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al-Barānis

(504 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
, name of one of the two groups of tribes which together constitute the Berber nation [ q.v.], that of the other being the Butr. It represents the plural of the name of their common eponynxous ancestor: Burnus; for a possible origin of this name see butr. According to Ibn Ḵh̲aldūn, the Barānis comprised five great peoples: Awraba, ʿAd̲j̲īsa, Azdād̲j̲a, Maṣmūda-G̲h̲umāra. Kutāma-Zawāwa, Ṣanhād̲j̲a, Hawwāra. Whether, however, the last three belong to this group is a matter of controversy; they are considered by some to be descendants of Ḥimyar…

Lamṭa

(330 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
, a large Berber tribe of the Barānis family. Its exact origin does not seem to have been known to the Arab and Berber genealogists, who simply make them brethren of the Ṣanhād̲j̲a, Haskūra and Gazūla; others give them a Ḥimyarite origin like the Hawwāra and the Lawāta [ q.vv.]. The Lamṭa were one of the nomadic tribes who wore a veil ( mulat̲h̲t̲h̲amūn ). One section lived on the south of the Mzāb, between the Massūfa on the west and the Tārga (Tuareg) on the east; they even seem to have extended as far as the Niger. In the south of Mo…

Čay

(483 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
Tea appears to be mentioned for the first time in an Arabic text by the author of the Ak̲h̲bār al-Ṣīn wa’l-Hind (ed. and transl. by J. Sauvaget, 18), under the form sāk̲h̲ , whereas al-Bīrūnī, Nubad̲h̲ fī Ak̲h̲bār al-Ṣīn , ed. Krenkow, in MMIA, xiii (1955), 388, calls it more correctly d̲j̲aʾ . It was introduced into Europe towards the middle of the 16th century by the Dutch East Indies company; but it is only in the middle of 17th century that its use spread, particularly in England. In Morocco the first mention of tea dates back to 1700. It was a French merchant, with business co…

Ḥinnāʾ

(825 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
, henna (known to botanists as the Lawsonia alba of Lamarck, a name preferable to the L. inarmis of Linnaeus, which corresponds only to the young form of the plant, the adult form being spinosa ), shrub whose leaves possess medical properties and are used as a dye. In Arabic, the word most commonly used is ḥinnāʾ , but in the earlier language there were used other words which, however, were applied also to other dye-producing plants: saffron ( zaʿfarān ), safflower ( ḳurṭum , ʿuṣfur ) and curcuma ( kurkum ); these are yarannā and raḳūn , riḳān , irḳān ; the three last are perhaps connected with yaraḳān…

Maṣmūda

(4,061 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
(the broken plural Maṣāmida is also found), one of the principal Berber ethnic groups forming a branch of the Barānis. If we set aside the Maṣmūda elements mentioned by al-Bakrī in the neighbourhood of Bône, the post-Islamic Maṣmūda seem to have lived exclusively in the western extremity of the Mag̲h̲rib: and as far back as one goes in the history of the interior of Morocco, we find them forming with the Ṣanhād̲j̲a [ q.v.], another group of Barānis Berbers, the main stock of the Berber population of this country. Indeed, from the first Arab conquest in the 1st/7th ce…

Māssa

(630 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
(Berber Masst), the name of a small Berber tribe of the Sūs of Morocco, from which comes the name of the place where it is settled, some 30 miles south of Agadir at the mouth of the Wādī Māssa; the latter is probably the flumen Masatat mentioned by Pliny the Elder (v. 9) to the north of the flumen Darat , the modern Wādī Darʿa, and the Masata of the geographer would correspond to the modern ahl Māssa . The name Māssa is associated with the first Arab conquest of Morocco: according to legend, it was on the shore there that, after conquering the Sūs, ʿUḳba b. Nāfiʿ drove his…

Ḥarṭānī

(541 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
(pl. ḥarāṭīn ), the name given, in north-west Africa, to certain elements of the population of the oases in the Saharan zone. From the ethnic point of view, they seem to have arisen from inter-breeding, perhaps at some very remote period, between white invaders and the indigenous negroid inhabitants (calling to mind the enigmatic Bāfūr in Mauritania). But the Ethnic type of the Ḥarāṭīn is markedly different from that of the Negroes; those from Southern Morocco are sometimes e…

Burd̲j̲

(207 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
(pl. burūd̲j̲ , abrādj , and abrid̲j̲a ), square or round tower, whether adjacent to a rampart or isolated and serving as a bastion or dungeon. Special meanings: each of the twelve signs of the zodiac, considered as solar ‘mansions’; more or less fortified country house standing alone amidst gardens (Eastern Mag̲h̲rib); tower used as a lighthouse ( burd̲j̲ al-manār ); tower used as a dovecote, especially for carrier pigeons ( burd̲j̲ al-ḥamām ; see J. Sauvaget, La poste aux chevaux dans l’empire des Mamlouks , Paris 1941, no. 157); masonry pier of a bridge;…

Fāzāz

(1,235 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
, name borne in mediaeval times by the north-western extremity of the Moroccan Middle Atlas. This territory lay to the south of Fez and Meknès. It was bounded to the east by the upper course of the Wādī Subū (=Wādī Gīgū); westwards, it extended as far as the upper course of the Wādī Umm-Rabīʿ (=Wādī Wānsīfan); its southern boundary was the so-called Tīg̲h̲ānīmīn pass, where the Malwiyya rises. It coincided with the territory now occupied by the Berber-speaking tribes called in Arabic: Bnī Mṭīr, …

Spartel

(119 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
, a cape forming the extreme north-western point of Morocco and of Africa, 7 or 8 miles west of Tangier, the ancient Ampelusia Promontorium. Al-Idrīsī does not mention it; al-Bakrī knows of it as a hill jutting out into the sea, 30 miles from Arzila [see aṣīla ] and 4 from Tangier, which has springs of fresh water and a mosque used as a ribāṭ . Opposite it on the coast of al-Andalus is the mountain of al-Ag̲h̲arr (= Ṭarf al-Ag̲h̲arr > Trafalgar). The name Is̲h̲bartāl (probably connected with the Latin spartaria = places overgrown with esparto) given it by al-Bakrī is not known to the natives. (G.S. C…

Gudāla

(514 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
, small Berber tribe belonging to the great ethnic group of the desert Ṣanhād̲j̲a (the Berber phoneme g is usually rendered in Arabic script by a d̲j̲īm but Ibn Ḵh̲aldūn, in his system of transcription, writes it as a kāf which, in the original manuscript, presumably had a diacritical point placed above or below). They lived in the southern part of what is now Mauritania, to the north of the Senegal and in contact with the ocean. To the south their territory bordered the land of the Negroes; to the north, in the…

Baraka

(324 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
, blessing. In the Ḳurʾān, the word is used only in the plural: barakāt , like raḥma and salām , are sent to man by God. It can be translated by “beneficent force, of divine origin, which causes superabundance in the physical sphere and prosperity and happiness in the psychic order”. Naturally, the text of the Ḳurʾān ( kalāmu-llāh ) is charged with baraka . God can implant an emanation of baraka in the person of his prophets and saints: Muḥammad and his descendants are especially endowed therewith. These sacred personages, in their turn, may communicate the effluvi…

Ḥisāb al-D̲j̲ummal

(663 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
, method of recording dates by chronogram. It consists of grouping together, in a word (significant and appropriate) or in a short phrase, a group of letters whose numerical equivalents, added together, provide the date of a past or future event. Such a chronogram is known as a ramz , and in Turkish a taʾrīk̲h̲ [ q.v.]. A more complex variety is called mud̲h̲ayyal ; here the principal chronogram is completed by a supplementary chronogram ( d̲h̲ayl ) and it is the sum of the two which provides the date. For the correct interpretation of these chronograms it is of course necessary to t…

al-Butr

(479 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
, the name given to one of the two groups of tribes who constitute the Berbers [ q.v.], the other being called al-Barānis [ q.v.]. The chief groups of whom al-Butr was composed were the Lawāta, the Nafūsa, the Nafzāwa, the Banū Fātin and the Miknāsa. Their earliest habitat is the region of steppe and plateau which extends from the Nile to southern Tunisia; they were thus originally Libyan Berbers. But, very early, several of these peoples (Miknāsa, Banū Fātin, and a part of Lawāta) moved towards the west—to Algeria (the…

Baḳḳāl

(489 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
, etymologically “retailer of vegetables”, this word has become the equivalent of the present English “grocer” taken in its widest sense. With the latter significance it has passed into Persian and Turkish, and, from Turkish, into the Balkan languages. In its etymological meaning, the word was known in the Spanish Arabic of Valencia in the 7th/13th century, glossed by olerum venditor. But in the dialect of Granada (end of the 9th/15th century), it corresponded to the Castilan regaton ( = regrattier ) "retailer of foodstuff s in general”, which was also rendered by k̲h̲aḍḍār . At the begin…

D̲j̲azūla

(584 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
Arabic name of a small ancient Berber tribe in south-western Morocco, doubtless related to the Ṣanhād̲j̲a group [ q.v.]. In association with the Lamṭa [ q.v.], their kinsmen, they led a nomadic life south of the Anti-Atlas. But, at quite ¶ an early date, some of them began to settle in the western part of This mountain (D̲j̲abal Hankīsa); their chief settlement was at Tāg̲h̲d̲j̲īzat, now known as Tāg̲h̲d̲j̲īd̲j̲t, 80 km. south-south-east of Tīznīt. It was among them that ʿAbd Allāh b. Yāsīn was born, the originator of the religious and political movement of the Murābiṭūn [ q.v.]. The Ḏj̲azū…

Ḳāʾid

(771 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
(A.), an imprecise term, but one always used to designate a military leader whose rank might vary from captain to general. Semantically, it is the equivalent of the Latin dux . The plural most frequently employed by historians is ḳuwwād . For the army in Muslim Spain, this title corresponded to general or even commander-in-chief. In the navy, ḳāʾid al-usṭūl (= ḳāʾid ʿala ’l-usṭūl ) or ḳāʾid al-baḥr (= ḳāʾid ʿala ’l-baḥr , ḳāʾid fi ’l-baḥr ) was equivalent to “admiral”. But Ibn K̲h̲aldūn intimates that the term current among sailors of his day was al-miland (pronounced with a back lām

Ibn Ḳuzmān

(4,561 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
, name of a Cordovan family, of which five members are, for various reasons, worthy of mention. The genealogy of the family is given in Ibn al-Abbār, no. 1517. I. Abu ’l-Aṣbag̲h̲ ʿĪsā b. ʿAbd al-Malik ibn Ḳuzmān , poet and man of letters of the 4th/10th century. The chamberlain al-Manṣūr Ibn Abī ʿĀmir chose him as one of the tutors of the young caliph His̲h̲ām II al-Muʾayyad, who succeeded to the throne at the age of eleven in 366/976. Thus, in spite of the opinion of E. Lévi-Provençal ( Du nouveau . . . 13), it is impossible that he should have been the father of the famous writer of zad̲j̲als

Kammūn

(1,032 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
, cumin ( Cuminum Cyminum ), an umbelliferous plant which seems to be a native of eastern Iran. At an early date it was found in the ¶ Near East (Syria, Palestine, the upper valley of the Nile), then spread throughout the Mediterranean basin. The Hebrew is kammōn , Greek kúminon , Latin cuminum . Wild or cultivated, its aromatic seeds were much sought after. Physicians recognized its many virtues: carminative, emmenagogic, sudorific, etc. in potions and in electuaries ( maʿād̲j̲īn ). Dieticians knew it as an aid to digestion. Many varieties were known and these were variously apprais…

al-Bādisī

(250 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
, ethnie adjective referring to the town of Bādis [ q.v.], and borne by three notable Moroccan personalities: 1. Abū Yaʿḳūb Yūsuf al-Zuhaylī al-Bādisī, saint and savant of the 8th/14th century, who is buried outside the town. The author of the Maḳṣad (cf. infra , 2) devoted a notice to him (cf. trans,, 146 and 218). Ibn Ḵh̲aldūn regarded him as the last of the great Moroccan saints (cf. Prolegomena , trans., ii, 199; Histoire des Berbères , i, 230). Leo Africanus (ed. Schefer, ii, 273; ed. Épaulard, Paris 1956, 274) speaks of his shrine which is still venerated: Sīdi Bū Yaʿḳūb. 2. ʿAbd al-Ḥaḳḳ a…

Maṭg̲h̲ara

(778 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
, the name of a Berber tribe belonging to the great family of the Butr [ q.v.]; they were related to the Zanāta and brethren of the Maṭmāṭa, Kūmiya, Lamāya, Ṣaddīna, Madyūna, Mag̲h̲īla, etc., with whom they form the racial group of the Banū Fātin. Like the other tribes belonging to this group, the Maṭg̲h̲ara originally came from Tripolitania; the most eastern members of the Maṭg̲h̲ara, however, known to al-Bakrī and Ibn K̲h̲aldūn were those who lived in the mountainous regions along the Mediterranean from Milyā…

Bādis

(652 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
, a town (now in ruins) and anchorage on the Mediterranean coast of Morocco. It is 68¼ m. (110 km.) south-east of Tetuan, between the territory of the G̲h̲umāra [ q.v.] and the Rīf [ q.v.] properly so-called. It is situated on the territory of the Banū Yaṭṭūfat ( vulgo: Bni Yiṭṭōft) near the mouth of a torrent named Tālā-n-Bādis ( vulgo: Tālembādes). An attempt has been made to identify it with the Parietina of the Itinerary of Antoninus; but this ancient place-name could equally well refer to the more sheltered cove of Yallīs̲h̲ (= Iris on our maps) which is only 7 km. to the south-west. The town of…

Banīḳa

(345 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
, (plur. banāʾiḳ ), an Arabic word which has been subject to considerable semantic evolution. In early Arabic, its meaning is disputed by the lexicographers (cf. Ibn Sīda, Muk̲h̲aṣṣaṣ , iv, 84-85; ¶ TA, s.v.). The primitive meaning seems to have been “any piece inserted ( ruḳʿa ) to widen a tunic ( ḳamīṣ ) or a leather bucket ( dalw )”. In the case of the ḳamīṣ, according to some authorities, banāʾiḳ were “snippets” of material, in the form of very elongated triangles, inserted vertically below the armholes, along the lateral seams of the garment, to give greater fu…

Melilla

(1,236 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
(in modern Arabic: Mlīlya , Berber Tamlilt , "the white"; in the Arab geographers, Malīla ), a seaport on the east coast of Morocco on a promontory on the peninsula of Gelʿiyya at the end of which is the Cape Tres Forcas or the Three Forks ( Rās Hurk of the Arab geographers, now Rās Werk ). Melilla probably corresponds to the Rusadir of the ancients (cf. Rhyssadir oppidum et portus (Pliny, v. 18), Russadir Colonia of the Antoninian Itinerary). Leo Africanus says that it had belonged for a time to the Goths and that the Arabs took it from them, but…

Garsīf

(677 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
(in the Marīnid period Agarsīf occurs quite as frequently; the occlusive Berber g is some times transcribed in Arabic characters as d̲j̲īm , sometimes as kāf , each distinguished by three diacritical points), the Guercif of French maps, a small place in eastern Morocco 60 km. east of Taza, in the middle of the immense Tāfrāṭa steppe. It is situated on the spit of land between the Mulullū and Moulouya rivers at their confluence; hence its name (Berber ger- “between” and āsīf “river”). Marmol wished to identify Guercif with Ptolemy’s Galapha but this is scarcely l…

Āgdāl

(86 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S.
(Berber), a term borrowed by the Arabic of Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia from Berber, with the same meaning as in that language namely "pasturage reserved for the exclusive use of the landowner". In Morocco, however, the word has acquired the special sense of "a wide expanse of pasture lands, surrounded by high walls and adjoining the Sultan’s palace, reserved for the exclusive use of his cavalry and livestock". Such enclosures exist in each of the royal cities, Fez, Meknes, Rabāṭ and Marrākus̲h̲. (G.S. Colin)

Abd̲j̲ad

(869 words)

Author(s): Weil, G. | Colin, G.S.
(or Abad̲j̲ad or Abū Ḏj̲ad ), the first of the eight mnemotechnical terms into which the twenty-eight consonants of the Arabic alphabet were divided. In the East, the whole series of these voces memoriales is ordered and, in general, vocalized as follows: ʾabd̲j̲ad hawwaz ḥuṭṭiy kalaman saʿfaṣ ḳaras̲h̲at t̲h̲ak̲h̲ad̲h̲ ḍaẓag̲h̲ . In the West (North Africa and the Iberian peninsula) groups no. 5, 6 and 8 were differently arranged; the complete list was as follows: ʾabad̲j̲id hawazin ḥuṭiyin kalamnin ṣaʿfaḍin ḳurisat t̲h̲ak̲h̲ud̲h̲ ẓag̲h̲s̲h̲in . ¶ The first six groups of the Ori…

Dār al-Ṣināʿa

(1,908 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S. | Cahen, Cl.
(also, but more rarely: Dār al-ṣanʿa ). Etymologically, this compound can be translated “industrial establishment, workshop”. In fact it is always applied to a State workshop: for example, under the Umayyads in Spain to establishments for gold and silver work intended for the sovereign, and for the manufacture and stock-piling of arms. But the sense most widely used is that of “establishment for the construction and equipment of warships”: dār ṣināʿa li-ins̲h̲āʾ al-sufun ; or simply dār al-ins̲h̲āʾ , which also occurs. This does not include the arsen…

Dawār

(401 words)

Author(s): Marçais, W. | Colin, G.S.
, an encampment of Arab Bedouins in which the tents (sing, k̲h̲ayma ) are arranged in a circle or an ellipse, forming a sort of enceinte around the open space in the middle ( murāḥ ) where the cattle pass the night; this very ancient way of laying out an encampment is still to be found among the Bedouins of the east (northern Syria, Mesopotamia) and among all the nomads or semi-nomads of North Africa. The name of dawār which is given to it appears already in the writings of certain travellers ¶ and geographers of the middle ages. In the East, the exact form of the word is dawār or dwār

al-D̲j̲adīda

(1,300 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S. | Cenival, P. de
, Arabic and the present-day official name of the ancient Mazagan (former Arabic name: al-Burayd̲j̲a “the little fortress”), a maritime town of Morocco, situated on the Atlantic Ocean 11 km. south-west of the mouth of the wādī Umm Rabiʿ. Its population was 40,318 in 1954, of whom 1704 were French, 120 foreigners, and 3,328 Jews. Some authors have considered that Mazagan arose on the site of Ptolemy’s ʿPоυσιβίς λιμήν, Pliny’s Portus Rutubis . The texts do not, indeed, say that there had ever been a town there, but merely an anchorage frequented by ships, and this ¶ seems to have been the ca…

al-Mag̲h̲rib

(29,328 words)

Author(s): Yver, G. | Lévi-Provençal, E. | Colin, G.S.
, al-Mamlaka al-Mag̲h̲ribiyya . a kingdom of North Africa whose name in European languages (Fr. Maroc; Eng. Morocco; Span. Marruecos) is a deformation of the name of the southern metropolis of the kingdom, Marrākus̲h̲ [ q.v.]. 1. Geography . Morocco occupies the western part of Barbary; it corresponds to the Mag̲h̲rib al-Aḳṣā of the Arab geographers [see al-mag̲h̲rib ]. Lying between 5° and 15° W. longitude (Greenwich) on the one hand and between 36° and 28° N. latitude on the other, it covers approximately an area of between 500,000 and 550,000 km2. On the north it is bounded by the …

Dallāl

(817 words)

Author(s): Becker, C.H. | Colin, G.S.
(ar.) “broker”, “agent”. Dallāl , literally “guide”; is the popular Arabic word for simsār , sensal . In the Tād̲j̲ al-ʿArūs we find, on the word simsār: “This is the man known as a dallāl ; he shows the purchaser where to find the goods he requires, and the seller how to exact his price”. Very little is known from the Arabic sources about the origins of these brokers, who have been of such great importance in economic affairs. The dallāl corresponded to the Byzantine μεδίτης. In the absence of any systematic earlier studies, only certain items of information collected at r…

S̲h̲āwiya

(2,712 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S. | Lancaster, W. Fidelity | O. Jastrow
(a., pl. of s̲h̲āwī ) “sheep-breeder or herder”, a term applied to groups in various parts of the Arab world. 1. The Mag̲h̲rib. Here the term, originally applied in contempt, has become the general designation of several groups, of which the most important are, in Morocco, the S̲h̲āwiya of Tāmasnā and in Algeria, the S̲h̲āwiya of the Awrās. E. Doutté ( Marrâkech , 4-5) mentions several other groups of less importance. An endeavour has also been made to connect Shoa, the name of a district in Abyssinia, with S̲h̲āwiya. Wherever it is found, the term is applied to Berbers of the Zanāt…

Bīmāristān

(3,821 words)

Author(s): Dunlop, D.M. | Colin, G.S. | Şehsuvaroǧlu, Bedi N.
, often contracted to māristān , from Persian bīmār ‘sick’ + the suffix -istān denoting place, a hospital. In modern usage bīmāristān is applied especially to a lunatic asylum. ¶ i. Early period and Muslim East . According to the Arabs themselves (cf. Maḳrīzī, Ḵh̲iṭaṭ , ii, 405), the first hospital was founded either by Manāḳyūs, a mythical king of Egypt, or by Hippocrates, the latter of whom is said to have made for the sick in a garden near his house a xenodokeion , literally ‘lodging for strangers’. The authority for this statement is given by Ibn Abī Uṣaybiʿa ( ʿUyūn , …

Filāḥa

(13,214 words)

Author(s): Shihabi, Mustafa al- | Colin, G.S. | Lambton, A.K.S. | İnalcık, Halil | Habib, Irfan
, agriculture. Falḥ , the act of cleaving and cutting, when applied to the soil has the meaning of “to break up in order to cultivate”, or “to plough”. Fallāḥ “ploughman”, filāḥa “ploughing”. But from pre-Islamic times the word filāḥa has assumed a wider meaning to denote the occupation of husbandry, agriculture. In this sense it is synonymous with zirāʿa , to which the ancients preferred filāḥa (all the earlier writers called their works on agriculture Kitāb al-Filāḥa ). At the present time this latter word is very widely used in North Africa, both …

Iṣṭabl

(7,005 words)

Author(s): Viré, F. | Colin, G.S. | Bosworth, C.E. | Digby, S.
and isṭabl (a.; pl. iṣṭablāt and rarely aṣābil , according to LA, s.v.), etymologically stable , that is to say the building in which mounts and baggage animals (equidae and camelidae) are kept tethered and, by metonomy, the actual stock of such animais belonging to one single owner. Iṣṭabl is the arabization of the low-Greek στάβλον/σταβλíον/σταυλíον(see Du Cange, Glossarium ad scriptores mediae et infimae graecitatis , Lyons 1688, s.v.), which ¶ in turn derives from the Latin stabulum . This is one of the so-called terms “of civilization” which hav…

Diplomatic

(17,714 words)

Author(s): Björkman, W. | Colin, G.S. | Busse, H. | Reychmann, J. | Zajaczkowski, A.
i.— Classical arabic 1) Diplomatic has reached the status of a special science in the West, and the results of such research are accessible in good manuals (like Harry Bresslau’s Handbuch der Urkundenlehre für Deutschland und Italien , 2nd. ed. 1931). Much less work has been done on Arabic documents: the material is very scattered, and not yet sufficiently collated to permit detailed research. Yet Arabic documents have aroused interest for some considerable time: a number have been published, and the editing o…

Hiba

(8,430 words)

Author(s): Rosenthal, F. | Bosworth, C.E. | Wansbrough, J. | Colin, G.S. | Busse, H. | Et al.
, one of many Arabic words used to express the concept of “gift”, and the preferred legal term for it, see following article. The giving of gifts, that is, the voluntary transfer of property, serves material and psychological purposes. In the pre-history of man, it probably antedates the contractual payment for goods and services. In Islam, it has retained its inherited functions as an important component of the social fabric and has exercised a considerable influence on political life. Literature (in the narrow sense…

Bārūd

(16,103 words)

Author(s): Colin, G.S. | Ayalon, D. | Parry, V.J. | Savory, R.M. | Khan, Yar Muhammad
i. — general In Arabic, the word nafṭ (Persian nafṭ) is applied to the purest form ( ṣafwa ) of Mesopotamian bitumen ( ḳīr —or ḳārbābilī ). Its natural colour is white. It occasionally occurs in a black form, but this can be rendered white by sublimation. Nafṭ is efficacious against cataract and leucoma; it has the property of attracting fire from a distance, without direct contact. Mixed with other products (fats, oil, sulphur etc.) which make it more combustible and more adhesive, it constituted the basic ingredient of “Greek fire”, a liquid incendiary compo…

Ḥiṣār

(16,216 words)

Author(s): Cahen, Cl. | Colin, G.S. | Bosworth, C.E. | Ayalon, D. | Parry, V.J. | Et al.
, siege. The following articles deal with siegecraft and siege warfare. On fortification see burd̲j̲ , ḥiṣn , ḳalʿa and sūr . i.— General Remarks Siege warfare was one of the essential forms of warfare when it was a matter of conquest, and not merely of plundering raids, in countries in which, from ancient times, most of the large towns had been protected by walls and where, during the Middle Ages, the open countryside was to an ever increasing extent held by fortresses [see ḥiṣn and ḳalʿa ]. Although the forces available were rarely sufficient to impose a co…

Dīwān

(16,419 words)

Author(s): Duri, A.A. | Gottschalk, H.L. | Colin, G.S. | Lambton, A.K.S. | Bazmee Ansari, A.S.
, a collection of poetry or prose [see ʿarabiyya ; persian literature ; turkish literature ; urdū literature and s̲h̲iʿr ], a register, or an office. Sources differ about linguistic roots. Some ascribe to it a Persian origin from dev , ‘mad’ or ‘devil’, to describe secretaries. Others consider it Arabic from dawwana , to collect or to register, thus meaning a collection of records or sheets. (See Ḳalḳas̲h̲andī, Ṣubḥ , i, 90; LA, xvii, 23-4; Ṣūlī, Adab al-kuttāb , 187; Māwardī, al-Aḥkām al-sulṭāniyya , 175; D̲j̲ahs̲h̲iyārī, Wuzarāʾ , ¶ 16-17; cf. Balād̲h̲urī, Futūḥ ,…
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