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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(34,897 words)

Author(s): Fahd, T. | Young, M.J.L. | Hill, D.R. | Rabie, Hassanein | Cahen, Cl. | Et al.
(a.) “water”. The present article covers the religio-magical and the Islamic legal aspects of water, together with irrigation techniques, as follows: 1. Hydromancy A a vehicle for the sacred, water has been employed for various techniques of divination, and in particular, for potamonancy (sc. divination by means of the colour of the waters of a river and their ebbing and flowing; cf. FY. Cumont, Études syriennes , Paris 1917, 250 ff., notably on the purification power of the Euphrates, consulted for divinatory reasons); for pegomancy (sc…


(1,772 words)

Author(s): Bosworth, C.E.
10. Irrigation in Transoxania. The rivers of Inner Asia, extending from Ḵh̲wārazm in the west through Transoxania to eastern Turkistān (the later Sinkiang) and northwards to the Semirečye, have all been extensively used for irrigation purposes in the lands along those rivers and in oasis centres, providing a possibility for agriculture in favoured spots which were not too open to attack from the steppe nomads or more northerly forest peoples. Hence, as elsewhere in the Old World, the maintenance of irrigation works, surface canals and kārīz s or subterranean ¶ channels (these last t…


(2,619 words)

Author(s): Arnaldez, R.
(a.), place of return, a technical term in religious and philosophical vocabulary. The verb ʿadā , ʿawdan signifies “to return to a place”. Al-D̲j̲awharī treats it as a synonym of rad̲j̲aʿa . The action of ʿawd is the movement whereby one. returns to the point of departure: rad̲j̲aʿa ʿalā badʾihi , or ilā ḥāfiratihi , either through a continuous progress, in describing a circle for example, or stopping at a certain point and retracing one’s steps (cf. Sībawayh, cited by LA), whence the idea of a return to the origin, to the source. The verb rad̲j̲aʿa is used in many Ḳurʾānic verses to ind…


(308 words)

Author(s): Watt, W. Montgomery
is a collective name for the northern Arab tribes (see D̲j̲azīrat al-ʿarab (vi) = i, 544b). According to the standard genealogy, Maʿadd was a son of ʿAdnān [ q.v.]. His son Nizār [ q.v.] had three sons, Muḍar, Iyād and Rabīʿa, from the first and third of whom most of the northern Arabs claimed descent. Maʿadd and his descendants are said to have lived for a time in the neighbourhood of Mecca and to have intermarried with D̲j̲urhum [ q.v.]. The name Maʿadd is found in pre-Islamic poets, e.g. in verses of Imruʾ al-Ḳays (ed. Ahlwardt, no. 41, l. 5) and al-Nābig̲h̲a (ed. Ahlwa…


(811 words)

Author(s): Grohmann, A. | Smith, G.R.
(or al-Maʿāfir ), the name of a South Arabian tribe, the genealogy of which is given as Yaʿfur b. Mālik b. al-Ḥārit̲h̲ b. Murra b. Udad b. Humaysaʿ b. ʿAmr b. Yas̲h̲d̲j̲ib b. ʿArīb b. Zayd b. Kahlān b. Sabaʾ; they are included among the Ḥimyar. The name was also given to the territory which the tribe inhabited and this corresponded roughly with the Turkish ḳaḍāʾ of Taʿizziyya and the present Yemen Arab Republic province ( ḳaḍāʾ) of al-Ḥud̲j̲ariyya (pronounced locally al-Ḥugariyya), itself part of the administrative area ( liwāʾ ) of Taʿizz. In early and mediaeval times it is described as a mik̲h̲…


(568 words)

Author(s): Tibi, Aida
, Abu ’l-Ḥasan ʿAlī b. Muḥammad b. ʿAlī b. D̲j̲amīl b. saʿd al-dīn , an Andalusian Mālikī scholar who settled in Jerusalem and died there in 605/1208. Born and educated in Mālaḳa, al-Maʿāfirī left his native town early in his life and, like many of his compatriots at the time, travelled east for the dual purpose of performing the pilgrimage and acquiring knowledge. Though the sources mention that al-Maʿāfirī did some writing, they do not name any of his works. We know of only one extant…


(972 words)

Author(s): Bosworth, C.E.
, Maʿalt̲h̲ā (Syriac “gate, entrance”, Payne Smith, Thesaurus syriacus , col. 2881), modern Malthai, the name given to two villages in the former ḳaḍāʾ of Dehōk (Duhūk) in the wilāyet of Mawṣil in Ottoman times, now in the Autonomous Region of Dehōk in Republican ʿIrāḳ. The second of these two villages was formerly distinguished as Maʿalt̲h̲ā al-Naṣārā “M. of the Christians”, but has recently become largely Kurdish and Muslim, like its fellow-village. Maʿalt̲h̲āyā lies on a small affluent of the Tigri…


(1,022 words)

Author(s): Elisséeff, N.
, Muʿān , a town of the south of Jordan, lying in lat. 30° 12′ N. and long. 35° 44′ E. at an altitude of 3,523 ft./1,074 m., and the chef-lieu of the governorate which is to the south of the Karak [ q.v.] one and to the east of the Wādī ʿAraba. The name is said to come from Maʿān, son of Lot. The town is surrounded by gardens which form an oasis of the western fringe of the desert plain; to its east are the slopes of the al-S̲h̲arāt mountain chain of granite and porphyry, which rise to 5,665 ft./1,727 m. In Maʿan itself and the neighbourhood are many springs…

al-Maʿānī wa ’l-Bayān

(5,552 words)

Author(s): Bonebakker, S.A. | Reinert, B.
, two of the three categories into which, since the time of al-Sakkākī (d. 626/1229), the study of rhetoric has often been divided. 1. In Arabic. The Miftāḥ al-ʿulūm by al-Sakkākī [ q.v.], where the two terms appear for the first time, was too confusing in its arrangement, and too obscure and at times self-contradictory to be of practical use to most students of rhetoric. It consisted of a section on grammar, a section on syntax, a section on the ʿilm al-maʿānī and the ʿilm al-bayān , and two supplements to its maʿānī section, one on demonstration ( istidlāl ), and one o…


(20,090 words)

Author(s): Winter, M. | Elayed, A. | Hadj-Salah, A. | Salmi, J. | Sana'i, Mahmud
(a.), education, public instruction. The word is the pl. of maʿrifa “knowledge”. The term was already used in mediaeval times to denote the secular subjects of knowledge or culture in general (e.g. in the title of Ibn Ḳutayba’s Kitāb al-Maʿārif ), in opposition to the religious sciences ( ʿulūm , pl. of ʿilm ). 1. In the Ottoman empire and the central and eastern Arab lands It seems that the official use of the term appears for the first time in the Ottoman Empire in 1838, when a school for educating government officials was established in Istanbul and was named Mekteb-i Maʿārif-i ʿAdliyye

Maʿarrat Maṣrīn or Miṣrīn

(1,438 words)

Author(s): Elisséeff, N.
, a small town in North Syria (lat. 36° 01′ N., long. 36° 40′ E.). It is 40 km. to the north of Maʿarrat al-Nuʿmān [ q.v.], 50 km. south-west of Aleppo or Ḥalab [ q.v.] and 12 km. north-west of Sarmīn. It owes its importance to its position between the districts of the Rūd̲j̲, the D̲j̲azr and the D̲j̲abal al-Summāḳ and formerly served as the market for this region which the road from Ḥalab to Armanāz traverses, a route used in the Middle Ages by the Turkomans. Its role has devolved today on Idlib. The land, although poorly watere…

Maʿarrat al-Nuʿmān

(5,760 words)

Author(s): Elisséeff, N.
, chef-lieu of a ḳaḍāʾ of North Syria comprising the southern half of the D̲j̲abal Zāwiya, which consists of the ¶ southern part of the Be lus massif with numerous villages. Maʿarrat al-Nuʿmān, famous as the birthplace of the blind poet al-Maʿarrī [ q.v.], is situated at about 500 m. altitude, in lat. 35° 38′ N. and long. 36° 40′ E. Falling within northern Phoenicia, two days’ journey to the south of Ḥalab or Aleppo (70 km.), it is situated on the eastern fringe of a massif rich in archaeologic…


(10,129 words)

Author(s): Smoor, P.
, Abu ’l-ʿAlāʾ Aḥmad b. ʿAbd Allāh b. Sulaymān , famous Arabic poet and prose author of the late ʿAbbāsid period, was born in 363/973 in Maʿarrat al-Nuʿmān [ q.v.], a town between Aleppo and Ḥimṣ in the northern part of Syria, where he also was to die in 449/1058. The Banū Sulaymān, his forefathers, belonged to the notable families of Maʿarra. As S̲h̲āfiʿī ʿulamāʾ , they held the office of ḳāḍī , which post was for the first time successfully claimed by a grandfather of Abu ’l-Alāʾ’s grandfather. In addition, some of the Banū Sulaymān are menti…

Maʾāt̲h̲ir al-Umarāʾ

(211 words)

Author(s): Ed.
, the name of a celebrated Persian collection of biographies of Muslim Indian commanders from the reign of the Mug̲h̲al Emperor Akbar (963-1014/1556-1605) till the time of its author, Ṣamṣām al-Dawla Mīr ʿAbd al-Razzāḳ S̲h̲āh-Nawāz K̲h̲ān Awrangābādī (1111-71/1700-58). Born at Lahore, he soon settled in the Deccan in the service of the first Niẓām of Ḥaydarābād [ q.v.], Niẓām al-Mulk Āṣaf-Ḏj̲āh. and filled offices in Berār [ q.v.] and then as Dīwān or chief minister of the Deccan. His policy in the latter post aimed at checking the growing influences in that state …

Māʾ al-ʿAynayn al-Ḳalḳamī

(3,682 words)

Author(s): Norris, H.T.
is the name consistently given in Mauritania and Morocco to the greatest scholar and religious and political leader of the Western Sahara during the latter half of the 19th century. Uncertainty remains as to the significance of his sobriquet Māʾ al-ʿAynayn, “water of both eyes”, but it is not unlike ḳurrat al-ʿayn , “coolness of the eye”. Māʾ al-ʿAynayn was born on the day of the death of his brother, Abu ’l-Fatḥ, and of his paternal grandmother K̲h̲adīd̲j̲a. His father Muḥammad Fāḍil regarded his birth as a blessed consolat…

Maʿbad b. ʿAbd Allāh b. ʿUkaym al-D̲j̲uhanī

(637 words)

Author(s): Ess, J. van
, early representative of Ḳadarī ideas, ¶ executed after the insurrection of Ibn al-As̲h̲ʿat̲h̲ [ q.v.], in 83/703. He was probably born about 20/640 or even earlier. He had contacts with Muʿāwiya (41-60/661-80), and ʿAbd al-Malik appreciated him to such an extent that he sent him as an ambassador to Byzantium and entrusted him with the education of his son Saʿīd al-K̲h̲ayr. According to a rather detailed, but perhaps fictitious report he played a certain political role as early as 38/658, during the negotiations…

Maʿbad b. Wahb

(707 words)

Author(s): Farmer, H.G. | Neubauer, E
, Abū ʿAbbād , one of the great singers and composers in Umayyad times, was born in Medina and died at Damascus in 125/743 or 126/744. Being the son of a negro, he was an ʿabd and later on became mawlā of one of the Mak̲h̲zūm families, serving them as overseer of their cattle. Like many other oriental musicians, he is said to have been led to music by a dream, and he took music lessons from Sāʾib K̲h̲āt̲h̲ir and Nas̲h̲īṭ. He soon made a name for himself in Medina and followed invitations to sing at Mecca, where I…

Mā Baʿd al-Ṭabīʿa

(3,859 words)

Author(s): Arnaldez, R.
, or Mā Baʿd al-Ṭabīʿiyyāt , a translation of the Greek τα μετὰ τα φυσικά “the things which come after physical things”, i.e. metaphysics, an expression which can have two meanings, each of which envisages a particular conception of that science ( ʿilm or ṣināʿa ). It can either be a discipline which one embarks upon after physics, utilising the results of the natural sciences, or else it can be one whose goal lies beyond the apprehendable objects which are the concern of physics. ¶ The two meanings are not mutually self-exclusive, but the first tends to put the accent on the r…


(1,525 words)

Author(s): Forbes, A.D.W.
, the name given by the Arabs in mediaeval times to the eastern shores of the Indian Deccan, an area corresponding closely, but not exactly, to the Coromandel coast (the latter name from the Tamil Čolamaṇḍalam , “the realm of the Cholas”, indicating the area formerly ruled by the Tamil Chola rād̲j̲ās from their capital at Tānd̲j̲āvūr (Tanjore); hence the alternative Arabo-Persian name, Barr al-Ṣūliyān or Ṣhūliyān (Tibbetts, op. cit. in Bibl ., 466), “the coast of the Cholas”). In Arabic, the term maʿbar signifies a passage or crossing point. In its applic…


(510 words)

Author(s): Ahmad, S. Maqbul
, S̲h̲ayk̲h̲ Zayn al-Dīn b. ʿAbd al-ʿAzīz b. Zayn al-Dīn b. ʿAlī b. Aḥmad , the author of Tuḥfat al-mud̲j̲āhidīn fī baʿḍ aḥwāl al-Purtukāliyyīn , is said to have lived in Ponani, Malabar District (Kerala, India) during the rule of the ʿAdil S̲h̲āh ʿAlī (965-88/1558-80), his patron, to whom he dedicated the book. The date of his birth or death is not known, but he wrote the work ¶ ca. 985/1577. The Tuḥfat al-mud̲j̲āhidīn deals with the geography of Southern India, and gives an account of Islam in Malabar and the Portuguese campaigns in India. It …


(328 words)

Author(s): Bosworth, C.E.
(A. mā bayn “what is between”), in the organisation of the Ottoman palace, the intermediate appartments lying between the inner courts of the Sarāy and the Ḥarem, a place where only the sultan, the eunuchs and the womenfolk could penetrate and where the corps of select pages known as mābeynd̲j̲is , an elite group from amongst the forty k̲h̲āṣṣ odali̊s , waited on the monarch for such intimate services as dressing and shaving him [see k̲h̲āṣṣ oda ]. Till the end of the 11th/17th century, the Mābeynd̲j̲is were headed by the Silaḥdār Ag̲h̲a or Swordbearer, as chief p…

Ma Chung-Ying

(2,661 words)

Author(s): Forbes, A.D.W.
( Matthews’ Chinese-English Dictionary , Revised American Edition 1969, characters nos. 4310, 1505, 7489), also known as ǧa ssuling , or “Little Commander” ( Ǧa is an affectionate diminutive used in colloquial Kansu Chinese—see the Hsin-Hua tzu-tien , Peking 1971, 124; Ssu-ling: see Matthews’ , nos. 5585, 4043), the youngest and best-known of the five Chinese Muslim warlords comprising the “Wu Ma” clique [ q.v.] which controlled much of Northwest China during the latter half of the Republican Period (1911-49). Little is known of Ma Chung-ying’s early years. ¶ He was born at Linhsia…


(6,636 words)

Author(s): Ferrand, G. | Vérin, P.
, with its 627,000 km2 the third largest island in the world, after New Guinea (785,000 km2) and Borneo (733,000 km2). Its area is slightly greater than that of France 550,880 km2), of Belgium (30,000 km2) and of Holland (33,000 km2) combined. The large African island is oriented from north-north-east to southsouth-west, measuring 1,600 km at its greatest length and 580 km at its greatest width, with a coastal perimeter of 5,000 km. It has a population in excess of 8 million inhabitants which is increasing at a fairly rapid rate (3.2 %). Although the Comoros (see ḳumr )…


(1,869 words)

Author(s): Streck, M. | Morony, M.
, "the cities" (pl. of al-madīna ), the Arabic translation of the Aramaic Māḥōzē or Medīnāt̲h̲ā referring to the Sāsānid metropolis on the Tigris about 20 miles southeast of Bag̲h̲dād where several adjacent cities connected by a floating bridge stretched along both banks of the river. This was the imperial administrative capital, the winter residence of the king, the home of the Jewish Exilarch and the seat of the Nestorian Catholikos. Among the mixed population of Aramaeans, Per…


(2,533 words)

Author(s): Sezgin, Ursula
, ʿAlī b. Muḥammad b. ʿAbd Allāh b. Abī Sayf , Abū ’L-Ḥasan , early Arabic historian, was born, according to his own information, in 135/752 ( Fihrist , 100). Little is known about his life. He was a client of Samura b. Ḥabīb b. ʿAbd S̲h̲ams b. ʿAbd Manāf, i.e. of the Companion ʿAbd al-Raḥmān b. Samura [ q.v.]; according to Fihrist, 101, al-Madāʾinī dedicated a monograph to him. Al-Madāʾinī, who was in Baṣra in 153/770 (see al-Ḏj̲āḥiẓ, al-Bayān wa ’l-tabyīn , ii, Cairo 1367/1948, 93), later went to al-Madāʾi̇n and Bag̲h̲dād at an unknown date. It is also unknown whether his nisba


(1,059 words)

Author(s): Jong, F. de
, a branch of the S̲h̲ādhiliyya [ q.v.] Ṣūfī order named after Muḥammad b. Ḥasan b. Ḥamza Ẓāfir al-Madanī (1194-Ḏj̲umādā I 1263/1780 - April-May 1847), who was originally a muḳaddam [ q.v.] of Mawlāy Abū Aḥmad al-ʿArbī al-Darḳāwī [see darḳāwa ]. From 1240/1824-5 al-Madanī presented himself as independent head of a ṭariḳa [ q.v.] in his own right (ʿAbd al-Ḳādir Zakī, al-Nafḥa al-ʿaliyya fī awrād al-S̲h̲ād̲h̲iliyya , Cairo 1321/1903-4, 233) while retaining the essentials of S̲h̲ād̲h̲ilī teaching and liturgical practice (see Muḥammad Aḥmad Sayyid Aḥmad, al-Anwār al-d̲h̲ahabiyya li ’l-…


(2,568 words)

Author(s): Boratav, P.N.
(Turkish meddāḥ ), an Arabic word which means "panegyrist"; the term was used by the Ottoman Turks as a synonym of ḳi̊ṣṣa-k̲h̲w ān (Arabic ḳāṣṣ ) and s̲h̲ehnāme-k̲h̲w ān to designate the professional story-tellers of the urban milieux; it was used in the same way by the Persians, but more rarely; as for the Arabs, they used it, in a fairly late period, to designate the "begging singers of the streets" (see Köprülüzāde M. Fuʾād, Meddāḥlar , in Türkiyyāt Med̲j̲mūʿasi̊ , i [1925], 11-12). In North Africa, however, the məddāḥ is a kind of "religious minstrel who go…

al-Madd wa ’l-Ḏj̲azr

(1,536 words)

Author(s): Martínez Martín, L.
(a.), literally "the ebb and flow", the name given by the Arabs to the phenomenon of the tide, which they explained by following the various theories inherited from the classical world; the latter assert in the main that the tide possesses a universal character resulting from the moon’s having a stronger influence than the sun over the mass of the Ocean’s waters. The classical writers reached this conclusion after having studied the accounts of their great navigators such as Pytheas and Nearchus…


(846 words)

Author(s): Gottschalk, H.L.
, name of a family of high-officials and revenue officers, originating from ʿIrāḳ, who held important positions in Egypt and Syria between 266/879 and 335/946. The nisba is derived from a village Mād̲h̲arāya, in the neighbourhood of Wāsiṭ (see al-Samʿānī, Kitāb al-Ansāb , fol. 499a; Yāḳūt, Muʿd̲j̲am , iv, 381). Abū Bakr Aḥmad b. Ibrāhīm al-Mād̲h̲arāʾī with the nickname al-Aṭras̲h̲ ("the partially deaf one", see Lane, Lexicon , s.v.), was given the control of finances of Egypt and Syria in 266/879 by Aḥmad b. Ṭūlūn, and so became the founde…


(497 words)

Author(s): Ed.
(a., pl. mad̲h̲āhib ), inf. n. of d̲h̲-h-b , meaning “a way, course, mode, or manner, of acting or conduct or the like” (Lane, i, 983b); as a term of religion, philosophy, law, etc. “a doctrine, a tenet, an opinion with regard to a particular case”; and in law specifically, a technical term often translated as “school of law”, in particular one of the four legal systems recognised as orthodox by Sunnī Muslims, viz. the Ḥanafiyya, Mālikiyya, S̲h̲āfiʿiyya and Ḥanbaliyya [ q.vv.], and the S̲h̲īʿī Ḏj̲aʿfarī and Zaydiyya legal schools [see it̲h̲nā ʿas̲h̲ariyya ; zaydiyya ]. For an exposé of mad̲h̲h…


(869 words)

Author(s): Smith, G.R. | Bosworth, C.E.
a large tribal group, now inhabiting in the main the areas of Ḏh̲amār and Radāʿ in the modern Yemen Arab Republic. The traditional genealogy, given by e.g. Ibn Durayd, Is̲h̲tiḳāḳ , ed. ¶ Wüstenfeld, 237 ff., and by Yāḳūt, Beirut 1374-6/1955-7, v, 89, is from Mālik b. Udad b. Zayd b. Yas̲h̲d̲j̲ub b. ʿArïb b. Zayd b. Kahlān b. Sabaʾ b. Yas̲h̲d̲j̲ub b. Yaʿrub b. Ḳaḥtān. The numerous component ḳabāʾil of Mad̲h̲ḥid̲j̲ are listed in full by al-Malik al-As̲h̲raf ʿUmar, Ṭurfat al-aṣḥāb fī maʿrifat al-ansāb , ed. K. V. Zetterstéen, Damascus 1949, 9; those most frequ…


(632 words)

Author(s): Troupeau, G.
(a.) "preterite", a technical term of Arabic grammar used to denote the verbal form devoted to the expression of past time; its counterpart is muḍāriʿ [ q.v.], the term denoting the author verbal form "resembling" [the noun] and devoted to the expression of the present and future ( ḥāḍir , mustaḳbal ). The majority of Arab grammarians define the verb as a word which indicates the matching ( iḳtirān ) of a happening ( ḥadat̲h̲ ) with a time ( zamān ). Already Sībawayh considered ( Kitāb , i, 11-12) that the verb is formed to demonstrate that a happening has taken place ( waḳaʿa

Madīḥ, Madḥ

(10,231 words)

Author(s): Wickens, G.M. | Clinton, J.W. | Stewart Robinson, J. | Haywood, J.A. | Knappert, J.
(a.), the normal technical terms in Arabic and other Islamic literatures for the genre of panegyric poetry, the individual poem being usually referred to as umdūḥa (pl. amādīḥ ) or madīḥa (pl. madāʾiḥ ). The author himself is called mādiḥ or, as considered professionally, maddāḥ . The root itself is sometimes used without technical connotations, as also are commonly the various other roots signifying "praise": ḥ-m-d, m-d̲j̲-d, ḳ-r-ẓ, t̲h̲-n-y, ṭ-r-w/y, etc. 1. In Arabic literature. As both an independent unit and a component of the ḳaṣīda [ q.v.], the genre has been so widespread …


(238 words)

Author(s): Seybold, C.F. | Ocaña Jiménez, M.
(a.) "the mine" is, by antonomasia, the name of a certain number of villages in ¶ Arabia and other parts of the Orient (see Yāḳūt, s.v.), and is also found in the toponomy of the Iberian peninsula. Under the form Almaden, this term refers to the locality in the province of Ciudad Real, 125 km. to the north of Cordova, in the Sierra de Almadén (A. Ḏj̲ibāl al-Maʿdin), which has one of the richest deposits in the world of mercury (A. ziʾbaḳ and variants, whence Spanish azogue and the fullest form of the place name Almadén de Azogue). According to Garciá Bellido ( España y los españoles hace dos mil años se…


(33,280 words)

Author(s): Ashtor, E. | Hassan, A.Y. al- | Hill, D.R. | Murphey, R. | Baer, Eva
(a.), "mine, ore, mineral, metal". In modern Arabic, the word mand̲j̲am denotes "mine", while muʿaddin means "miner" and d̲j̲amād is a mineral. In the vast Islamic empire, minerals played an important part. There was a great need for gold, silver and copper for the minting of coins and other uses. Iron ore was indispensable for the manufacture ¶ of iron and steel for arms and implements. Other minerals such as mercury, salt and alum, as well as pearls and precious stones, were necessary for everyday life. The empire was richly endowed with the various…


(6 words)

, urbanism. [See Supplement].


(13,695 words)

Author(s): Watt, W. Montgomery | Winder, R.B.
(usually Medina in English, Médine in French), residence of the Prophet Muḥammad after the ḥid̲j̲ra and one of the sacred cities of Islam. Medina is situated in the Ḥid̲j̲āz province of Saʿūdī Arabia in latitude 24° 28′ N, longitude 39° 36′ E, about 160 km. from the Red Sea and about 350 km. north of Mecca. It has developed from an oasis on relatively level ground between the hill of Uḥud on the north and that of ʿAyr on the south. East and west are lava flows (in Arabic ḥarra [ q.v.] or lāba ). There are several wādī s or watercourses which cross the oasis from south to…


(3,868 words)

Author(s): Raymond, A.
(a.), urbanism, the structure and planning of the Arab town and city. This can be reconstructed as an historical reality from a vast body of literature, including chronicles and archival documents. It embodies enlightened ideas which seem to be commented on, as it were, by the remains of all the great Arab cities that can still be seen. The concept of a Muslim “city” was formulated chiefly by French orientalists (on this subject see R.S. Humphreys, Islamic history: a framework for inquiry, Princeton 1991, 228) between 1920 and 1950; in particular see G. and W. Marçais, J. Sa…

Madīnat al-Nuḥās

(1,204 words)

Author(s): Hamori, A.
, “The city of brass,” a story within the Thousand and one nights [see alf layla wa-layla ]. This story, that found its way, somewhat variably, into the 19th-century editions of the Nights (on the 18th-century manuscripts in which it appears, see the excellent discussion by D. Pinault, Story - telling techniques in the Arabian Nights , Leiden 1992, 150-80), is the most elaborate narrative about a city of copper, brass or bronze (on the proper meanings of nuḥās and ṣufr , and their indiscriminate use in non-scientific discourse, see M. Aga-Oglu, A brief note on Islamic terminology for bronz…

Madīnat Sālim

(434 words)

Author(s): Lévi Provençal, E.
, the Arabic name, which has become Medinaceli , of a small town in north-eastern Spain, on the railway from Madrid to Saragossa, and almost equidistant from these two cities; it lies at an altitude of more than 3,280 feet/1,000 m., on the left bank of the Jalón. It owes its name to a Berber from the Maṣmūda, Sālim, who repaired a Roman fortress which Ṭāriḳ [ q.v.], according to Yāḳūt, iii, 13, had found in a ruinous state. The Arab geographers give brief descriptions of Medinaceli. According to al-Idrīsī, it was a large town built in a hollow with many large buildings, ga…

Madīnat al-Zahrāʾ

(1,683 words)

Author(s): Ocaña Jiménez, M.
, governmental city of the Umayyad caliphs of Cordova. According to the texts which recount the construction of this madīna , it was the monumental work of ʿAbd al-Raḥmān III who had it built to satisfy the whim of a d̲j̲āriya of his ḥaram , al-Zahrāʾ. The city was constructed 5 km. as the crow flies to the north-west of Cordova, on the southern flank of the Ḏj̲abal al-ʿArūs ("the Bride’s Mountain") of the mountain chain called today Sierra Morena. The work was begun at the beginning of the year 325/19 November 936, …

al-Madīna al-Zāhira

(391 words)

Author(s): Ocaña Jiménez, M.
, a city founded in 366/978-9 to constitute a court by al-Manṣūr Ibn Abī ʿĀmir [ q.v.] in a place called Ālas̲h̲, Ballas̲h̲ or Manzil Ibn Badr, on the right bank of the Guadalquivir to the east of and a short distance from Cordova. Al-Zāhira’s existence was of short duration, since it was sacked and utterly destroyed in 399/1009, at the time when Muḥammad II al-Mahdī revolted against ʿAbd al-Raḥmān Sanchuelo, whom he had imprisoned and killed, and usurped the caliphate, dethroning His̲h̲ām II. The ploughshare s…


(354 words)

Author(s): Ed.
(a.), a dish of meat cooked in sour milk, sometimes with fresh milk added, and with spices thrown in to enhance the flavour. This dish, which Abū Hurayra [ q.v.] is said to have particularly appreciated (see al-Masʿūdī, Murūd̲j̲ , viii, 403 = § 3562, where a piece of poetry in praise of maḍīra is cited), must have been quite well sought-after in mediaeval times (al-Ḏj̲āḥiẓ, however, does not cite it in his K. al-Buk̲h̲alā ’; see nevertheless al-T̲h̲aʿālibī, Laṭāʾif , 12, tr. C. E. Bosworth, 46). Its principal claim to fame comes from al-Hamad̲h̲ānī’s al-Maḳāma al-maḍīriyya


(706 words)

Author(s): Yver, G.
, al-Madya , Lemdiya , in French Médéa , a town of Algeria situated about 100 km./60 miles to the south of Algiers (in lat. 36° 15′ 50′′ N., long. 2° 45′ E.), at an altitude of 920 m./3,018 ft. and on the northern border of the mountainous massif which divides the high plateau from the Mittīd̲j̲a. Down to the French occupation, it could only be reached by a bridle-path over the Muzāya pass (979 m./3,270 ft.). The bui…


(424 words)

Author(s): Hofheinz, A.
, a leading “holy family” among the Sudanese Ḏj̲aʿaliyyūn [ q.v.]. Their ancestors emerged in the 16th century as a family of religious specialists ( fugara , sg. fakī ) in the area of al-Dāmar. In 1117/1705-6, Muḥammad al-Mad̲j̲d̲h̲ūb (“the Enraptured”), the first of the family to bear this epithet, may have participated in the first revolt of the northern Sudanese provinces against their Fund̲j̲ [ q.v.] overlords. Under his son, Fakī Ḥamad wad al-Mad̲j̲d̲h̲ūb (1105-90/1694-1776), the family strengthened its position by …


(5 words)

[see med̲j̲elle ]

Mad̲j̲ar, Mad̲j̲aristān

(15,962 words)

Author(s): Lewicki, T. | Káldy-Nagy, Gy.
, name given to the Hungarians or Magyars and to Hungary in the Ottoman period. 1. In pre-Ottoman period (1) The names for the Hungarians and Hungary in the Arabic and Persian authors of the 3rd-8th/9th-14th centuries. The earliest mention of the Hungarians (Magyars) occurs in ¶ the Kitāb al-Aʿlāḳ al-nafīsa of Ibn Rusta (Ibn Rosteh), written between the years 290-300/903-12-13 on the basis of the geographical treatise of al-Ḏj̲ayhānī ( ca. 300 A.H.) who used, in the composition of this work, an anonymous historical account dealing with Central Asia and Eastern Euro…


(1,419 words)

Author(s): Kunitzsch, P.
, the Galaxy or Milky Way. This remarkable celestial phenomenon was well-known to the peoples of the Islamic world. Its popular assimilation to the traces of spilt milk seems to be of Greek origin (cf. τὸ ϒάλα. [Aristotle], ὁ τοῦ ϒάλακτος κύκλος [Euclid, Geminus], ὁ ϒαλακτίας [κύκλος] [Ptolemy], ὁϒαλαξίας [κύκλος] [other authors]; see Liddell and Scott, s.vv.), whereas in the Near East the image of traces of lost straw, or chaff, prevails (cf. Pers. rāh-i kāhkas̲h̲ān , Turk, samanyolu , etc., and already Syriac s̲h̲bhīlā d-t̲h̲ebhnā (A.D. 660), also colloquial Arabic darb al-tabbāna


(2,566 words)

Author(s): Reinert, B. | Bruijn, J.T.P. de | Stewart Robinson, J.
(A.), a term in rhetoric, means "trope" and, more generally, the use of a word ¶ deviating from its original meaning and use, its opposite being ḥaḳīḳa ("veritative expression"). In Arabic literature. The different modes of expression labelled as mad̲j̲āz by the Arabic theorists were divided into twelve categories by Fak̲h̲r al-Dīn al-Rāzī (d. 606/1210) without, however, following a consistent system of criteria (cf. al-Suyūṭī, Muzhir , ed. Cairo 1282, i, 171). A more refined and detailed version of this classifying system was put forward by al-Suyūṭī (d. 911/1505) ( Itḳān


(9 words)

al-Dīn [see hibat allāh b. muḥammad ].
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