Muhammad’s Successors

After Muhammad’s death in 632 CE, there were conflicts among his followers regarding who would come to be his successor, which produced a separation in Islam between the Sunni and also Shi’a sects.

You are watching: During the height of muslim power, inventions included

Key Takeaways

Key PointsAfter Muhammad ‘s fatality in 632 CE, his friend Abu Bakr was named caliph and also ruler of the Islamic community, or Ummah.Sunni Muslims believe that Abu Bakr to be the proper successor, if Shi’a Muslims believe that Ali should have actually succeed Muhammad together caliph.After Muhammad’s death and the rebellion of number of tribes, Abu Bakr initiated number of military projects to lug Arabia under Islam and also into the caliphate.The Rashidun Caliphate (632–661) was led by Abu Bakr, climate by Umar ibn Khattab together the second caliph, Uthman Ibn Affan as the 3rd caliph, and also Ali as the fourth caliph.Muslim armies conquered most of Arabia through 633, complied with by phibìc Africa, Mesopotamia, and also Persia, substantially shaping the history of the civilization through the spread out of Islam.Key TermsSunni: The branch the Islam that believes that a caliph must be chosen by Muslims or their representatives and that Abu Bakr was the an initial caliph.Ummah: one Arabic word meaning “nation” or “community;” usually refers to the collective community that Islamic peoples.Shi’a: The decimal Islamic branch the believes Muhammad appointed his cousin Ali together his follower and that the caliph should be decided based on this family lineage.caliph: The head the state in a caliphate, and the title for the leader of the Islamic Ummah; a successor of Muhammad.

Succession after Muhammad’s Death

Muhammad joined the tribes of Arabia into a solitary Arab Muslim religious polity in the last years that his life. He established a brand-new unified Arabian Peninsula, which resulted in the Rashidun and also Umayyad Caliphates and the rapid growth of Muslim power over the following century.

With Muhammad’s fatality in 632 CE, disagreement broke out amongst his pendant over deciding his successor. Muhammad’s significant companion Umar ibn al-Khattab nominated Abu Bakr, Muhammad’s friend and collaborator. With extr support, Abu Bakr was shown as the first caliph (religious successor to Muhammad) that very same year. This choice was disputed by some of Muhammad’s companions, who held that Ali ibn Abi Talib, his cousin and son-in-law, had been designated the successor by Muhammad in ~ Ghadir Khumm. Ali was Muhammad’s very first cousin and closest living masculine relative, as well as his son-in-law, having actually married Muhammad’s daughter Fatimah. Ali would eventually become the fourth Sunni caliph. These arguments over Muhammad’s true successor led come a major split in Islam between what ended up being the Sunni and also Shi’a denominations, a division that still holds come this day.

Sunni Muslims believe and confirm that Abu Bakr was favored by the community and also that this to be the ideal procedure. Sunnis more argue the a caliph have to ideally be liked by election or ar consensus. Shi’a Muslims think that just as God alone appoints a prophet, only God has actually the prerogative to choose the successor to his prophet. They think God decided Ali to it is in Muhammad’s successor and the very first caliph of Islam.

Rise of the Caliphates

After Muhammad’s death, plenty of Arabian people rejected Islam or withheld the alms tax developed by Muhammad. Numerous tribes declared that they had submitted to Muhammad and that v Muhammad’s death, your allegiance had ended. Caliph Abu Bakr insisted that they had not just submitted to a leader, however joined the Islamic community of Ummah.

To maintain the cohesion that the Islamic state, Abu Bakr divided his Muslim military to pressure the Arabian tribes into submission. After a collection of effective campaigns, Abu Bakr’s basic Khalid ibn Walid beat a competing prophet and the Arabian peninsula was united under the caliphate in Medina. When the rebellions had been quelled, Abu Bakr began a battle of conquest. In just a few short decades, his projects led to one of the largest empires in history. Muslim armies conquered many of Arabia by 633, followed by north Africa, Mesopotamia, and Persia, significantly shaping the background of the people through the spread of Islam.

Rashidun Caliphate (632–661)

Abu Bakr nominated Umar together his follower on his deathbed. Umar ibn Khattab, the 2nd caliph, was killed by a Persian named Piruz Nahavandi. Umar’s successor, Uthman Ibn Affan, was chosen by a board of directors of electors (Majlis). Uthman was killed by members that a disaffected group. Ali then took control, however was not universally embraced as caliph through the governors that Egypt, and also later by few of his very own guard. He confronted two significant rebellions and also was assassinated by Abdl-alRahman, a Kharijite. Ali’s tumultuous preeminence lasted only 5 years. This duration is well-known as the Fitna, or the first Islamic polite war.

The followers of Ali later ended up being the Shi’a minority sect that Islam, i beg your pardon rejects the legitimacy that the very first three caliphs. The pendant of all four Rashidun caliphs (Abu Bakr, Umar, Uthman, and Ali) ended up being the majority Sunni sect. Under the Rashidun, each region (Sultanate) of the caliphate had actually its own governor (Sultan). Muawiyah, a loved one of Uthman and governor (Wali) of Syria, ended up being one the Ali’s challengers, and also after Ali’s assassination controlled to get over the other claimants come the caliphate. Muawiyah reinvented the caliphate right into a hereditary office, thus establishing the Umayyad dynasty. In areas that were formerly under Sassanid Persian or byzantine rule, the caliphs lowered taxes, noted greater neighborhood autonomy (to their delegated governors), granted greater religious freedom for Jews and also some native Christians, and also brought tranquility to individuals demoralized and disaffected by the casualties and heavy tax that result from the years of Byzantine-Persian warfare.

Expansion Under the Umayyad Caliphates

The Umayyad Caliphate, the second of the four significant Arab caliphates established after the fatality of Muhammad, broadened the territory of the Islamic state to among the largest realms in history.

Key Takeaways

Key PointsThe Umayyad Caliphate, which emerged after the Rashidun Caliphate collapsed, was defined by hereditary elections and territory expansion.The Umayyad Caliphate became one the the largest unitary claims in background and one of the couple of states to ever extend direct rule over three continents.When the Abbasid dynasty revolted versus the Umayyads and killed many of their ruling family members, a few Umayyads escaped to the Iberian peninsula and founded the Cordoba Caliphate, defined by peaceful diplomacy, spiritual tolerance, and social flourishing.Key TermsAl-Andalus: also known together Muslim Spain or Islamic Iberia, a middle ages Muslim territory and cultural domain occupying in ~ its peak most of modern Spain and Portugal.Dome the the Rock: A shrine situated on the holy place Mount in the Old City of Jerusalem.Umayyad Caliphate: The second of the four major Arab caliphates created after the fatality of Muhammad.

Umayyad Caliphate (661–750)

The Umayyad Caliphate was the second of the four significant Arab caliphates developed after the death of Muhammad. This caliphate was centered on the Umayyad dynasty, hailing native Mecca. The Umayyad family had first come to power under the third caliph, Uthman ibn Affan (r. 644–656), however the Umayyad regime was founded by Muawiya ibn Abi Sufyan, long-time governor of Syria, after the end of the an initial Muslim Civil war in 661 CE. Syria continued to be the Umayyads’ main power base thereafter, and also Damascus was your capital.

Under the Umayyads, the caliphate territory grew rapidly. The Islamic Caliphate came to be one the the biggest unitary states in history, and also one of the couple of states to ever extend straight rule over three continents (Africa, Europe, and Asia). The Umayyads included the Caucasus, Transoxiana, Sindh, the Maghreb, and the Iberian Peninsula ( Al-Andalus ) into the Muslim world. At its greatest extent, the Umayyad Caliphate covered 5.79 million square miles and also included 62 million people (29% of the world’s population), making the the 5th largest realm in background in both area and proportion of the world’s population. Back the Umayyad Caliphate did not rule all of the Sahara, nomadic Berber people paid homage come the caliph. However, although these huge areas may have actually recognized the dominance of the caliph, de facto power was in the hand of local sultans and also emirs.

Expansion the the caliphate: This map shows the extension of Islamic preeminence under Muhammad, the Rashidun Caliphate, and also the Umayyad Caliphate

The Umayyad dynasty was no universally supported within the Muslim ar for a variety of reasons, consisting of their hereditary election and also suggestions the impious behavior. Part Muslims feel that just members that Muhammad’s Banu Hashim clan or those the his very own lineage, such together the progeny of Ali, should rule. Some Muslims believed that Umayyad taxation and administrative practices were unjust. While the non-Muslim populace had autonomy, your judicial matters were faced in accordance through their own laws and by their own religious heads or your appointees. Non-Muslims paid a poll taxation for policing come the main state. Muhammad had proclaimed explicitly during his life time that each religious minority must be permitted to exercise its own religion and also govern itself, and the policy had actually on the entirety continued.

There were plenty of rebellions against the Umayyads, and splits in ~ the Umayyad ranks, i m sorry notably contained the rivalry between Yaman and Qays. Allegedly, The Sunnis eliminated Ali’s child Hussein and his household at the fight of Karbala in 680, solidifying the Shi’a-Sunni split. Eventually, pendant of the Banu Hashim and the pendant of the lineage of Ali united to lug down the Umayyads in 750. However, the Shiʻat ʻAlī, “the Party of Ali,” to be again disappointed as soon as the Abbasid empire took power, as the Abbasids were descended from Muhammad’s uncle `Abbas ibn `Abd al-Muttalib, and not native Ali.

The Abbasid victors desecrated the burial places of the Umayyads in Syria, sparing just that that Umar II, and also most of the staying members that the Umayyad family members were tracked down and killed. When Abbasids declared amnesty because that members that the Umayyad family, eighty gathered to receive pardons, and also all to be massacred. One grandson of Hisham, Abd al-Rahman I, survived and established a kingdom in Al-Andalus (Moorish Iberia), proclaiming his family to be the Umayyad Caliphate revived.

Umayyad dynasty in Cordoba, Spain

The revival of the Umayyad Caliphate in Al-Andalus (what would become modern Spain) was referred to as the Caliphate of Córdoba, i beg your pardon lasted till 1031. The duration was identified by an expansion of trade and culture, and saw the building and construction of masterpieces that al-Andalus architecture.

The caliphate delighted in increased prosperity throughout the 10th century. Abd-ar-Rahman III unified al-Andalus and brought the Christian kingdoms the the phibìc under control through force and diplomacy. Abd-ar-Rahman quit the Fatimid breakthrough into caliphate floor in Morocco and al-Andalus. This duration of prosperity was significant by increasing diplomatic relations with Berber tribes in north Africa, Christian queens from the north, and also France, Germany, and also Constantinople.

Córdoba to be the cultural and intellectual facility of al-Andalus. Mosques, such as the great Mosque, to be the emphasis of countless caliphs’ attention. The caliph’s palace, Medina Azahara, was on the outskirts of the city, and also had countless rooms filled through riches indigenous the East. The library of Al-Ḥakam II was one of the largest libraries in the world, real estate at the very least 400,000 volumes, and also Córdoba own translations of old Greek texts into Arabic, Latin and Hebrew. During the Umayyad Caliphate period, relations in between Jews and also Arabs to be cordial; Jewish stonemasons helped build the columns of the good Mosque. Al-Andalus was topic to eastern cultural influences together well. The musician Ziryab is credited with bringing hair and also clothing styles, toothpaste, and also deodorant indigenous Baghdad to the Iberian peninsula. Breakthroughs in science, history, geography, philosophy, and also language emerged during the Umayyad Caliphate together well.


Mosque: interior of the Mezquita (Mosque), among the best examples the Umayyad style in Spain.

Legacy the the Umayyad Caliphate

The Umayyad caliphate was marked both by territorial expansion and by the administrative and social problems the such growth created. Regardless of some noteworthy exceptions, the Umayyads had tendency to donate the rights of the old Arab families, and also in details their own, over those of recently converted Muslims (mawali). Therefore, they hosted to a much less universalist conception the Islam 보다 did countless of your rivals.

During the duration of the Umayyads, Arabic became the bureaucratic language, in which state documents and also currency to be issued. Massive conversions carried a big influx of Muslims to the caliphate. The Umayyads likewise constructed famous structures such together the Dome of the rock at Jerusalem and also the Umayyad Mosque at Damascus.

According to one typical view, the Umayyads revolutionized the caliphate from a spiritual institution (during the Rashidun) to a dynastic one. However, the Umayyad caliphs perform seem come have understood themselves as the to represent of God on Earth.

The Umayyads have actually met through a largely negative reception from later on Islamic historians, who have accused them of promoting a kingship (mulk, a term v connotations the tyranny) rather of a true caliphate (khilafa). In this respect the is remarkable that the Umayyad caliphs referred to themselves no as khalifat rasul Allah (“successor of the messenger the God,” the title desired by the tradition), but rather as khalifat Allah (“deputy of God”).

Many Muslims criticized the Umayyads for having actually too plenty of non-Muslim, previous Roman administrators in your government. St. Man of Damascus was additionally a high administrator in the Umayyad administration. As the Muslims took end cities, castle left the people’s political representatives and also the Roman taxes collectors and also administrators. The people’s politics representatives calculated and negotiated taxes. The central government and the neighborhood governments gained paid respectively for the solutions they provided. Countless Christian cities supplied some the the taxes to keep their churches and run their own organizations. Later, the Umayyads were criticized by some Muslims for not reducing the taxes of the civilization who convert to Islam.

Spread the Islam

In the years following the Prophet Muhammad’s death, the growth of Islam was carried out by his successor caliphates, who raised the region of the Islamic state and also sought converts from both polytheistic and monotheistic religions.

Learning Objectives

Discuss the spread out of Islam and also identify exactly how the caliphs kept authority over conquered territories.

Key Takeaways

Key PointsThe growth of the Arab empire in the years adhering to the Prophet Muhammad ‘s fatality led to the development of caliphates, who inhabited a large geographical area and sought converts come Islamic faith.The human being of the Islamic people created numerous advanced centers of culture and science with significant mercantile networks, travelers, scientists, hunters, mathematicians, doctors, and also philosophers.Historians distinguish in between two separate strands of switch of the time. One is animists and polytheists of tribal societies of the Arabian Peninsula and the fertile crescent; the various other is the monotheistic populations of the center Eastern agrarian and also urbanized societies.The Arab conquerors normally respected the timeless middle-Eastern sample of spiritual pluralism v regard to the conquered populations, respecting the practice of other faiths in Arab territory, although extensive conversions come Islam came around as a an outcome of the malfunction of in the history religiously organized societies.Key TermsZoroastrianism: an ancient Iranian religion and religious philosophy that emerged in the eastern ancient Persian Empire, when the spiritual philosopher Zoroaster simplified the pantheon of early on Iranian gods into two opposing forces.Imam: an Islamic management position, most generally in the paper definition of a worship leader that a mosque and Sunni Muslim community.


The development of the Arab empire in the years complying with the Prophet Muhammad’s fatality led come the production of caliphates occupying a large geographical area. Conversion to Islam was enhanced by missionary activities, specifically those of Imams, who conveniently intermingled with regional populace come propagate religious teachings. These early on caliphates, coupled v Muslim economics and also trading and also the later expansion of the ottoman Empire, led to Islam’s spread outwards native Mecca in the direction of both the Atlantic and also Pacific oceans and the creation of the Muslim world. Commerce played vital role in the spread of Islam in several parts of the world, notably southeast Asia.

Muslim empires were shortly established and subsequent empires such together those the the Abbasids, Fatimids, Almoravids, Seljukids, and also Ajurans, Adal and also Warsangali in Somalia, Mughals in India, Safavids in Persia, and Ottomans in Anatolia were amongst the largest and also most an effective in the world. The human being of the Islamic world created numerous advanced centers of culture and scientific research with significant mercantile networks, travelers, scientists, hunters, mathematicians, doctors, and also philosophers, all contributing to the golden e of Islam. Islamic growth in South and also East Asia fostered cosmopolitan and also eclectic Muslim cultures in the Indian subcontinent, Malaysia, Indonesia, and also China.

Within the an initial century the the establishment of Islam upon the Arabian Peninsula and the subsequent rapid expansion of the Arab Empire throughout the Muslim conquests, one of the most far-reaching empires in world history was formed. Because that the topics of this brand-new empire, formerly subjects that the greatly lessened Byzantine and also obliterated Sassanid empires, not much changed in practice. The objective of the conquests was the a practical nature more than noþeles else, as fertile land and also water to be scarce in the Arabian Peninsula. A real Islamization thus only came about in the succeeding centuries.

Conversions to Islam

Historians distinguish in between two separate strands of switch of the time. One is animists and also polytheists that tribal societies of the Arabian Peninsula and also the abundant crescent; the various other is the monotheistic populations of the center Eastern agrarian and urbanized societies.

For the polytheistic and pagan societies, apart from the spiritual and spiritual factors each separation, personal, instance may have actually had, conversion come Islam “represented the an answer of a tribal, pastoral population to the need for a larger structure for political and also economic integration, a an ext stable state, and also a much more imaginative and encompassing ethical vision to cope with the difficulties of a blatant society.” In contrast, because that sedentary and often already monotheistic societies, “Islam to be substituted for a oriental or Sassanian politics identity and for a Christian, Jewish or Zoroastrian spiritual affiliation.” Initially, conversion was neither compelled nor necessarily wished for: “ did not call for the conversion as much as the subordination that non-Muslim peoples. At the outset, castle were enemy to conversions because brand-new Muslims diluted the economic and also status benefits of the Arabs.”

Only in succeeding centuries, v the advancement of the religious doctrine the Islam and also with that the understanding of the Muslim Ummah, go mass conversion take place. The brand-new understanding through the religious and political management led in many cases to a weakening or break down of the society and spiritual structures of parallel spiritual communities such together Christians and also Jews. V the weakening of plenty of churches, for example, and with the donate of Islam and also the migrate of an extensive Muslim Turkish populations right into the locations of Anatolia and also the Balkans, the “social and cultural relevance the Islam” were magnified and a big number of individuals were converted.

During the Abbasid Caliphate, growth ceased and the central disciplines that Islamic philosophy, theology, law, and mysticism became an ext widespread, and the steady conversions of the populaces within the empire occurred. Significant conversions likewise occurred beyond the extents of the empire, such together that that the Turkic tribes in main Asia and peoples life in regions south the the Sahara in Africa through contact with Muslim traders active in the area and also Sufi orders. In Africa it spread along 3 routes—across the Sahara via trading towns such together Timbuktu, increase the Nile Valley through the Sudan as much as Uganda, and across the Red Sea and also down east Africa through settlements such together Mombasa and Zanzibar. This initial conversions were of a functional nature.

See more: Fitbit Alta Vs Garmin Vivosmart, : What Is The Difference

The Arab-Muslim conquests followed a basic pattern the nomadic conquests of settled regions, by which conquering peoples came to be the brand-new military elite and reached a compromise through the old elites by enabling them to retain local political, religious, and financial authority. Peasants, workers, and merchants payment taxes, while members that the old and brand-new elites collected them.