Friday, April 26, 2013

Young Turks - Zaynab bint Khuzaima

Young Turks
Young Turks (Jöntürkler) (Jön Türkler) (Jeunes Turcs). Name of a revolutionary group of Turkish nationalists, whose center was the Ittihad we Teraqqi Jem’iyyeti.  They initiated the rebellion against the regime of Sultan Abdulhamid II in 1908, took control of the Ottoman government, restored its constitution, and instituted westernizing reforms. The main organization of the Young Turks was the Committee of Union and Progress.

Europe designated as the “Young Turks” the opposition to Sultan Abdulhamid II’s regime (1876-1908) that restored the constitution on July 23, 1908, and ruled the Ottoman Empire until its destruction in 1918.  This opposition movement was the successor to the “Young Ottomans” who had been responsible for the promulgation of the first constitution in December 1876.  But after Abdulhamid shelved the constitution in February 1878 and dissolved the New Ottoman Association, the movement went underground or into exile.

In 1889, a new body was formed calling itself the Committee of Ottoman Union.  It soon became famous as the Ottoman Committee of Union and Progress (CUP).  It was active mainly in Europe and Egypt, and its members came from virtually every ethnic and religious community in the empire.  Turks, Arabs, Kurds, Albanians, Armenians, and Greeks united under the umbrella of Ottomanism in opposition to Hamidian autocracy.  In 1906, certain officials and military officers formed the secret Ottoman Freedom Society in the port city of Salonika.  The following year, the two bodies merged under the established name of the CUP, but it was the Salonika group that led the revolution and forced the sultan to restore the 1876 constitution.

After July 1908, the Young Turks were divided into two broad groups, both determined to maintain the integrity of the Ottoman Empire, but by rather different methods.  The Unionists emphasized unity and modernization under a centralized state as the way to progress.  The liberals, who formed the Liberal Party (Ahrar Firkasi) in 1908 and the Liberal Union in 1911, favored a decentralized polity with substantial autonomy for the non-Turkish, non-Muslim communities.  Both groups stayed away from religion as much as they could, a difficult task in an empire still organized on essentially religious lines in millets or religious communities.  In fact, the Young Turks had to undermine the traditional privileges enjoyed by the non-Muslim millets in order to create a modern state.  One such privilege permitted foreign states to act as protectors of particular permitted foreign states to act as protectors of particular millets.  Thus, Russia protected the Greek Orthodox community and France the Catholic, giving these nations power to interfere in Ottoman affairs and violating the state’s sovereignty.

The goal of maintaining a multinational, multireligious empire forced the Young Turks to adopt a dynasty based ideology of Ottomanism and to shun both nationalism and religion.  There were, however, both nationalists and Islamists in their ranks: Said Halim Pasha was an Islamist and Ziya Gokalp a nationalist, and both were prominent in the CUP.  Initially they were kept in the background, and Islam became the instrument of the conservative and reactionary opposition.  Yet even the liberals exploited it during the insurrection of April 1909 led by the Ittihad-i Muhammadi Cemiyeti. 

After this traumatic event, the Unionists became more cautious about fostering social reform that might alienate Islamist opinion influenced by such journals as Sebilurresad and Sirat-i mustakim.  Thus they emphasized the religious element in the ceremony of girding the sword of Osman when Sultan Mehmed V succeeded the deposed Abdulhamid.  On May 10, 1909, Mehmed Resad was taken to the mausoleum of his ancestor at Eyub and, in the presence of civil and religious notables, Abdulhalim Efendi, the leader of the Mevlevi order who traced his line to Mevlana Jelal ed-Din Rumi (in Arabic, Mawlana Jalal al-Din Rumi), girded the sword on the new sultan.

After the abortive insurrection of 1909, the two factions of the Young Turks competed for political supremacy under the watchful eye of the military high command under Mahmud Sevket Pasha, the general who had crushed the rebellion.  In July 1912, while Istanbul ws at war with Italy over Libya, a military coup brought the liberals to power, and it seemed that the CUP’s days were numbered.  But the Unionists took advantage of the defeats suffered by Ottoman armies at the hands of the Balkan states (Serbia, Montenegro, Bulgaria, and Greece) in the war that broke out in October 1912.  In the political chaos in the capital they seized power in January 1913 and consolidated it in June by destroying the liberal opposition.

The wars with Italy and the Balkan states weakened the multinational, multireligious character of Ottomanism while strengthening its Islamic and nationalist elements.  Italy’s attack and occupation of Libya, an Arab province, boosted Islamic solidarity.  The loss of virtually all territories in the Balkans followed by the expulsions of much of their Muslim population left the empire with a predominantly Muslim/Turkish Anatolia and the Arab provinces.  This trend continued during World War I with the massacre and deportation of the Armenians from eastern Anatolia as well as the arrival of Turks from the Caucasus.

In 1913, following the example of the Jacobins in the French Revolution, the nationalist faction of the CUP organized the Committees of National Defense and Public Safety to facilitate the conduct of war.  To appease Arab opinion, Mahmud Sevket Pasha, who was born in Baghdad and claimed he was Arab, was appointed grand vizier in January 1913.  Following his assassination in June 1913, the Egyptian prince Said Halim Pasha succeeded him and led the government until February 1917 -- the longest grand vizierate of the Young Turk period.  Ottomanism strongly tinged with Islam had now become the ideology of the Young Turks.

The Islam of the Unionists, however, was ideologically different from that of the Islamists.  This is apparent from articles that appeared in Islam mecmuasi (Journal of Islam), first published in February 1914.  Unlike the Islamists, the Unionists argued that nationalism was not contrary to Islam but complemented it.  Moreover, religion had to conform to the needs of everyday life; this idea was summed up in the word on the journal’s masthead, “A Religious Life and a Living Religion.”  Islam had to be interpreted in terms of the new conditions confronting Muslims in order to be of living significance.  The writers in Islam mecmuasi went so far as to propose the separation of religion from the state.  Only this reform, they claimed, could make Islam a vital part of a Muslim’s everyday life; religious required taking measures to make religion a matter of conscience while subordinating the legal aspects of Islam to secular legislation.  The first step was the concern of religious leaders and institutions, while the second was the job of the state.  Some of these ideas were put in action by the Unionist government during the war; they were adopted wholesale by Ataturk’s republic and provided the foundations for its policy of secularization.

The Young Turks were ultimately a coalition of various reform groups that led a revolutionary movement against the authoritarian regime of Ottoman sultan Abdülhamid II, which culminated in the establishment of a constitutional government. After their rise to power, the Young Turks introduced programs that promoted the modernization of the Ottoman Empire and a new spirit of Turkish nationalism. Their handling of foreign affairs, however, resulted in the dissolution of the Ottoman state.

In 1889 a group of students in the Imperial Medical Academy in Istanbul initiated a conspiracy against Abdülhamid that spread rapidly to other colleges in the city. When the plot was uncovered, many of its leaders fled abroad, mainly to Paris, where they prepared the groundwork for a future revolution against Abdülhamid. Among the most notable of the liberal émigrés was Ahmed Rıza, who became a key spokesman for the influential Young Turk organization known as the Committee of Union and Progress (CUP), which advocated a program of orderly reform under a strong central government and the exclusion of all foreign influence. A major rival faction was formed by Prince Sabaheddin. His group, called the League of Private Initiative and Decentralization, espoused many of the same liberal principles as those propounded by the CUP, but, unlike the latter, it favored administrative decentralization and European assistance to implement reforms.

Although the CUP and the League played a significant role in disseminating and stimulating liberal thought, the actual impetus for the Young Turk Revolution of 1908 came from groups within the empire, particularly from discontented members of the Third (3rd) Army Corps in Macedonia. Many young officers of the corps garrisoned at Salonika (now Thessaloníka, Greece) organized to form the Ottoman Liberty Society in 1906. This secret revolutionary group merged with the CUP in Paris the following year, bringing to the Young Turk ideologists the command of the 3rd Army Corps. Later in 1907 the CUP and the League of Private Initiative and Decentralization agreed, though reluctantly, to work together to achieve their common goal.

On July 3, 1908, Major Ahmed Niyazi of the 3rd Corps led a revolt against the provincial authorities in Resna. Other conspirators soon followed his example, and the rebellion rapidly spread throughout the empire. Unable to rely on government troops, Abdülhamid announced on July 23 the restoration of the 1876 constitution and recalled parliament. The Young Turks had succeeded in establishing a constitutional government, but their deep-seated ideological differences resurfaced and prevented them from taking effective control of that government until 1913, when the CUP under new leaders—the triumvirate of Talât Paşa, Ahmed Cemal Paşa, and Enver Paşa—set itself up as the real arbiter of Ottoman politics.

While in power, the Young Turks carried out administrative reforms, especially of provincial administration, that led to more centralization. They were also the first Ottoman reformers to promote industrialization. In addition, the programs of the Young Turk regime effectuated greater secularization of the legal system and provided for the education of women and better state-operated primary schools. Such positive developments in domestic affairs, however, were largely overshadowed by the disastrous consequences of the regime’s foreign policy decisions. An overly hasty appraisal of Germany’s military capability by the Young Turk leaders led them to break neutrality and enter World War I (1914–18) on the side of the Central Powers. Upon the end of the war, with defeat imminent, the CUP Cabinet resigned on October 9, 1918, less than a month before the Ottomans signed the Armistice of Mudros.

The Young Turk movement built a rich tradition of dissent that shaped the intellectual and political life of the late Ottoman period and laid the foundation for Atatürk's revolution. Most of their leaders believed that the state, not popular will, was the instrument by which social and political change would be achieved. They bequeathed to Atatürk the conviction that reformers should seize state power and then use it ruthlessly for their own ends, not to democratize society in ways that would weaken the centralized state.

Except for the shift in focus on nationalism, the official ideology of the early modern Turkish state was shaped during this period. The Young Turks who lived long enough to witness the coming into being of the Republic of Turkey saw many of their ideals realized – it was a regime based on a popular materialistic-positivist ideology and nationalism. The new regime worked to be included in western culture while exerting an anti-imperialist rhetoric and convened a parliament composed not of elected politicians but of virtually selected intellectuals working on behalf of the people without cooperating in any capacity with the 'ignorant' masses. The effect of the Young Turks on shaping the official ideology of early modern Turkey went far beyond the political changes they brought about.

Jöntürkler see Young Turks
Jon Turkler see Young Turks
Jeunes Turcs see Young Turks
Turkler, Jon see Young Turks
Turcs, Jeunes see Young Turks

Yousafzai, Malala
Malala Yousafzai (Pashto: ملاله یوسفزۍ‎; Urdu: ملالہ یوسف زئی‎; Malālah Yūsafzay) (b. July 12, 1997) is a Pakistani education activist from the town of Mingora in the Swat District of Pakistan's northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. She is known for her activism for rights to education and for women, especially in the Swat Valley, where the Taliban had at times banned girls from attending school. In early 2009, at the age of 11–12, Yousafzai wrote a blog under a pseudonym for the BBC detailing her life under Taliban rule, their attempts to take control of the valley, and her views on promoting education for girls. The following summer, a New York Times documentary was filmed about her life as the Pakistani military intervened in the region, culminating in the Second Battle of Swat. Yousafzai rose in prominence, giving interviews in print and on television, and she was nominated for the International Children's Peace Prize by South African activist Desmond Tutu.
On October 9, 2012, Yousafzai was shot in the head and neck in an assassination attempt by Taliban gunmen while returning home on a school bus. In the days immediately following the attack, she remained unconscious and in critical condition, but later her condition improved enough for her to be sent to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, England, for intensive rehabilitation. On October 12, 2012, a group of 50 Islamic clerics in Pakistan issued a fatwā against those who tried to kill her, but the Taliban reiterated its intent to kill Yousafzai and her father.

The assassination attempt sparked a national and international outpouring of support for Yousafzai. The United Nations Special Envoy for Global Education Gordon Brown launched a United Nations petition in Yousafzai's name, using the slogan "I am Malala" and demanding that all children worldwide be in school by the end of 2015 – a petition which helped lead to the ratification of Pakistan's first Right to Education Bill. In the April 29, 2013 issue of Time magazine, Yousafzai was featured on the magazine's front cover and as one of "The 100 Most Influential People in the World". She was the winner of Pakistan's first National Youth Peace Prize and was nominated for the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize (which was awarded to the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons). On July 12, 2013, Yousafzai spoke at the United Nations to call for worldwide access to education, and in September 2013 she officially opened the Library of Birmingham. Yousafzai was also the recipient of the Sakharov Prize for 2013.

Yousafzai was born on July 12, 1997 into a Sunni Muslim family of Pashtun ethnicity. She was given her first name Malala (meaning "grief stricken") after Malalai of Maiwand, a famous Pashtun poet and warrior woman from southern Afghanistan.Her last name, Yousafzai, is that of a large Pashtun tribal confederation that is predominant in Pakistan's Swat Valley, where she grew up. At her house in Mingora, she lived with her two younger brothers, her parents, and two pet chickens.
Yousafzai was educated in large part by her father, Ziauddin Yousafzai, who was a poet, school owner, and an educational activist himself, running a chain of schools known as the Khushal Public School. She once stated to an interviewer that she would like to become a doctor, though later her father encouraged her to become a politician instead. Ziauddin referred to his daughter as something entirely special, permitting her to stay up at night and talk about politics after her two brothers had been sent to bed.
Yousafzai started speaking about education rights as early as September 2008, when her father took her to Peshawar to speak at the local press club. "How dare the Taliban take away my basic right to education?" Yousafzai asked her audience in a speech covered by newspapers and television channels throughout the region.

Yunfa (d. 1808).  Ruler of the Hausa kingdom of Gobir (r. c.1801-c.1808).  Tradition says that, in his youth, Yunfa was tutored by ‘Uthman, then a resident of Gobir.  When Yunfa’s father, the ruler of Gobir died, ‘Uthman rallied support for Yunfa against his cousins.  Yunfa soon came to fear ‘Uthman because of his immense popularity and the Muslim threat to traditional authority, and Yunfa may have attempted to assassinate him.  He banished the Fula leader to Gudu, in a distant part of the kingdom.  ‘Uthman attracted a large following which further frightened Yunfa, who attacked ‘Uthman in 1804.  The war continued until the final Muslim victory at Alkalawa in 1808, when Yunfa was killed.  The battles marked the beginning of ‘Uthman’s jihad (holy war) which swept through the Hausa states.

Yunfa was a king of the Hausa city-state of Gobir in what is now Nigeria. He is particularly remembered for his conflict with Islamic reformer Usman (Uthman) dan Fodio.

Nephew and designated heir of Bawa, Yunfa appears to have been taught by Fulani religious leader Usman dan Fodio as a young man. Though dan Fodio helped Yunfa succeed Nafata to the throne in 1801, the two soon came into conflict over dan Fodio's proposed religious reforms. Fearing dan Fodio's growing power, Yunfa summoned him and attempted to assassinate him in person.  However, Yunfa's pistol backfired and wounded him in the hand. The following year, Yunfa expelled dan Fodio and his followers from their hometown of Degel.

Dan Fodio soon called for help from other Fulani nomad groups, and declared himself the imam of a new caliphate in jihad against Gobir. A widespread uprising soon began across Hausaland, and in 1804, Yunfa appealed to rulers of neighboring city-states for aid. In December of that year, Yunfa won a major victory in the Battle of Tsuntua, in which Dan Fodio's forces were said to have lost 2,000 men, 200 of whom knew the Qur'an by heart.

However, dan Fodio soon launched a successful campaign against Kebbi and established a permanent base at Gwandu. In October 1808, the jihadists seized the Gobir capital of Alkalawa and killed Yunfa.

Yunus al-Katib
Yunus al-Katib (al-Mughanni).  Musician and writer on music in the eighth century.  He is mentioned in the Thousand-and-One Nights and composed verses extolling the beauty of Zaynab bint ‘Ikrima ibn ‘Abd al-Rahman, which became the rage under the name of Zayanib.
Katib, Yunus al- see Yunus al-Katib
Mughanni, al- see Yunus al-Katib

Yunus ibn Tashufin
Yunus ibn Tashufin (Yusuf ibn Tashfin). Sanhaja Berber who was the first independent ruler of the Almoravids (r.1061-1106).  In 1062, he founded Marrakesh as his capital.  After Toledo had fallen to Alphonso VI of Castile in 1085, he was summoned by the Muluk al-Tawa’if to save Islam in the Iberian Peninsula.  He defeated Alphonso in the battle of Zallaqa in 1086 and suppressed almost all the Tawa’if.

Yusuf ibn Tashfin was a king of the Berber Almoravid empire in North Africa and Al-Andalus (Moorish Iberia).

Yusuf ibn Tashfin emerged from a line of military rulers. Abu Bakr ibn Umar, one of the original disciples of Ibn Yasin, a natural leader of Sanjaha extraction who served as a spiritual liaison for followers of the Maliki school of thought, was appointed general after the death of his brother Yahya ibn Ibrahim. His brother oversaw the military for Ibn Yasin but was killed in a Saharan revolt in 1056. Ibn Yasin, too, would die in battle with the Barghawata three years later. Abu-Bakr was an able general, taking the fertile Sūs and its capital Aghmāt a year after his brother's death, and would go on to suppress numerous revolts in the Sahara himself, on one such occasion delegating permanent governorship of Sūs and thus the whole of his northern provinces to his pious cousin Yusuf, who had received such authority in the interim; even going so far as to giving him his wife, Zaynab an-Nafzawiyyat, purportedly the richest woman of Aghmāt. This sort of trust and favor on part of a seasoned veteran and savvy politician reflected the general esteem in which Yusuf was held, not to mention the power he attained as a military figure in his absence. Daunted by Yusuf's newfound power, Abu Bakr saw any attempts at recapturing his post politically unfeasible and returned to the fringes of the Sahara to settle the unrest of the southern frontier.

In the year 1091 the last sovereign king of al-Andalusia, al-Mu'tamid, saw his Abbadid-inherited taifa of Seville, controlled since 1069, in jeopardy of being taken by the increasingly stronger king of Castile-León, Alfonso VI. The Taifa period followed the demise of the Umayyad Caliphate. Previously, the emir launched a series of aggressive attacks on neighboring kingdoms to garner more territory for himself.  However, his military aspirations and capabilities paled in comparison to the Castilian king, who in the name of Christendom, in 1085, captured a culturally refined Toledo and induced parias, or tribute, from proud Muslim princes in places like Granada, al-Mu'tamid of Seville being no exception. The tribute of the emirs bolstered the economy of the Christian kingdom. These are the circumstances that led to the Almoravid conquest.

Yusuf was an effective general and administrator, evidenced by his ability to organize and maintain the loyalty of the hardened desert warriors and the territory of Abu Bakr, as well as his ability to expand the empire, cross the Atlas Mountains onto the plains of Morocco, reaching the Mediterranean and capturing Fez in 1075, Tangier in 1079, Tlemcen in 1080, Ceuta in 1083, as well as Algiers, Ténès and Oran in 1082-83. He is regarded as the co-founder of the famous Moroccan city Marrakech (in Berber Murakush, corrupted to Morocco in English). The site had been chosen and work started by Abu Bakr in 1070. The work was completed by Yusuf, who then made it the capital of his empire, in place of the former capital Aghmāt. By the time Abu Bakr died in 1087, after a skirmish in the Sahara as result of a poison arrow, Yusuf had crossed over into al-Andalus and also achieved victory at the Battle of az-Zallaqah, also known as the Battle of Sagrajas in the west. He came to al-Andalus with a force of 15,000 men, armed with javelins, daggers, most of his soldiers carried two swords, shields, cuirass of the finest leather and animal hide, as well as drummers for psychological combat. Yusuf's cavalry was said to have included 6,000 shock troops from Senegal mounted on white Arabian horses. Camels were also put to use. On October 23, 1086, the Almoravid forces, accompanied by 10,000 Andalusian fighters from local Muslim provinces, decisively checked the Reconquista, defeating the largest Christian army ever assembled up to that point. The death of Yusuf's heir, however, prompted his speedy return to Africa.

When Yusuf returned to al-Andalus in 1090, he saw the lax behavior of the taifa kings, both spiritually and militarily, as a breach of Islamic law and principles, and left Africa with the express purpose of usurping the power of all the Muslim principalities, under the auspices of the Abbasid caliph of Baghdad, who he had shared correspondence with and under the shibboleth "The spreading of righteousness, the correction of injustice and the abolition of unlawful taxes." The emirs in such cities as Seville, Badajoz, Almeria and Granada had grown accustomed to the extravagant ways of the east. On top of doling out tribute to the Christians and giving Andalusian Jews unprecedented freedoms and authority, they had levied burdensome taxes on the populace to maintain this lifestyle. After a series of fatwas and careful deliberation, Yusuf saw the implementation of orthodoxy as long overdue. That year he exiled the emirs 'Abd Allah and his brother Tamim from Granada and Málaga, respectively, to Aghmāt, and a year later al-Mutamid of Seville would suffer the same fate. When all was said and done, Yusuf united all of the Muslim dominions of the Iberian Peninsula, with the exception of Zaragoza, to the Kingdom of Morocco, and situated his royal court at Marrakech. He took the title of amir al-muslimin (Prince of the Muslims), seeing himself as humbly serving the caliph of Baghdad, but for all intents and purposes he was considered the caliph of the western Islamic empire. The military might of the Almoravids was at its peak.

The Sanhaja confederation, which consisted of a hierarchy of Lamtuna, Musaffa and Djudalla Berbers, represented the military's top brass. Amongst them were Andalusian Christians and heretic Africans, taking up duties as diwan al-gund, Yusuf's own personal bodyguard; including 2,000 black horsemen, whose tasks also included registering soldiers and making sure they were compensated financially. The occupying forces of the Almoravids were made up largely of horsemen, totaling no less than 20,000. Into the major cities of al-Andalus, Seville (7,000), Granada (1,000), Cordoba (1,000), 5,000 bordering Castile and 4,000 in western Andalusia, succeeding waves of horsemen in conjunction with the garrisons that had been left there after the Battle of Sagrajas, made responding, for the Taifa emirs, difficult. Soldiers on foot used bows and arrows, sabres, pikes, javelins, each protected by a cuirass of Moroccan leather and iron piked shields. During the siege of the fort-town Aledo, in Murcia, captured by the Spaniard Garcia Giménez previously, Almoravid and Andalusian hosts are said to have used catapults, in addition to their customary drum beat. Yusuf also established naval bases in Cadiz, Almeria and neighboring ports along the Mediterranean. Ibn-Maymun, the governor of Almeria, had a fleet at his disposal. Another such example is the Banu-Ganiya fleet based off the Balearic Islands that dominated the affairs of the western Mediterranean for much of the 12th century.

Although the Almoravids had not gained much in the way of territory from the Christians, rather they merely offset the Reconquista, Yusuf did succeed in capturing Valencia. A city divided between Muslims and Christians, under the waffling rule of a petty emir paying tribute to the Christians, including the famous El Cid, Valencia proved to be an obstacle for the Almoravid military, despite their untouchable reputation. Abu Bakr ibn Ibrahim ibn Tashfin and Yusuf's nephew Abu 'Abdullah Muhammad both failed in defeating the El Cid. Yusuf then sent Abu'l-Hasan 'Ali al-Hajj but he was not successful either. In 1097, upon his fourth trip to al-Andalus, Yusuf sought to personally dig down and fight the armies of Alfonso VI, making way toward the all but abandoned, yet historically important, Toledo. Such a concerted effort was meant to draw the Christian forces, including those laying siege to Valencia, into the center of Iberia. On August 15, 1097, the Almoravids delivered yet another blow to Alfonso's forces, a battle in which the El Cid's son was killed.

Muhammad ibn 'A'isha, Yusuf's son, who he had appointed governor of Murcia, succeeded in delivering an effective pounding to the El Cid's personnel at Alcira. Still not capturing the city, but satisfied with the results of his campaigns, Yusuf left for his court at Marrakesh only to return two years later on a new effort to take the provinces of eastern Andalusia. El Cid had died in the same year, 1099, and his wife, Jimena, had been ruling until the coming of another Almoravid campaign at the tail end of 1100, led by Yusuf's trusted lieutenant Mazdali ibn Banlunka. After a seven month siege, Alfonso and Jimena, hopeless to the prospects of staving off the Almoravids, set fire to the great mosque in anger and abandoned the city. Yusuf had finally conquered Valencia and exerted complete dominance over the east of al-Andalus, now unquestionably the most powerful ruler in western Europe. He receives mention in the Spanish epic Poema del Cid, also known as El Cantar del Mio Cid, the oldest of its kind.

A wise and shrewd man, neither too prompt in his determinations, nor too slow in carrying them into effect, Yusuf was very much adapted to the rugged terrain of the Sahara and had no interests in the pomp of the Andalusian courts. According to Abd Allah's "Roudh el-Kartas" (History of the Rulers of Morocco) and A. Beaumier's French translation of the 14th century work, Yusuf was of "teint brun, taille moyenne, maigre, peu de barbe, voix douce, yeux noirs, nez aquilin, meche de Mohammed retombant sur le bout de l'oreille, sourcils joints l'un a l'autre, cheveux crepus"; meaning - "Brown color, middle height, thin, little beard, soft voice, black eyes, straight nose, lock of Muhammad falling on the top of his ear, eyebrow joined, wooly hair". He went on to reach the 100 years old mark and, unlike his predecessors, not die in battle.

Since Yusuf's reign represented the apogee of the Almoravid dynasty, something has to be said for its certain demise after his death. His son and successor, Ali ibn Yusuf, was viewed just as devout a Muslim but he neither commanded the same respect nor retained the clientele of his father. As he prayed and fasted the empire crumbled about him. Córdoba, in about 1119, served as the launch pad for Andalusian insurrection. Christians on the northern frontier gained momentum shortly after his father's death, and the Almohads, beginning about 1120, were to engulf the southern frontier. Both respective hosts seeing to the ultimate disintegration of Yusuf's hard-fought territories by the time of Ibrahim ibn Tashfin (1146) and Ishaq ibn Ali (1146–1147), the last of the Almoravid dynasty.

Much of the disparaging things written about the Almoravids, whether it be from Almohads or Christian sources, was propaganda. While Yusuf was the most honorable of Muslim rulers, he spoke Arabic poorly. Ali ibn Yusuf in 1135 exercised good stewardship by attending to the University of Al-Karaouine and ordering the extension of the mosque from 18 to 21 aisles, expanding the structure to more than 3,000 square meters. Some accounts suggest that Ali ibn Yusuf hired two Andalusian architects to carry out this work who also built the central aisle of the Great Mosque of Tlemcen, Algeria, in 1136.

In popular culture

    * Ben Yussuf is the name of Yusuf ibn Tashfin in El Cid.
    * Yusuf appears in Age of Empires II: The Conquerors as one of the primary antagonists in the "El Cid" campaign. However, he is described as "never showing his face", always covering it with a cloth.

Yusuf ibn Tashfin see Yunus ibn Tashufin

Yusef Islam
Yusef Islam (Yusuf Islam) (Cat Stevens) (Steven Demetri Georgiou) (b. July 21, 1947/1948).  Pop musician who achieved notoriety during the 1970s under the name Cat Stevens.  He was born in Soho, London, the son of a Greek London restaurateur and a Swedish mother.  In July 1966, he began his musical career playing folk music at Hammersmith College.  He contracted tuberculosis in 1968 and spent over a year recuperating.  Afterwards, he adopted a new more sensitive and reflective style which would catapult him to international success during the 1970s.  His hits included Wild World, Moon Shadow, Peace Train, Morning Has Broken, Oh Very Young, and Another Saturday Night.  His fame increased when his songs were used on the soundtrack of Hal Ashby’s cult movie, “Harold and Maude.” 

On December 23, 1977, Stevens formally embraced Islam and changed his name to Yusef Islam.  He retired from the music business in 1979 citing a desire to follow a more spiritual path and later that year he married Fouzia Ali at Kensington Mosque in London. 
 In 1981, he financed the establishment of, and began to teach at, a Muslim school in North London.  In this year, he also officially confirmed that he had left show business.  He auctioned all the trappings of his pop career, including his gold records, and donated the money to his Islamic work. 

In February of 1989, Yusef Islam sparked a controversy by concurring with the Ayatollah Khomeini’s fatwa calling for the death of Salman Rushdie.  In June of 1990, he was barred from entering Israel because he had become an “undesirable.”  In November 1990, Yusef visited Iraq and successfully secured the release of a number of British Muslims held hostage during the Gulf War crisis.

In May of 1993, Yusef, then the President of the Islamic Association of North London, won a libel action over an article which claimed the misused charitable fundsto buy arms for Afghan rebels.  Yusef subsequently donated his damage award to Islamic charities. 

In September of 1995, after 18 years of musical silence, Yusef, living with his wife and five children at the Islamia School he founded in 1983 in the North London suburb of Kilburn, signed copies of his new album in London, the predominantly spoken word: The Life of the Last Prophet.

Yusef Islam has been given several awards for his work in promoting peace in the world, including the 2003 World Award, the 2004 Man for Peace Award, and the 2007 Mediterranean Prize for Peace. In 2006, he returned to pop music with his first album of new pop songs in 28 years, entitled An Other Cup. He also began to go professionally by the single name Yusuf.

Yusuf Islam see Yusef Islam
Cat Stevens see Yusef Islam
Stevens, Cat see Yusef Islam
Islam, Yusuf see Yusef Islam
Steven Demetri Georgiou see Yusef Islam
Georgiou, Steven Demetri  see Yusef Islam

Yusuf ibn al-Hasan
Yusuf ibn al-Hasan (Dom Jeronimo-Chingulia) (c. 1606-c. 1638).   Sultan of Mombasa when most of the East African coast was under nominal Portuguese rule. 

When Yusuf was seven, his father was mysteriously murdered.  The Portuguese apparently wished to atone by raising Yusuf as a Christian.  He was sent to Goa, where he was educated by the Augustinians and baptized as a Dom Jeronimo.  He returned to Mombasa in 1626 to assume the office of Sultan, but found himself despised by local Muslims and bullied by Portuguese officials.

After several years a rumor arose that Yusuf was observing Islamic prayers -- a capital offense to the Catholic Portuguese.  Hearing of a Portuguese plan to arrest him, he seized the initiative.  On a Catholic feast day in mid-1631 he entered the massive bastion of Fort Jesus with several hundred followers and massacred almost every Portuguese there.  He then renounced Christianity.

Within days, he was the true master of the city.  He attempted to raise a general coastal revolt, but lacking military resources he found little sympathy.  The next year, the Portuguese muffed an attempt to retake Mombasa and retreated.  Yusuf seems to have lost heart, for the fled to Arabia, abandoning Mombasa to the Portuguese.  Over the next few years he conducted minor raids against coastal towns, until he was killed, apparently by pirates, in the Red Sea around 1638.

Dom Jeronimo-Chingulia see Yusuf ibn al-Hasan
Jeronimo-Chingulia, Dom see Yusuf ibn al-Hasan

Yusufi, Mawlana
Yusufi, Mawlana (Mawlana Yusufi).  Secretary to the Mughal Emperor Humayun.  He acquired a place in Indian literature with his epistolary manual.
Mawlana Yusufi see Yusufi, Mawlana

Yusuf Khass Hajib
Yusuf Khass Hajib (Yusuf Balasaghuni) (Yusuf Khas Hajib Balasaghuni) (Yūsuf Khāṣṣ Ḥājib Balasağuni) (Yusuf Has Hacip) (Yusuf Has Hajib). Turkish author of the eleventh century.  He wrote a “Mirror of Princes” for the Ilek-Khanid prince of Kashghar Bughra-Khan (d. 1102).  It is the first classic of Turkish poetry of Central Asia.

Yusuf Balasaghuni was an 11th century Uyghur scribe from the city of Balasaghun, the capital of the Karakhanid Empire. He wrote the Kutadgu Bilig and most of what is known about him comes from his own writings in this work.

Balasagun was located near present-day Tokmok in Kyrgyzstan. Yusuf Khas Hajib was about 50 years old when he completed the Kutadgu Bilig. After presenting the completed work to the prince of Kashgar he was awarded the title Khāṣṣ Ḥājib, an honorific similar to "Privy Chamberlain" or "Chancellor".

He is often referred to as either Yūsuf Balasaguni or Yūsuf Khāṣṣ Ḥājib.

Some scholars suspect that the prologue to the Kutadgu Bilig, which is much more overtly Islamic than the rest of the text, was not written by Yūsuf, particularly the first prologue, which is in prose, unlike the rest of the text.
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Yusuf Khas Hajib died in 1085 at the age of 66 in the Uyghur city Kashgar, and was buried there. There is now a mausoleum erected on his gravesite. He is remembered as a prominent Uyghur scholar.
Hajib, Yusuf Khass see Yusuf Khass Hajib
Yusuf Balasaghuni see Yusuf Khass Hajib
Yusuf Khas Hajib Balasaghuni see Yusuf Khass Hajib
Yūsuf Khāṣṣ Ḥājib Balasağuni see Yusuf Khass Hajib
Yusuf Has Hacip see Yusuf Khass Hajib

Zacharias (Zakariyya’) (Zechariah) (b. c. 100 B.C.T. - d. c. 20) Father of John the Baptist.  In the Qur’an, he is reckoned along with John, Jesus and Elias among the righteous.  His story is expanded by later legend.
Zakariyya is one of the prophets mentioned in the Qur'an. Muslim's also believe Zechariah to be the guardian of Mary, mother of Prophet Jesus, and they believe Zakariyya to be the father of Prophet John.

Zakariyya see Zacharias
Zechariah see Zacharias

Zafar, Bahadur Shah
Zafar, Bahadur Shah (Abu Zafar Siraj ud-Din Muhammad Bahadur Shah) (Bahādur Shāh II) (b. October 24, 1775, Delhi, India — d. November 7, 1862, Rangoon [now Yangon], Myanmar).  Poetic pen name of Abu Zafar Siraj ud-Din Muhammad Bahadur Shah, the last Mughal emperor of Delhi.  Living only the facade of a royal life, he endured with dignity his helpless position as a British pensioner.  His reign began only at the age of sixty.  As an old man of eighty, he was made the figurehead of the Rebellion of 1857.  For this, the British exiled him to Rangoon, where he died.  He is known as the author of a large number of melancholy and devotional Urdu poerms and songs.  He is also known for his two brilliant court poets, Zauq and Ghalib.

Bahādur Shāh II, the last Mughal emperor of India (r. September 28, 1837 – September 14, 1857), was a poet, musician, and calligrapher, more an aesthete than a political leader.

He was the second son of Akbar Shāh II and Lāl Bāī. For most of his reign he was a client of the British and was without real authority. He figured briefly, and unwillingly, in the Indian (Sepoy) Mutiny of 1857–58. During the mutiny, rebel troops from the city of Meerut seized Delhi and compelled Bahādur Shāh to accept nominal leadership of the revolt. At the age of 82, and in fear of his life, he acquiesced. After the rebellion was put down by the British, he was exiled to Burma (Myanmar) with his family.

Bahadur Shah Zafar see Zafar, Bahadur Shah
Abu Zafar Siraj ud-Din Muhammad Bahadur Shah see Zafar, Bahadur Shah
Bahadur Shah II see Zafar, Bahadur Shah

Zaghlul, Sa’ad
Zaghlul, Sa’ad (Sa'ad Zaghlul) (Saad Zaghloul) (Sa'd Zaghloul Pasha ibn Ibrahim) (1857/1859-August 23, 1927).  Prime Minister of Egypt from January 26, 1924 to November 24, 1924.  Egyptian politician and nationalist.  Zaghlul was the founder of the Wafd movement.

Zaghlul was born in July of 1857 into a middle class peasant family in Ibaynah in the Nile River delta.  During his youth, he was educated at the Muslim University of Al-Azhar in Cairo, as well as at the Egyptian School of Law.

In 1892, Zaghlul was appointed judge at the Court of Appeal.

In 1895, Zaghlul married the daughter of the Prime Minister of Egypt, Mustafa Pasha Fatmi.

In 1906, Zaghlul became head of the Ministry of Education.  Later in the year, he partook in the establishment of Hizbu al-Ummah, which was a moderate group in a time when more and more Egyptians claimed to revive their independence from the British.

In 1910, Zaghlul was appointed Minister of Justice.

In 1912, Zaghlul resigned from the post of Minister of Justice after a disagreement with Khedive Abbas Hilmi II.  Later in the year, he was elected to the Legislative Assembly.

In 1913, Zaghlul was appointed vice-president of the Legislative Assembly, a position he used to criticize the government.

From 1914 to 1918, during World War I, Zaghlul and many members from the old Legislative Assembly formed activist groups all over Egypt.  World War I led to much hardship for the Egyptian population, due in large part to the many British restrictions.

On November 13, 1918, with the end of World War I, Zaghlul and two other former members from the Legislative Assembly called upon the British high commissioner, asking for the abolishment of the protectorate.  They also ask to be representative for Egypt in the peace negotiations after the war.  These demands were refused, and Zaghlul’s supporters, a group now known as Wafd, instigated disorder all over the country.

In March of 1919, Zaghlul and three other members of Wafd were deported to Malta.  Zaghlul was soon released after General Edmund Allenby took over as high commissioner of Egypt.  He travelled to Paris, France, in an attempt to present his version of Egypt’s case to representatives of the Allied countries, but without much success.

In 1920, Zaghlul had several meetings with the British colonial secretary, Lord Milner.  They reached an understanding, but Zaghlul was uncertain of how the Egyptians would see him if he forged an agreement with the British, so he withdrew.  Zaghlul then returned to Egypt, and was welcomed as a national hero.

In 1921, Zaghlul used his supporters to hinder the establishment of a British-friendly government.  Allenby responded by deporting Zaghlul to the Seychelles in the Indian Ocean.

In February of 1922, Egypt received limited independence, according to Lord Milner’s recommencations, as these were designed through the talks with Zaghlul.

In 1923, Zaghlul was allowed to return to Egypt.

In February of 1924, Zaghlul became prime minister after the Wafd won ninety percent of the parliament seats in the elections.  Zaghlul then found out that not even he was able to stop demonstrations and riots among Egyptians.  In November of this year, after the British commander in chief of the Egyptian army was killed, Zaghlul was forced to leave office.

In 1926, Zaghlul became president of the parliament and, from this position, he was able to control the actions of extreme nationalists.

On August 23, 1927, Zaghlul died in Cairo.

Zaghlul was considered as too moderate and cooperative by many nationalists until 1913.  In 1913, his politics changed, and he used his position as vice-president of the Legislative Assembly to criticise the government. 

Zaghlul was not a great leader.  However, he proved to be the most effective leader of popular opinions of his time.  In many ways, he was the instigator of the process that led to total independence of Egypt nearly thirty years after his death.  Zaghlul was shrewd politician, who knew well how to deal with both the British opponent and his fellow Egyptian countrymen at the same time.  Often he played a double game.

Zaghlul derived much of his charisma and success from a combination of intelligence, diplomacy and eloquence, as well as a humble background with which most Egyptians could identify.

Zaghloul was born in Ibyana village in the Kafr el-Sheikh Governorate of Egypt's Nile Delta. For his post-secondary education, he attended Al-Azhar University in Cairo. In the 1880s, he became politically active, for which he was arrested. After his release from prison, Zaghloul went on to practice law. He became increasingly active in nationalist movements, and in 1918, he led a delegation demanding complete independence from Britain at the Paris Peace Conference. The British in turn demanded that Zaghloul end his political agitation. When he refused, they exiled him to Malta and later to the Seychelles. At the time of his arrival in the Seychelles, a number of other prominent anti-imperialist leaders were also exiled there, including Mohamoud Ali Shire, the 20th Sultan of the Somali Warsangali Sultanate, with whom Zaghloul would soon develop a rapport.

Zaghloul's absence caused disturbances in Egypt, ultimately leading to the Egyptian Revolution of 1919. Upon his return from exile, Zaghloul led the Egyptian nationalist forces. The elections of January 12, 1924 gave the Wafd Party an overwhelming majority, and two weeks later, Zaghloul formed the first Wafdist government.

Following the assassination on November 19, 1924 of Sir Lee Stack, the Sirdar and Governor-General of the Sudan, and subsequent British demands which Zaghloul felt to be unacceptable, Zaghloul resigned, deciding to play no further role in government.

Zaghloul's wife, Safiyya, was the daughter of Mustafa Fahmi Pasha, the Egyptian cabinet minister and two-time Prime Minister of Egypt. A feminist and revolutionary, she was also active in politics.
Sa'ad Zaghlul see Zaghlul, Sa’ad
Saad Zaghloul see Zaghlul, Sa’ad
Sa'd Zaghloul Pasha ibn Ibrahim see Zaghlul, Sa’ad

Zahawi, Jamil Sidqi al-
Zahawi, Jamil Sidqi al- (Jamil Sidqi al-Zahawi) (1863-1936).  Arab poet, scholar and philosopher of Kurdish descent from Iraq.  He associated with the Young Turks, was opposed to the Wahhabis and an ardent champion of the emancipation of women.  He is also celebrated as a Persian poet.

Jamil Sidqi al-Zahawi was a prominent Iraqi poet and philosopher. He is regarded as one of the greatest contemporary poets of the Arab world and was known for his defense of women's rights.

Zahawi was born in Baghdad. His father, of Iraqi Kurd origin, was the Mufti of Iraq and a member of the Baban clan. His mother was a Turkmen. He lived in Baghdad, then left for Istanbul, then to Jerusalem to complete his studies.

During the Ottoman era he held numerous positions: as a member of the Baghdad Education Council, where he championed education for women; as an editor of the only newspaper in Baghdad, al-Zawra; as a member of the Supreme Court in Yemen and Istanbul; as a professor of Islamic philosophy at the Royal University and as a professor of literature at the College of Arts in Istanbul. After Iraq's independence in 1921, he was elected to parliament twice and appointed to the upper chamber for one term.

He was one of the leading writers in the Arab world, publishing in the major newspapers and journals of Beirut, Cairo, and Baghdad. In the 1930s, because of his political views, he was marginalized by the political establishment.

Jamal Sidqi al-Zahawi see Zahawi, Jamil Sidqi al-

Zahir al-Din al-Mar‘ashi, Sayyid
Zahir al-Din al-Mar‘ashi, Sayyid (Sayyid Zahir al-Din al-Mar‘ashi).  Persian statesman and historian of the fifteenth century.  He composed a chronicle of Tabaristan from the earliest times to 1476. 
Sayyid Zahir al-Din al-Mar'ashi see Zahir al-Din al-Mar‘ashi, Sayyid

Zahir Ghazi, al-Malik al-
Zahir Ghazi, al-Malik al- (al-Malik al-Zahir Ghazi) (Az-Zahir Ghazi) (1172-1215/October 8, 1216). Ayyubid prince.  He was the second son of Saladin, who made him ruler of Aleppo in 1186.  During the wars with the Crusaders he loyally assisted his father and later his brother al-Malik al-Afdal, the ruler of Damascus., and his uncle al-Malik al-‘Adil, the ruler of Egypt and, after al-Afdal had been deposed, of Damascus.  He played an energetic part in the fighting for Acre and Jaffa.  In 1198, he recognized al-‘Adil’s suzerainty.

Az-Zahir Ghazi was governor and then ruler of Halab (now Aleppo) from 1186 (A.H. 581) to 1216 (A.H. 613). He was the third son of Saladin and his lands included northern Syria and a small part of Mesopotamia.

In 1186, az-Zahir's father appointed him governor of Aleppo, Mosul and supporting areas which had recently been taken from the Zengids. At the same time his two older brothers were appointed, respectively, as governor of Syria (al-Afdal) and Egypt (al-Aziz). The lands that az-Zahir received had been under the control of his uncle, Saladin's brother al-Adil, and al-Adil took an avuncular interest in az-Zahir. As the third son, when he inherited in 1193 he was to owe suzerainty to his eldest brother, al-Afdal, in Damascus. However, he failed to do so, and he conducted his affairs independently from his brothers.

In 1193, faced with the on-going revolt of the Zengid 'Izz al-Din in Mosul, he called upon his uncle, al-Adil, to provide the forces to suppress the revolt, which was quickly quelled. In 1194 az-Zahir received Latakia as part of a settlement in which he recognized al-Afdal's authority. However, by 1196 al-Afdal had proved himself incompetent as a ruler, and had lost the support of his uncle, al-Adil. Az-Zahir joined with his brother al-Aziz and uncle al-Adil in deposing and exiling al-Afdal. In October 1197, noting that Amalric of Lusignan had retaken the port at Beirut and that Bohemond III of Antioch was threatening the ports of Latakia and Jableh, az-Zahir destroyed the ports. Although Bohemond took the two locations, they were no longer advantageous, and he soon withdrew. At which point az-Zahir reoccupied them, and rebuilt the fortress at Latakia.

While ruler in Aleppo, az-Zahir kept many of his father's advisors. He appointed Baha ad-Din as a qadi ("judge") in Halab. He brought the unorthodox as-Suhrawardi to Halab, but was forced to imprison him in 1191 due to the demands of the orthodox ulama ("men of learning").

When al-Aziz died in Egypt in 1198 and was succeeded by his son Malik al-Mansur, a boy of twelve, al-Aziz's ministers, worried about the ambitions of al-Adil, summoned al-Afdal from exile to act as Regent of Egypt in the name of his young nephew. Early in the next year, while al-Adil was in the north suppressing an Artuqid rebellion, al-Afdal and az-Zahir came together in alliance and were joined by most of the other Ayyubid princes. Together they besieged Damascus, but as it held out for several months az-Zahir, as did other Ayyubid princes, lost interest and withdrew his troops. Al-Adil was not pleased and after conquering Egypt, he returned and reduced az-Zahir's territories to the area around Aleppo, forcing him to recognize overarching al-Adil suzerainty. During the last decade of his life he skirmished with crusaders and lent his army to support other Ayyubid princes. In 1206, King Leo of Cilicia defeated az-Zahir forces at the Battle of Amq, but was unable to secure any permanent advantage against Aleppo. In 1207, the French attacked and besieged Homs and its emir, an Ayyubid prince called Mujadid Shirkuh II, appealed to az-Zahir, whose troops lifted the siege.

Prior to his death in 1216, Az-Zahir appointed his younger son Malek al-Aziz Mohammed (b. 1213) to succeed him.
Malik al-Zahir Ghazi, al- see Zahir Ghazi, al-Malik al-
Zahir Ghazi, Az- see Zahir Ghazi, al-Malik al-
Az-Zahir Ghazi see Zahir Ghazi, al-Malik al-

Zahiriyya (al-Zahiriyya). Name of a school of law, which would derive the law only from the literal text (in Arabic, zahir) of the Qur’an and Sunna.  Founded by Dawud ibn Khalaf, it spread in Iraq, Persia and Khurasan.  In Spain, it was codified by Ibn Hazm, who remained practically isolated.  Only in the reign of the Almohad Abu Yusuf Ya‘qub al-Mansur was the Zahiri school recognized as the state code.

Ẓāhirī is a school of thought in Islamic jurisprudence and Aqida. The founder of this school was Daud ibn Khalaf (d. 270/883),[1] better known as Daud al-Zahiri because of his insistence on sticking to the manifest (zahir) or literal meaning of expressions in the Qur'an and the Sunnah; the school and its followers are called Zahiriyah.

Among the textual evidence for their claim, the Zahirists use verses similar to "...this is a clear Arabic language" (Quran 16:103) to back their view. Anyone, in their understanding, possessing knowledge of the Arabic language is able to understand the message of God inasmuch is necessary to fulfill his religious duties.

However, it should be known that the name Zahiri itself is not endorsed by the adherents of this method, using other textual proof to suggest that there is no name to be known by except what has been mentioned thereby in the religious texts. God said, "He named you submitters [Arabic muslimeen) from before and in this." (Quran 22:76) Ibn Hazm, a well-known practitioner and teacher of this school, would refer to himself and those who followed this view as ashab al-zahir, or "the people of the literal sense," defining rather than labeling.

In history the Zahiri understanding has been persecuted by those preferring to interpret the texts by their inward meanings; this happened to such an extent that many of the scholars of Sunni and Shi'ite sects have labeled the Zahiri school extinct, but it is not clear that this is the case.

The modern Salafi movement can be described as influenced by the Zahiri school.

The famous quotation "Satan was the first to do Qiyas" is commonly used.

Zahir, Mohammed
Zahir, Mohammed (Mohammad Zahir)  (Mohammed Zahir Shah)  (Mohammed Zahir) (Muhammad Zahir) (Zahir Shah) (October 16, 1914, Kabul, Afghanistan - July 23, 2007, Kabul, Afghanistan).  King of Afghanistan.  Zahir was born into the Pashtun Barakzai dynasty of Afghanistan.  He was a descendant of Sardar Muhammad Khan, the half brother of Dost Muhammad.  His great grandfather, Yahya Khan was responsible for the mediation between Yaqub Khan and the British during the Gandomak Negotiations which is known as the Gandomak Treaty.  After the signing of the treaty, Yaqub Khan and Yahya Khan fled to British India.  His Pashtun heritage and his preference of the Persian (Farsi) language gave him credibility with the two most important groups of the country.  The Pashto-speaking tribes of the south and the Farsi-speaking elite of Kabul.  Zahir Shah was educated in France, where he observed the democratic process and brought back progressive ideas that would be implemented over the course of his reign.  He spoke fluent Pashto, French, English and Italian.

Zahir married Homairah Begum on November 7, 1931.  They would have six sons and two daughters.

On November 8, 1933, Zahir was proclaimed king after the assassination of his father, Mohammed Nadir Shah, which he witnessed.  For the first twenty years, Zahir did not effectively rule, ceding power to his paternal uncles.  Between 1933 and 1963, the king was dominated by his uncles and his cousin Mohammad Daud.  They ruled while he reigned.  When Zahir finally took over the government, he introduced several reforms, including, in 1964, a new constitution.  Zahir instituted programs of political and economic modernization, ushering in a democratic legislature, and education for women.  These reforms put him at odds with the religious militants who opposed him.  However, he started an anti-Persian program to popularize the Pashtu language which resulted in failure.

Zahir was also known for being an ethno-centric during his rule.  Most government officials and members of parliament were from Pashtun origin and Pashtuns had more privilege than non-Pashtuns which resulted into the creation of anti-government movements and parties, for instance Sitam Milli headed by Tahir Badakhshi, Abdur Rahman Mahmoudi's movement and many more.  By the time Zahir returned to Afghanistan, in the 21st century of the Christian calendar, his rule had been characterized by a lenghty span of peace.

In 1973, Zahir's cousin and former prime minister, Mohammad Daud staged a coup d'etat and established a republican government while Zahir was in Italy undergoing eye surgery for lumbago.  As a former prime minister, Mohammad Daud had been fired by Zahir a decade earlier.  Following this coup, Zahir abdicated rather than fight.

Zahir lived in exile in Italy for twenty-nine years in a large villa in the affluent community of Olgiata on Via Cassia, north of the city of Rome.  He was barred from returning to Afghanistan during Soviet-backed Communist rule in the late 1970s.

In 1991, Zahir survived an attempt on his life by a knife-wielding assassin who pretended to be a Portuguese journalist.

During the fundamentalist Islamic regime of the Taliban, Zahir remained secluded in Italy and refused to speak out against the Taliban.  Upon his return to Afghanistan in 2002, he vowed not to challenge Hamid Karzai for the presidency.

In April 2002, Zahir returned to Afghanistan while the country was under American occupation to open the Loya Jirga which met in June 2002.  After the fall of the Taliban, there were open calls for a return to the monarchy.  Zahir entertained the idea of becoming president.  However, he made it clear that he did not want to return as king.  Instead, Zahir was given the title "Father of the Nation," symbolizing his role in Afghanistan's history as a non-political symbol of national unity, even though he was an ethno-centric king during his reign. 

Hamid Karzai, a prominent figure from Zahir's clan became the president of Afghanistan and Zahir's relatives and supporters were handed over key posts in the transitional government.  Zahir moved back into his old palace but was refused to be given the throne by the Loya Jirga.  Criticisms focused on Zahir's over zealous attempts to modernize Afghanistan often putting his policies against traditional values and his failure to come to a working and stable agreement with neighboring Pakistan which also contains a significant Afghan and Pashtun population.

In an October 2002 visit to France, Zahir slipped in a bathroom, bruising his ribs and, on June 21, 2003, while in France for a medical check-up, he broke his femur by slipping again in a bathroom.  On February 3, 2004, Zahir was flown from Kabul to New Delhi, India, for medical treatment after complaining of an intestinal problem.  He was hospitalized for two weeks, and remained in New Delhi under observation.  On May 18, 2004, Zahir was brought to a hospital in the United Arab Emirates because of nose bleeding caused by heat. 

On December 7, 2004, Zahir attended the swearing in of Hamid Karzai as the President of Afghanistan.

In 2005, Zahir reportedly attempted to sell his former palace, which by then was the property of the government of Afghanistan.

In his final years, Zahir was frail and required a microphone pinned to his collar so that his faint voice could be heard.  In January 2007, Zahir was reported to be seriously ill and bedridden.  On July 23, 2007, Zahir died in the compound of the presidential palace in Kabul after a prolonged illness.  His death was announced on national television by President Karzai. 

Weak, albeit well-meaning during his forty year reign, Zahir was a symbol of a yearned for peace and unity in a nation that struggled to emerge from the turmoil that began with his 1973 ouster in a palace coup.  His return to Afghanistan from three decades of exile to bless the war-battered country's fragile course toward democracy brought hope for change.

The sons of Moḥammad Nāder Shah, Zahir and his brothers reasserted central government control during a period of anarchy and banditry in the late 1920s. Zahir Shah came to the throne at the age of 19, after the assassination of his father in November 1933, having previously served as a cabinet minister. For a number of years Zahir Shah remained in the background while his relatives ran the government, but he asserted his power through the constitution of 1964, which established a constitutional monarchy and prohibited royal relatives from holding public office.

Zahir Shah undertook a number of economic development projects, including irrigation and highway construction, backed by foreign aid, largely from the United States and the Soviet Union. He was also able to maintain Afghanistan’s neutral position in international politics. His reforms seemed to have little effect outside the Kabul area, however. In the early 1970s the country suffered drought and famine. Pashto tribes along the Pakistan border continued to press for autonomy, and the political structure in the capital was unable to deal with the country’s economic problems. In a bloodless coup on July 17, 1973, Zahir Shah was deposed. The leader of the coup, General Mohammad Daud Khan (the king’s brother-in-law), proclaimed Afghanistan a republic with himself as its president. Zahir Shah formally abdicated on August 24, 1973, and went into exile in Italy. Following the U.S. overthrow of the Taliban, he returned to Afghanistan in 2002. Zahir Shah, who publicly opposed the restoration of the monarchy and declined to run for president, was later given the honorary title Father of the Nation.

Mohammad Zahir see Zahir, Mohammed
Muhammad Zahir see Zahir, Mohammed
Zahir Shah see Zahir, Mohammed
Mohammed Zahir see Zahir, Mohammed
Mohammed Zahir Shah see Zahir, Mohammed

Zahravi, Abu al-Qasim al-
Zahravi, Abu al-Qasim al- (Abu al-Qasim al-Zahravi) (Abul Qasim al-Zahravi) (Abul Qasim Khalaf ibn al-Abbas al-Zahravi) (Albucasis) (Abul Kasim) (Abū al-Qāsim Khalaf ibn ʿAbbās az-Zahrāwī) (Abu al-Qasim Khalaf ibn al-Abbas Al-Zahrawi) (Albucasis) (b. c. 936, near Córdoba [Spain] - d. c. 1013).  Undoubtedly the greatest surgeon of the Middle Ages.  He is best known for several original breakthroughs in surgery, as an inventor of several surgical instruments, and for his famous Medical Encyclopedia.  Al-Zahravi is considered as “Father of Modern Surgery.”

Al-Zahravi was born and brought up in Zahra, the royal suburb of Cordova (in Arabic, Qurtuba), the capital of Muslim Spain.  During this time Zahra competed in grandeur and magnificence with Baghdad and Constantinople.  Al-Zahravi served in the capacity of the court physician to King al-Hakam II of Spain. 

Al-Zahravi was a prominent surgeon.  Patients and students from all parts of Europe came to him for treatment and advice.  At this time, Cordova was the favorite destination for Europeans seeking surgical operations, and the services of al-Zahravi were much in demand. 

Al-Zahravi’s principles of medical science surpassed those of Galen in the European medical curriculum.  He is famous for his thirty volume medical encyclopedia ‘Al-Tasrif li man ajaz an-il-talif.  Three volumes of this vast encyclopedia deal with the surgical knowledge including his own inventions and procedures.  The last volume contains many diagramsand illustrations of more than two hundred surgical instruments, most of which he developed.  Al-Zahravi gave detailed descriptions of many surgical operations and their treatment, including cauterization, removal of stone from the bladder, surgery of eye, ear and throat, midwifery, removal of the dead fetus, amputation, dissection of animals, and stypics.

As an inventor of many surgical instruments, al-Zahravi is famous for developing instruments for internal examination of the ear, internal inspection of the urethra and for applying or removing foreign bodies from the throat.  He introduced such new procedures as cauterization of wounds, crushing stones inside the bladder, vivisection and dissection. He applied cauterization procedure to as many as 50 different operations.  In addition, al-Zahravi discussed the preparation of medicines and the application of such techniques as sublimation and decantation.  He prescribed the use of diuretics, sudorifics, purgatives, the absorption of pure wine and hot baths.  Al-Zahravi was the first to give detailed descriptions of hemophilia and was the first to use silk thread for stitching wounds.

Al-Zahravi was also an expert in oral surgery and dentistry.  His Al-Tasrif contains sketches of complex instruments that he developed.  He discussed the problem of non-aligned or deformed teeth and procedures to rectify these defects.  In addition, he developed the procedure for preparing and setting artificial teeth made from animal bones.

Gerard of Cremona (1114-1187) translated Al-Tasrif into Latin in the Middle Ages.  It was then translated into Hebrew, French, English and into Latin dialect of the Provencal.  Al-Zahravi’s Al-Tasrif was an essential component of the medical curriculum in European countries for many centuries.  The famous French surgeon Guy de Chauliac (1300-1368) appended its Latin edition to his own book on surgery.  Several editions of this book (surgical chapters) were published including one at Venice (1497), at Basel (1541) and at Oxford (1778).  This book was taught for approximately five centuries as a standard textbook on surgery at universities of Salerno in Italy, Montpellier in France, and several European universities.

After a long and distinguished medical career, al-Zahravi died in 1031.

Al-Zahravi was Islām’s greatest medieval surgeon, whose comprehensive medical text, combining Middle Eastern and Greco-Roman classical teachings, shaped European surgical procedures until the Renaissance.

Abū al-Qāsim was court physician to the Spanish caliph ʿAbd ar-Raḥmān III an-Nāṣir and wrote At-Taṣrīf liman ʿajazʿan at-Taʾālīf, or At-Taṣrīf (“The Method”), a medical work in 30 parts. While much of the text was based on earlier authorities, especially the Epitomae of the 7th-century Byzantine physician Paul of Aegina, it contained many original observations, including the earliest known description of hemophilia. The last chapter, with its drawings of more than 200 instruments, constitutes the first illustrated, independent work on surgery.

Although At-Taṣrīf was largely ignored by physicians of the eastern Caliphate, the surgical treatise had tremendous influence in Christian Europe. Translated into Latin in the 12th century by the scholar Gerard of Cremona, it stood for nearly 500 years as the leading textbook on surgery in Europe, preferred for its concise lucidity even to the works of the classic Greek medical authority Galen.

Abu al-Qasim al-Zahravi see Zahravi, Abu al-Qasim al-
Abul Qasim al-Zahravi see Zahravi, Abu al-Qasim al-
Abul Qasim Khalaf ibn al-Abbas al-Zahravi see Zahravi, Abu al-Qasim al-
Albucasis see Zahravi, Abu al-Qasim al-
Abu al-Qasim Khalaf ibn al-Abbas Al-Zahrawi  see Zahravi, Abu al-Qasim al-
Father of Modern Surgery see Zahravi, Abu al-Qasim al-

Za‘im.  In modern usage the word za‘im means a political leader who possesses the support of a locally circumscribed community and who retains this support by fostering or appearing to foster the interests of as many as possible from amongst his clientele.  The main distinction of this type of leadership is that it is personal and not party based in the modern sense of organizations with political or ideological grassroots. 

There is a traditional social dimension that dictates visits by the clients to the za‘im and by him on special occasions and the observance of wajibat (“obligations”) between them.  The za‘im might have a religious or community base or transcend confessional boundaries by having a local or geographic base.  He might also have a purely economic base as a large employer or landowner.  His authority also has a moral dimension and involves a certain amount of reciprocity.

Some distinguish among three different types of zu‘ama’, each referring to a different mode of political activity.  First, there are feudal zu‘ama’ who are based mainly in the countryside where large estates and traditional lordships exist and whose power rests on their position as landowners, often of ancient lineage, and their ability to give protection and patronage.  Second, there are populist politicans of the mainly Christian regions in the northern half of Lebanon where smallholdings are common who maintain leadership on a less-solid base of socio-economic power.  Leadership is derived on the one hand from the use of powers of protection and patronage to maintain political clans and on the other from some kind of ideology or program of action.  Third, there are Muslim leaders of the coastal cities who also obtain and retain leadership by ideological appeal and the exercise of patronage, but add to these a third source of power -- the manipulation of the urban masses mobilized by strongarm men or qabadays.

In modern Lebanon, za‘imship is often linked to the attainment of high office, such as membership of parliament or a ministerial post.  Political loyalty is also expressed by voting during elections.  Relations among zu‘ama’ ensure a wider availability of favors to the clients, and competition among them, especially in urban areas, provides a minimum of checks and balances to the otherwise absolute power that a za‘im may wield.

The holding of an office is also important because the za‘im provides two kinds of services: general services, such as the provision of electricity, roads, and other amenities to the region or community; or personal services, such as the provision of employment, wasta’ (mediation), and access to welfare services.  Hence the za‘im’s power can be based on the loyalty of people in his district, the relationship he has with the state or central authorities, or both.  Both wealth and frequent return to high office, giving the za‘im access to state patronage, are important components in the legitimization of his powers.

Za‘imship as a system can be described as the relations between zu‘ama’ and their clients together with the relationship between local and national zu‘ama’  in a continuous process of fine tuning of the provision of favors and services in exchange for political loyalty and power.  In this system, every transaction is connected and dependent on the other.  It is often referred to as the traditional political system as opposed to the modern one based on political parties and state institutions.

The final results of the process were not always seen as coinciding with the wider national interest, and the za‘im system was seen as a parallel or “backstage” system, which predominated over the “frontstage” of state institutions.  The clash between the system and central gvoernment, when the latter impinged on the powerbase from which the authority of the former was derived, was seen as restrictive of state sovereignty and authority and as a hindrance to the development of a strong central government.

The decline and demise of the za‘im system has been declared, but it endures and sometimes emerges stronger from crises and government reforms, for example, during the presidency of General Fuad Chehab (Fu’ad Shihab, 1958-1964), who was particularly opposed to the system.  It is also common to attack the system in political rhetoric, even by its very practitioners.

The civil war of 1975-1990 has, however, had consequences onthe system which it is still too early to fully appreciate.  The prolonged absence of state authority and institutions, the paralysis of the normal political process, the emergence of new powers in Lebanon, and the fragmentation of society must have taken their toll on the traditional system of zu‘ama’.  Whether this involves a radical structural change or simply a change in the cast of characters, with the emergence of new and different types of zu‘ama’, remains to be seen.

Zamakhshari (Abu’l-Qasim Mahmud al-Zamakhshari) (Abu al-Qasim Mahmud ibn Umar al-Zamakhshari) (Jar Allah - "God's neighbor") (b. March 8, 1075, Khwārezm [now in Turkmenistan or Uzbekistan] - d. June 14, 1144, Al-Jurjānīya, Khwārezm).  Persian born Arabic scholar, theologian and philologist from Khwarazm.  As a theologian, he followed the teachings of the Mu‘tazila and as a philologist, in spite of his Persian descent, he championed the absolute superiority of Arabic. His principal work is a commentary on the Qur’an.  At the very beginning of the work he declares the Qur’an created, but notwithstanding this clearly Mu‘tazila point of view, it was widely read in orthodox circles.  He also wrote grammatical works, a collection of old proverbs, and composed a series of moral discourses.

Al-Zamakhshari was a medieval Muslim scholar of Iranian origin who subscribed to the Muʿtazilite theological doctrine. He was born in Khwarezmia, but lived most of his life in Bukhara, Samarkand, and Baghdad.  His chief work is Al-Kashshāf ʿan Ḥaqāʾiq at-Tanzīl (“The Discoverer of Revealed Truths”), his exhaustive linguistic commentary on the Qurʾān.

As is true for most Muslim scholars of his era, little is known of his youth. He was apparently well-traveled and resided at least twice (once for an extended period of time) in the holy city of Mecca, where he earned his nickname, Jār Allāh. He studied at Bukhara and Samarkand (both now in Uzbekistan) and also spent time in Baghdad. At some point in his travels, one of his feet had to be amputated (probably because of frostbite), and thereafter—so the story goes—al-Zamakhsharī felt obliged to carry with him affidavits from noted citizens attesting that his foot had not been amputated as punishment for some crime.

Theologically, he was affiliated with the rationalist Muʿtazilah school. As a philologist, he considered Arabic the queen of languages, in spite of the fact that his own native tongue was Persian (and though he wrote several minor works in that latter language). His great commentary, Al-Kashshāf ʿan Ḥaqāʾiq at-Tanzīl, was written in Arabic and became the work for which he is best known. A comprehensive study of the Muslim scripture that focused on its grammatical nuance, it was completed in 1134. It was widely read, in spite of its Muʿtazilite bias, especially in the East. In the western portions of the Islamic world, his dogmatic point of view was offensive to the Mālikīyah school, though the great 14th-century Arab historian Ibn Khaldūn regarded the work highly.

Of al-Zamakhsharī’s grammatical works, Al-Mufaṣṣal fī ʿilm al-ʿArabīyah (“Detailed Treatise on Arabic Linguistics,” written 1119–21; and sometimes titled Kitāb al Mufaṣṣal fī al-Naḥw ["Detailed Treatise on Grammar"]) is celebrated for its concise but exhaustive exposition. He was also the author of a collection of old proverbs. Though well regarded, this work has been considered second to the anthology Al-Amthāl ("The Proverbs") written by his close contemporary Abū Faḍl al-Maydānī with whom al-Zamakhsharī had a notorious and somewhat undignified feud. Al-Zamakhsharī’s other works include three collections of apothegms as well as treatises on moral discourses and a number of poems.

The works of al-Zamakhshari include:

    * Al-Kashshaaf ("the Revealer") — A tafsir of the Qur'an
    * Rabi al-Abrar
    * Asasul-Balaghat dar-Lughat — Literature
    * Fasul-ul-Akhbar
    * Fraiz Dar-ilm Fariz
    * Kitab-Fastdar-Nahr
    * Muajjam-ul-Hadud
    * Manha Darusul
    * Diwan-ul-Tamsil
    * Sawaer-ul-Islam
    * Muqaddimat al-Adab (Arabic to Chorasmian Language dictionary)
    * Kitab al-Amkinah wa al-Jibal wa al-Miyah (Geography))
    * Mufassal Anmuzaj (Nahw: Arabic grammar)

Abu’l-Qasim Mahmud al-Zamakhshari see Zamakhshari

Zamindar (Zemindar) (Jomidar). Term which refers to a landowner.  Under the Mughals of India, the zamindar was a person who has a right to collect revenues from the land. 

In India, a zamindar was a holder or occupier (dār) of land (zamīn). The root words are Persian, and the resulting name was widely used wherever Persian influence was spread by the Mughals or other Indian Muslim dynasties. The meanings attached to it were various. In Bengal the word denoted a hereditary tax collector who could retain 10 percent of the revenue he collected. In the late 18th century the British government made these zamindars landowners, thus creating a landed aristocracy in Bengal and Bihar that lasted until Indian independence (1947). In parts of north India (e.g., Uttar Pradesh), a zamindar denoted a large landowner with full proprietary rights. More generally in north India, zamindar denoted the cultivator of the soil or joint proprietors holding village lands in common as joint heirs. In Maratha territories the name was generally applied to all local hereditary revenue officers.

A zamindar or zemindar, was an official employed by the Mughals to collect taxes from Ryots (peasants). The zamindari system used the existing structure of the bhuiyan land tenure system of the pre-Mughal era by the Mughals as a key economic and political institution to implement the sharia-based Islamic rule over the "zimmis". The practice was continued under British rule with colonial landholders. After independence, however, the system was abolished in India and East Pakistan (present-day Bangladesh). It is still current in modern Pakistan.

Other terms were and are used in various provinces. For example, a zamindar is known as a wadera in Sindh. In Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya pradesh, Himachal pradesh, Haryana, Uttrakhand, Chhatisgarh, and Bihar it is thakur. In the Punjab and Haryana, many different terms occur, such as chaudhary, lambardar, and sardar. Malik is an Arabic term used in the Punjab which literally means "king". The word zamindar itself comes ultimately from Persian zamīn, "earth", and the common suffix -dār, "-holder".

Zemindar see Zamindar
Jomidar see Zamindar

Zanata (Banu Zanata) (Zenata).  Name given by the Arab historians of the Middle Ages to one of the two great confederations of the Berbers, the other being the Banu Sanhaja.

The Zenata were an ethnic group of North Africa, who were technically an Eastern Berber group and who are found in Tunisia, Algeria and the Rif mountains.

Zenata tribes entered in Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia from the east of Northern Africa in pre-Islamic times and grouped themselves with the tribes of Maghrawa, Miknasa, and Banu Ifran.

According to Ibn Khaldun, an Arabic historian of the 14th century, there were Zenata tribes dispatched in all North Africa (current Morocco, Libya, Tunisia, Algeria), and some of them may have also lived in modern Egypt as well.

According to Ibn Khaldun, the Zenata are one of the main divisions of the medieval Berbers, along with Senhaja and Masmuda.  He added that these tribes, traditionally nomads, were concentrated in the Middle Maghreb (part of the current Algeria). It is why he called the Middle Maghreb home of the Zenata.

The hypothesis of Ibn Khaldun about the origin of this Berber group or ethnicity is not widely accepted by modern historians.

Banu Zanata see Zanata
Zenata see Zanata

Zand. Short-lived Iranian dynasty (r. 1750/1751-1794) founded by Karim Khan Zand “the vakil” (“regent, deputy”; r. 1751-1779).  Their main capital was Shiraz.  The Zand were a tribe of the southern Iranian group of Kurds known as the Lak.  Exiled to Khorasan by Nadir Shah in 1731, the Zand retreated under their leader, Muhammad Karim Khan Zand, into the southwest in 1747.  Muhammad Karim Khan (1750-1779) occupied the whole of southern Iran and assumed the title Wakil (“representative”).  Following the conquest of Mazandaran (in 1759) and Azerbaijan (in 1762), he developed a successful regime, led the country into great economic prosperity (involving trade with India, construction of irrigation channels, a fair tax policy), and made his court a cultural center.  Following his death, the state disintegrated in the power struggle waged by pretenders, until the last Zand ruler was violently eliminated by the Qajars in Kerman in 1794.

Between 1750 and 1765 Karim Khan salvaged most of western Iran between Urmia and Bandar Abbas from the wreck of Nadir Shah’s empire.  With his capital at Shiraz, Karim Khan established a degree of trust and cooperation between tribal armies, urban administrators, and the peasantry, and hence a measure of internal security that encouraged and stimulated trade and agriculture. 

On Karim’s death in 1779 the internecine power struggle between his relatives destroyed most of what he had achieved.  Even before his funeral, his half-brother Zaki slaughtered most of his rivals in Shiraz and ruled in the name of one of Karim’s incompetent sons.  Ali Murad, of a different branch of the Zand tribe, seized Isfahan, but an attack by the Qajar chief Agha Muhammad Khan delayed Ali Murad and enabled Karim’s brother Sadiq, returning from his occupation of Basra, to seize Shiraz.  In 1781, Ali Murad took Shiraz but again had to turn his attention to Qajar attackes from Mazandaran.  His half brother Ja’far (son of Sadiq) marched on Isfahan, and Ali Murad died on his way to defending the city in February 1785.

Zand control of the Elburz and uppre Zagros mountain ranges was now relinquished to the Qajara.  Killed in a palace coup in 1789, Ja’far was succeeded (after a brief reign by Said Murad Khan, a cousin of Ali Murad) by his popular son Lutf Ali Khan, whose energetic campaigns against Qajars and defecting vassals in the south and east briefly staved off the dynasty’s impending downfall.  However, Haji Ibrahim, the powerful kalantar (mayor) of Shiraz, acting out of self-preservation (Lutf Ali had revealed his distrust by taking the son of the kalantar hostage) or out of a desire to end the destructive tribal warfare, gained control of the garrison and shut the gates of Shiraz against Luft Ali’s army.  Robbed of a base, the young Zand chief retreated to Kerman and finally to the fortress of Bam.  Here he was captured by Agha Muhammad Khan Qajar, who blinded, tortured, and finally executed him in November 1794 at Tehran.

The only material monuments of the Zand dynasty are Karim Khan’s mosque, fortress, and bazaar in Shiraz, which was sacked by the Qajar ruler before his return to the new capital of Tehran.  None of Karim Khan’s successors aspired to the title of shah (which he had not assumed), or even to Karim’s title of vakil.  The dynasty is remembered chiefly for its founder’s unusual humanity and unselfishness, which produced a quarter of a century of comparative peace and prosperity in the middle of Iran’s bloodiest century since the Mongol invasions.

Following the death of the Afshārid ruler Nāder Shāh (1747), Karīm Khān Zand became one of the major contenders for power. By 1750 he had sufficiently consolidated his power to proclaim himself as vakīl (regent) for the Ṣafavid Esmāʿīl III. Karīm Khān never claimed the title of shāhanshāh (“king of kings”). Instead he maintained Esmāʿīl as a figurehead. Karīm Khān, with 30 years of benevolent rule, gave southern Iran a much needed respite from continual warfare. He encouraged agriculture and entered into trade relations with Great Britain. His death in 1779 was followed by internal dissensions and disputes over successions. Between 1779 and 1789 five Zand kings ruled briefly. In 1789 Loṭf ʿAlī Khān (ruled 1789–94) proclaimed himself as the new Zand king and took energetic action to put down a rebellion led by Āghā Moḥammad Khān Qājār that had begun at Karīm Khān’s death. Outnumbered by the superior Qājār forces, Loṭf ʿAlī Khān was finally defeated and captured at Kermān in 1794. His defeat marked the final eclipse of the Zand dynasty, which was supplanted by that of the Qājārs.

Zand, Karim Khan
Zand, Karim Khan (Karim Khan Zand) (b. c. 1705 - d. March 1779, Shiraz, Zand, Iran).  Ruler of western Iran (1751-1779).  Among the tribal contingents of Nadir Shah Afshar’s army that returned to their home ranges after Nadir’s assassination in 1747 were the Bakhtiyari, under Ali Mardan Khan, and the Zand, led by Karim Khan.  The latter were seminomads of the Lakk people, related to both the Lurs and the Kurds, pasturing between Hamadan and Isfahan.

On the failure of the Afsharids to hold western Iran, these two chiefs in 1750 occupied the former Safavid capital of Isfahan in the name of a minor Safavid protégé styled Isma’il III, with Ali Mardan as vakil, or regent, and Karim as commander of the army.  While Karim was campaigning in Kurdistan, Ali Mardan staged a coup and plundered the province of Fars.  Karim Khan captured Isfahan and defeated his rival in battle.  Three other contestants for power occupied all of the Zand leader’s energies for three more years.  His campaigns ranged from the Persian Gulf to the Caspian coast and the foothills of the Caucasus.  The Qajar chief Muhammad Hasan Khan was defeated and killed outside his fortress of Astarabad in 1759.  Azad Khan the Afghan was routed by his erstwhile ally, the Afshar leader Fath Ali Khan, in 1760.  He surrendered to Karim Khan and spent the rest of his life in Shiraz as a pensioner of the Zands.  Fath Ali made a last stand with a tribal coalition in Azerbaijan, but the province fell to the Zands in 1762 and was thereafter administered for them by Najaf Quli Khan Dunbuli, of an eminent local family of turkicized Kurds.

In July 1765, having subdued all the Elburz and Zagros provinces, Karim Khan entered Shiraz and was not to leave for the remaining fourteen years of his life.  This strategic southern city had come to be his refuge and capital during his early struggle for power against rivals based in northern Iran, and he now embellished it with a fortress-palace (arg), a mosque, a covered bazaar, and other buildings and gardens.  During the next decade, he sent expeditions led by his relatives to secure the Persian Gulf littoral and its hinterland, the provinces of Lar, Yazd, and Kerman.  He attempted to keep the Qajars in check -- with only moderate success -- by appointing a son of the late Muhammad Hasan Khan as governor of Damghan and keeping the eldest son, Agha Muhammad Khan, a hostage in Shiraz.  Impoverished Khurasan he left in the hands of Nadir Shah’s grandson, Shahrukh Shah, as a buffer againstthe new Afghan monarchy of Ahmad Shah Durrani.  North of the Aras River Iran’s former vassals, the Georgian kingdom and the Darband khanate, began to drift into the economic and political orbit of Russia.  

In the Persian Gulf, the commercial centre of gravity moved from Bandar Abbas to Bushehr, the natural port of Shiraz, where the East India Company was granted facilities.  In 1766, Karim Khan regained Kharg Island from the hands of the colorful pirate Mir Muhanna, who had earlier captured it from the Dutch East India Company.  However, he was unable to bring Hormuz Island under his control or to intimidate the imam of Oman, his commercial rival in the lower gulf.  Repeated expeditions against the Ka’b Arabs of Khuzistan -- even with the cooperation of the East India company and the Ottoman governor of Basra -- brought no more than fitful subservience until the death of their strong leader, Shaikh Salman, in 1768.  Karim Khan exchanged embassies with Haidar Ali, ruler of the Deccan, and Indian merchants frequented Shiraz and the gulf ports.  Armenian and Jewish merchants who had fled during the chaotic interregnum were encouraged to return to Iran, and commerce increased.  Agricultural subsidies and rebuilding programs, both in Shiraz and the provinces (e.g., in Isfahan and Kashan, hit by an earthquake in 1778), helped to restorte Iran’s threadbare economic and social fabric. 

Seeking to divert Persian Gulf trade to Bushehr, Karim Khan in 1776 besieged and occupied Basra.  His death -- probably as a result of tuberculosis -- which occurred on March 2, 1779, when he was was about eighty years old, prompted an Iranian withdrawal Ironically, Basra’s trade was indeed largely diverted as a result of this war, but to Kuwait, rather than Bushehr.  The internecine wars of succession following his death further undermined much of the prosperity he had restored.

Karim Khan’s virtues were universally acknowledged, even by his enemies.  During his rise to power, he displayed prowess in the field, tenacity in adversity, and magnanimity in victory.  As ruler he dressed and lived simply (although indulging a taste for wine and women) and never assumed the title shah.  Even his title vakil (“representative”) he modified from vakil al-daula, “sovereign’s regent,” to vakil al-ra’aya, “people’s deputy,” which was the designation of a traditional provincial ombudsman appointed by the crown.  Apocryphal tales of his justice, kindness, humility, sense of humor, and concern for the safety and prosperity of the common man testify to his continuing place in his countrymen’s affection.

Karim Khan was the first Zand ruler of Iran. He restored peace to the kingdom after the strife following the collapse of the Ṣafavid dynasty.

Of humble tribal origin, Karīm Khān became one of the generals of his predecessor, Nāder Shāh. In the chaotic aftermath of Nāder Shāh’s assassination in 1747, Karīm Khān became a major contender for power but was challenged by several adversaries. In order to add legitimacy to his claim, Karīm Khān in 1757 placed on the throne the infant Shāh Ismāʿīl III, the grandson of the last official Ṣafavid king. Ismāʿīl was a figurehead king, real power being vested in Karīm Khān, who never claimed the title of shāhānshāh (“king of kings”) but used that of vakīl (“regent”).

By 1760, Karīm Khān had defeated all his rivals and controlled all of Iran except Khorāsān, in the northeast, which was ruled by Shāh Rokh, the blind grandson of Nāder Shāh. During Karīm Khān’s rule, Iran recovered from the devastation of 40 years of war. He made Shīrāz his capital, constructing many fine buildings. Moreover, he reorganized the fiscal system of the kingdom, removing some of the heavy burdens of taxation from the agricultural classes. An active patron of the arts, he attracted many scholars and poets to his capital.

Karīm Khān also opened Iran to foreign influence by allowing the English East India Company to establish a trading post in Bushire, the Persian Gulf port (1763). In advancing his policy of developing trade, in 1775–76 he attacked and captured Basra, the Ottoman port at the mouth of the Persian Gulf, which had diverted much of the trade with India away from Iranian ports.

The civil war that followed Karīm Khān’s death ended only with the final establishment of the Qājār dynasty in 1796.

Karim Khan Zand see Zand, Karim Khan

Zangids (Zengids). Dynasty of Turkish origin, which ruled in Mosul and Aleppo (r.1127-1222), and in Damasacus and Aleppo (r.1146-1181).  Their main capital was Aleppo and Damascus in 1154.  The founder of the dynasty was Aqsunqur, a Seljuk military slave and atabeg (tutor) to the Seljuk Tutush of Aleppo.  His son, Imad al-Din Zangi (r. 1127-1146), became governor of Iraq (with Baghdad) in 1127 and conquered Mosul (in 1127), Aleppo (in 1128), and other Syrian towns.  Through political skill and successful battles against the crusading nations, he acquired authority over Mesopotamia and large parts of Syria.  While his son, Nur al-Din (r. 1146-1174), conquered Syria and occupied Damascus in 1154, his brother, Saif al-Din (r. 1146-1149), inherited Mesopotamia and established the Mosul dynastic branch (r. 1146-1262).  Nur al-Din led Zangid rule to its apogee and was able to extend his sovereignty as far as Egypt (under the Fatimids) and over all branches of the family.  His son, Isma‘il, was defeated in 1174 by the Ayyubids, under Saladin, who had risen in the service of the Zangids; the secondary dynastic branches in Sinjar (r. 1170-1220) and Jazira by the Ilkhanids in 1262.

The Zengid (or Zangid) dynasty was a Muslim dynasty of Turkic origin, which ruled parts of Syria and northern Iraq on behalf of the Seljuk Empire.

The dynasty was founded by Imad ed-Din Zengi (or Zangi), who became the Seljuk Atabeg (governor) of Mosul in 1127. He quickly became the chief Turkish potentate in Northern Syria and Iraq, taking Aleppo from the squabbling Ortoqid emirs in 1128, and capturing the County of Edessa from the Crusaders in 1144. This latter feat made Zengi a hero in the Muslim world, but he was assassinated by a slave two years later, in 1146.

On Zengi's death, his territories were divided, with Mosul and his lands in Iraq going to his eldest son Saif ad-Din Ghazi I, and Aleppo and Edessa falling to his second son, Nur ad-Din Mahmud. Nur ad-Din proved to be as competent as his father. In 1149 he defeated and killed Prince Raymond of Antioch in battle, and the next year conquered the remnants of the County of Edessa west of the Euphrates River. In 1154 he capped off these successes by his capture of Damascus from the Burid Emirs who ruled it.

Now ruling from Damascus, Nur ad-Din's success continued. Another Prince of Antioch, Raynald of Châtillon was captured, and the territories of that Principality were greatly reduced. In the 1160s, Nur ad-Din's attention was mostly held by a competition with the King of Jerusalem, Amalric I, for control of the Fatimid Caliphate of Egypt. Ultimately, Nur ed-Din's Kurdish general Shirkuh was successful in conquering Egypt in 1169, but Shirkuh's nephew and successor as Governor of Egypt, Saladin, rejected Nur ad-Din's control.

Nur ad-Din was preparing to invade Egypt to bring Saladin under control when he unexpectedly died in 1174. His son and successor As-Salih Ismail al-Malik was only a child, and was forced to flee to Aleppo, which he ruled until 1181, when he was murdered and replaced by his relation, the Atabeg of Mosul. Saladin conquered Aleppo two years later, ending Zengid rule in Syria.

Zengid princes continued to rule in Northern Iraq well into the 13th Century, ruling Mosul until 1234; their rule did not come finally to an end until 1250.

The Zengid Atabegs and Emirs of Mosul were:

    * Imad ad-Din Zengi I 1127-1146
    * Saif ad-Din Ghazi I 1146-1149
    * Qutb ad-Din Mawdud 1149-1170
    * Saif ad-Din Ghazi II 1170-1180
    * Izz ad-Din Mas'ud 1180-1193
    * Nur ad-Din Arslan Shah I 1193-1211
    * Izz ad-Din Mas'ud II 1211-1218
    * Nur ad-Din Arslan Shah II 1218-1219
    * Nasir ad-Din Mahmud 1219-1234

The Zengid Emirs of Aleppo were:

    * Imad ad-Din Zengi I 1128-1146
    * Nur ad-Din Mahmud 1146-1174
    * As-Salih Ismail al-Malik 1174-1181
    * Imad ad-Din Zengi II 1181-1183

The Zengid Emirs of Damascus were:

    * Nur ad-Din Mahmud 1154-1174
    * As-Salih Ismail al-Malik 1174

The Zengid Emirs of Sinjar (in Northern Iraq) were:

    * Imad ad-Din Zengi II 1171-1197
    * Qutb ad-Din Muhammad 1197-1219
    * Imad ad-Din Shahanshah 1219-1220
    * Jalal ad-Din Mahmud 1219-1220
    * Fath ad-Din Umar 1219-1220

The Zengid Emirs of Jazira (in Northern Iraq) were:

    * Mu'izz ad-Din Sanjar Shah 1180-1208
    * Mu'izz ad-Din Mahmud 1208-1241
    * Mahmud Al-Malik Al-Zahir 1241-1250

After Zangī’s death in 1146, his sons divided the state between them, Syria falling to Nureddin (Nūr ad-Dīn Maḥmūd; r. 1146–74) and al-Jazīrah to Sayf ad-Dīn Ghāzī I (r. 1146–49). Nureddin’s expansionist policy led him to annex Damascus (1154), subjugate Egypt (1168), and present a broad and competent Muslim front against the crusaders, especially under such generals as Saladin, subsequent founder of the Ayyūbid dynasty of Egypt.

The Syrian branch of the Zangids was reunited with the Iraqi line in 1181 and was eventually absorbed into Saladin’s new empire. The Zangids held on to al-Jazīrah and successfully repulsed several attempts made by Saladin to capture Mosul (1182 and 1185). They were, however, forced to accept his suzerainty. The rise to power of Badr ad-Dīn Luʾluʾ, a former slave, as regent for the last Zangid, Nāṣir ad-Dīn Maḥmūd (reigned 1219–22), marked the end of the dynasty. Luʾluʾ ruled Mosul as atabeg from 1222 to 1259.  Soon afterward the city fell to the Mongols.

A third branch of the Zangids had established themselves in Sinjār, west of Mosul, in 1170 and ruled there for about 50 years. The Ayyūbids completed several architectural works begun by the Zangids. The most noteworthy is the Great Mosque in Aleppo, completed in 1190. The building, a perfect continuation of the Zangid artistic tradition, demonstrates simplicity in decorative architecture. It is built around a large, open, marble-floored court, with a polychrome mihrab (prayer niche facing Mecca) and a tall, square minaret. Large areas of wall are left undecorated in contrast to the expressive but delicately carved marble inlay ornaments.

The Zangids are famous for their patronage of the 13th-century Mosul schools of metalwork and painting. Mosul produced the finest metal inlay pieces (usually bronze with silver inlay) in the Islāmic world at that time. Their craftsmen carried the technique to Aleppo, Damascus, Baghdad, Cairo, and Iran, influencing the metalwork of those areas for centuries following. The Mosul school of painting was rivaled in Iraq only by the Baghdad school. Stylistically, Mosul miniatures were based heavily on Seljuq traditions, but they had an iconography of their own. Of somewhat less importance were knotted carpets made by Zangid craftsmen, two-colored silks being the speciality.

Zengids see Zangids

Zanj (in plural form, Zunuj) (Zeng) (Zinj).  Name of the black (African) tribes of the east coast of Africa.  It was given by the Arab historians to the rebel slaves who, having previously rebelled in 694, for fifteen years (868-883) terrorized Lower Mesopotamia.  They were led by a man called “the veiled”.  They took al-Ubulla, now part of Basra; Abadan; Ahvaz, now the capital of Khuzistan; and finally Basra itself.  They were in the end defeated by the ‘Abbasid regent al-Muwaffaq.

Zanj ("Land of the Blacks") was a name used by medieval Arab geographers to refer to both a certain portion of the coast of East Africa and its inhabitants. It is the origin of the place name Zanzibar.

The geographers divided the coast of East Africa at large into several regions based on each region's respective inhabitants. In northern Somalia was Barbara (around modern-day Berbera), which was the land of the Eastern Baribah or Barbaroi (Berbers), as Somalis were referred to by medieval Arab and ancient Greek geographers, respectively. In modern-day Ethiopia was al-Habash or Abyssinia, which was inhabited by the Habash or Abyssinians, who were the forbears of the Habesha.

Beyond the Abyssinian highlands and the Berber coast lay to the south Zanj (also transliterated as Zenj or Zinj), a land inhabited by Bantu-speaking peoples called the Zanj, which stretched from the area far south of present-day Mogadishu, to Pemba Island in Tanzania. South of Zanj lay the Land of Sofala in Mozambique, the northern limit of which may have been Pangani, opposite Pemba Island. And beyond Sofala was the obscure realm of Waq-Waq, also in Mozambique. The tenth century Arab historian and geographer Abu al-Hasan 'Alī al-Mas'ūdī describes Sofala as the furthest limit of the Zanj settlement and mentions its king's title as Mfalme (a Bantu word).

Arab writers used the term Zanj to refer to "Bantu-speaking Negroes" on the coast of East Africa and south of Barbara and Abyssinia. The Zanj traded extensively with Arabs, Persians and Indians, but only locally since they possessed no ocean-going ships. Through this trade, some Arabs intermarried with local Bantu women, which eventually gave rise to the Swahili culture and language -- both Bantu in origin but significantly influenced by foreign elements (e.g. clothing, loan words, etc.).

Prominent settlements of the Zanj coast included Shungwaya (Bur Gao), as well as Malindi, Gedi, and Mombasa. By the late medieval period, the area included at least 37 substantial Swahili trading towns, many of them quite wealthy. However, these communities never consolidated into a single political entity (the "Zanj Empire" being a late nineteenth century fiction).

The urban ruling and commercial classes of these Swahili settlements was occupied by Arab and Persian immigrants. The Bantu peoples inhabited the coastal regions, and were organized only as family groups. The term 'shenzi' used on the East African coast and derived from Swahili 'zanji' referred in a derogatory way to anything associated with rural blacks. An example of this would be the colonial term a 'shenzi' dog, referring to a native dog.

The Zanj were for centuries shipped as slaves by Arab traders to all the countries bordering the Indian Ocean. The Umayyad and Abbasid caliphs recruited many Zanj slaves as soldiers and, as early as 696, we learn of slave revolts of the Zanj against their Arab masters in Iraq. Ancient Chinese texts also mention ambassadors from Java presenting the Chinese emperor with two Seng Chi (Zanji) slaves as gifts, and Seng Chi slaves reaching China from the Hindu kingdom of Sri Vijaya in Java.

The term "Zanj" apparently fell out of use in the tenth century. However, after 1861, when the area controlled by the Arab Sultan of Zanzibar was forced by the British to split with the parent country of Oman, it was often referred to as Zanj. The sea off the south-eastern coast of Africa was known as the "Sea of Zanj" and included the Mascarene islands and Madagascar. During the anti-apartheid struggle it was proposed that South Africa should assume the name 'Azania' to reflect ancient Zanj.

The Zanj Rebellion (869–883) was a black-slave revolt against the ʿAbbāsid caliphal empire. A number of Basran landowners had brought several thousand East African blacks (Zanj) into southern Iraq to drain the salt marshes east of Basra. The landowners subjected the Zanj, who generally spoke no Arabic, to heavy slave labor and provided them with only minimal subsistence. In September 869, ʿAlī ibn Muḥammad, a Persian claiming descent from ʿAlī, the fourth caliph, and Fāṭimah, Muḥammad’s daughter, gained the support of several slave-work crews—which could number from 500 to 5,000 men—by pointing out the injustice of their social position and promising them freedom and wealth. ʿAlī’s offers became even more attractive with his subsequent adoption of a Khārijite religious stance: anyone, even a black slave, could be elected caliph, and all non-Khārijites were infidels threatened by a holy war.

Zanj forces grew rapidly in size and power, absorbing the well-trained black contingents that defected from the defeated caliphal armies, along with some disaffected local peasantry. In October 869 they defeated a Basran force, and soon afterward a Zanj capital, al-Mukhtārah (Arabic: the Chosen), was built on an inaccessible dry spot in the salt flats, surrounded by canals. The rebels gained control of southern Iraq by capturing al-Ubullah (June 870), a seaport on the Persian Gulf, and cutting communications to Basra, then seized Ahvāz in southwestern Iran. The caliphal armies, now entrusted to al-Muwaffaq, a brother of the new caliph, al-Muʿtamid (r. 870–892), still could not cope with the rebels. The Zanj sacked Basra in September 871, and subsequently defeated al-Muwaffaq himself in April 872.

Between 872 and 879, while al-Muwaffaq was occupied in eastern Iran with the expansion of the Ṣaffārids, an independent Persian dynasty, the Zanj seized Wāsiṭ (878) and established themselves in Khuzistan, Iran. In 879, however, al-Muwaffaq organized a major offensive against the black slaves. Within a year, the second Zanj city, al-Manīʿah (The Impregnable), was taken. The rebels were next expelled from Khuzistan, and, in the spring of 881, al-Muwaffaq laid siege to al-Mukhtārah from a special city built on the other side of the Tigris River. Two years later, in August 883, reinforced by Egyptian troops, al-Muwaffaq finally crushed the rebellion, conquering the city and returning to Baghdad with ʿAlī’s head.
Zunuj see Zanj
Zeng see Zanj
Zinj see Zanj

Zanjani, ‘Izz al-Din ‘Abd al-Wahhab al-
Zanjani, ‘Izz al-Din ‘Abd al-Wahhab al- (‘Izz al-Din ‘Abd al-Wahhab al- Zanjani) (al-‘Izzi).  Arab grammarian of thirteenth century.  Besides grammatical works, he wrote on the use of the astrolabe and made a collection of Arabic poems.
'Izz al-Din 'Abd al-Wahhab al-Zanjani see Zanjani, ‘Izz al-Din ‘Abd al-Wahhab al-
'Izzi, al- see Zanjani, ‘Izz al-Din ‘Abd al-Wahhab al-

Zarathustra (Zoroaster) (Zartosht) (Avestan) (b. c. 628 B.C.T., probably Rhages, Iran - died c. 551).  Iranian prophet and the founder ot the Zoroastrian religion.  He is in many contexts called Zoroaster.  There are several conflicting stories about Zarathustra, and many of these are too young to be historically acceptable.  In short, there is much that is unknown about who Zarathustra was, as well as when and where he lived.

What is also not known fully is how much of the teachings and theology of Zoroastrianism comes from Zarathustra himself.   There is good reason to believe that Zarathustra lived and worked in eastern Iran, considering the language used in the gathas, religious texts.  It is said that Zarathustra was of the lineage of Spitama and that he worked as a sacrifice priest but held a low social status.  

Zarathustra’s teachings can be seen in connection with the old Iranian cult of sacrifice, where he fought the ancient sacrifice of murder, where life comes from the repetition of the cosmogonic murder.  Zarathustra did not go against the institution in itself, but he spent his time with opposing the taditional intentions with the sacrifice.

Zarathustra is in the Baha’i religion considered a true manifestation of God.  Indeed, the Baha’i appear to accept Zarathustra in much the same way that Zoroastrians perceive him.

Zarathustra (Zoroaster) was an Iranian religious reformer and founder of Zoroastrianism, or Parsiism, as it is known in India.

A major personality in the history of the religions of the world, Zoroaster has been the object of much attention for two reasons. On the one hand, he became a legendary figure believed to be connected with occult knowledge and magical practices in the Near Eastern and Mediterranean world in the Hellenistic Age (c. 300 B.C.T. – c. 300 C.C.). On the other hand, his monotheistic concept of God has attracted the attention of modern historians of religion, who have speculated on the connections between his teaching and Judaism and Christianity. Though extreme claims of pan-Iranianism (i.e., that Zoroastrian or Iranian ideas influenced Greek, Roman, and Jewish thought) may be disregarded, the pervasive influence of Zoroaster’s religious thought must nevertheless be recognized.

The student of Zoroastrianism is confronted by several problems concerning the religion’s founder. One question is what part of Zoroastrianism derives from Zoroaster’s tribal religion and what part was new as a result of his visions and creative religious genius. Another question is the extent to which the later Zoroastrian religion (Mazdaism) of the Sāsānian period (224–651) genuinely reflected the teachings of Zoroaster. A third question is the extent to which the sources—the Avesta (the Zoroastrian scriptures) with the Gāthās (older hymns), the Middle Persian Pahlavi Books, and reports of various Greek authors—offer an authentic guide to Zoroaster’s ideas.

A biographical account of Zoroaster is tenuous at best or speculative at the other extreme. The date of Zoroaster’s life cannot be ascertained with any degree of certainty. According to Zoroastrian tradition, he flourished “258 years before Alexander.” Alexander the Great conquered Persepolis, the capital of the Achaemenids, a dynasty that ruled Persia from 559 to 330 B.C.T., in 330 B.C.T. Following this dating, Zoroaster converted Vishtāspa, most likely a king of Chorasmia (an area south of the Aral Sea in Central Asia), in 588 B.C.T. According to tradition, he was 40 years old when this event occurred, thus indicating that his birthdate was 628 B.C.T. Zoroaster was born into a modestly situated family of knights, the Spitama, probably at Rhages (now Rayy, a suburb of Tehrān), a town in Media. The area in which he lived was not yet urban, its economy being based on animal husbandry and pastoral occupations. Nomads, who frequently raided those engaged in such occupations, were viewed by Zoroaster as aggressive violators of order, and he called them followers of the Lie.

According to the sources, Zoroaster probably was a priest. Having received a vision from Ahura Mazdā, the Wise Lord, who appointed him to preach the truth, Zoroaster apparently was opposed in his teachings by the civil and religious authorities in the area in which he preached. It is not clear whether these authorities were from his native region or from Chorasmia prior to the conversion of Vishtāspa. Confident in the truth revealed to him by Ahura Mazdā, Zoroaster apparently did not try to overthrow belief in the older Iranian religion, which was polytheistic; he did, however, place Ahura Mazdā at the center of a kingdom of justice that promised immortality and bliss. Though he attempted to reform ancient Iranian religion on the basis of the existing social and economic values, Zoroaster’s teachings at first aroused opposition from those whom he called the followers of the Lie (dregvant).

Zoroaster’s teachings centered on Ahura Mazdā, who is the highest god and alone is worthy of worship. He is, according to the Gāthās, the creator of heaven and earth; i.e., of the material and the spiritual world. He is the source of the alternation of light and darkness, the sovereign lawgiver, and the very center of nature, as well as the originator of the moral order and judge of the entire world. The kind of polytheism found in the Indian Vedas (Hindu scriptures having the same religious background as the Gāthās) is totally absent; the Gāthās, for example, mention no female deity sharing Ahura Mazdā’s rule. He is surrounded by six or seven beings, or entities, which the later Avesta calls amesha spentas, “beneficent immortals.” The names of the amesha spentas frequently recur throughout the Gāthās and may be said to characterize Zoroaster’s thought and his concept of god. In the words of the Gāthās, Ahura Mazdā is the father of Spenta Mainyu (Holy Spirit), of Asha Vahishta (Justice, Truth), of Vohu Manah (Righteous Thinking), and of Armaiti (Spenta Armaiti, Devotion). The other three beings (entities) of this group are said to personify qualities attributed to Ahura Mazdā: they are Khshathra Vairya (Desirable Dominion), Haurvatāt (Wholeness), and Ameretāt (Immortality). This does not exclude the possibility that they, too, are creatures of Ahura Mazdā. The good qualities represented by these beings are also to be earned and possessed by Ahura Mazdā’s followers. This means that the gods and mankind are both bound to observe the same ethical principles. If the amesha spentas show the working of the deity, while at the same time constituting the order binding the adherents of the Wise Lord, then the world of Ahura Mazdā and the world of his followers (the ashavan) come close to each other. The very significant eschatological aspect of Zoroastrianism is well demonstrated by the concept of Khshathra (Dominion), which is repeatedly accompanied by the adjective Desirable. It is a kingdom yet to come.

The conspicuous monotheism of Zoroaster’s teaching is apparently disturbed by a pronounced dualism: the Wise Lord has an opponent, Ahriman, who embodies the principle of evil, and whose followers, having freely chosen him, also are evil. This ethical dualism is rooted in the Zoroastrian cosmology. He taught that in the beginning there was a meeting of the two spirits, who were free to choose—in the words of the Gāthās—“life or not life.” This original choice gave birth to a good and an evil principle. Corresponding to the former is a Kingdom of Justice and Truth; to the latter, the Kingdom of the Lie (Druj), populated by the daevas, the evil spirits (originally prominent old Indo-Iranian gods). Monotheism, however, prevails over the cosmogonic and ethical dualism because Ahura Mazdā is father of both spirits, who were divided into the two opposed principles only through their choice and decision.

The Wise Lord, together with the amesha spentas, will at last vanquish the spirit of evil: this message, implying the end of the cosmic and ethical dualism, seems to constitute Zoroaster’s main religious reform. His monotheistic solution resolves the old strict dualism. The dualist principle, however, reappears in an acute form in a later period, after Zoroaster. It is achieved only at the expense of Ahura Mazdā, by then called Ohrmazd, who is brought down to the level of his opponent, Ahriman. At the beginning of time, the world was divided into the dominion of the good and of the evil. Between these, each man is bound to decide. He is free and must choose either the Wise Lord and his rule or Ahriman, the Lie. The same is true of the spiritual beings, who are good or bad according to their choices. From man’s freedom of decision it follows that he is finally responsible for his fate. Through his good deeds, the righteous person (ashavan) earns an everlasting reward, namely integrity and immortality. He who opts for the lie is condemned by his own conscience as well as by the judgment of the Wise Lord and must expect to continue in the most miserable form of existence, one more or less corresponding to the Christian concept of hell. According to Avestan belief, there is no reversal and no deviation possible once a man has made his decision. Thus, the world is divided into two hostile blocks, whose members represent two warring dominions. On the side of the Wise Lord are the settled herdsmen or farmers, caring for their cattle and living in a definite social order. The follower of the Lie (Druj) is a thieving nomad, an enemy of orderly agriculture and animal husbandry.

The Gāthās, the early hymns, many of which may have been written by Zoroaster, are permeated by eschatological thinking. Almost every passage contains some reference to the fate awaiting men in the afterlife. Each act, speech, and thought is viewed as being related to an existence after death. The earthly state is connected with a state beyond, in which the Wise Lord will reward the good act, speech, and thought and punish the bad. This motive for doing good seems to be the strongest available to Zoroaster in his message. After death, the soul of man must pass over the Bridge of the Requiter (Činvat), which everyone looks upon with fear and anxiety. After judgment is passed by Ahura Mazdā, the good enter the kingdom of everlasting joy and light, and the bad are consigned to the regions of horror and darkness. Zoroaster, however, goes beyond this, announcing an end phase for the visible world, “the last turn of creation.” In this last phase, Ahriman will be destroyed, and the world will be wonderfully renewed and be inhabited by the good, who will live in heavenly joy. Later forms of Zoroastrianism teach a resurrection of the dead, a teaching for which some basis may be found in the Gāthās. Through the resurrection of the dead, the renewal of the world bestows a last fulfillment on the followers of the Wise Lord.

Zoroaster forbade all sacrifices in honor of Ahriman or of his adherents, the daevas, who from pre-Zoroastrian times had degenerated into hostile deities. In the prevailing religious tradition, Zoroaster probably found that the practice of sacrificing cattle, combined with the consumption of intoxicating drinks (haoma), led to orgiastic excess. In his reform, Zoroaster did not, as some scholars would have it, abolish all animal sacrifice but

simply the orgiastic and intoxicating rites that accompanied it. The haoma sacrifice, too, was to be thought of as a symbolic offering; it may have consisted of unfermented drink or an intoxicating beverage or plant. Zoroaster retained the ancient cult of fire. This cult and its various rites were later extended and given a definite order by the priestly class of the Magi. Its center, the eternal flame in the Temple of Fire, was constantly linked with the priestly service and with the haoma sacrifice.

After the conversion of Vishtāspa to such teachings, Zoroaster remained at the court of the king. Other officials were converted, and a daughter of Zoroaster apparently married Jāmāsp, a minister of the king. According to tradition, Zoroaster lived for 77 years, thus indicating that he died about 551 B.C.T. After his death, many legends arose about him. According to these legends, nature rejoiced at his birth, and he preached to many nations, founded sacred fires, and fought in a sacred war. He was viewed as a model for priests, warriors, and agriculturalists, as well as a skilled craftsman and healer. The Greeks regarded him as a philosopher, mathematician, astrologer, or magician. Jews and Christians regarded him as an astrologer, magician, prophet, or arch heretic. Not until the 18th century did a more scholarly assessment of Zoroaster’s career and influence emerge.

Zoroaster see Zarathustra
Zartosht see Zarathustra
Avestan see Zarathustra

Zarnuji, Burhan al-Din al-
Zarnuji, Burhan al-Din al- (Burhan al-Din al-Zarnuji) (Burhan al-Din) (Burhan al-Islam al-Zarnuji) (az-Zarnuji) (Al-Zarnuji) (d. 1223).  Arab philosopher of the thirteenth century.  He composed a vademecum for students to teach them the ethical outlook of the man of learning, which became very popular.

Al-Zarnuji was a Muslim scholar and the author of Ta'lim al-Muta'allim-Tariq at-Ta'-allum (Instruction of the Student: The Method of Learning).

Al-Zarnuji was born and lived in Zarnuj, a well-known town beyond the river Oxus in the present Turkistan. 

He studied with many shaykhs including: Shaykh 'Ali ibn Abi Bakr al-Marghiyani al-Rushdani (the author of al-Hidayah); Shaykh Abu al-Muhamid Qawaduddin Hammad ibn Ibrahim al-Saffar; the great Shaykh Hasan ibn Mansur Qadiykhani; and others.

The works include:

Al-Zarnuji's treatise, Ta'lim al-Muta'allim-Tariq at-Ta'-allum, is a short introduction to the secrets of attaining knowledge. Acknowledged by many as a book in which even the most advanced and experienced teachers find advice they have yet to apply in their teaching, this book serves to create the proper framework for the Sharia program and its students and teachers alike.
Burhan al-Din al-Zarnuji see Zarnuji, Burhan al-Din al-
Burhan al-Din see Zarnuji, Burhan al-Din al-
Burhan al-Islam al-Zarnuji see Zarnuji, Burhan al-Din al-
az-Zarnuji see Zarnuji, Burhan al-Din al-
Al-Zarnuji see Zarnuji, Burhan al-Din al-

Zarqali, Abu Ishaq Ibrahim ibn Yahya al-
Zarqali, Abu Ishaq Ibrahim ibn Yahya al- (Abu Ishaq Ibrahim ibn Yahya al-Zarqali) (Abū Isḥāq Ibrāhīm ibn Yaḥyā al-Naqqāsh al-Zarqālī) (Arzachel) (1028/1029-1087).  Spanish Arab.  He was the foremost astronomer of his time.  Al-Zarqali carried out a series of astronomical observations at Toledo (in Arabic, al-Tulaytalah) and compiled them in what is known as his famous Toledan Tables.  Al-Zarqali corrected Ptolemy’s estimate of the length of the Mediterranean Sea from 62 degrees to approximately correct value of 42 degrees.  The Toledo Tables were translated into Latin in the twelfth century.

Al-Zarqali was the first to prove conclusively the motion of the Aphelion relative to the stars.  He measured its rate of motion as 12.04 seconds per year, which is remarkably close to the modern calculation of 11.8 seconds.  Al-Zarqali invented a flat astrolabe which is known as Safihah.  Its details were published in Latin, Hebrew and several European languages.

Copernicus in his famous book De Revolutionibus Orbium Clestium expresses his indebtedness to al-Battani (Albategnius) and al-Zarqali (Arzachel) and quotes their work several times.  Beer and Madler in their famous work Der Mond named a surface feature of the Moon after al-Zarqali (Arzachel).  It is a plain more than sixty miles in diameter and is surrounded by rows of mountains rising like terraces to heights of 13,000 feet above the interior region.  It also includes several hills and craters and a prominent cleft by the side of the base of the western mountainous wall.

Abū Isḥāq Ibrāhīm ibn Yaḥyā al-Naqqāsh al-Zarqālī was an instrument maker and one of the leading theoretical and practical astronomers of his time. Although his name is conventionally given as al-Zarqālī, it is probable that the correct form was al-Zarqālluh. He lived in Toledo in Castile, Al-Andalus (now Spain), moving to Córdoba later in his life. His works inspired a generation of Islamic astronomers in Andalusia.

The crater Arzachel on the Moon is named after him.

Abu Ishaq Ibrahim ibn Yahya al-Zarqali see Zarqali, Abu Ishaq Ibrahim ibn Yahya al-
Arzachel see Zarqali, Abu Ishaq Ibrahim ibn Yahya al-
Abū Isḥāq Ibrāhīm ibn Yaḥyā al-Naqqāsh al-Zarqālī see Zarqali, Abu Ishaq Ibrahim ibn Yahya al-

Zaydan, Jirji
Zaydan, Jirji (Jirji Zaydan) (1861-1914).  Christian Arab scholar, journalist and man of letters from Egypt.  He wrote many novels, the majority of which deal with the history of Islam from the Arab conquest to the beginning of the Mameluke dynasty.  They were translated into several languages.  Their main value lies in the popularizing of history.  His best known works are the History of Muslim Civilization and the History of the Arabic Literature.
Jirji Zaydan see Zaydan, Jirji

Zayd ibn ‘Ali Zayn al-‘Abidin
Zayd ibn ‘Ali Zayn al-‘Abidin (Zayd ibn 'Ali) (Zaid ibn 'Ali) (695-740) was a Shi‘a leader of a rebellion against the Umayyads of the eighth century.  He was a grandson of al-Husayn ibn ‘Ali and placed himself at the disposal of the people of Kufa as Imam.  He was mortally wounded during street fighting against the troops of the governor Yusuf ibn ‘Umar al-Thaqafi.  The Zaydiyya, to which he gave his name, revere him as a political and religious martyr. He is deemed to be the fifth Shi‘a imam.

Zayd ibn ‘Alī was the grandson of Husayn ibn Alī, the grandson of Muhammad. Zayd was born in Medina in 695. His father was the Shī‘ah Imam ‘Alī ibn Husayn "Zayn al-Abidīn". Zayd’s mother was of Sindhi origin and was named Jaydā, who is said to have been presented to his father by the Shī'ī rebel leader al-Mukhtār.

Historians of both Shi'is and Sunnis recorded that when Hisham ibn Abd al-Malik became the caliph, he committed many atrocities. With regard to the Bani Hashim, he was particularly cruel. At last, Zayd ibn ‘Ali, well known as a great scholar and a pious theologian, went to see the caliph to seek redress for the grievances of the Bani Hashim. As soon as Zayd arrived, the caliph, instead of greeting him as a direct descendant of the prophet, abused him with such abominable language that it can not be repeated. Because of this disgraceful treatment, Zayd left Syria for Kufa, where he raised an army against the Bani Umayyad. The governor of Kufa, Yusuf ibn 'Umar al-Thaqafi came out with a huge army to face him. Zayd recited the following war poem: "Disgraceful life and honorable death: both are bitter morsels, but if one of them must be chosen, my choice is honorable death."

Although he fought bravely, Zayd was killed in battle on the 2nd of Safar in 740 at the age of forty-two by Yusuf ibn 'Amr ath-Thaqafi (the Umayyad governor). His son, Yahya, took his body from the field and buried him away from the city near the river bank, causing the water to flow over it. However, the grave was discovered and, under Yusuf's orders, the body was exhumed, Zayd's head was cut off and sent to Hisham in Syria. Hisham had the sacred body of this descendant of the Prophet placed on the gallows entirely naked. For four years the sacred body remained on the gallows. Thereafter, when Walid ibn Yazid ibn Abd al-Malik ibn Marwan became caliph, he ordered that the skeleton be taken down from the gallows, burned, and the ashes scattered to the wind.

Zayd ibn 'Ali see Zayd ibn ‘Ali Zayn al-‘Abidin
Zaid ibn 'Ali see Zayd ibn ‘Ali Zayn al-‘Abidin

Zayd ibn ‘Amr ibn Nufayl
Zayd ibn ‘Amr ibn Nufayl. Member of the Quraysh at Mecca, and a seeker of the original and true monotheistic religion (in Arabic, hanif).  He died before the beginning of the Prophet’s mission, but tradition considers him a true believer.

Zayd ibn Haritha
Zayd ibn Haritha (Zayd ibn Harithah) (Zayd mawla Muhammad) (c. 588-629).  Slave from Syria whom Khadija presented to the Prophet as a gift before his mission.  The Prophet freed and adopted him.  He was one of the very first converts to Islam, perhaps the first.

Zayd ibn Harithah was a prominent figure in the early Islamic community and the only one of the sahaba whose name is spelled directly in the Qur'an. As an adopted son of the Islamic prophet, Muhammad, he was an early convert to Islam and later, a military leader. He died in 629 at the Battle of Mu'tah.

Zayd was the natural son of a man named Harithah and was adopted by Muhammad. Many years later Harithah found Zayd and asked if his son wanted to go home with him. Zayd said no and that he would stay due to the great love that Muhammad had shown him. Little is known of Zayd's natural father. Some sources say that Harithah was descended from the Arab poet Imru' al-Qais. One or more of his ancestors may have been of African descent, as he is said to have had very dark skin.

Zayd is said to have been captured in an inter-tribal war and sold as a slave. He was given as a present to Muhammad's first wife Khadijah bint Khuwaylid. The couple freed him and treated him as a son; he was then known as Zayd ibn Muhammad, Zayd son of Muhammad. He lived with Muhammad and Khadijah in their household in the city of Mecca in the Hejaz region of western Arabia. Zayd's father and uncle came to take him back home from Muhammad, but he preferred living with his adoptive family.

When Muhammad reported that he had received a revelation from the angel Gabriel, his wife Khadijah believed and thus became the first convert to Islam. While the identity of the first male convert is disputed, Zayd is a strong possibility, as are Ali and Abu Bakr. Regardless, Zayd was clearly among the first Muslims. As Muhammad's adopted son he quickly became an important figure in the small community of pre-Hijra Meccan Muslims.

In 622, Zayd, as part of the Hijra, emigrated to the oasis of Yathrib (later called Medina) with the rest of the small Muslim community.

Zaynab bint Jahsh was his wife. He later divorced her and Muhammad married her.

Zayd took part in an expedition in 629. A Muslim force of 3,000 men set out to raid the Byzantine city of Bosra. They were intercepted at a place called Mu'tah. The Battle of Mu'tah was a rare reverse for the Muslims. Zayd was killed as he held the standard, as were two other leaders, Ja`far ibn Abī Tālib and `Abd Allah ibn Rawahah. He was the first Muslim to be killed on foreign soil.

Zayd was the father of Usama bin Zayd bin Harithah.
Zayd ibn Harithah see Zayd ibn Haritha
Zayd mawla Muhammad see Zayd ibn Haritha

Zayd ibn Thabit ibn al-Dahhak
Zayd ibn Thabit ibn al-Dahhak  (Zayd ibn Thabit) (Zaid ibn Thabit) (d. 665).  Companion of the Prophet.  He became the Prophet’s secretary, and is best known for his part in the editing of the Qur’an.

Zayd ibn Thabit was the personal scribe of Muhammad and an Ansar. When Zayd ibn Thabit was 6 years old his father died in the Battle of Bu'ath. Zayd was 13 years old when he asked permission to participate in the Battle of Badr. Since he was younger than 15 years old, Muhammad did not allow him to do so, and sent him back. He then decided to try to win favor with Muhammad by learning the Qur'an. Later on he was appointed to write letters to non-Muslims and to collect and keep record of the Qur'anic verses.

Zayd was among those chosen by Muhammad to write down the verses of the Qur'an.

He used to spend most of his time reciting the Qur'an, and continued to learn the Quranic verses as they were recited by Muhammad.

Zayd later volunteered to fight when he was 19 years old. This time he was accepted in the ranks of the Muslim army. Zayd's time to fight had come nine years after the establishment of the Muslim community in Medina.

Zayd had the role of writing down the Quranic verses that were sent to Muhammad from Allah through the Angel Gabriel.

After the departure of Muhammad from this world the task fell on Ibn Thabit, who specialized in the Qur'an, to authenticate the first and most important reference for the ummah of Muhammad. This became an urgent task after the wars of apostasy and the Battle of Yamamah in particular in which a large number of those who had committed the Qur'an to memory perished. Umar convinced the Khalifah Abu Bakr that the Qur'an should be collected in one manuscript.

During Abu Bakr's reign as caliph, he was given the task of collecting the Quranic verses from all over Arabia. Zayd finally accepted the task and started locating the Quranic material and collecting it from parchments, scapula, leafstalks of date palms and from the memories of men who knew it by heart.

When Zayd had completed his task, he left the prepared suhuf (sheets) with Abu Bakr. Before he died, Abu Bakr left the suhuf with Umar who in turn left it with his daughter Hafsah. Hafsah, Umm Salamah, and Aishah were wives of Muhammad who memorized the Qur'an.

Zayd completed the task, compiling a version of the Qur'an called Mushaf, and delivered the copy to Abu Bakr.

Zayd ibn Thabit thus became one of the foremost authorities on the Qur'an. Umar ibn al-Khattab once addressed the Muslims and said: "O people, whoever wants to ask about the Qur'an, let him go to Zayd ibn Thabit."

During the time of Uthman, by which time Islam had spread far and wide, differences in reading the Qur'an in different dialects of Arabic language became obvious. A group of companions, headed by Hudhayfah ibn al-Yaman, who was then stationed in Iraq, came to Uthman and urged him to "save the Muslim ummah before they differ about the Qur'an". Uthman obtained the manuscript of the Qur'an from Hafsah and again summoned the leading authority, Zayd ibn Thabit, and some other companions to make copies of it. Zayd was put in charge of the task. The style of Arabic dialect used was that of the Quraish tribe. Hence this style was emphasized over all others.

Zayd and other Companions copied many copies. One of these was sent to every Muslim province with the order that all other Quranic materials, whether fragmentary or complete copies, be burned. When standard copies were made and were widely available to the Muslim community everywhere then all other material was burned voluntarily by the Muslim community themselves. This was important in order to eliminate variations or differences in the dialect from the standard text of the Qur'an. The Caliph Uthman kept a copy for himself and returned the original manuscript to Hafsah.
Zayd ibn Thabit see Zayd ibn Thabit ibn al-Dahhak
Zaid ibn Thabit see Zayd ibn Thabit ibn al-Dahhak

Zaydiyya (Zaydiyah) (al-Zaydiyya) (Zaydites)  (Zaidiya) (Zaidīs) (Zaydis).  Shi‘ite group who supported the revolt of Zayd ibn Ali, al-Husayn’s grandson, in Kufa in 739 of the Christian calendar.  Zayd was the next Alid to be killed after the martyrs of Karbala, and as such is revered by the Zaydiyya. 

The Zaydiyya are distinguished from all the other Shi‘ite groups in that they did not recognize the necessity of an imam, nor did they accept the principles of nass al-jali (clear designation) and ‘isma (infallibility) as prerequisites in a person assuming the imamate.  Nass implied recognition of a hereditary line of imams from the descendants of Fatima, but the Zaydites accorded the office of imam to any Fatimid who openly fought against an oppressive ruler. 

From the beginning, the Zaydiyya seem to have been divided into two main factions: the compromisers (Batriyya) and the revolutionaries (Jarudiyya).  Both subdivisions maintained the superiority of Ali over all Companions of the Prophet.  But the former, in contrast to all other Shi‘ite groups, held the doctrine of the “imamate of the inferior”, according to which, although Ali was best fitted to be the imam, it was right to acknowledge the imamate of Abu Bakr and ‘Umar, since Ali had let them hold the position.  The Zaydiyya were, therefore, attempting to work out a compromise between the Shi‘a and the Sunni by acknowledging the Caliphates of Abu Bakr and ‘Umar, while admitting their inferiority to Ali.

The revolutionary Zaydites asserted that Muhammad had designated Ali as imam, not by name, but by describing his person, and that those who did not recognize his imamate became unbelievers.  Following Ali, his two sons, al-Hasan and al-Husayn, were imams.  Thereafter any new imam had to be appointed by a small council from among the descendants of either al-Hasan or al-Husayn.  The new imam should issue his call to allegiance by rising in rebellion.  Unlike the Batriyya, the Jarudiyya held the radical views of the early Shi’a and rejected any attempt to compromise on the question of acknowledging the first three caliphs.  From the ninth century of the Christian calendar onward, the Jarudiyya view of the imamate came to prevail among the Zaydiyya, particularly after the establishment of the Zaydi state in Yemen.

Zaydiyya doctrines were formulated by the theologian al-Qasim al-Rassi, who based his teaching on Mu‘tazilite principles, though with some fundamental differences.  His demand that the imam be qualified in Islamic law and doctrine, with sufficient political initiative to carry out armed rebellion against usurpers, excluded many Alid pretenders and rulers, who were sometimes, in the absense of truly qualified imams, termed “restricted imams.”

The list of Zaydi imams varies, because there was always uncertainty regarding the recognition of a “restricted” or “full” imam, though there was consensus on many.  The last Zaydi imam to rule Yemen was Muhammad al-Badr, whose policies ushered Yemen into the twentieth century.  The constitution of the Yemen Arab Republic abolished the Zaydi imamate in 1971, declaring Yemen an Islamic state in accord with the “principles of Muslim social justice.”

Al-Zaydiyya (Zaydites) was the official name of the Fiver Shi‘ites (named after their fifth imam, Zayd ibn Ali), who established their own state structures. A Zaydite dynasty (also named the Alids after the founding father of the Shi‘ites) established by Hasan ibn Zayd (r. 864-883), ruled in Mazandaran, Tabaristan, and Dailam (Iran, to the south of the Caspian Sea) ruled from 864 to 1126.  The most important Zaydite state was Yemen.  In 893, the well-respected commander of the Zaydites, Yahya ibn Husain (859-911), was invited to Yemen as mediator by the tribes there and established a Zaydite imamate in Sada in 901.  He and his successors brought substantial areas of Yemen (including Sanaa) under their control and ruled as Rassids (of the Banu Kasim, ruling imams since 1592, ruled in Sanaa from 1635 and was able to persuade the Ottomans to make a peaceful exit from Yemen.  The Zaydite imams ruled with Fiver Shi‘ism as state religion until 1962.  The most important imam of modern times, Yahya ibn Hammidaddin (1904-1948), concluded beneficial treaties with the European powers, modernized Yemen, and assumed the title of king in 1926.

Al-Zaydiyya were a group of the Shi‘a which were distinguished from the “Twelvers” and the “Seveners” by the recognition of Zayd ibn ‘Ali Zayn al-‘Abidin as Imam.  The essential demands on the Zaydi Imam are membership of the Family of the Prophet, ability to resort to the sword if required, and the necessary learning.  There was thus no dynastic tradition, individual success being in the end the deciding factor.  The Zaydiyya was founded as a united community in Tabaristan by al-Hasan ibn Zayd Muhammad and lasted there until 1126, after which date it became merged in the little sect of the Nuqtawis.

In Yemen, the Zaydiyya was founded by al-Hadi ila’l-Haqq I Yahya, grandson of the al-Qasim al-Rassi, founder of the Rassids.  The Rassid line lasted until 1281, and their successors, the Qasimi line, founded by al-Mansur bi’llah al-Qasim, until 1962.  In 1962, the last Zaydite imam was ousted by Yemeni officers.

Doctrinally, the Zaydīyya are closer to the majority Sunnites than are the other Shīʿites. Early in the 10th century the Zaydīyya became dominant in Yemen, and thereafter Zaydī imāms were the spiritual rulers of that area. From the departure of the Turks in 1917 until 1962, they were also the temporal rulers of Yemen.

Zaydiyah see Zaydiyya
al-Zaydiyya see Zaydiyya
Zaydites see Zaydiyya
Zaidiya see Zaydiyya
Zaidis see Zaydiyya
Zaydis see Zaydiyya

Zaynab bint Jash
Zaynab bint Jash (Zaynab bint Jahsh ibn Ri‘ab) (Zaynab bint Jahsh) (c.591/593-c.643).  Married to the Prophet Muhammad from 626 until his death in 632.  Muhammad’s marriage to Zaynab was the result of Muhammad falling in love, which is different from most of his other marriages, where brothers or fathers had given sisters or daughters to Muhammad as wives.  Moreover, Zaynab was married to Zaid at that time.  Zaid was one of the first that had converted to Islam, and he divorced Zaynab so that Muhammad could marry her.  Zaynab received a dowry of 400 dirhams.  Zaynab had good relations with ‘A’isha, and was one of Muhammad’s favorite wives. Zaynab is celebrated in the texts for her charity. 

Zaynab bint Jahsh was a wife of Muhammad and therefore a Mother of the Believers. Prior to this, she was briefly married to Muhammad's adopted son, Zayd ibn Harithah. She was also Muhammad's first cousin. Muhammad's father Abdullah bin Abdul Muttalib was a brother of Zaynab's mother Umaimah bint Abd al-Muttalib.

Zaynab's brother, Ubayd-Allah ibn Jahsh, went on the migration to Abyssinia and there left Islam for Christianity. His wife, Ramlah bint Abi Sufyan, later married Muhammad. She had a sister named Hammanah bint Jahsh.

After her migration to Medina, Zaynab became part of the newly founded Muslim community. There, Muhammad proposed to Zaynab's family the marriage of his freed slave and adopted son, Zayd ibn Harithah. However, Zayd was a former slave and of lower social status. Zayd was son of Harithah ibn Shurahbil, a person of the Kalb tribe, and his mother, Su'da bint Tha'labah, was from the Bani Ma'n, a branch of the Tay tribe. When he was eight years old, Su'da took Zayd along to visit her parents. There the people of Bani Qain bin Jasr raided their camp, plundered their goods and took some men as captives, including Zayd. They later sold Zayd at the fair of 'Ukaz near Ta'if. His buyer was Hakim ibn Hizam, a nephew of Khadija. Hakim brought him to Makkah (Mecca) and presented him to his paternal aunt. When Muhammad married Khadija he found Zayd in her service.  Muhammad was so impressed by Zayd's good manners and conduct that he asked Khadija to give Zayd to him.

Zaynab had an aristocratic lineage and thus had a higher social status. On these grounds, her brothers rejected the proposal and she disapproved of it.

Muhammad, however, was determined to eliminate such class distinctions that had their roots in pre-Islamic Arab custom. He also wanted to establish the legitimacy and right to equal treatment of the adopted.

Additionally, there may have been other reasons for Zaynab's initial disapproval. After all, Zayd, despite his social status, was held quite high in Muhammad's esteem. Thus, one reason for Zaynab's disapproval may have been that she wanted to marry Muhammad herself.

Whatever the reasons, Muhammad insisted on the marriage of Zayd to Zaynab. When Qur'an 33:36 was revealed, Zaynab acquiesced and married Zayd in the year 626. However, Zayd divorced Zaynab after just over a year.

Zaynab was married to Muhammad in Dhul Qa'adah, in the fifth year of Hijra. Since Zaynab was the wife of Muhammad's adopted son, pre-Islamic practices frowned upon such her marriage with the prophet. The marriage was used by Munafiqs of Medina in an attempt to discredit Muhammad on two fronts, one of double standards as she was his fifth wife, while everyone else was restricted to four, and marrying his adopted son's wife.. This was exactly what Muhammad feared and why he was initially hesitant in marrying her. The Qur'an, however, confirmed that this marriage was valid. Thus Muhammad, confident of his faith in the Qur'an, proceeded to reject the existing Arabic norms. When Zaynab's waiting period from her divorce was complete, Muhammad married her.

We read in Sura Al-Ahzab 33:37:

    Behold! Thou didst say to one who had received the grace of Allah and thy favour: "Retain thou (in wedlock) thy wife, and fear Allah." But thou didst hide in thy heart that which Allah was about to make manifest: thou didst fear the people, but it is more fitting that thou shouldst fear Allah. Then when Zaid had dissolved (his marriage) with her, with the necessary (formality), We joined her in marriage to thee: in order that (in future) there may be no difficulty to the Believers in (the matter of) marriage with the wives of their adopted sons, when the latter have dissolved with the necessary (formality) (their marriage) with them. And Allah's command must be fulfilled.

In Pre Islamic Arabia, adoption was common and Zayd was given to Muhammad as a slave by his wife Khadija. Muhammad freed Zayd and took him to Kaaba in Mecca.  He declared Zayd to be his son (thus becoming one who received Muhammad's grace). However, with the coming of Islam all relations of adoption were nullified. Muhammad himself started calling Zayd, Zayd ibn Harithah instead of Zayd bin Muhammad (Zayd was known as Zayd bin Muhammad, i.e. son of Muhammad). Since Zayd's background was as a slave, and Muhammad wanted to lift the social status of freed slaves (like Zayd), Muhammad asked for Zaynab's hand in marriage for Zayd. Zaynab was Muhammad's first cousin, daughter of his aunt Umaima bint Abdul Muttalib. Zaynab had initially refused to marry Zaid because of his slave background and the same displeasure had come from her brother, 'Abdullah bin Jahsh. However, on insistence of Muhammad, Zaynab and everyone else agreed. The marriage was a failure as Zaynab found it extremely difficult to accept a freed slave as her husband. Zayd got tired of her and the bitterness left him with no desire for her, eventually leading to their divorce.  Zaynab being Muhammad's first cousin was no stranger to Muhammad, he had seen her hundreds of times in his aunt Umaima bint Abdul Muttalib's house for over thirty years before she became Zayd's wife.

The Quranic verse set forth above starts with the time when Zayd came to seek the council of Muhammad to divorce Zaynab.  However, Muhammad advised Zayd to 'Keep thy wife to thyself; and fear God'. Muhammad had already been informed by Gabriel that Zayd would divorce his wife and Muhammad would have to marry her. In spite of this knowledge, Muhammad asked Zayd to keep his wife. It was because of this that Muhammad was rebuked and told to fear God and not to fear men. Muhammad had two things to fear: One was that the Qur'an had restricted men to keep no more than four wives, and that if he was to marry Zaynab she would be his fifth wife, hence people would say double standards, 'four for us and five for you'. The second thing he feared was loss of reputation, Arabs had not been able to digest the fact that non-blood relations (like adoption) had no place in Islam, so an example had to be set for people to realize that the era of non-blood relations was over. The best way to do this was by marrying Zaynab.  However, the matter was concerning a woman and Muhammad feared that the hypocrites of Medina would not leave this golden chance to start a new propaganda against Islam. It was against this background that Muhammad was rebuked and told to fear God and not to fear men. The full verse was revealed to tell the complete tale to the Muslims and the hypocrites of Medina as to what actually happened, and to put an end to the continuous gossip that was going around.

Zaynab was the first of Muhammad's wives to die after him. She died during the caliphate of Umar bin Khattab in the 23rd year of Hijra (643/644).
Zaynab bint Jahsh ibn Ri'ab see Zaynab bint Jash
Zaynab bint Jahsh see Zaynab bint Jash

Zaynab bint Khuzaima
Zaynab bint Khuzaima (Zaynab bint Khuzayma) (Umm al-Masakin - Mother of the Poor) (595-626).  Wife of Muhammad for a period of two to eight months in 626.  Zaynab had been married twice before, the first marriage had ended with divorce, while her other husband had been killed in the battle at Badr.  Zaynab received a dowry of 400 dirhams, and she died after a few months, either two or eight, of marriage.

Zaynab bint Khuzayma was the fifth wife of the Islamic prophet Muhammad. As a result of her early death, less is known about her than any of his other wives.

Typically described as being in her late 20s, although occasionally said to be 48, she was described as "beautiful". She was known for her "compassion and pity" for the poor.

Zaynab was first married to Tufail bin Harith, who either divorced her or died shortly afterward. Zaynab then married her first husband's brother, Ubaydah ibn al-Harith. In 624, her husband died of wounds received in the Battle of Badr, and she began to live in poverty. Ibn Kathir, in his 14th century Sira, referred to Zaynab's first husband as being Husayn bin al-Harith, and her second marriage to Jahsh bin Ri'ab, who was killed at the Battle of Uhud.

There are conflicting reports as to whether she was shunned or whether she was sought after for marriage. Some even suggest she had a third husband, who also died.

The following year shortly after his marriage to Hafsa bint Umar, Muhammad approached Zaynab with a mahar of either 400 dirhams or 12 ounces of gold, and offered to marry her. There was debate about how the marriage was proposed. In Ibn Kalbi's al-Isaba, he claimed that Muhammad proposed to her directly - while Ibn Hashim wrote that her uncle, Quobaisa bin Arm al-Hilali arranged the marriage proposal.

It was said that the marriage, which took place during the month of Ramadan, was meant to assure Muhammad's followers that their deaths in battle would not mean their families would starve and be neglected. She was the first of his wives to come from outside the Quraysh tribe.

Unlike Aisha and Hafsa, who bickered with each other, Zaynab was believed to have offered no trouble to either of them. At one point, a poor man came to her house to beg for some flour, and she gave him the last of her own, and went without food that night. Muhammad was moved by her compassion, and told his other wives about it and preached that "if you have faith in Allah...he would provide for your sustenance, even as he doeth for the birds, who leave their nest hungry in the morning, but return full at night".

Zaynab died less than two years later, some suggest as little as two months, the only one of Muhammad's wives to die before him, other than his first wife Khadijah. It has been suggested she died during the month of Rabi' al-thani, four years after the Hijra.

Zaynab was buried in Jannat al-Baqi, carried into her grave by Muhammad.

The wives of Muhammad were:

     *  Khadijah bint Khuwaylid
     *  Sawda bint Zama
     *  Aisha bint Abi Bakr
     *  Hafsa bint Umar
     *  Zaynab bint Khuzayma
     *  Hind bint Abi Umayya
     *  Zaynab bint Jahsh
     *  Juwayriya bint al-Harith
     *  Ramlah bint Abi Sufyan
     *  Rayhana bint Zayd
     *  Safiyya bint Huyayy
     *  Maymuna bint al-Harith
     *  Maria al-Qibtiyya
Zaynab bint Khuzayma see Zaynab bint Khuzaima
Umm al-Masakin see Zaynab bint Khuzaima
Mother of the Poor see Zaynab bint Khuzaima

Zaynab bint Muhammad
Zaynab bint Muhammad (Zainub bint Muhammad) (Zainab bint Muhammad) (?-630).  Daughter of Muhammad and Khadija.  Zaynab was perhaps the oldest of Muhammad’s daughters.  By the time of the hijra (the exodus to Medina in 622), she was married to a non-Muslim man so she did not follow her father to Medina.  However, when her husband was taken prisoner after the battle of Badr in 626, Muhammad had him freed after Zaynab had promised to come to Medina.  Her husband was taken prisoner again in 628, and once again freed by Zaynab’s intercession.  He became a Muslim the following year, and was reunited with his wife.  Zaynab had two children, Ali, who died as a child, and Umama, who married Ali after Fatima died.

While Sunnis view Zainab as the daughter of Muhammad and Khadijah bint Khuwaylid, other Muslim sects such as Shia Muslims debate her being the daughter of Muhammed (or even of Khadijah).

Zainab was married to her maternal cousin Abu al-Aas ibn al-Rabiah prior to his conversion to Islam. She became the mother of two children: Ali and Umamah.

When Muhammad abandoned Mecca for Medina, his daughter Zainab could not bear to leave her non-Muslim husband Abu al-'Aas, and was not required to do so until years later under other circumstances. Muhammad did not automatically divorce them.

Some sources states that at one time there were three girls living in the household of Khadija. Their names were Zainab, Ruqayya and Umm Kulthoom. Zainab, the eldest of the three, was married to one Abul-'As ibn er-Rabi' (Abu al-'Aas) of Makkah (Mecca). This man fought against the Prophet in the battle of Badr, and was captured by the Muslims. To ransom his freedom, his wife sent to the Prophet, a necklace which at one time had belonged to Khadijah that Khadijah had given to her as a present on her marriage. Abul-'As was set free. He returned to Makkah, and sent Zainab to Medina as he had promised to do. Zainab, however, died soon after her arrival in Medina. Later, Abul-'As also went to Medina, accepted Islam, and lived with the Muslims.

The daughters attributed to Muhammad are;

   1. Zainab bint Muhammad, married to her maternal cousin Abu al-Aas ibn al-Rabee before al-Hijra
   2. Ruqayyah bint Muhammad, first married to Utbah ibn Abu Lahab and then to Uthman ibn Affan
   3. Umm Kulthum bint Muhammad, first married to Utaybah bin Abu Lahab and then to Uthman ibn Affan after the death of her sister Ruqayyah
   4. Fatimah, married to Ali ('Ali bin Abi Talib)

According to some Shi'a Muslim sources Khadijah only had one daughter, Fatimah. The others either belonged to her sister or were orphaned girls raised by her. Possibly all of them were Khadijah's, but only Fatimah was born to Muhammad.  Sunni Muslims, however, do not contest the parentage of her daughters.

Based on narrations found even in Sunnī sources, Muhammad said that daughters of his household could only marry those who were from Banū Hāshim.

However, if it is assumed that Zainab, Ruqayyah and Umm Kulthum were daughters of Muhammed and Khadijah, this argument does not seem to be correct as:

    * Zainab was married to Abu al-Aas ibn al-Rabee who belonged to the Banu Abd Shams clan of the tribe Quraish.
    * Ruqayyah and after her death Umm Kulthum were married to Uthman bin Affan who belonged to the Banu Umayya clan of the tribe Quraish.

Zainab bint Muhammad see Zaynab bint Muhammad

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