Page:EB1911 - Volume 05.djvu/64

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52
CALIPHATE

Kūrtakīn. Ibn Rāiq came back and reinstated himself as Amīr al-Omarā. But Barīdī again laid siege to Bagdad, and Mottaqi fled to Nāsir addaula the Hamdānid prince of Mosul, who then marched against Bagdad, and succeeded in repelling Barīdī. In return he obtained the office of Amīr al-Omarā. But the Dailamite and Turkish soldiery did not suffer him to keep this office longer than several months. Tūzūn, a former captain of Bajkam, compelled him to return to Mosul and took his place. Mottaqi fled again to Mosul and thence to Rakka. The Ikshīd, sovereign of Egypt and Syria, offered him a refuge, but Tūzūn, fearing to see the caliph obtain such powerful support, found means to entice him to his tent, and had his eyes put out, Saphar 333 (October 944).

22. Reign of Mostakfi.—As successor Tūzūn chose al-Mostakfī billāh (“he who finds full sufficiency with God”), a son of Moktafi. This prince, still more than his predecessors, was a mere puppet in the hands of Tūzūn, who died a few months later, and his successor Ibn Shīrzād. Such was the weakness of the caliph that a notorious robber, named Hamdī, obtained immunity for his depredations by a monthly payment of 25,000 dinars. One of the Būyid princes, whose power had been steadily increasing, marched about this time against Bagdad, which he entered in Jomada I. A.H. 334 (December 945), and was acknowledged by the caliph as legal sovereign, under the title of Sultan. He assumed at this time the name of Mo‛izz addaula. Mostakfi was soon weary of this new master, and plotted against him. At least Mo‛izz addaula suspected him and deprived him of his eyesight, Jomada II. A.H. 334 (January 946). There were thus in Bagdad three caliphs who had been dethroned and blinded, Qāhir, Mottaqi and Mostakfi.

23. Reign of Moti.—Mo‛izz addaula soon abandoned his original idea of restoring the title of caliph to one of the descendants of Ali, fearing a strong opposition of the people, and also dreading lest this should lead to the recovery by the caliphs of their former supremacy. His choice fell on a son of Moqtadir, who took the title of al-Moti’ billāh (“he who obeys God”). The sultan, reserving to himself all the powers and revenues of the Caliphate, allowed the caliph merely a secretary and a pension of 5000 dirhems a day. Though in public prayers and on the coins the name of the caliph remained as that of the supreme authority, he had in reality no authority out of the palace, so that the saying became proverbial, “he contents himself with sermon and coin.”

The Hamdānid prince of Mosul, who began to think his possessions threatened by Mo‛izz addaula, tried without success to wrest Bagdad from him, and was obliged to submit to the payment of tribute. He died in 358 (A.D. 969), and ten years later the power of this branch of the Hamdanids came to an end. The representative of the other branch, Saif addaula, the prince of Haleb (Aleppo), conducted the war against the Byzantines with great valour till his death in 356 (A.D. 967), but could not stop the progress of the enemy. His descendants maintained themselves, but with very limited power, till A.H. 413 (A.D. 1022).

Mo‛izz addaula died in the same year as Saif addaula, leaving his power to his son Bakhtiyār ‛Izz addaula, who lacked his father’s energy and loved pleasure more than business.

While the Abbāsid dynasty was thus dying out in shame and degradation, the Fātimites, in the person of Mo‛izz li-dīn-allah (or Mo‛izz Abu Tamin Ma‛add) (“he who makes God’s religion victorious”), were reaching the highest degree of power and glory in spite of the opposition of the Carmathians, who left their old allegiance and entered into negotiations with the court of Bagdad, offering to drive back the Fātimites, on condition of being assisted with money and troops, and of being rewarded with the government of Syria and Egypt. The former condition was granted, but the caliph emphatically refused the latter demand, saying: “Both parties are Carmathians, they profess the same religion and are enemies of Islam.” The Carmathians drove the Fātimites out of Syria, and threatened Egypt, but, notwithstanding their intrepidity, they were not able to cope with their powerful rival, who, however, in his turn could not bring them to submission. In 978-979 peace was made on condition that the Carmathians should evacuate Syria for an annual payment of 70,000 dinars. But the losses sustained by the Carmathians during that struggle had been enormous. Their power henceforward declined, and came to an end in A.H. 474 (A.D. 1081).

Mo‛izz addaula, as we have seen, professed a great veneration for the house of Ali. He not only caused the mourning for the death of Hosain and other Shi‛ite festivals to be celebrated at Bagdad, but also allowed imprecations against Moawiya and even against Mahomet’s wife Ayesha and the caliphs Abu Bekr, Omar and Othman, to be posted up at the doors of the mosques. These steps annoyed the people and the Turkish soldiery, who were Sunnites, and led at last to an insurrection. Moti was compelled to abdicate, and Bakhtiyār was driven out of Bagdad Dhu‛l-qa‛da 363 (August 974).

24. Reign of Tai.—Moti left the empty title of caliph to his son al-Tā‛i li-amri‛llāh (“the obedient to the command of God”). The Turks who had placed him on the throne could not maintain themselves, but so insignificant was the person of the caliph that ‛Adod addaula, who succeeded his cousin Bakhtiyār in Bagdad, did not think of replacing him by another. Under this prince, or king, as he was called, the power of the Būyids reached its zenith. His empire stretched from the Caspian to the Persian Sea, and in the west to the eastern frontier of Syria. He did his best to remedy the misery caused by the intestine Wars, repaired the ruined mosques and other public edifices, founded hospitals and libraries—his library in Shirāz was one of the wonders of the world—and improved irrigation. It was also he who built the mausoleum of Hosain at Kerbela, and that of Ali at Kufa. But after his death in the year 372 (A.D. 983), his sons, instead of following the example of their predecessors, the three sons of Būya, fought one against the other. In 380 (A.D. 990) the youngest of them, Bahā addaula, had the upper hand. This prince, who was as avaricious as he was ambitious, wishing to deprive the caliph Ta‛i of his possessions, compelled him to abdicate A.H. 381 (A.D. 991).

25. Reign of Qādir.—A grandson of Moqtadir was then made caliph under the name of al-Qādir billāh (“the powerful through God”). The only deed of power, however, that is recorded of him, is that he opposed himself to the substitution of a Shi‛ite head cadi for the Sunnite, so that Bahā addaula had to content himself with giving to the Shi‛ites a special judge, to whom he gave the title of naqīb (superintendent). During this caliphate the Būyid princes were in continual war with one another. Meanwhile events were preparing the fall of their dynasty. In 350 (A.D. 961) a Turkish general of the Sāmānids had founded for himself a principality in Ghazni, arid at his death in 366 (A.D. 976) his successor Sabuktagin had conquered Bost in Sijistān and Qosdār in Baluchistan, beaten the Indian prince Diaya Pala, and been acknowledged as master of the lands west of the Indus. At his death in 387 his son Mahmud conquered the whole of Khorasan and Sijistān, with a great part of India. He then attacked the Būyids, and would have destroyed their dynasty but for his death in the year 421 (A.D. 1030).

In 389 (A.D. 999) Ilek-khān, the prince of Turkistan, took Bokhārā and made an end to the glorious state of the Sāmānids, the last prince of which was murdered in 395 (A.D. 1005). The Sāmānids had long been a rampart of the Caliphate against the Turks, whom they held under firm control. From their fall dates the invasion of the empire by that people. The greatest gainer for the moment was Mahmūd of Ghazni. In Mesopotamia and Irak several petty states arose on the ruins of the dominions of the Hamdānids and of the Abbasids.

Qādir died in the last month of A.H. 422 (November 1031). He is the author of some theological treatises.

26. Reign of Qāim.—He was succeeded by his son, who at his accession took the title of al-Qāim bi-amri‛llāh (“he who maintains the cause of God”). During the first half of his long reign took place the development of the power of the Ghūzz, a great Turkish tribe, who took the name Seljuk from Seljuk their chief in Transoxiana. Already during the reign of Mahmūd large bodies had passed the Oxus and spread over Khorasan and the adjacent