Untitled timeline


Roman empire divides


King of Khosroess

531 - 579

Meccan Period

570 - 622

Muhammad First wife: widow Khadija (merchant and businesswoman: managed her father's business interests and preserved family's fortune) proposed: 'mother of Islam'. M gave her 20 camels as his dowry/mahr (usually 400 dirhams dowry), four times as much, significant for she to be the only wife as long as she lived instead of traditional 4
His high social rank was established by Khadija (wife) and Abu Talib (had of the Banu hashim clan of the Quraysh tribe)Merchant and sheperd
Periodically retreating to cave in Mount Hira for seclusion and prayer
First Revelation at age 40: Quran - recitation: the lord taught by the pen. Writing therefore sacred (God word, Muhammad pen)
From revelation taught by Gabriel, M teaches first wife Khadija, then his cousin Ali at age 10, then father in law Abu Bakr (Aisha's father)
Started preaching revelations 3 years later
to escape persecutions, sent his followers to Abyssinia before he could flee to Medina

Birth of Muhammad - Year of the Elephant


Pre Islam:
Arabia Deserta (Empty Quarter) sandy Vs Arabia Felix (Syrian desert) limestone
From Fertile Crescent (Mesopotamia, Egypt, Indus Valley)
Nomadism development, camels, seasonal pastures
Kaaba: celestial stone brought to Abraham, Banu Quraysh of Mecca profitable advantages: sanctuary for numerous divinities (idol) around arabia, thus object of pilgrimage + merchants travelling stop to visit sanctuary
Provoked conflict Quraysh Vs Qusayy (clans) over who is custodian

North: Nabateans (script ancestral to Arabic) Phoenicians from Carthage
Took trading roots away from
South: Sebeans (400BC)
Hellenistic/classical roman and greek influences:
- hydraulic engineering
- Crock made cisterns (Petra = stone)
- Pagan/ foreign imagery
- Mountain tops highest place of worship (iconoclastic praise until Islam but tendencies still kept for while)

2 months before birith, father Abd Allah dies. Mother Aminah sends his out in the desert as tradition requires to learn self-discipline, nobility, and freedom. Nursed by poor bedouin lady Haminah. After five years, mother introduced him to city and met family, from Mecca to Yathrib mother falls ill and dies 577: Muhammad orphan with seals of prophet, brought up by uncle Abu Talib
Honest, trustworthy man

Year of the Elephant:
Axum (king of Axum Kingdom/ Abyssinia: 400BC - 10C) invades yemen, conquer Mecca

Death of Aminah


mother of M

Death of Abd Al Muttalib


Grandfather of M

First Revelation


Koran - recitation

Death of Khadija and Abu Talib


Wife and uncle of M



Fled from Mecca to Medina w/ Abd Allah

Medinan Period

622 - 632

Unification of tribes under Constitution of Medina
After 8 years of Mecca Medina conflict, peaceful conquest of Mecca: destruction of idols in Kaaba, sent followers to destroy all pagan temples in Arabia
By time of death (632) almost all arabian peninsula had converted and he had united Arabia into a Muslim religious polity (ummah)

Ridda (Apostacy) Wars

622 - 623

After M's death against rebel arabian tribes not pledging allegiance to Abu Bakr

Second Battle of Badr


Battle of Uhud


Battle of Badr


on wells of coastal caravan route



Pilgrimage from Medina to Mecca for Ka'aba

Death of Muhammad


Conquest of Syria and Persia

633 - 637

Military general: Khalid Ibn Walid
Conquest era:
Islam organization
Zeal, enthusiasm
Religious: disaffected people (Christian heretics) persecuted by Byzantines and Syrians whereas Islam was very tolerant

First 629 - Khaibar attack: oasis north of Medina inhabited by Jews
Second - Syria take over
Third 933 - Syria and Persia conquest (Mesopotamia, Syria, Egypt)

Battle of the Bridge


Damascus raided

Battle of Yarmuk


Syria taken over

Battle of Qadisiya


Ctesiphon taken over

Conquest of Egypt, Alexandria

639 - 640

Military general: Amr Ibn Al as

Battle of the Camel


First Fitnah

656 - 661

Civila War - Ali

Battle of Siffin


Euphrates : (pages of Koran on spears) Vs Muawiyah
Denounce same Allah they were fighting for

Umayyad Dynasty Caliphate

661 - 750

Capital : Damascus

Colonisation of Khurasan


Arabs from Basra and Kufa

Second Fitnah

680 - 692

Cross of Jaxartes river (Khazakistan)


Under Kutaiba bin Muslin (governor of Khurasan under al Walid I)
Extending to Ferghana Valley
Conquest of Transoxania

Sulayman Caliph

715 - 717

Granted refugee to Yazid before caliphate
Made Yazid governor of Mesopotamia (Iraq) and later of Khurasan - continued expansion towards Tabaristan (Iran)
Didn't move to Damascus, remained in Ramla (Palestine)
Built wells for pilgrims + enforcements for prayers (Mecca)

Umar II Caliph

717 - 720

public works in Persia, Khorasan and North Africa (canals, roads, rest houses for travelers and medical dispensaries)
encouraged education
programs for orphans and the destitute
abolish the Jizya tax
ordered the first collection of hadiths
- made unpaid labor illegal
- pasture lands evenly distributed among the poor for cultivation
- urged all officiers to listen to people complaints

Yazid II

720 - 724

Most corrupt ??
Civil wars outbrak in Al Andalus, North Africa and east
Pushed into the Caucasus, taking Balanjar (722-723)

Hisham Caliph

724 - 743

patron of the arts: encouraged arts in the empire: built schools, translation of literary and scientific masterpieces into Arabic
stricter interpretation of the Sharia
Battle of Tours

Great Berber Revolt

739 - 744

Under Abd Al Malik
Led by Al Matghari
First successful secession from Caliphate domain
Purist Kharjite preachers
Failed capture of Umayyad capital Kairouan
Spread and governed (Kharjites imams and chieftains) western Maghreb fragmented into smaller berber statelets

Walid II Caliph

743 - 744

Dissolute life (reputed drinking, singing and immorality)
open-handed: took care of cripple and blind (increasing their stipend)
Plotted against Khalid. Armed men marched in Damascus and besieged castle

Marwan II Caliph

744 - 750

Governor of Armenia and Azeirbajan
Siege of Emesa
Kharjite rebellion (sort of Third Fitnah): defeated syrian forces and took Kufa
Defeat at Battle of the Zab (river)
End of Umayyad dynasty in esat: Marwan died in Egypt escaping, heirs died, all Umayyads killed by Abbassids
Except for Abd Al - Rahman, escaped to Spain and found Umayyad dynasty

Third Fitnah


Battle on river Zab
Marwan defeated

Ibn Tulun takes power


Abu Abd Allah Al Shi in North Africa as Dai


Fragmentation of Empire into Sub Dynasties


Conquest of Egypt, Foundation of Cairo


Against Tulunids
Cairo: Caliphal residence

Battle of Anjalut


Ottoman Turks conquer Costantinople


Ottoman Turks Caliphate


Seljuk Turks


Marwanid Caliphate

Marwan bin Al Hakam Caliph

684 - 685

Was secretary under Uthman

Abd Al Malik Caliph

685 - 705

Walid Caliph

705 - 715

Sufyanid Caliphate

Muawiyah Caliph

661 - 680

Yazid Caliph

680 - 683

Muawiyah II Caliph

683 - 684

Rightly Guided Caliphs

Abu Bakr Caliph I

632 - 634

Umar Caliph II

634 - 644

Uthman Caliph III

644 - 656


Kairowan at Okba (Africa)

670 - 683

First Arab Siege of Costantinople


by Abu Ayub

Carthage abbandoned for Tum


Second Arab Siege of Costantinople

717 - 718

By Leo the Isauman


Tarik Vs Visigoths (Roderik)


Freed berber mawali

Battle of Poitiers/Tours


North central France - Frankish/Burgundian forces under Austrian Mayor Charles Martels Vs Umayyad army under Al Gafiqi
Charles Martel victorious
Muslim sack of Abbey of Saint Martins of Tours (holiest european shrine)

Abbassid Dynasty Caliphate

Abul Abbass al Saffah Caliph

749 - 754

'the generous'
Kufa as new capital
Jews, Nestorian Christians, and Persians well represented in government and in succeeding Abbasid administration
Betrayed muslim shia supporters, having promised their imam as head of caliphate

Abu Muslim removed


Had led victory of Abbassids forces against Umayyad in Third Fitnah
Assasination arranged by Al Mansur
Motive: to preclude a power struggle in the empire

Al Mansur Caliph

754 - 775

'the victorious'

Hasanid Alids Rebellion

756 - 762

Leading brothers: Muhammad 'the pure soul' revolt Medina (September) and Ibrahim revolt Basra (November)
Abbassids (under al Mansure) lacked organization and coordination
Dissent among rival shia for future political objectives
Ibrahim's forces defeated at Bakhamra

Foundation of Baghdad

762 - 766

'City of Peace'
North of Persian capital Ctesiphon
Commissioned by Al Mansur
Supervised by the Barmakids
control over strategic and trading routes (along Tigris)
Abundence of water (both SOuth and North ends) and dry climate
18mm bricks counted by Abu Hanifa - also developed a canal system
framework: two semicircles 19km in diameter
single ring of residential and commercial structures, later added ulterior ring
Parks, gardens, villas, and promenades
Centre: mostue + headquarters for guards
circular design, 'the round city': reflection of the traditional Persian Sasanian urban design (Sasanian city of Gur in Fars identical, 500 years before)
Combine the hegemony of Arabic tribe with the imperial, court, ceremonial, and administrative structures of the Persians
House of Wisdom: ancient Greek, Middle Persian and Syriac texts translations, representative of Arab Islamic - centre of learning and commerce
Surraounding walls: name Basra, Kufa, Khurasan and Damascus because gates (double doors made of iron, heavy) facing cities, 30m high with merlons, embattled parapet pierced with embrasures, surrounded by further thicker wall with towers and rounded merlons, protected by solid glacis and water filled moat

Golden Gate Palace: residence of the Caliph and family, centre: green dome 39m high, surrounded by esplanade, built by Naubakht, a Zoroastrian, and Mashallah, a Jew.

Al Mahdi Caliph III

775 - 785

Pilgrimage to Mecca - Contract


Al Mahdi contract for succession of sons Al Hadi and Harun

Al Hadi Caliph VI

785 - 786

Harun Al Rashid Caliph V

786 - 809

Established the House of Wisdom
Artistic, musical, scientific, cultural and religious prosperity
Intellectually, politically and militarily resourceful

Pilgrimage to Mecca - Contract


Harun's contract for sons Amin and Mamun sucession (see Al Amin Caliph VI)

Destruction of Barmakids


Culminated with Jafar's death, Caliph Harun

Al Amin Caliph VI

809 - 813

Pledge during hajj to Mecca that he would respect father's (Harun) will: Al Amin would be Caliph, brother Al Mamun would be governor of Khurasana (Eastern Iran) granted autonomy, on Al Amin's death, Al Mamun would be caliph
Sought to: turn Mamun's financial agent in Rayy against him and ordered him to aknowledge his son Musa as heir to caliphate and to return to Baghdad
BUT: Mamun refused orders, replaced agent + had strong support from Iran
Destroyed succession documents of father Harun
Amin: interferring minister Al Fadl
811: dispatched army under Ali ibn Isa ibn Mahan against Mamun but defeated by capable general Tahir bin Husain (killed Ali)
Uprising in Baghdad by Ali ibn Isa's son Husayn but quelled (Husayn dead)
Basra, Kufa, Mecca (Dawud, then confirmed governor of Mecca and medina) allied to Mamun
Mother Zubaida to arbitrate succession (as Aisha had), refused - caliphate to Mamun

Battle of Rayy


Ali bin Isa (Amin's general) dies

Siege of Baghdad

812 - 813

Mamun's army under Tahir near Anbar Gate
Worst effects by jail prisoners outbreak
Amin negotiated freedom on condition he would resign caliph position and turn over documents. Left on boat as caliph, rejecting warnings to wait, reached by Tahir, thrown into water, captured on shore and executed
Mamun new caliph

Al Mamun Caliph IV

813 - 833

Alchemy developed: pioneers Jabir Ibn Hayyan and his student Yusuf Lukwa
House of Wisdom - center of tanslation for greek, rediscovery of Hellenism (Islamic renaissance)
centralization of power and the certainty of succession
Ulama (arbitrers of Sharia law - class of muslims scholars engaged in islamic studies) as political force Vs Mihna (initiated by Mamun - inquisition where religious scholars would be punished, imprisoned, killed if not conceding to Quran doctrine, with intention to centralize religious power in the caliphal institution and test the loyalty of his subjects, central question was about the createdness of the Qur'an, state Quran to be created to be released, controversial for traditionalist-Sunnis believing Quran is coeternal with God. Served two caliphates until abbandoned by Al Mutawakkil (848))
Tahrid named governor of Khurasan to assure his loyalty BUT became increasingly powerful and entrenched in iranian politics, contrary to Mamun's desire to centralize and strengthen caliphal power: Tahrid dynasty threath
Win over Shia: named Ali ar Rida, eighth Imam, as successor but empty gesture as he was too old as to die before succession, in fact poisoned and died: episode further alienated Shia from Abbassids (had already been promised and denied caliphate by Al Abbass)
Personality: concisive and eloquent speaker, generous, respectful for Muhammad and religion, just and love of poetry.

Mamun enters Baghdad


Al Mutasim Caliph

833 - 842

Under genreal Al Afshin defeated uprising of Babak Khorramdin (had overcome several caliphate forces) and executed after glorious entrance in Samarra
Battle of Anzen (838): Al Afshin response and victory after Byzantine emperor Theophilus launched attack
Aware of conspiracy by Mamun's son Al Abbass bin Al Mamun and thus ecxecuted
Ghilman introduced to caliphate: slave-soldiers taken as prisoners of war from conquered regions and made caliphal guards
Tahrid dynasty received governship of Farghana, Samarquand and Herat: provinces exempted from many tributes and oversight functions
support for heretical sect of Mutazila, applying brutal methods for torturing imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal

Samarra new capital


Under al Mutasim, until 892

Al Wathiq Caliph

842 - 847

great patron of scholars, artists.
Renowned for his own musical talents, composed over one-hundred songs.
Revolts in Syria and Palestine caused by arge gap between Arab populations and the Turkish armies

Al Mutawakkil Caliph

847 - 861

Put end to the Mihna "ordeal", the Inquisition-like attempt by his predecessors to impose a single Mu'tazili version of Islam
Revolt by Bujah (african descent people): ceased paying tax on gold mine, drove muslims away around Egypt. Mutawakkil sent al Qumma to restore order
Death, said to be platted by son, and begginning of 'Anarchy at Samarra'

Al Muntasir

861 - 862

Reigned during the period 'Anarchy at Samarra'
Accused of having plotted against murder of father (Al Mutawakkil) by Turkish soldier, while Turkish party helping him
Turkish party and caliph prevailed on removing brothers to succession and appointing his son, fearing revenge on murder of his father
House of Shia favourer: removed ban from pilgrmage to tombs of Hassan and Hussayn

AL Mustain Caliph

862 - 866

Anarchy at Samarra : People blamed the Turks that had brought disaster on the faith, murdered their Caliphs, and set up others at their pleasure.
rebellion by the Alid Yahya ibn Umar.
escaped from Samarra, al Mutazz caiph, brought back and executed

Al Mustasim

1242 - 1258

Last Abbassid Cantil until sack of Baghdad by Mongols

Abbassid Caliphate ends


Executed by Mongols with sack of Baghdad

Imamate Caliphate

Ubaid Allan Al Mahdi Imam

909 - 934

Founder of Fatimid caliphate
Only major Shia caliph
Established rule throughout north africa
Father (Imam al Husain al Mastoor) Dais to Yemen and Western Africa to found fatimid Caliphate
Expansionistic policy
City named after him: Al Mahdiyya
916 Great Mosque of MAhdia

Abu Karim Imam

934 - 946

Fatimid Caliphate

Mansur Caliph

946 - 953

Muizz Caliph

953 - 975

Aziz Caliph

975 - 996

Hakim Caliph

996 - 1021

Convinced by his divinity