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Chaghatāy Khān

(3,266 words)

Author(s): Rajabzadeh, Hashem | Asatryan, Mushegh
, also Jaghutāy and Jaghātāy, was the second son of Chingīz Khān by his first wife, Börte Üjin (Rashīd al-Dīn, 1/94). Juwaynī (1/29) writes, ‘By this wife Chingiz-Khan had four sons . . . who were to the throne of the kingdom as its four pedestals. . . . For each of these Chingiz-Khan had selected a special office. To Joshi, the eldest, he assigned the hunt and the chase . . .; while to Chaghatai, who came next to him, fell the administration of the yasa and the law, both the enforcement thereof and the reprimanding and chastisement of those that contravened it. Ögetei [Ögedey] h…

Carpets and Carpet-Making

(22,304 words)

Author(s): Parham, Cyrus | Asatryan, Mushegh
1. Types of Hand-Woven Carpets Knotted Carpets Qālī Kilims Zīlū 2. Carpet-Weaving before Islam Non-Textile Specimens and Documents The Earliest Known Carpet-Weaving The Pazyryk Carpet: Significance Sāsānid Carpets The Bahāristān Carpet Kilims and Zīlū 3. Carpet-Weaving during the Islamic Period up to the 9th/15th Century The Early Islamic Centuries The Mid-Islamic Centuries Early- and Middle-Islamic Written Sources 4. The Golden Age of Carpet-Weaving The Ardabīl Carpets The Salting Carpet Carpets in Persian Miniature Paintings Centres of Persian Carpet Production The Globa…

al-Būzjānī, Abū al-Wafāʾ

(8,191 words)

Author(s): Karamati, Younes | Asatryan, Mushegh
Muḥammad b. Muḥammad b. Yaḥyā b. Ismāʿīl b. ʿAbbās (Ramaḍān 328–Rajab 388/June 940–July 998), was a famous Iranian mathematician, astronomer and musicologist, who played an important role in the invention and development of trigonometry and various aspects of arithmetic and applied geometry. The earliest and most reliable source on his life and work is Ibn al-Nadīm’s Fihrist, according to which al-Būzjānī was born in the town of Būzjān (near today’s Turbat-i Jām in Khurāsān) and studied arithmetic and geometry with both his paternal uncle Abū ʿAmr al…

Bishr al-Marīsī

(4,094 words)

Author(s): Gozashteh, Naser | Asatryan, Mushegh
, Abū ʿAbd al-Raḥmān Bishr b. Ghiyāth b. Abī Karīma al-ʿAdawī al-Marīsī (d. 218 or 219/833 or 834), was a Murjiʾī theologian of the Jahmī branch, a jurist of the Ḥanafī school, and a famous proponent of dialectical jurisprudence ( ra⁠ʾy). After his conversion to Islam, he became a client ( mawlā) of the clan of Zayd b. al-Khaṭṭāb, the brother of the second caliph ʿUmar b. al-Khaṭṭāb. There is some confusion over his nisba al-Marīsī: the area of Baghdad where he lived was known as Darb al-Marīs(ī), and according to al-Khaṭīb (7/56), the neighbourhood was actually named…


(1,444 words)

Author(s): Pakatchi, Ahmad | Asatryan, Mushegh
al-Bazanṭī, Abū Jaʿfar Aḥmad b. Muḥammad b. Abī Naṣr (152–221/769–836), an early Kūfan Imāmī scholar, a companion of Mūsā al-Kāẓim, ʿAlī al-Riḍā, and Muḥammad al-Jawād al-Taqī, respectively 7th, 8th and 9th in the line of Twelver Shiʿi Imams. It is reported that his family were clients of the al-Sakūn tribe, and it seems that they were held in high regard by the Imāmīs of Kūfa, including prominent individuals such as al-Bazanṭī’s cousin Ismāʿīl b. Mihrān (al-Ṭūsī, al-Fihrist, 43; idem, al-Ghayba, 71; al-Najāshī, 26, 75, 290; cf. al-Kashshī, 589). According to extant rijālī sources, al…

Creation (in Islamic Philosophy)

(7,222 words)

Author(s): Movahhed, Samad | Asatryan, Mushegh
. The Arabic terms khalq and khilqa refer to the act of bringing forth, creating, making, fashioning and generating, to the more general notions of nature, natural disposition, form and shape, and, finally, to the multiplicity of created beings. In addition to these two, Muslim philosophers have used a number of other terms in order to distinguish between the shades of meaning associated with the general idea of creation. Ibdāʿ The term ibdāʿ refers to the creation of something, the existence of which is not preceded by matter, time or any other intermediate means; …

Chaghatay, Language and Literature

(1,377 words)

Author(s): Sheikh, Hossein | Asatryan, Mushegh
, Chaghatay is an Eastern Turkic language that served as a literary and diplomatic language for the Muslim Turks living in an area stretching from Central Asia to the Crimea and Volga region from the early 9th/15th century until the beginning of the 14th/20th century (Canpolat, 769; ‘Çağatay Dili’, 319). Its name derives from Chaghatāy Khān (q.v.), the second son of Chingīz Khān, who was granted Transoxiana (excluding Khwārazm) as his apanage, and whose descendants ruled in the area after his death, founding the Chaghatāy Khanate (q.v.). The name was thereafter …

The Crusades

(14,212 words)

Author(s): Taheri, Abdullah Naseri | Asatryan, Mushegh
Causes The Islamic World In the second half of the 5th/11th century, on the eve of the First Crusade, the greater part of the Islamic world was divided between the Sunni ʿAbbāsid and Shiʿi Fāṭimid caliphates, based respectively in Baghdad and Cairo. ʿAbbāsid authority had been on the wane for over a hundred years and by then was largely a mere formality, as would soon be demonstrated by their inability to respond effectively to the Crusader campaigns (Ibn Athīr, al-Kāmil, 6/383; Gibb, 82–87). Since the Battle of Dandānqān in 431/1040, when the Saljūqs defeated the Ghaznawi…


(7,423 words)

Author(s): Bulookbashi, Ali A. | Asatryan, Mushegh
Balūch, a people inhabiting the area termed Balūchistān that includes parts of Iran, Pakistan and Afghanistan. They are also to be found in countries outside Balūchistān proper, particularly in the states along the Persian Gulf. Etymology of the Name The Shahrastān-hā-yi Īrān, a 2nd/8th-century Pahlawī geographic work, calls one of the seven administrative divisions of Iran ‘Balūch’ (Marquart, 75; Hidāyat, 423); it can ¶ therefore be surmised that the people of this region were the Balūch. The geographer Ibn Ḥawqal, on the other hand, mentions seven nomadic …

Balʿam Bāʿūr

(1,035 words)

Author(s): Manouchehri, Faramarz Haj | Asatryan, Mushegh
Balʿam Bāʿūr (or Bāʿūrāʾ), a biblical figure that appears in the Islamic written tradition. The foundational narrative for Balʿam’s story in the Islamic tradition—which, in the main, agrees with the Old Testament one—is Q 7:175–176, which tells of an unnamed person who is given God’s signs but turns away from them and follows the Devil’s path. While this passage is generally accepted to refer to Balʿam, the story has also been interpreted as referring to one or more of the Prophet Muḥammad’s cont…


(36,107 words)

Author(s): Pakatchi, Ahmad | Asatryan, Mushegh | Ahmadi, Abuzar
( khilāfa), a central religio-political institution in Islamic history. As a concept, it has its roots in the Qurʾān, especially those verses in which the caliphates of Adam and David are mentioned. In addition to its Qurʾānic denotation and usage for prophets and their successors, the term is employed in other uses in the Shiʿi and Sunni schools of thought, as well as in the mystical and philosophical traditions of Islam. This article explores the various and complex ways in which the concept of…


(13,905 words)

Author(s): Bulookbashi, Ali A. | Asatryan, Mushegh | Pakatchi, Ahmad
, as a marker of identity in Islamic civilisation, with specific reference to Persianate cultures. The Sociology of Clothing Like language, clothing may communicate information about a person’s ethnic identity, social position, geographical origin, occupation, political orientation, religious outlook, age, and gender. To understand its social and cultural role, therefore, it should be viewed and analysed as a collection of symbols. By carrying and displaying on their bodies clothes that function as symbols, members of a society establish and maintain thei…


(5,896 words)

Author(s): Bahramian, Ali | Asatryan, Mushegh | Esots, Janis
al-Balādhurī, Aḥmad b. Yaḥyā b. Jābir b. Dāwūd (d. ca. 279/892), a prominent author, poet, translator, historiographer and genealogist of the 3rd/9th century. The earliest sources of information on his life and activities, such as the Kitāb Baghdād of Ibn Abī Ṭāhir Ṭayfūr (d. 280/893) or the Muʿjam al-shuʿarāʾ of Muḥammad b. ʿImrān al-Marzubānī (d. ca. 380/990), have survived only in part, and one has to rely on quotations from these books in the works of later authors in order to reconstruct what they contained about al-Balādhurī. It is unli…


(18,670 words)

Author(s): Sajjadi, Sadeq | Asatryan, Mushegh | Melvin-Koushki, Matthew
or Buwayhids (Āl-i Būya), an Iranian Shiʿi dynasty named after Abū Shujāʿ Būya (Buwayh), whose sons and descendants ruled the greater part of Iran, Iraq and the Jazīra up to the northern borders of Syria between the years 322–448/933–1056. The era of Būyid power in Iraq and western and central Iran marked the apogee of a process of Persian revivalism that can be dated back to the early ʿAbbāsid caliphate and the role of Persians in the ʿAbbāsid revolution in 132/749–750. The Persian influence th…


(4,221 words)

Author(s): Tareh. Masoud | Shah-Kazemi, Reza | Asatryan, Mushegh | Khaleeli, Alexander
, or ahl al-dahr, a designation referring to those thinkers who putatively uphold various materialistic and atheistic opinions and trends. They are seen, by those framing the designation, as disbelievers inasmuch as they believe that Time ( dahr or maniyya), understood as ineluctable Fate, alone dictates all things in the cosmos. There is little evidence of specific groups or individuals adhering to this philosophy; rather, it appears to have been a convenient typological category used by heresiographers to stigmatise those deemed to…