History of Islam- March 13, 2013
I. The World ofAl-Ghazali
a. Scholar living and working under the Seljuqs, (converts to Islam who got
powerful- the defenders of Sunni Islam)
b. Destroyed the Byzantine border and took Mecca and Medina from Shia Fatimids
c. Coined the term Sultan- NizamAl-Mulk wrote the book of Politics, which
defines what exactly the Sultan is (subservient to only the Caliph and God-they
would be approved by the Caliph). Sultans are responsible for making sure
Islamic values are upheld on their lands. Nizam tried to “save” the dying
Caliphate from the Seljuqs by this Sultan idea.
d. Iqta- “tax farming/feudal system” a way for the Sultan/warlords (Atabegs) to pay
the army which allowed the lords to be mostly autonomous
e. Nizamiyya- schools (madrassa) founded by Nizam Al-Mulk, in which one of
these schools, Al-Ghazali taught. Learning based on coping books and notes
down word for word. (Period of the Sunni Synthesis)
f. Al-Ghazali- wrote an autobiography of his thought process.Aphilosopher who
up and left teaching one day and traveled as a Sufi. In book he talks about his
Sufist journey. Looks at the different types of teaching/learning/knowing God:
i. Authoritative Teaching- Obeying everything a teacher tells you, blindly
follow instruction (Ishmilis and their Imams). Only know God to the point
which your teacher did
ii. Philosophy- better, but uses only basic logic, which can lead you astray
from Islamic truth. Does not lead you to moral conclusions.
iii. Kalam Theology- You end up with watered down philosophy and
theology. Abit intellectually dishonest, bending things to make them fit.
iv. Sufism- knowing God through your own experience, feeling, and emotion.
g. Sufism- sufi orders organized around the Shaykh and disciple relationship.
Student pledged full obedience to teacher. Played a large role into bringing the
Turks into Islam. Shaykhs were the leaders of the Seljuqs (charismatic type of
II. The First Crusade 1096-1099-
Byzantine Emperor asked pope for mercenaries to defeat the Seljuqs. Pope Urban II
turns this outward and decides to try and retake the Middle East. Penitence
movements were very common at this time so the pope took those people and that
feeling and put it towards the crusade
a. Peter the Hermit and “the people’s Crusade”- Peter was a popular preacher
who went around from town to town exclaiming that the end of the world was
near and in order to assure one’s place with God, you should go on this military
crusade. Sending ordinary townsfolk to the crusade. People really felt this war
would purify them. Peter and his followers were slaughtered at war.
b. First Crusade was a bloody success with crusaders establishing an independent
kingdom in Jerusalem. Byzantines never got the conquered lands. Bring castle
culture to the Middle East.
III. The Third Crusade (1189-1192) a. Atabeg Zengi- Suboordinate nobels in Seljuq heiarchy who control the taxes
(IQTA). This guy started to swallow up his neighboring atabegs. These Zengids
wanted to get rid of the Fatimids and retake lands lost in the crusades. Zengi
begins to attack crusader states.
Salah Al-Din- Zengi general in army who was successful in conquering
Egypt. He was the first real ruler in the Ayyubid Dynasty in Egypt. (Conquered
Fatimids. The turned to crusader states and retook Jerusalem. Uses the concept
of Jihad. Cordial with everyone including crusaders, he was just trying to take
land- he was very merciful.
Horns of Hattin (two cliffs outside Jerusalem) al-Din attacked Jerusalem
but then retreated and the crusaders followed. Out in the dessert, Din had
stopped up all the wells so his army had water and the crusaders did not.
IV. Long Term Effects
a. Fourth Crusade (1200-1204)
i. Never made it to the holy land attacked Byzantine Constantinople instead
ii. Italian City-States
March 18, 2013
I. Rule #1 Don’t Piss Off the Khan
a. Chinghiz Khan (1167-1227)- “Gangus” or Temujin- He and his brothers were
raised by their mother and became outcasts from other Mongol tribes. Temujin
was to get vengeance for those who killed his father. Rival tribes stole his wife,
and Khan defeats the tribe. Conquered a large amount of land inAsia, brought
together all the different Mongol tribes and he also reorganized the tribes
i. 1206 The Great Quriltay- The great meeting in which the leaders of the
other Mongol Tribes acknowledge Chinghiz Khan as leader. This is where
his name changed from Temujin to Changhiz.
b. Conquered others by fear: when a city opposed him, he obliterated the town so
other towns would submit.
c. The Khan’s main ambition was really to conquer China. China was politically
fragmented at this time and ruled by two Song Dynasties. Khan wasn’t initially
interested in the Islamic middle east but things start to change because of
Khwarazmshah (the Turkish ruler at the border of the Empire). He pissed off the
Khan by arresting and humiliating a Mongol merchant caravan. Also kills the
d. At the Khan’s death, the Empire is split along his four sons (See Figure)
II. The Mongol Conquests
a. The Golden Horde conquered China
b. Hulegu is who initiated the Conquests in Islamic areas (Again someone broke
rule number 1). Conquered Baghdad
i. 1258- The Sack of Baghdad: Killed the lastAbbassid Caliph by having
horses trample him. END OF THE CALIPHATE!!!
ii. Ibn Taymiyya-Argues that the Ulama now have the right to call people to
jihad (since there is no longer a caliph) c. Mongols then head to conquer Egypt at the battle of ‘Ayn Jalut
i. Mumluks lead Egypt defense and defeat the Mongol army
ii. Egypt border held
d. Rum Seljuqs immediately surrendered inAnatolia
III. The “Pax Mongolia”
a. After conquests, Mongol Empire had a period of no warfare
b. Merchants and travelers could travel from one end of the empire to the other with
very little trouble
i. Allows Marco Polo to travel and trade networks to set up
ii. William of Rubruck brought a letter from the pope in Germany to
Mongol court. He writes about the other people (from all overAsia) at the
c. Mongols were really religiously tolerant
d. Set up one of the most effective postal system of the time
i. Pony Express-Type System
Yasa- legal system like sharia; went over how to treat prisoners, dietary laws, how you ruled the
empire, how you are supposed to prepare food March 20, 2013 History of Islam Notes
I. Mongol Empire
The Turks won out in the Mongol invasion because then Turks started to get positions of power
within the tribes. When Chinghiz Khan died his lands were split amongst his four sons:
a. Golden Horde- Area portioned to the Eldest son, he wanted to expand into
Europe. Fragmented very quickly into many many small parts all recognized the
family relationships between one another but that didn’t always lead into
i. Uzbek Horde- Islam convert ruler. Converted when a sufi leader came
and performed miracles in front of Uzbeck (boiling water).
ii. Muscuvy Russia (Romanov)
b. Ilkhans- Descendants of Hulegu (Sacked Baghdad in 1258). This territory held
on to unity the longest. “Second in Command” Khan which was located mainly
in Iran. Assimilate to Persian and Turkish culture--used Persian as their language.
Main enemy were the mamluks. They go through a lot of different religions but
finally settle on Islam.
i. Safivids- form the basis of modern Iran
c. Great Horde (Yuan Dynasty China): The great Khanate in the East, which was
(symbolically) the “leader” state. Khanate sets up a new capital, Beijing. Mongol
goal was not to turn everybody into Mongols; when they conquered an area, They
“assimilated down/to” the conquered peoples and adopt their customs and dress
(this is different from the Muslim conquests).
d. Chaghatay Khanate- Third son of Chinghiz Khan- Fragment quickly
i. Timurids- fragment of this Khanate formed by Timur (The Lame) who
wanted to re-combine the entire Mongol empire. He begins to conquer
some of his neighbors, invades the Ilkhanate, Russia, and the Ottoman
Anatolia. Timur was the most successful conqueror of this era.
March 23, 2013
I. Travel- Traveled because they had the luxury to, their jobs permitted them to be
able to afford (time and money) to go on the hajj
a. Scholars- the hajj traveling was the biggest part of their travels. Met with other
scholars in Mecca and exchanged ideas and writings and learnings. Then after the
hajj they would stay in the center of the Islamic world to either meet other
important scholars or do more studies.
i. Rihla Fi TalabAl-ilm – journey to knowledge. Included with the hajj but
not restricted to the hajj
b. Merchants- traveled in order to trade luxury goods from other parts of the world
(i.e the silk road).
i. Trans-Asia trade routes ii. Sahara trade routes
iii. Mediterranean trade routes
iv. Indian Ocean trade routes*** most stable and lucrative***
Swahili emerges as a trading language (“pigeon language”: elements of all the
different languages). Trading mineral wealth, goods, and slaves
c. Sufis- Traveled to preach their message. Once a student became a master, he
would go travel to start another branch of the order somewhere else. Very often
they would follow the merchants. Bengal jungles for Sufi retreats were set up to
retreat and preach to the hunter and gatherers living outside the jungles. Set up
farms for their