By Hugh Kennedy
In exploring and explaining the nice number of caliphs who've governed in the course of the a while, Kennedy demanding situations the very slender perspectives of the caliphate propagated by way of extremist teams this present day. An authoritative new account of the dynasties of Arab leaders in the course of the Islamic Golden Age, Caliphate lines the history—and misappropriations—of one of many world's such a lot powerful political ideas.
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Extra resources for Caliphate: The History of an Idea
The second option was that the caliphate should be hereditary within one Holy Family, that of Alī and Fātima, daughter of the Prophet Muhammad. But this led to further questions and possibilities. Should all of the family be considered eligible or just one branch? Within that branch, should the office be decided by primogeniture, the succession of the eldest son, even if that son was apparently incapable or failed to obey the established laws and customs of the Muslims? Should he still be chosen or passed over in favour of a more suitable candidate?
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Edward Gibbon, in eighteenth-century Britain, writes of him: The abstinence and humility of Omar were not inferior to the virtues of Abubeker [Abū Bakr]: his food consisted of barley-bread or dates; his drink was water; he preached in a gown that was torn or tattered in twelve places; and a Persian satrap, who paid his homage as to the conqueror, found him asleep among the beggars on the steps of the mosch of Medina. Oeconomy is the source of liberality, and the increase of the revenue enabled Omar to establish a just and perpetual reward for the past and present services of the faithful.