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Remembering Saladin: The Crusades and the Politics of Heresy in Persian Historiography



In this study I examine the presentation of Saladin and the Crusades within the genre of Persian universal histories produced from the thirteenth to the sixteenth century. While a number of recent studies have begun to explore the place of the Crusades in the historical memory of the Islamic world, to date little attention has been given to the question of the manner in which the ensuing Mongol conquests affected subsequent Muslim memory of the Crusades. In this article I argue that historiographers of the Mongol and post-Mongol eras largely sought to legitimate the conquests through evocation of heresy and by celebrating the Mongols’ role in combating alleged heretical elements within Muslim society, most notably the Ismāʿīlīs. While Saladin is universally remembered today first and foremost for his re-conquest of Jerusalem from the Crusaders, within the context of the agenda of Persian historiography of the post-Mongol era the locus of his significance was shifted to his overthrow of the Ismāʿīlī Fatimid dynasty in Egypt, to the almost complete exclusion of his role in the Crusades. This article challenges long-standing assumptions that the figure of Saladin was largely forgotten within the Muslim world until the colonial era, and instead presents an alternative explanation for the supposed amnesia in the Muslim world regarding the Crusades in the pre-modern era.



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1 Maalouf, Amin, The Crusades through Arab Eyes, translated Jon Rothschild (London, 1984); Hillenbrand, Carole, The Crusades: Islamic Perspectives (New York, 2000); Christie, Niall, Muslims and Crusaders: Christianity's Wars in the Middle East, 1095-1382, from the Islamic Sources (New York, 2014); Cobb, Paul M., The Race for Paradise: An Islamic History of the Crusades (Oxford, 2014); Mallett, Alexander, Popular Muslim Reactions to the Franks in the Levant, 1097–1291 (Farnham, 2014). Idem., (ed.) Medieval Muslim Historians and the Franks in the Levant (Leiden, 2015).

2 Some of the most challenging revisionist work in this regard has been undertaken by Paul Chevedden; see his “The Islamic Interpretation of the Crusade: A New (Old) Paradigm for Understanding the Crusades” Der Islam 83 (2006), pp. 90–136; “The Islamic View and the Christian View of the Crusades: A New Synthesis,” History 93, no. 310 (2008), pp. 181–200.

3 For example, see Paul, Nicholas and Yeager, Suzanne M., (eds.), Remembering the Crusades: Myth, Image, and Identity (Baltimore, 2012); Bull, Marcus Graham and Kempf, D., (eds.), Writing the Early Crusades: Text, Transmission and Memory (Woodbridge, 2014).

4 Hammad, Mona and Peters, Edward, “Islam and the Crusades: A Nine Hundred-Year-Long Grievance?”, in Seven Myths of the Crusades, (ed.) Andrea, Alfred J. and Holt, Andrew (Indianapolis, 2015), pp. 127149.

5 For an analysis of these competing discourses see Bhatia, Umej, Forgetting Osama bin Munqidh, Remembering Osama bin Laden: The Crusades in Modern Muslim Memory (Singapore, 2008). See also Riley-Smith, Jonathan, “Islam and the Crusades in History and Imagination, 8 November 1898–11 September 2001,” Crusades 2 (2003), pp. 151168.

6 See Shagrir, Iris and Amitai-Preiss, Nitzan, “Michaud, Montrond, Mazloum and the First History of the Crusades in Arabic,” Al-Masāq 24, no. 3 (2012), pp. 309312; Sivan, Emmanuel, “Modern Arab Historiography of the Crusades”, in Interpretations of Islam: Past and Present, (ed.) Sivan, Emmanuel (Princeton, 1985), pp. 343.

7 Hillenbrand, Carole, “The Evolution of the Saladin Legend in the West”, Mélanges de l'Université Saint-Joseph 58 (2005), p. 13.

8 This same term has been calqued in modern Persian as Janghā-yi ṣalībī. For examples of modern Iranian scholarship on the Crusades see Sharafī, Sharārah, Janghā-yi ṣalībī va ʿilal-i ān (Mashhad, 1378 A.Hsh./1999); ʿṬāhirī, Abdullāh Nāṣirī, ʿ Ilal va āthār-i janghā-yi ṣalībī (Tehran, 1373 A.Hsh./1994); Idem., Naqsh-i Ismāʿīlīyan dar janghā-yi ṣalībī (Tehran, 1387 A.Hsh./2008).

9 On the latter see Lewis, Bernard, The Crisis of Islam: Holy War and Unholy Terror (New York, 2003), pp. 4752.

10 See Mallett, Alexander, “Islamic Historians of the Ayyūbid Era and Muslim Rulers from the Early Crusading Period: A Study in the Use of History,” Al-Masāq 24, no. 3 (2012), pp. 241252.

11 See Abouali, Diana, “Saladin's Legacy in the Middle East before the Nineteenth Century,” Crusades 10 (2011), pp. 175189; Heidemann, Stefan, “Memory and Ideology: Images of Saladin in Syria and Iraq,” in Visual Culture in the Modern Middle East: Rhetoric of the Image, (ed.) Gruber, Christiane J. and Haugbolle, Sune (Bloomington, 2013), pp. 5781; Phillips, Jonathan, “Vor der Orientreise Wilhelms II: Die Erinnerung an Saladin und die Kreuzzüge im Nahen Osten vom 15. bis zum 19. Jahrhundert,” in Kreuzzüge des Mittelalters und der Neuzeit: Realhistorie - Geschichtskultur - Didaktik, (ed.) Hinz, Felix (Hildesheim, 2015), pp. 6786. Among some earlier works on this subject are the studies on the Crusades in Arabic folklore by Lyons, Malcolm C., “The Crusading Stratum in the Arabic Hero Cycle,” in Crusaders and Muslims in Twelfth-Century Syria, (ed.) Shatzmiller, Maya (Leiden, 1993), pp. 147161; Idem., “The Land of War: Europe in the Arab Hero Cycles,” in The Crusades from the Perspective of Byzantium and the Muslim World, (ed.) Angeliki E. Laiou and Roy P. Mottahedeh (Washington, D. C, 2001), pp. 41–51.

12 Hillenbrand, “The Evolution of the Saladin Legend in the West”, pp. 1–13.

13 Irwin, Robert, “The Arabists and Crusader Studies in the Twentieth Century,” in Cultural Encounters during the Crusades, (ed.) Jensen, Kurt Villads, et al. (Odense, 2013), pp. 283298.

14 Lane-Poole, Stanley, Saladin and the Fall of the Kingdom of Jerusalem (London, 1898).

15 Among Gibb's many studies on the subject see The Life of Saladin (Oxford, 1973). For a critical assessment of Gibb's scholarship see Holt, P. M., “Saladin and His Admirers: A Biographical Reassessment”, Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London 46, no. 2 (1983), pp. 235239.

16 Ehrenkreutz, Andrew S., Saladin (Albany, 1972), p. 234.

17 Idem., Saladin, p. 235.

18 Eddé, Anne-Marie, Saladin, translated by Jane Marie Todd (Cambridge, 2011).

19 This survey will not encompass contemporary literature concerning the later Crusades from the thirteenth century onwards. For an overview of the role of Persia and the Mongols in the later Crusades see Cahen, Claude, “The Mongols and the Near East,” in A History of the Crusades, vol. 2: The Later Crusades, 1189–1311, (ed.) Setton, Kenneth M., et al. (Madison, 1969), pp. 715734; Jackson, Peter, “Crusades, in relation to Persia,” Encyclopædia Iranica 6 (1993), pp. 433434.

20 Waldman, Marilyn R., Toward a Theory of Historical Narrative: A Case Study in Perso-Islamicate Histoiography (Columbus, 1980), pp. 116.

21 The most complete account of these events is Lev, Yaacov, Saladin in Egypt (Leiden, 1999). See also Ehrenkreutz, Andrew S., “Saladin's Coup d’État in Egypt,” in Medieval and Middle Eastern Studies in Honor of Aziz Suryal Atiya, (ed.) Hanna, Sami A. (Leiden, 1972), pp. 144157.

22 For an overview of Persian historiography in the Mongol and post-Mongol eras see Melville, Charles P., “Historiography iv: Mongol Period,” Encyclopædia Iranica 12 (2004), pp. 348356; Idem., “The Mongol and Timurid Periods, 1250–1500,” in A History of Persian Literature, vol. 10: Persian Historiography, (ed.) C. P. Melville (London, 2012), pp. 155–208.

23 Morgan, David O., “Persian as a Lingua Franca in the Mongol Empire,” in Literacy in the Persianate World: Writing and the Social Order, (ed.) Spooner, Brian and Hanaway, William L. (Philadelphia, 2012), pp. 160170.

24 On Persian historiography in the pre-Mongol era see Daniel, Elton L., “Historiography iii: Early Islamic Period”, Encyclopædia Iranica 12 (2004), pp. 330348; Meisami, Julie Scott, Persian Historiography to the End of the Twelfth Century (Edinburgh, 1999).

25 Nīshāpūrī, Ẓahīr al-Dīn, Saljūq-nāmah, (ed.) Morton, Alexander H. (Cambridge, 2004).

26 al-Dīn, Rashīd, Jāmiʿ al-tavārīkh: Tārīkh-i Āl-i Saljūq, (ed.) Rūshan, Muḥammad (Tehran, 1386 A.Hsh./2007); Idem., The History of the Seljuq Turks from the Jāmiʿ al-Tavārīkh: An Ilkhanid Adaption of the Saljūq-Nāma of Ẓahīr al-Dīn Nīshāpūrī, (ed.) Clifford E. Bosworth, translated by Kenneth Allin Luther (Richmond, 2001). On the relationship between the work of Nīshāpūrī and Rashīd al-Dīn see Luther, Kenneth Allin, “The Saljūqnāmah and the Jāmiʿ al-Tawārīkh,” in Proceedings of the Colloquium on Rashīd al-Dīn Faḍl Allāh, (ed.) Nasr, Seyyed Hossein (Tehran, 1971), pp. 2635.

27 Kirmānī’s addition does makes one brief mention of Saladin, in reference to his role in helping to settle a rebellion in the city of Urmiya; see Rashīd al-Dīn, History of the Seljuq Turks, p. 153.

28 On the latter see Nīshāpūrī, Saljūq-nāmah, pp. 58–59; Rashīd al-Dīn, History of the Seljuq Turks, pp. 84–86. On the Qara-Khitay see Biran, Michal, The Empire of the Kara-Khitai in Eurasian History: Between China and the Islamic World (Cambridge, 2005).

29 Alī Rāvandī, Muḥammad b., Rāḥat al-ṣudūr va āyat al-surūr, (ed.) Iqbāl, Muḥammad (Leiden, 1921). On this work see also Meisami, Persian Historiography, pp. 237–256.

30 On the “Mirror for Princes” genre see Lambton, Ann K. S., “Islamic Mirrors for Princes,” Quaderno dell'Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei 160 (1971), pp. 419442. See especially pp. 426–428 on the Baḥr al-favāʾid.

31 Baḥr al-favāʾid, translated by Meisami, Julie Scott as The Sea of Precious Virtues: A Medieval Islamic Mirror for Princes (Salt Lake City, 1991), pp. 1335.

32 Baḥr al-favāʾid, pp. 56–57 (italics in original). I have slightly modified Meisami's translation here.

33 A derogatory term for Zoroastrians, but also a more general term of abuse for non-Muslims.

34 Baḥr al-favāʾid, p. 251.

35 Suleiman Ali Mourad and James Lindsay, E., The Intensification and Reorientation of Sunni Jihad Ideology in the Crusader Period: Ibn ʻAsākir of Damascus (1105-1176) and His Age, with an Edition and Translation of Ibn ʻAsākir's The Forty Hadiths for Inciting Jihad (Leiden, 2013).

36 On the text see Meisami, Persian Historiography, pp. 188–209.

37 Mujmal al-tavārīkh va al-qiṣaṣ, (ed.) Muḥammad Taqī Bahār (Tehran, 1318 A.Hsh./1939), pp. 484–487. Meisami suggests that the illustrations may have been a later addition to the manuscript.

38 Bakrān, Muḥammad b. Najīb, Jahān-nāmah, (ed.) Riyāhī, Muḥammad Amīn (Tehran, 1342 A.Hsh./1963), p. 67.

39 On this genre see Afshār, Iraj and Bosworth, Clifford E., “ʿAjāʾeb al-Maklūqāt,” Encyclopædia Iranica 1 (1984), pp. 696699.

40 Hamadānī, Muḥammad b. Maḥmūd, ʿ Ajāʾib-nāmah (ʿAjāʾib al-makhlūqāt va gharāyib al-mawjūdāt), (ed.) Ṣādiqī, Jaʿfar Mudarris (Tehran, 1375 A.Hsh./1996), pp. 477–478.

41 Juvaynī, ʿAtāʾ Malik, The History of the World Conqueror, translated by John A. Boyle (Manchester, 1958), pp. 1617. I have relied upon Boyle's translation here with some minor modifications.

42 Idem., History of the World Conqueror, p. 19.

43 Idem., History of the World Conqueror, p. 105.

44 For example, this response is in evidence in the writings of the Damascene jurist ʿAlī b. Ṭāhir al-Sulamī, on which see Christie, Niall, “Motivating Listeners in the Kitab al-Jihad of ʿAli ibn Tahir al-Sulami (d. 1106),” Crusades 6 (2007), pp. 314; Hillenbrand, The Crusades: Islamic Perspectives, pp. 71–73.

45 On this theme see Hamblin, William, “To Wage Jihād or Not: Fatimid Egypt during the Early Crusades,” in The Jihād and its Times, (ed.) Dajani-Shakeel, Hadia and Messier, Ronald A. (Ann Arbor, 1991), pp. 3140; Brett, Michael, “The Fatimids and the Counter-Crusade, 1099–1171,” in Egypt and Syria in the Fatimid, Ayyubid and Mamluk Eras, vol. 5, (ed.) Vermeulen, Urbain and D'Hulster, K. (Leuven, 2007), pp. 1526; Abu-Munshar, Maher Y., “Fāṭimids, Crusaders and the Fall of Islamic Jerusalem: Foes or Allies?”, Al-Masāq 22, no. 1 (2010), pp. 4556.

46 The text mistakenly reads here 566.

47 Juvaynī inexplicably misreports the name of the ruling ʿAbbāsid caliph of the time, who was not al-Nāṣir li-Din Allāh (r. 1180–1225) but rather his predecessor, al-Mustaḍī bi-Amr Allāh (r. 1170–80).

48 The tenth day of the month of Muḥarram.

49 Juvaynī, History of the World Conqueror, pp. 664–665.

50 al-Athīr, ʿIzz al-Dīn Ibn, al-Kāmil fiʾl-tawārīkh, (ed.) Tornberg, C. J., 12 vols. (Leiden, 1851-76), xi, pp. 241244; Idem., The Chronicle of Ibn al-Athīr for the Crusading Period from al-Kāmil fīʾl-taʾrīkh, vol. 2: The Years 541–589/1146–1193: The Age of Nur al-Din and Saladin, translated by Donald S. Richards (Aldershot, 2006), pp. 196–198.

51 Shaddād, Bahāʾ al-Dīn Ibn, al-Nawādir al-Sulṭāniyya waʾl-Maḥāsin al-Yūsufiyya, translated by Richards, Donald S. as The Rare and Excellent History of Saladin (Aldershot, 2001), p. 47.

52 Idem., al-Nawādir al-Sulṭāniyya, pp. 77–78.

53 Juvaynī, History of the World Conqueror, pp. 724–725. Juvaynī’s claim that the execution of Khūrshāh marked the extinction of the Ismāʿīlīs is an exaggeration, as significant members of the community survived and remained active in subsequent decades; see Virani, Shafique N., “The Eagle Returns: Evidence of Continued Ismāʿīlī Activity at Alamūt and in the South Caspian Region following the Mongol ConquestsJournal of the American Oriental Society 123, no. 2 (2003), pp. 351370. Juvaynī’s exaggeration of the extant of Hülegü’s achievements would seem to further testify to his authorial agenda: the vast harm caused by the Mongol conquests could not be compensated by a mere partial success against the forces of heresy, but only through the depiction of a complete and total victory.

54 Juvaynī, History of the World Conqueror, p. 638. The “conquest of Khaybar” refers to one of the pivotal military victories of the early Muslim community in the year 629.

55 Jūzjānī, Minḥaj al-Dīn, Ṭabaqāt-i Nāṣirī, (ed.) Ḥabībī, ʿAbd al-Ḥayy, 2 vols. (Kabul, 1342 A.Hsh./1963), i, pp. 288293.

56 Both terms referring to the Ismāʿīlīs.

57 Jūzjānī, Ṭabaqāt-i Nāṣirī, i, p. 290.

58 Idem., Ṭabaqāt-i Nāṣirī, i, p. 291.

59 Idem., Ṭabaqāt-i Nāṣirī, i, pp. 292–293.

60 On this process see Kumar, Sunil, “The Ignored Elites: Turks, Mongols and a Persian Secretarial Class in the Early Delhi Sultanate,” Modern Asian Studies 43, no. 1 (2009), pp. 4577.

61 For a survey of some of these narratives see Eddé, Saladin, pp. 160–166.

62 For example, see Ibn Shaddād, al-Nawādir al-Sulṭāniyya, pp. 35–38.

63 On this text see Lewis, Bernard, “The Use by Muslim Historians of Non-Muslim Sources”, in Historians of the Middle East, (ed.) Lewis, Bernard and Holt, P. M. (London, 1962), pp. 183184. The work has been published both in a text edition and a French translation; see al-Dīn, Rashīd, Jāmiʿ al-tavārīkh: Tārīkh-i Afrānj, (ed.) Sīyāqī, Muḥammad Dabīr (Tehran, 1339 A.Hsh./1960); Idem., Histoire universelle de Rashīd al-Dīn Faḍl Allāh Abūʾl-Khair: Histoire des Francs, translated by Karl Jahn (Leiden, 1951).

64 Jahn, Karl, “Rashīd al-Dīn's Knowledge of Europe”, in Proceedings of the Colloquium on Rashīd al-Dīn Faḍl Allāh, (ed.) Nasr, Seyyed Hossein (Tehran, 1971), pp. 925. See also Boyle, John A., “Rashīd al-Dīn and the Franks,” Central Asiatic Journal 14 (1970), pp. 6267.

65 Jahn, “Rashīd al-Dīn's Knowledge of Europe”, p. 22.

66 al-Dīn, Rashīd, Compendium of Chronicles: A History of the Mongols, translated by Wheeler M. Thackston, 3 vols. (Cambridge, MA: Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations, Harvard University, 1998), i, pp. 166173.

67 Idem., History of the Mongols, i, p. 173.

68 Daftary, Farhad, “Persian Historiography of the Early Nizārī Ismāʿīlīs”, Iran: Journal of the British Institute of Persian Studies 30 (1992), pp. 9197.

69 Like Juvaynī, Rashīd al-Dīn misreports the name of the ruling ʿAbbāsid caliph of the time.

70 One of the main gates of medieval Baghdad.

71 al-Dīn, Rashīd, Jāmiʿ al-tavārīkh: Qismat-i Ismāʿīlīyān va Fātimīyān va Nizārīyān va Dāʿīyān va Rafīqān, (ed.) Dānishpazhūh, Muḥammad Taqī and Zanjānī, Muḥammad Mudarrasī (Tehran, 1388 A.Hsh./2009), pp. 7475.

72 Kāshānī, Abū al-Qāsim, Zubdat al-tavārīkh: Tārīkh-i Ismāʿīlīyah va Nizārīyah va Mulāḥidah, (ed.) Dānishpazhūh, Muḥammad Taqī (Tabriz, 1343 A.Hsh./1964), pp. 115119.

73 Qazvīnī, Ḥamdullāh Mustawfī, Tārīkh-i guzīdah, (ed.) Navāʾī, ʿAbd al-Ḥusayn (Tehran, 1362 A.Hsh./1983), p. 516. Qazvīnī also composed a geographical compendium titled Nuzhat al-qulūb, which in its description of Jerusalem does include a very brief mention of the city's capture by the Crusaders and of how Saladin “brought the land back into the path of Islam”; see Idem., The Geographical Part of the Nuzhat al-Qulūb, translated Guy Le Strange (London, 1919), p. 18.

74 Vaṣṣāf, Shihāb al-Dīn ʿAbdullāh, Taḥrīr-i Tārīkh-i Vaṣṣāf, (ed.) Āyatī, ʿAbd al-Muḥammad (Tehran, 1346 A.Hsh./1967), pp. 5253.

75 Abrū, Ḥāfiẓ-i, Jughrāfiyā, (ed.) Sajjādī, Ṣādiq, 3 vols. (Tehran, 1375 A.Hsh./1997), i, pp. 323–327.

76 Idem., Majmuʿ al-tavārīkh al-sulṭānīyah: qismat-i khulafā-yi ʿAlavīyah-i Maghrib va Miṣr va Nazāriyān va Rafīqiyān, (ed.) Muḥammad Mudarrasī Zanjānī (Tehran, 1364 A.Hsh./1985), pp. 184–187.

77 Mīrkhwānd, Muḥammad b. Khwāndshāh, Rawḍat al-ṣafā fī sīrat al-awliyā va al-mulūk va al-khulafā, 7 vols. (Tehran, 1339 A.Hsh./1960), iv, pp. 196198.

78 Idem., Rawḍat al-ṣafā, iv, pp. 594–199.

79 Khwāndamīr, Ghiyāth al-Dīn, Ḥabīb al-siyar fī akhbār afrād bashar, (ed.) Siyāqī, Muḥammad Dabīr, 4 vols. (Tehran, 1333 A.Hsh./1955), ii, pp. 459460.

80 Quoted in Phillips, “Vor der Orientreise Wilhelms II,” p. 78.

81 Daftary, Farhad, The Ismāʿīlīs: Their History and Doctrines, 2nd edition (Cambridge, 2007), pp. 241243.

82 For a critical survey of the development of the “Assassins legend” in European historiography see Idem., The Assassin Legends: Myths of the Ismāʿīlīs (London, 1994).

83 The most thorough study on this struggle to date remains Hodgson, Marshall G. S., The Secret Order of Assassins: The Struggle of the Early Nizārī Ismāʿīlīs Against the Islamic World (Philadelphia, 1955). On relations between the Ismāʿīlīs and the Crusaders see Lewis, Bernard, “The Ismāʿīlites and the Assassins”, in A History of the Crusades, vol. 1: The First Hundred Years, (ed.) Setton, Kenneth M. and Baldwin, Marshall W. (Madison, 1969), pp. 99134; Daftary, Farhad, “The Ismaʿilis and the Crusaders: History and Myth,” in The Crusades and the Military Orders: Expanding the Frontiers of Medieval Latin Christianity, (ed.) Hunyadi, Zsolt and Laszlovszky, József (Budapest, 2001), pp. 2142; Smarandache, Bogdan, “The Franks and the Nizārī Ismāʿīlīs in the Early Crusade Period,” Al-Masāq 24, no. 3 (2012), pp. 221239.

84 According to one recent estimate, at least 44 assassinations of high-profile figures were carried out by the Ismāʿīlīs during the peak of this campaign between 1092 and 1147; see Cook, David, “Were the Ismāʿīlī Assassins the First Suicide Attackers? An Examination of Their Recorded Assassinations,” in The Lineaments of Islam: Studies in Honor of Fred McGraw Donner, (ed.) Cobb, Paul M. (Leiden, 2012), pp. 97120.

85 On these conflicts see Lewis, Bernard, “Saladin and the Assassins,” Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London 15, no. 2 (1953), pp. 239245.

86 Idem., “Ismāʿīlī Notes,” Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London 12, no. 3/4 (1948), p. 598. Lewis considers the text to be authentic. On the conflicts between the Ismāʿīlīs and the Mamlūks see also Melville, Charles P., “‘Sometimes by the Sword, Sometimes by the Dagger’: The Role of the Ismaʿilis in Mamlūk-Mongol Relations in the 8th/14th Century,” in Mediaeval Ismaʿili History and Thought, (ed.) Daftary, Farhad (Cambridge, 1996), pp. 247264. Recent decades have witnessed some startling shifts in the reception of Saladin within Ismāʿīlī historical memory as Syrian Ismāʿīlī historians, seeking to situate the history of the community within a Syrian nationalist narrative, have depicted the Nizārīs as allies of Saladin in his counter-crusade; see El-Moctar, Mohamed, “Saladin in the Sunni and Shi'a Memories,” in Remembering the Crusades: Myth, Image, and Identity, (ed.) Paul, Nicholas and Yeager, Suzanne M. (Baltimore, 2012), p. 207. Among the most striking examples of this shift is the support given by the current Nizārī Imām (Aga Khan IV) to the renovation of the Qalʿat Ṣalāḥ al-Dīn, one of Saladin's most renowned fortifications in Syria. The literature introducing the project refers to Saladin as “the Hero of Islam,” who brought unity to the Muslim world and the liberation of Jerusalem, with no mention of his campaigns against the Ismāʿīlīs in Egypt and Syria; see Grandin, Thierry, “Introduction to the Citadel of Salah al-Din,” in Syria: Medieval Citadels Between East and West, (ed.) Bianca, Stefano (Geneva, 2007), p. 158.

87 See Allsen, Thomas T., Culture and Conquest in Mongol Eurasia (Cambridge, 2001); Kotkin, Stephen, “Mongol Commonwealth? Exchange and Governance across the Post-Mongol Space”, Kritika: Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History 8, no. 3 (2007), pp. 487531.

88 On the Islamisation of the Mongols see DeWeese, Devin, Islamization and Native Religion in the Golden Horde: Baba Tükles and Conversion to Islam in Historical and Epic Tradition (University Park, 1994); Idem., “Islamization in the Mongol Empire,” in The Cambridge History of Inner Asia: The Chinggisid Age, (ed.) Nicola Di Cosmo, et al. (Cambridge, 2009), pp. 120–134.

89 On these narrative traditions see Biran, Michal, Chinggis Khan (Oxford, 2007), pp. 108121; DeWeese, Devin, “‘Stuck in the Throat of Chingīz Khān’: Envisioning the Mongol Conquests in Some Sufi Accounts from the 14th to 17th Centuries,” in History and Historiography of post-Mongol Central Asia and the Middle East: Studies in Honor of John E. Woods, (ed.) Pfeiffer, Judith, et al. (Wiesbaden, 2006), pp. 2360.


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