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image of Islamic Law and Society

In Muslim histories of the Mamlūk period little attention is given to the affairs of minority communities unless these were in conflict with dominant Muslim interests and posed a threat to social and political stability. This in general is true of Mujīr al-Dīn al-'Ulaymī's work on the merits of Jerusalem for Muslims, al-Uns al-Jalīl bi-Ta'rīkh al-Quds wa' 1-Khalīl. Nevertheless, thanks to the special character of the book and the author's militantly Ḥanbalī outlook, al-Uns covers in exceptional detail several episodes involving communal strife in the city under Mamlūk rule, most notably two disputes over holy places, one involving Muslims and Jews, the other, Muslims and Christians. Examination of these complex disputes shows how the Mamlūk judicial system succeeded in adjudicating them through legal institutions and in accordance with legal principles.

Affiliations: 1: McGill University


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