Questions tagged [islamic-history]

concerns the political, economic, social, and cultural developments of the Islamic civilization. Not necesarily related to the religion itself.

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Why is the Ottoman Empire considered important? [closed]

I was surprised to know that the area of the Ottoman Empire, at its height, was 5.2 million square kilometers, which resembles less than 4% of the world. That is nearly nothing compared to the British ...
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Why does Retsö claim that only members/clients of Arabian tribes were considered “real Muslims” in the Umayyad Caliphate before 750?

In his book "The Arabs in Antiquity: Their History from the Assyrians to the Umayyads", Professor Jan Retsö writes: The conflicts were aggravated by the fact that the tribes identified the ...
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What was the population of the Umayyad Caliphate in 750 CE?

What was the population of the Umayyad Caliphate at its greatest extent (750 CE)? According to Wikipedia it was 22 million. According to other various sources / websites it was 62 million (wikipedia ...
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Did Averroes really try to bury light in an attempt to create gold, or was that invented by Victor Hugo?

In The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Frollo relates a story that supposedly Averroes buried light in order to create gold from it, as, according to him, gold is light, but that it would not be for ...
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How many people did the Islamic Caliphate send to the Maghreb during the Arabization of North Africa?

I know that during the Muslim conquest of the North Africa it was more a military colonization than an Arabization an spread of their culture as the Berbers in North Africa kept their culture and were ...
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How did Islam spread before the invention of the printing press?

Before the invention of the printing press the Koran must have been quite rare and not a lot of people must have read it. If so, how did Islam spread so wide. Today most Muslims would, presumably, ...
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Why did the first Safavid Shia become Shia?

I'm currently reading the history of Safavid Iran (by Roger Savory) which was a Shia ruling. The eponym of Safavid is Safi-ad-din Ardabili that was a Sunni. We can be sure that his grandson Khvajeh ...
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Is there any known pre-twentieth century history of the tomb of Sidi Rezegh?

Is there any known pre-twentieth century history of the tomb of Sidi Rezegh? A variant spelling is Sidi Rizq from سيدي رزق at 31.8287°N, 24.1345°E in Al Butnan province, Libya near Tobruk and Al Adm. ...
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Were there distinctions between Arab, Berbers and Iberian Muslims in 10th century Islamic Spain?

The Muslims of al-Andalus (Islamic Iberia) consisted of Arabs, Berbers and native Iberians who converted to Islam (+descendants). Were there significant social distinctions between the three ethnic ...
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How were slave girls usually dressed in Arabia in early Islamic societies?

After slave girls were purchased by their owners and brought to the owners' Islamic hometowns, was it acceptable for these girls to be topless in public? Abdullah Sameer quotes Sheikh Hamza Yusuf's ...
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How was Christian intermarriage with the Muslim Turks viewed by the Byzantines?

While learning about the Battle of Manzikert (1071) I was surprised to hear that the emperor Romanos IV agreed in the aftermath to a political marriage by giving his daughter to be married to Sultan ...
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How were wars financed under Islamic empires?

A related question is this thread, where the subject in question were banks, and how they operated and profited under Islamic rule. In Islamic jurisprudence (fiqh), charging interest on loans is ...
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How did Islamic finance under the early Caliphates profit or take loans if charging interest wasn't legal?

Under Islamic Law, any type of interest is considered usury and therefore illegal (in the religious context). How did lenders make money under this restriction? I am asking in the time frame from ...
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Historical examples and numbers for the value of ‘Jizya’ levied by Muslim states

Context From the early Islamic conquests in the seventh and eighth centuries, down to the nineteenth or early twentieth centuries, under Sharia law, Muslim rulers generally allowed non-Muslim subjects ...
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Did the Ottoman empire suppress the printing press?

I overheard this conversation a while back that the Ottoman Empire which flourished in all fields during the Golden Age of Islam were left behind after the introduction of the printing press in Europe ...
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Were early mosques originally oriented on Petra instead of Mecca according to archaeological record?

I have come across a claim that in early Islam, the focal point of orientation for prayers was not Mecca but was originally supposed to be Petra, and that originally Qiblas used to point in that ...
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Women in the Iranian revolution

Iranian women are now always portrayed as oppressed in the media and social media compared to the 1970s. I expected their situation to be similar to that for women in Saudi Arabia but after reading a ...
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The Abbasid ransom for the Black Stone (Hajar Aswad)

The Black Stone (Al Hajaru Al Aswad, popularly called Hajar Aswad) of the Kaaba in Mecca was stolen in 930 AD by the Qarmatians, and was returned 23 years later in 952 AD for "a huge" ransom paid by ...
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Why did the Umayyads spare some of the male members of the Family (Ahl-al-Bait) after Karbala?

Given that it's the Islamic month of Muharram, there's something that I have always wondered about the Battle of Karbala fought between Umayyad Empire and the family of the Prophet Muhammad. In the ...
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History of Moti Masjid

Who built the Moti Masjid? Google says it's Sahjahan who built it, but Wikipedia says it was built by Jahangir. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moti_Masjid_(Red_Fort) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/...
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Before 1800, were there major schools of Islamic thought that relaxed behavior rules for women on the Hajj?

It is my understanding that most comprehensive works of Islamic thought (past and present) do the following: (a) Give rules or guidelines for behavior, some of them specific to women; (b) Give rules ...
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Is there evidence that the annual pilgrimage to Mecca facilitated cultural exchanges?

I've read once (but I don't recall where anymore) that the Hajj, that is, the annual pilgrimage to Mecca, had an important non-religious consequence in medieval times, namely the fast spread of new ...
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Why was Caliph Suleyman disliked by the noted generals in the Umayyad army?

Caliph Suleyman of Umayyad Empire was by all accounts a rash man who kept a grudge. He also appears to have had stormy relations with the Army's Walidist generals. His only apparent support in the ...
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What significant regions and countries became Muslim without being first conquered by a Muslim power?

Most if not all of the present Muslim countries & regions close to Europe (or in Europe, e.g. parts of Spain and of the Balkans) in North Africa and the Middle East became Muslim as a result or in ...
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Did the Byzantines forget using the caltrops?

Many of the Muslim conquests against the Byzantine empire (both Arab and Turkic) came down to clever use of cavalry. But the Romans had a handy helper against cavalry charges, the caltrop. Did the ...