1. Compare the Arab and Seljuk conquests of the Middle East. How did each group of conquerors control their own followers and supporters and govern their new subjects? Can these conquests be put into a long-term context? Hint: don’t dwell overlong on sequences of events, though it is fine if you want to examine an event as part of a broader analysis of a larger historical process.
The history of the Middle East tells a story of continuous conquer and seemingly
One cannot help but recall the Muslim historian Ibn Khaldun, and detect his analysis of historical cycles in the all but systematic rise and fall of ruling forces within this region of the world. Two influential ruling states of the Middle East, the Arab empire and Seljuk
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The caliph had also lost legitimate control over governors of various states. These governors paid no attention to the fact that they were still technically under the rule of the caliphate. They refused to return to Baghdad after their allotted time of governance and even began to appoint their sons as successors. The governors had become rulers of their own small states in virtually every way. Conflict also arose with the ulama over the created or eternal nature of the Qur’an. In turn, several religiously motivated rebellion groups began gaining power and taking over land. The Buyids, who were Twelver Shi’ites, conquered most of Iraq and Iran, and even took over Baghdad in 945, though they did not kill the caliph. The Fatimids were another group, although they were Sevener Shi’ites. They conquered Egypt and the surrounding lands, building and establishing the city of Cairo as their capital. With these various groups controlling vast areas of land while strongly opposing each other, the empire was weak and very vulnerable to invasion and conquer. In a similar way, the Seljuks were divided from within before their inevitable demise. After the conquests of Arp Arsalon and his predecessors, the
Sultan Malik Shah established a golden age for Seljuk rule. However, this lasted no more than Malik Shah’s lifetime. When he died, it was unclear who of his many sons was to become the next sultan. They began a great debate over the subject,