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Mahdids

(1,185 words)

Author(s): Smith, G.R.
, a dynasty of Zabīd in the Yemen claiming descent from the pre-Islamic Tubbaʿs of Ḥimyar. 1. History. The family took its name from the father of its first leader, ʿAlī b. Mahdī, who died in 554/1159. ʿAlī was brought up with a strong traditional Islamic education by his father in Tihāma. Though much given to quiet meditation, ʿAlī also acquired a reputation for eloquence. He travelled widely too, performing the pilgrimage each year and meeting ʿulamāʾ from all corners of the Islamic world. The famous historian-poet, ʿUmāra, is our earliest source…

T̲h̲ād̲j̲

(373 words)

Author(s): Smith, G.R.
, an ancient pre-Islamic walled site in northeastern Arabia, some 90 km/56 miles ¶ almost due west of the port of D̲j̲ubayl on the Arabian Gulf (see General map, Potts, Arabian Gulf, xx). Located in Wādī al-Miyāh, the site covers an area of about 990 m by 825 m and lay on the trans-Arabian route linking southern Arabia with ʿIrāḳ, and in Islamic times both al-Hamdānī and Ibn Khurradād̲h̲bih mention the route, called by the 7th/13th century traveller Ibn al-Mud̲j̲āwir (214) Ṭarīḳ al-Raḍrāḍ , the “Gravel Road”. It has in recent years been suggested that the…

ʿĪnāt

(220 words)

Author(s): Smith, G. R.
, a town in Ḥaḍramawt, about 10 miles/15 km. due east of Tarīm, and situated at the confluence of the Wādīs ʿĪnāt and Ḥaḍramawt. The holy family of Īnāt is the Āl Bū Bakr b. S̲h̲ayk̲h̲ and the illustrious manṣab , S̲h̲ayk̲h̲ Bū Bakr b. Sālim, known as Mawlā ʿĪnāt, is buried in the town. The family has been subjected to severe criticism from other Sayyid groups because of its bearing arms. ʿĪnāt has become one of the most important ḥawṭas [ q.v.] in Ḥaḍramawt. It is famous for its own breed of hunting dogs which seem to be indistinguishable from the common “pie-dog”. With thes…

Kat̲h̲īrī

(1,679 words)

Author(s): Smith, G.R.
, a South Arabian tribal group and sultanate, the latter eventually becoming part of the Eastern Aden Protectorate prior to the departure of the British from South Arabia in 1967. Their origins were in the area of Ẓafār [ q.v.] on the Indian Ocean, now within the Southern Region of the Sultanate of Oman [see ʿumān ], and they appear suddenly on the stage of history in the 9th/15th century. By the time the Eastern Aden Protectorate collapsed in 1967 after the departure of the British, the Kat̲h̲īrī sultanate was made up of the centre and eastern end o…

al-S̲h̲arīf Abū Muḥammad Idrīs

(660 words)

Author(s): Smith, G.R.
b. ʿAlī , called ʿImād al-Dīn, a Ḥasanī s̲h̲arīf of Yemen. Belonging also to the Zaydī Ḥamzas, he is usually given the nisba al-Ḥamzī. He was a Ṣanʿānī, was born in 673/1274 and died in 714/1314. Idrīs had a strict Zaydī background and his early days were spent under the eye of his father, D̲j̲amāl al-Dīn ʿAlī, who played a prominent military part on the side of the Zaydīs in the Zaydī-Rasūlid struggles of the late 7th/13th century. By the time his father died in 699/1299, he had made his peace with the Rasūlids and Idrīs was left in charge of the Ḥamzī as̲h̲rāf in the Yemen…

Yuʿfirids

(803 words)

Author(s): Smith, G.R.
, the first local dynasty to emerge in the Yemen in the Islamic period (232-387/ 847-997). The name is often erroneously vocalised “Yaʿfurids”, but the 4th/10th century Yemeni scholar al-Hamdānī, who was a contemporary of the Yuʿfirids, makes it clear that Yuʿfirids is the correct spelling ( al-Iklīl , Südarabisches Muštabih , ed. O. Löfgren, Uppsala etc. 1953, 36, and al-Iklīl, ii, ed. Löfgren, Uppsala 1965, 71). The family was of D̲h̲ū Ḥiwāl, a tribe from S̲h̲ibām-Kawkabān some 40 km/25 miles north-west of Ṣanʿāʾ [ q.v.]. The founder of the dynasty, Yuʿfir b. ʿAbd al-Raḥmān al…
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