Caliphate of Abd al-Malik

Topics: Ali, Caliphate / Pages: 7 (1551 words) / Published: Jul 31st, 2014
Abd al-Malik ibn Marwan

Abd al-Malik ibn Marwan, (646 – 8 October 705) was the 5th Umayyad Caliph.
He was born in Medina, Hejaz. `Abd al-Malik was a well-educated man and capable ruler, despite the many political problems that impeded his rule. 14th century Muslim historian Ibn Khaldun states: "`Abd al-Malik ibn Marwan is one of the greatest Arab and Muslim Caliphs. He followed in the footsteps of `Umar ibn al-Khattab, the Commander of the Believers, in regulating state affairs".
Abd al-Malik succeeded to the caliphate in a difficult situation. Shiite rebels occupied much of Iraq, and there were also troubles in Syria. To free his hands,
Abd al-Malik made a truce with the Byzantine emperor in 689. He then attacked
Iraq, but it was not until 691 that the Zubayrid army there was defeated. A year later Mecca fell after a siege to Abd al-Malik's general al-Hajjaj, and Abdullah ibnaz-Zubayr was killed. The empire remained disturbed, and three separate revolts by men of the Kharijite sect were not quelled until 697. The final pacification was largely effected by al-Hajjaj, governing Iraq and the lands to the east from Al
Kufa, but his severity provoked many wellborn Arabs of Iraq to revolt under Ibnal-Ashath from 701 to 703.
With the restoration of Umayyad rule over the empire it became possible once again to mount campaigns on the frontiers. Abd al-Malik achieved little in Central
Asia, Afghanistan, and Anatolia, but in North Africa the Byzantines were defeated, Carthage was occupied in 697, and a base was established atKairouan; thus the way for the Arab advance to Morocco and into Spain was prepared.
In administrative matters Abd al-Malik took the important step of making Arabic the official language of Islam. He also unified fiscal and postal administration, eliminating the local systems that had been retained in the provinces conquered from the Byzantine and Persian empires. Similarly, he discouraged the use of
Byzantine coinage that

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