, or just ʿabbāsī. Two types were struck, one of 120 grains and another of 144 grains, or 1.66 and 2 mithqāl, an Arabic “weight,” originally set at about 4.25 grams, but varying in later periods from less…
Date: 2019-11-11


(364 words)

Author(s): van Gelder, Geert Jan
Badr al-Din ʿAbd al-Raḥīm b. ʿAbd al-Raḥmān b. Aḥmad al-ʿAbbāsī (869–963/1463–1556) was an Egyptian philologist and poet. He was born in Cairo and studied religious and philological sciences there (al-Suyūṭī was one of his teachers), as well as in Syria and Constantinople. Asked to teach ḥadīth in Constantinople, he would have preferred to return to Cairo but nevertheless settled in Constantinople after the Ottoman conquest of the Arab lands. Most of his reputedly many works, among them a commentary on al-Bukhārī’s Ṣaḥīḥ, are lost. Three have survived, two of them preserved …
Date: 2019-11-11

ʿAbbās I

(2,715 words)

Author(s): Newman, Andrew J.
ʿAbbās I (r. 995–1038/1587–1629) was one of three sons of Muḥammad Khudābanda (d. 1003–5/1595–6) and the grandson of Ṭahmāsp I (r. 930–84/1524–76) and great-grandson of the first Ṣafavid ruler, Ismāʿīl I (r. 907–30/1501–24). Born in 978/1571, he is understood to have become shah in 995/1587, when leaders of two of the most important Kizilbāsh tribes swore allegiance to him, in preference to his father, who had become shah in 985/1577. ʿAbbās died in Māzandarān on 24 Jumāḍā I 1038/19 January 1629. Western historians often highlight the forceful personality of ʿAbbās, often st…
Date: 2019-11-11

ʿAbbāsid art and architecture

(6,616 words)

Author(s): Northedge, Alastair E.
ʿAbbāsid art and architecture was the visual culture of the ʿAbbāsid caliphate at its height (132–320/750–932). The architecture was mainly a Mesopotamian tradition of unfired and fired brick but also included other techniques and styles in Iran, Central Asia, and the Mediterranean. Nevertheless, the building types developed from the requirements of an Islamic society originating in the Arabian Peninsula. Decoration began to include styles from outside the Middle East, notably Central Asia, while c…
Date: 2019-11-11

ʿAbbāsid music

(2,793 words)

Author(s): Sawa, George Dimitri
ʿAbbāsid music was that of the ʿAbbāsid dynastic period (132–656/750–1258). Little is known of ʿAbbāsid musical repertoire save for an ʿ ūd (lute) exercise by the philosopher al-Kindī (d. after 256/870), in which the notation is expressed in terms of fingers and frets, and transcriptions in the later ʿAbbāsid era by Ṣafī al-Dīn al-Urmawī (d. 693/1294) of songs and pieces in which durations and pitches are given [Illustration 1]. 1. Notation Musical notation in the early ʿAbbāsid era was apparently precise yet rarely used. We know of only two anecdotes touching the …
Date: 2019-11-11

ʿAbbāsid Revolution

(3,997 words)

Author(s): Daniel, Elton L.
ʿAbbāsid Revolution is the term used to describe the process that led to the fall of the Umayyads and the establishment of the ʿAbbāsid dynasty in the mid-second/eighth century. 1. The daʿwa Information about the origins and development of the ʿAbbāsid Revolution may be found in the usual corpus of classical Islamic historical texts, with the most important account still being that of al-Ṭabarī, although it can now be supplemented in important ways by texts that have been more recently edited and published, notably al-Balādhurī's Ansāb al-ashrāf (vol. 3, ed. ʿAbd al- ʿAzīz al-Dūr…
Date: 2019-11-11

ʿAbbās, Iḥsān

(971 words)

Author(s): al-Qāḍī, Wadād
Iḥsān ʿAbbās (1920–2003) was the most influential, prolific, and internationally recognised Arab educator and scholar of Arabic literature in the second half of the twentieth century. His works laid the foundation for the systematic study of Andalusian literature, the scientific editing of mediaeval Arabic manuscripts, the avant–garde understanding of literary criticism (especially of modern Arabic poetry), and the research–based translation of world literature. He was a member of several academi…
Date: 2019-11-11

ʿAbbās II

(1,836 words)

Author(s): Matthee, Rudolph P.
ʿAbbās II (r. 1052–77/1642–66) was the seventh ruler of the Ṣafavid dynasty. The eldest son of Shāh Ṣafī I (r. 1038–52/1629–42), he was originally named Sulṭān Muḥammad Mīrzā born in 1042/1633—most likely on January 1—ʿAbbās II succeeded his father upon the latter's premature death on 12 Ṣafar 1052/12 May 1642. The transition of power was peaceful. The stability needed for this nonviolent accession was secured through the payment of a large sum by way of wages in arrears to the military and a substantial tax reprieve to peasants. The killing of the shāh's four siblings and the executio…
Date: 2019-11-11

ʿAbbās III

(302 words)

Author(s): Tucker, Ernest
ʿ Abbās III (r. 1145–9/1732–6) was the last shah of the Ṣafavid dynasty. At first protected by Ṭahmāsp Qulī Khān (1100–60/1688–1747, the future ruler Nādir Shāh), ʿAbbas III was then deposed by Nādir Shāh and later murdered on the orders of his son. When he made the eight-month-old ʿAbbās III his monarch, Nādir dropped his own previous title, Ṭahmāsp Qulī Ḳhān, now preferring to be referred to as vakīl al-dawla (lit. ‘administrator of the state’, i.e., prime minister) or nāʾib al-salṭana (viceroy). ʿAbbās III was deposed in 1148/1736, when Nādir (r. 1147–60/1736–47) became …
Date: 2019-11-11

ʿAbbāsī, Shaykh

(480 words)

Author(s): Farhad, Massumeh
Shaykh ʿAbbāsī was an eleventh/seventeenth-century Ṣafavid painter who introduced a new hybrid style, inspired largely by Indian pictorial conventions. His works are dated between 1057/1647 and 1095/1684 and are often signed in minute characters with the phrase bahā girift chu gardīd Shaykh ʿAbbāsī, “it [or he] achieved worth because he became Shaykh ʿAbbāsī.” According to Robert Skelton (ʿAbbāsī, Šayk̲, EIr, 87–8), the signature implies that he and/or his work gained value because his patron ʿAbbās II (r. 1052–77/1642–66) allowed him to use the nisba “ʿAbbāsī” (indicating his…
Date: 2019-11-11

ʿAbbās Mīrzā

(1,982 words)

Author(s): Werner, Christoph
Nāyib al-Salṭana ʿAbbās Mīrzā (1203–49/1789–1833) was the fourth son of Fatḥ-ʿAlī Shāh Qājār (r. 1797–1834). He was heir apparent (valī ʿahd) to the Qājār throne of Iran and, as governor of Azerbaijan, played a leading role in the two Russo-Persian wars in the Caucasus (1804–13 and 1826–8). With his ministers Mīrzā ʿĪsā Buzurg (d. 1822) and Mīrzā Abū l-Qāsim Qāʾim Maqām (d. 1835), he is credited with making the first efforts at reform and modernisation in Iran. He was born in Navā (in Māzandarān) on 4 Dhū l-Ḥijja 1203/26 August 1789 and died in Mashhad on 10 Jumada II 1249/25 October 1833. ʿAbbā…
Date: 2019-11-11

Abbasquluağa Bakıxanov

(496 words)

Author(s): Heß, Michael R.
Abbasquluağa Bakıxanov (Qüdsi) (b. 3 July 1794, d. mid-December 1846 N.S.) was a Russian officer and diplomat and an Azerbaijani poet, writer, and translator. Abbasqulu’s father, Mirzə Məhəmməd II, was one of the last  khans of Baku. An ally of the Russians from 1803, he assumed the partially Russianised name Bakıxanov. In 1820, he joined the Russian diplomatic and military service and became an adviser on local affairs and translator. His highest military rank was colonel. In 1831, Bakıxanov fell out with the Russian commander-in-chief, G. V. Rozen, and quit the servi…
Date: 2019-11-11

ʿAbbās Sarwānī

(707 words)

Author(s): Kolff, Dirk H. A.
ʿAbbās Sarwānī was an Afghan historian in Mughal India. He was a member of a Sarwānī Afghan family which had settled in the town of Banūr, in the sarkār of Sirhind, after receiving two thousand bīghās of land as a maintenance grant during the reign of Bahlūl Lodī. Islām Shāh Sūr renewed the grant to shaykh ʿAlī, ʿAbbās’s father; but in 987/1579 the land was reappropriated by the state. ʿAbbās subsequently entered the service of Sayyid Ḥamīd, a scholarly officer of Akbar; and it was on this latter’s instance that, in 990/1582, he wrote his Tuḥfa-yi Akbar Shāhī, generally known as the Tārīkh-i She…
Date: 2019-11-11

ʿAbbūd, Mārūn

(373 words)

Author(s): Ruocco, Monica
Mārūn ʿAbbūd (1886–1962), Lebanese literary critic, writer, and poet, was born on 9 February 1886 in ʿAyn Kifāʿ. At the time of his death, he was considered one of the foremost intellectuals of his time. After a religious education—his parents had hoped he would undertake an ecclesiastical career—he continued his studies at the Madrasat al-Ḥikma in Beirut, which provided a milieu more favourable to his literary aspirations. He taught from 1907 to 1957, first at the Université Saint-Joseph and the Collège des Frères Maristes of Be…
Date: 2019-11-11

ʿAbd al-Aḥad Nūrī Sīvāsī

(400 words)

Author(s): Clayer, Nathalie
ʿ Abd al-ʿAḥad Nūrī Sīvāsī (d. in 1061/1650–1), born in Sivas (Sīwās) in central Anatolia in 1003/1594–5 or 1013/1604–5, was son of the muftī of Sivas and nephew of the famous Khalwatī (Halveti) shaykh ʿAbd al-Majīd Sīvāsī (1563–1639), who had been invited by Sulṭān Meḥmed III (1003–12/1595–1603) to the Ottoman capital. He accompanied his uncle to Istanbul, where he studied religious sciences. His uncle initiated him into the Khalwatī ṭarīqa (mystical “way”), founded in Baku by Yaḥya Shirwānī (d. around 864/1460). After receiving the khilāfet (investiture diploma), he was sent …
Date: 2019-11-11

Abdalan-ı Rum, historical

(1,704 words)

Author(s): Beldiceanu, Irène
Abdalan-ı Rum (Ott. Turk. Abdālān-i Rūm, mod. Turk. Rum Abdallarıi, “Abdals of Rum”), is a compound term consisting of the word abdal/abdāl (with the Persian plural suffix -ān ) and the geographical name Rum (Rūm, referring to Anatolia in general and to an Ottoman province in northeastern Anatolia that included Çorum, Tokat, and Sivas). The term was made famous by the historian Aşıkpaşazade (ʿĀşıqpaşazāde) (d. after 896/1491, or, less likely, 908/1502) and was widely used for dervishes and Anatolian and even Rumelian Ṣūfīs…
Date: 2019-11-11

Abdalan-ı Rum, literature

(1,231 words)

Author(s): Heß, Michael R.
Abdalan-ı Rum (Abdālān-ı Rūm, from the Tu. sing.  abdal) refers to “dervishes” coming from Rum, the former Roman territories of Anatolia. They are historical figures who lived from the seventh/thirteenth century until about the end of the ninth/fifteenth century. The  literature about them is often legendary. Of the few of their literary works that have been preserved, most are posthumously recorded hagiographies or utterances only ascribed to individual figures. Much of this literature was apparently handed down orally for some tim…
Date: 2019-11-11


(517 words)

Author(s): Farah, Caesar E.
ʿAbdalī (pl. ʿAbādila) is the tribe of Khawlān b. ʿAmr b. al-Khāf b. Quḍāʿa, which consists of two principal clans, Sallāmī and ʿUzaybī. The ʿAbdalīs became the pre-eminent tribe of South Yemen, centred at Laḥj in the territory of Aden, which they dominated from 1740, when they expelled the dawla who governed in the name of the imām of Ṣanʿāʾ, until World War I. The first chief and ruler of the area, ʿAbd al-Karīm Faḍl (r. 1915–47), adopted the title of sultan and erected a fort at Biʾr Aḥmad. In the early nineteenth century the tribe controlled the k…
Date: 2019-11-11

ʿAbdallāh b. ʿAbbās

(7,558 words)

Author(s): Gilliot, Claude
Abū l-ʿAbbās ʿAbdallāh b. ʿAbbās b. ʿAbd al-Muṭṭalib b. Hāshim b. ʿAbd Manāf al-Qurashī al-Hāshimī (d. c. 68/687–8), known usually as Ibn ʿAbbās, was a paternal cousin and a Companion of the Prophet. 1. The life of Ibn ʿAbbās. The making of a Companion—between history and myth The sources tell us much about Ibn ʿAbbās, both historical and mythical. Given the importance attributed to his contribution to religious science, the period of his birth and childhood is surrounded by an aura of legend and fantasy, like those of the prophet Muḥammad h…
Date: 2019-11-11
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