Fall of the Caliphate of Córdoba (Chronology of European History)
Article abstract: The fall of the caliphate of Córdoba marks the receding political power of Muslim Spain and its loss of cultural influence.
Summary of Event
The tenth century was the golden age of Muslim Spain, and Córdoba was its political and intellectual center. Yet the roots of the downfall of the Umayyad caliphate in al-Andalus can be found in the caliphate’s rapid rise to power.
On January 16, 929, ʿAbd al-Rahmān III proclaimed himself caliph, an act which separated Córdoba from the caliphate at Baghdad. Córdoba, a city with a population of one hundred thousand inhabitants, was noted for its extensive markets, the architecture of its mosques, its official residences, palace, industrial zones, baths, and gardens. Beginning in 936, ʿAbd al-Rahmān built a new palace and administrative headquarters, Medinat az-Zahra, approximately three miles from the city. Until 961, al-Andalus, or Muslim Spain, prospered during his reign. ʿAbd al-Rahmān quieted the Christian campaigns in the north as well as the Fatimid navy that threatened the Mediterranean from North Africa. To maintain this peace, he relied heavily on mercenary soldiers, and imported Slavs from Europe for his personal protection.
ʿAbd al-Rahmān was succeeded as caliph by his son al-Hakam II, who continued many of the policies of his father. Always the scholar, he accumulated a library of more than four hundred thousand...
(The entire section is 1361 words.)
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