Encyclopaedia of Islam, Second Edition

Get access Subject: Middle East and Islamic Studies
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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Miʾān Bhuʾā

(1,202 words)

Author(s): Siddiqui, I.H.
, Masnad-i ʿĀlī , the wazīr and ṣadr of the Dihlī sultanate during the reign of Sultan Sikandar S̲h̲āh Lōdī (894-923/1489-1517). He was the eldest son of Masnad-i ʿAlī Ḵh̲awwāṣ Ḵh̲ān, who belonged to an old aristocratic family of north India. Ḵh̲awwāṣ Ḵh̲ān seems to have been elevated to the posts of wazīr and ṣadr by Sultan Sikandar at the beginning of his reign. Upon his death, sometime towards the close of the 9th/15th century, Miʾān Bhuʾā, who was also adept in learning and statesmanship, was allowed by the sultan to take up the combined charge of the wizārat and ṣadārat


(514 words)

Author(s): Witkam, J.J.
, the common Arabic word, together with its synonym ḥibr , for ink. Derived from the root m-d-d, it originally meant “anything that is added to a thing, because of its utility”, and therefore one of its more specific meanings is “that with which one writes” (Lane, Lexicon , s.v.), or “that with which the writer is provided” ( LA, s.v.). There is a single Ḳurʾānic mention of midād : “If the sea were ink for the Words of my Lord, the sea would be spent before the Words of my Lord are spent” (XVIII, 109). Tradition has is that on the Day of Jud…


(5 words)

[see manāra ].

Midḥat Pas̲h̲a

(4,127 words)

Author(s): Davison, R.H.
(1822-84), Ottoman provincial governor, twice grand vizier, and father of the 1876 constitution. Midḥat was born in Istanbul in Ṣafar 1238/October-November 1822, the son of Rusčuklu Ḥād̲j̲d̲j̲ī ʿAlī Efendi-zāde Ḥād̲j̲d̲j̲ī Ḥāfi̊ẓ Meḥmed ¶ Es̲h̲ref Efendi. He was named Aḥmed S̲h̲efīḳ. Having memorised the Ḳurʾān at 10, he was then called Ḥāfi̊z S̲h̲efīḳ. In 1833 he moved with his family to Vidin, where his father was an assistant judge. When his family returned to Istanbul the next year, he became an apprentice in the secretariat of the imperial dīwān . His tal…


(2,842 words)

Author(s): Soucek, S.
(Turkish form of Μυτιλήνη, Mytilene, the Greek name of its capital), the island of Lesbos in the eastern Aegean alongside the Turkish coast near the entrance to the Gulf of Edremit [ q.v.] and the town of Ayvalık (Aywali̊ḳ [ q.v.]); the straits of Müsellim and Mytilene that separate it from Turkey on the north and east average 10 and 16 km in width. With an area of 1614 km2, Lesbos is the third largest Greek island after Crete and Euboea, and the seventh largest of the Mediterranean. It has a roughly triangular shape, its broad base, ca. 70 km long, running from east-south-east to west-nort…


(4,565 words)

Author(s): Pellat, Ch.
(Banū) or Midrārids , minor Berber dynasty which was established in Sid̲j̲ilmās(s)a [ q.v.] and which enjoyed relative independence until its final collapse in 366/976-7. The history of this dynasty can be briefly outlined, thanks to al-Bakrī [ q.v.], who lived in the 5th/11th century and thus possessed quite recent information in order to write the chapter that he devotes to it ( Mug̲h̲rib , 148 ff., Fr. tr. 282 ff.), before Ibn ʿId̲h̲ārī (7th-8th/13th-14th century [ q.v.]), Ibn Ḵh̲aldūn (8th/14th century [ q.v.]) and several historians of the Mag̲h̲rib and Mas̲h̲riḳ were abl…


(2,356 words)

Author(s): Lewicki, T.
(also Madyūna or Medyūna ), an important Berber tribe, belonging to the major branch of Butr and descended from the family of Fāṭin, son of Tamzīt (or Tamṣīt), son of Ḍarīs, son of Zaḥīk (Zad̲j̲īk), son of Mādg̲h̲is al-Abtar. According to Ibn ʿIdhārī, Madyūna was said to be the son of Tamzīt, son of Ḍarī and brother of Maṭmāṭa, Mad̲h̲g̲h̲ara, Ṣadīna, Mag̲h̲īla and Malzūza. According to Ibn Ḵh̲aldūn, the Midyūna (Medyūna) were related to the Maṭg̲h̲ara, Ṣadīna, Lamāya, Kūmiya, Mag̲h̲īla, Dūna, Maṭmaṭa, Malzūza, Kas̲h̲āna (Kas̲h̲āta) and Ḍarīsa. Little is known of the history of the…


(1,178 words)

Author(s): Andrews, P.A.
(a.), more usually in its Persian form mafras̲h̲ , or the Ottoman mifres̲h̲ , denotes a travelling pack for bedding. Derived from the Arabic verb faras̲h̲a “to spread out or furnish a house or tent”, it is thus cognate with mafrūs̲h̲āt [ q.v.] in the sense of “bedding”. Two early examples made from waxed canvas, reinforced with patterns of brass studs, are preserved in the harem of the Topkapı Sarayı, Istanbul (8/460 and 8/465 k̲h̲urd̲j̲ ). These are flat-bottomed, 90 × 55 cm, with D-shaped ends 30 cm high around which the long sides curve inwards…


(371 words)

Author(s): Bosworth, C.E.
(p.), literally “guest”, the equivalent of Ar. ḍayf [ q.v. for this sense]. The Persian word occurs in various compounds, such as mihmāndār and mihmān-k̲h̲āna . In Ṣafawid Persia, the mihmāndārs were officials appointed to receive and to provide hospitality for guests, including foreign ambassadors and envoys, with a court head official, the mihmāndār-bāshī , superintending these lesser persons. In Ḳād̲j̲ār times, the mihmāndārs seem to have been appointed ad hoc. See the references to the accounts of European travellers in Ṣafawid Persia (Chardin, Kaempfer, Sanso…


(574 words)

Author(s): Saleh, A.
(p.), the title of the 18th dignity, out of the 25 at the Mamlūk sultan’s court; succeeding to the duties of the Fāṭimid nāʾib ṣāḥib al-bāb (see M. Canard, Le ceremonial fâtimite et le ceremonial byzantin, in Byzantion , xxi [1951], 371, 377, 412), he was in charge of receiving ambassadors and delegations of Bedouins ( ʿurbān ), of providing them with accommodation suitable to their rank, of providing for their needs during their stay and of presenting them, at the appropriate moment, in the audience chamber of the ruler. Whilst the nāʾib was an official of the pen ( min arbāb al-aḳlām


(7 words)

[see ṣināʿa , ṣinf ].


(5,021 words)

Author(s): Hinds, M.
(a.), a term meaning in general usage a “testing” or “trial”, whether by the accidents of fortune or the actions of men (Patton, 1). This general sense is reflected in the Kitāb al-Miḥan by Abu ’l-ʿArab [ q.v.] where the author sets out to give an account of “those who have been afflicted ( ubtuliya ) by being killed, imprisoned, flogged, or threatened. . . ” (47). More particularly, the term (together with its counterpart imtiḥān ) signifies the procedure adopted by the caliph al-Maʾmūn [ q.v.], and officially applied under his two immediate successors, for the purpose of imposi…


(5 words)

[see taʾrīk̲h̲ ].


(10,201 words)

Author(s): Fehérvári, G.
(a.), pl. maḥārīb , the prayer niche in the mosque. Etymological origin of the word. In Islamic religious practice and in Islamic architecture, the word denotes “the highest place in a mosque”, a “niche” which shows the direction of the ḳibla [ q.v.], or “the station of the Imām in a mosque” (Lane, 1865, 541). The word includes the radicals ḥ-r-b , from which comes the verb ḥariba , which in Form I means “to be violently angry”, “to be affected by canine madness”; in Form II “to provoke”, “to sharpen”, or “to excite s.o.”; in Form III “to f…


(5,741 words)

Author(s): Calmard, J.
(p. Mihragān/Mehregān ; a. Mihrad̲j̲ān ; Meherangān among the Parsees), name of an Iranian Mazdaeanfestival dedicated to Mithra/Mihr, traditionally celebrated in Iran around the autumn equinox. Its origins, its place in the calendar, its duration, its rituals and the beliefs connected with it, its diffusion in other cultural areas and its survivals in the Islamic period present several problems which are the subject of discussions and controversies. It is also a word used in toponymy, patronymy and music (see below, iv). i. The name of the festival. It comes from the Pahlavi mihrakān/m…


(1,082 words)

Author(s): Bosworth, C.E.
, the name generally given by the classical Islamic geographers to the Indus river (Skr. Sindhu, Σίνθος, “Ινδς, Lat. Sindus, Indus), but Nahr al-Sind, Sind-Rūdh, Nahr Multān, etc. were also used by them. There was, in fact, considerable confusion over the precise nomenclature of the Indus and its constituents, with, in particular, uncertainty over what was to be regarded as the main river channel. Thus al-Iṣṭak̲h̲rī, followed by Ibn Ḥawḳal, records the Nahr Multān or Mihrān as rising in the mountains of Central Asia. They compa…


(2,497 words)

Author(s): Pellat, Ch.
(a.) and its plur. maḥārīt̲h̲ are used more frequently than the doublet miḥrat̲h̲ , plur. maḥārit̲h̲ , to designate today a plough, but these terms are applied more specifically, in mediaeval literature, to the tiller, which is not equipped with wheels or a mould-board or a coulter, but consists essentially of a ploughshare, a crossbeam, a handle and a pole (or beam). Although it goes back to the earliest antiquity, this agricultural implement is still in use, without modification of note, throughout the Islamic world. While miḥrāt̲h̲ , unknown in the Ḳurʾān,…


(5 words)

[see mihragān ].

Mihrī K̲h̲ātūn

(1,000 words)

Author(s): Menzel, Th. | Ambros, E.G.
, an important Turkish poetess of the end of the 9th/15th and beginning of the 10th/16th centuries. Although ʿĀs̲h̲i̊ḳ Čelebi clearly states that Mihrī was her given name as well as her mak̲h̲laṣ , later on Ewliyā Čelebi writes ( Seyāḥatnāme , ii, 192) that it was Mihrmāh. (It is possibly as her cognomen that Fak̲h̲r al-nisāʾ is mentioned in ʿOt̲h̲mānli̊ müʾellifleri .) Mihrī K̲h̲ātūn was a descendant of Pīr Ilyās, the K̲h̲alwetī s̲h̲eyk̲h̲ of Amasya. Her father was a ḳāḍī who wrote poetry under the mak̲h̲laṣ Belāyī. Mihrī K̲h̲ātūn herself spent her whole li…

Mihr-i Māh Sulṭān

(486 words)

Author(s): Babinger, Fr.
, daughter of the Ottoman sultan Süleymān II the Magnificent (926-74/1520-66). Mihr-i Māh (sometimes also written Mihr-ü-māh: cf. Ḳaračelebi-zāde, Rawḍat ul-ebrār , 458) was the only daughter of Süleymān q.v., as well as F. Babinger, in Meister der Politik , ii2, Berlin 1923, 39-63). While still quite young she was married to the grand vizier Rüstem Pas̲h̲a (cf. Babinger, GOW, 81-2) at the beginning of December 1539 (cf. J.H. Mordtmann, in MSOS, xxxii, Part 2, 37), but the marriage does not seem to have been a happy one. She used her enormous wealth—St. Gerlach in …
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