Encyclopaedia of Islam, Second Edition

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(588 words)

, literally ‘rascal, tramp, vagabond’; Arabic pl. ʿayyārūn , Persian pl. ʿayyārān . From the 9th to the 12th century it was the name for certain warriors who were grouped together under the futuwwa [q.v.] in ʿIraḳ and Persia, and gradually also in Transjordania, similar to the aḥdāt̲h̲ [q.v.] in Syria and Mesopotamia, and to the rindān (v. ak̲h̲ī ) in Anatolia. Occasionally, the term is used to mean the same as jityān (v. fatā ). Thus one of their leaders might sometimes be referred to as sar-ʿayyārān , and sometimes as raʾīs al-fityān . On occasions they appeared as fighters for the fa…

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Taeschner, F., “ʿAyyār”, in: Encyclopaedia of Islam, Second Edition, Edited by: P. Bearman, Th. Bianquis, C.E. Bosworth, E. van Donzel, W.P. Heinrichs. Consulted online on 07 December 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1573-3912_islam_SIM_0927>
First published online: 2012
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004161214, 1960-2007

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