Encyclopaedia of Islam, Second Edition

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Edited by: P. Bearman, Th. Bianquis, C.E. Bosworth, E. van Donzel and W.P. Heinrichs

The Encyclopaedia of Islam (Second Edition) Online sets out the present state of our knowledge of the Islamic World. It is a unique and invaluable reference tool, an essential key to understanding the world of Islam, and the authoritative source not only for the religion, but also for the believers and the countries in which they live. 

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(5 words)

[see nud̲j̲ūm ].


(563 words)

Author(s): Kopf, L.
, the thorn-tail lizard ( Uromastix spinipes). Cognate synonyms exist in other Semitic languages. The animal, found in abundance in the homeland of the Arabs, is often mentioned and described in ancient poetry and proverbs. Much of the information on the animal derives from just these sources which are freely quoted in later zoological works. The ḍabb was eaten by the ancient Arabs who relished it as tasty food; still it is reported that the tribe of Tamīm, who were especially fond of eating it, were ridiculed on that account by…


(709 words)

Author(s): Caskel, W.
b. Udd b. Ṭābīk̲h̲a b. al-Yās ( K̲h̲indif ) b. Muḍar b. Nizār b. Maʿadd was the eponymous hero of the well known Arab tribe of that name. With their “nephews” ʿUkl b. ʿAwf, Taym, ʿAdī, and T̲h̲awr b. ʿAbd Manāt b. Udd, Ḍabba formed a confederacy called al-Ribāb. The Ribāb were in alliance with Saʿd b. Zayd Manāt, the greatest clan of Tamīm. This alliance has never been broken by the other confederates. These, indeed, were formations of rather moderate size, whereas the Ḍabba by means of their power sometimes were able to follow their own policy. Of the three clans of Ḍabba, Ṣuraym had in the…


(796 words)

Author(s): Abel, A.
, (plur. dawābb ), any living creature which keeps its body horizontal as it moves, generally quadruped. In particular, beast of burden or packanimal: horse, donkey, mule, camel (cf. Lane, s.v.). Burāḳ, the legendary steed ridden by the Prophet at his ascension ( miʿrād̲j̲ ), is given the name dābba by al-G̲h̲īṭī and in the commentaries. The word acquires a particular significance from its use in the Ḳurʾān, XXVII, 82 in the sense of the archetypal “Beast”, equivalent to the term θήριον in the Apocalypse of St. John. The …


(603 words)

Author(s): Beg, M. A. J.
(a.), “tanner”, frequent as a nisba in mediaeval and modern Arabic. In pre-Islamic Arabia, the tanners were Jewish craftsmen. During the lifetime of the Prophet, his Companions, such as al-Ḥārit̲h̲ b. Ṣabīra, Sawda, Asmāʾ bint ʿAmīs and others, were associated with tanning. Saʿd b. ʿĀʾid̲h̲ al-Ḳaraẓ, one of the Companions of Muḥammad, was busy trading in fruit of the acacia ( ḳaraẓ ) which was widely used as a material for the processing of leather. During the Umayyad, ʿAbbāsid and Mamlūk periods, there were many Jewish and Arab trade…

al-Dabbāg̲h̲, Abū Zayd ʿAbd al-Raḥmān

(542 words)

Author(s): Talbi, M.
Muḥammad b. ʿAlī b. ʿAbd Allāh al-Anṣārī al-Usaydī , b. 605/1208-9, d. 699/1300, was, according to the eyewitness and probably interested testimony of al-ʿAbdarī, the unique true scholar in al-Ḳayrawān of his time. If one can believe an anecdote which states that he owed his cognomen of al-Dabbag̲h̲ to the fact that his great-grandfather disguised himself as a tanner in order to avoid the office of ḳāḍī , he must have stemmed from an ancient family of Ḳayrawānī faḳīhs . Al-ʿAbdarī, who visited him in 688/1289 and received from him a general id̲j̲āza for the transm…

al-Ḍabbī, Abū D̲j̲aʿfar

(211 words)

Author(s): Seybold, C.F.
Aḥmad b. Yahyā b. Aḥmad b. ʿAmīra , an Andalusian scholar of the 6th/12th century. According to the information that he gives us in his works concerning himself and his family, he was born at Vélez, to the west of Lorca, and he began his studies in Lorca. He travelled in North Africa (Ceuta, Marrākus̲h̲, Bougie) and even reached Alexandria, but he appears to have spent the greater part of his life at Murcia. He died at the end of Rabī II 599/beginning of 1203. Of his writings only…

al-Ḍabbī, Abū ʿIkrima

(7 words)

[see al-mufaḍḍal ].


(339 words)

Author(s): Sourdel, D.
, a locality in the ʿAzāz region of northern Syria. It lies on the road from Manbid̲j̲ to Anṭākiya (Ṭabarī, iii, 1103) upstream from Aleppo on the river Nahr Ḳuwayḳ. In Assyrian times its name was Dabigu , to become Dabekôn in Greek. It lies on the edge of the vast plain of Mard̲j̲ Dābiḳ where, under the Umayyads and ʿAbbāsids, troops were stationed prior to being sent on operations against Byzantine territory. The Umayyad caliph Sulaymān b. ʿAbd al-Malik lived in Dābiḳ for some time, and after his death and buri…


(417 words)

Author(s): Wiet, G.
(variant forms Dabḳa and Dabḳū ) was a locality in the outer suburbs of Damietta, noted for the manufacture of high quality woven material, which it exported to the whole of the Muslim empire. The location of Dabīḳ cannot be fixed more exactly. It is found mentioned along with other cities that have disappeared, such as S̲h̲aṭā, Tinnīs, or Tūna, which were probably on the islands of Lake Menzāleh. Fine cloths embossed with gold were made there, and, during the Fāṭimid period, turbans of multicoloured linen. These textiles were so sumptious that dabīḳī soon became …


(5 words)

[see dwīn ]


(325 words)

Author(s): Bosworth, C. E.
(p.) “scribe, secretary”, the term generally used in the Persian cultural world, including the Indo-Muslim one (although in the later centuries it tended to be supplanted by the term munshī , so that Yule-Burnell, Hobson-Jobson , a glossary of Anglo-Indian colloquial words and phrases, London 1886, 328, record “dubeer” as being in their time “quite obsolete in Indian usage”), as the equivalent of Arabic kātib and Turkish yazi̊d̲j̲i̊ ,. The word appears as dipīr / dibīr (Pahlavi orthography dpy ( w) r, see D.N. MacKenzie, A concise Pahlavi dictionary, London 1971, 26) in Sāsānid Per…

Dabīr, Salāmat ʿAlī

(936 words)

Author(s): S̲h̲afīʿ, Muḥammad
, Mīrzā , Lakhnawī , an Urdū poet, who devoted himself to writing and reciting highly devotional elegies on the death of the martyrs of Karbalā. He was a son of Mīrzā G̲h̲ulām Ḥusayn, who is claimed to be a grandson of Mullā Hās̲h̲im S̲h̲īrāzī (a brother of the famous Ahlī of S̲h̲īrāz, d. 934/1536-7). Salāmat ʿAlī was born in Ballīmārān, Dihlī on 11 Ḏj̲umāda I 1218/29 August 1803; he accompanied his father as a child to Lucknow and there received a good education. He studied all the usual Persian and Arabic texts on religious and foreign sciences ( manḳūl wa maʿḳūl ) from well-known ʿulamāʾ

Dabistān al-Mad̲h̲āhib

(401 words)

Author(s): Horovitz, J. | Massé, H.
, “The school of religions”, a work in Persian describing the different religions of and in particular the religious situation in Hindustān in the 11th/17th century; it is the most complete account in the Persian language, later than the Bayān al-adyān (6th/12th century), which is accurate but concise, and than the Tabṣirat al-ʿawāmm (7th/13th century), written from the S̲h̲īʿite point of view. The sources of the Dabistān derive partly from the sacred books of the different religious persuasions, partly from verbal information given to th…


(270 words)

Author(s): Lewis, B.
, in Turkish zabit , an Ottoman term for certain functionaries and officers, later specialized to describe officers in the armed forces. In earlier Ottoman usage Ḍābiṭ seems to indicate a person in charge or in control of a matter or of ( ? the revenues of) a place ( e.g. Ewḳāf ḍābiṭi , Wilāyet ḍābiṭi etc.; examples, some with place-names, in Halit Ongan, Ankara’nın I Numaralı Şer’iye Sicili , Ankara 1958, index, and L. Fekete, Die Siyāqat-Schrift , i, Budapest 1955, 493 ff.; cf. the Persian usage in the sense of collector — Minorsky, Tad̲h̲kirat al-Mulūk , index). The…


(29 words)

, assessment of taxable land by measurement, applied under the later Dihlī sultanate and the Mug̲h̲als; land so measured is called ḍabṭī . See Ḍarība , 6.


(178 words)

Author(s): Lewis, B.
, in Turkish zabtiyye , a late Ottoman term for the police and gendarmerie. Police duties, formerly under the control of various janissary officers, were placed under the jurisdiction of the Serʿasker ([ q.v.] see also bāb-i serʿaskerī ) in 1241/ 1826, and in 1262/1846 became a separate administration, the Ḍabṭiyee Mus̲h̲īriyyeti (Ḷutfī iii 27-8). At about the same time a council of police ( med̲j̲lis-i ḍabṭiyye ) was established, which was later abolished and replaced by two quasi-judicial bodies, the dīwān-i ḍabṭiyye and med̲j̲lis-i taḥḳīḳ- After several further changes the mus̲h̲īr…


(3,887 words)

Author(s): Viré, F.
, Ḍabʿ (A. ḍubʿ , ḍubuʿ , ḍibāʿ , aḍbuʿ , maḍbaʿa ), grammatically feminine singular nouns designating the hyena (Persian: kaftār , Turkish: ṣi̊rtlan , Berber: ifis , pl. ifisen ) irrespective of sex or species (see Ch. Pellat, Sur quelques noms d’animaux en arabe classique , in GLECS, viii, 95-9). From this vague generic term, additional forms have been derived to differentiate the sexes: ḍibʿān , pl. ḍabāʿīn for the male (alongside d̲h̲īk̲h̲ , pl. d̲h̲uyūk̲h̲ ) and ḍibʿāna , pl. - āt , for the female. The word ḍabuʿ (preferable to ḍabʿ ) is of Sumero-Akkadian origi…


(290 words)

Author(s): Bosworth, C. E.
, a town of mediaeval Transoxania, in the region of Soghdia, and lying on a canal which led southwards from the Nahr Ṣug̲h̲d and on the Samarḳand-Karmīniyya-Buk̲h̲ārā road. The site is marked by the ruins of Ḳalʿa-yi Dabūs near the modern village of Ziyaudin (=Ḍiyāʾ al-Dīn), according to Barthold, Turkestan3 , 97. It lay in a prosperous and well-watered area, say the mediaeval geographers, and Muḳaddasī, 324, cf. R.B. Serjeant, Islamic textiles, material for a history up to the Mongol conquest, Beirut 101, mentions in particular the brocade cloth known as Wad̲h̲ārī produced there. Dabūsi…


(333 words)

Author(s): Spuler, B.
( Dābōē ), the founder of the Dābūyid dynasty in Gīlān [ q.v.]. The tribe claimed to be of Sāsānid extraction through Dābūya’s father, Gīl Gāwbāra. Their residence was the town of Fūman [ q.v.]. The dynasty clung to Zoroastrianism for a long time, and repeatedly defended the land against the Arabs, until the last ruler, K̲h̲ūrs̲h̲īd̲h̲ II (758/60, 141 or 142 A.H.) had to flee before the superior force of the ʿAbbāsids, and put an end to his own life in Daylam (Ṭabarī, iii, 139 f.). One of his daughters, whose name is unknown, became the wife of the Caliph al-Manṣūr. The names of the members of t…
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