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1. The Reign of al-Muqtadir (295–320/908–32): A History

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Chapter Summary

Al-Muqtadir was the eighteenth Abbasid caliph, and reigned for longer than any of his predecessors. Al-Muqtadir's two predecessors, his father and his brother had systematically used their army to establish, or re-establish, control over marginal areas in the Jazira, important for the food supply of Baghdad, and areas in the Zagros mountains. The idea that the Samanids still had a legitimate interest in the affairs of the caliphate is suggested by the role that they might have played in the accession of Ibn al-Muʿtazz to the caliphate. The comparative stability of the first 15 years of the reign was shattered in a series of disasters which came thick and fast in the year 311/923-4 and led people to refer to it as the 'year of destruction'. The most pressing concern of the new administration was to prepare military force to defend Iraq against the inevitable attack of the Qarāmiṭa.

Keywords:Abbasid Caliph; al-Muqtadir's reign; Baghdad; Ibn al-Muʿtazz; Qarāmiṭa



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