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CHAPTER THREE

Óim‚ by al-Íåliª Ayy¨b in 641/1243 in order to pronounce the rst khu†ba in his name since his ascension to the position of head of the Ayy¨bid federation (“‚åªib al-khu†ba wa-l-sikka”).45 Al-Isird came to Damascus once again a few years later, to receive its garrison’s oath of allegiance to the new sultan in Cairo, this time al-Muizz Aybak al-Turkumån, maml¨k of al-Íåliª Ayy¨b and husband of his widow, Shajar al-¤urr.46 The Shå scholar and kha†b Ab¨ Óåmid Muªammad b. Y¨suf (d. 608/1211–12) was sent to Baghdad and to Damascus by the ruler of Mosul N¨r al-Dn Arslån, the only Shå prince of the Zangid family.47 3.3. Kha†bs as Communal and Spiritual Leaders Evidently, kha†bs ranked high in the ofcial sphere. Yet, only rarely do we hear of a kha†b who truly assumed spiritual and political leadership, such as Aªmad ibn Qudåma, who served as kha†b of Jammål while the village was under Frankish occupation. The Frankish seigneur of Mt. Nåblus, Baldwin of Iblin (transliterated by al-Maqdis as Ah¨man b. Barizån), suspected that he was causing unrest amongst villagers with his sermons, and plotted to get rid of him. Sensing that his life was endangered, Aªmad ibn Qudåma ed to Muslim-ruled Damascus. According to ¤iyå al-Dn’s account, Aªmad ibn Qudåma referred to his emigration as a religiously motivated hijra. He called on fellow-villagers to follow in his footsteps quoting verse 14:36 from the Qurån, where Abraham says: “fa-man tabian fa-innahu minn—but who follows me, he verily is of me.” One hundred and sixty ve men, women and children from eight different villages of Mt. Nåblus indeed followed him: they took the risky path to Damascus and settled there collectively. After some time, upon the instructions of Aªmad ibn Qudåma, they relocated to Mt. Qåsy¨n.48 In later years, Aªmad ibn Qudåma and other Óanbal preachers of his clan enjoyed considerable authority in Damascus, both among their

45 He was recognized as such in an agreement with al-Malik al-Íåliª Ismål of Cairo (Humphreys, From Saladin, 273). 46 Humphreys, From Saladin, 305. 47 Ibn al-Ward, Tarkh, 2:128. 48 Ibn ¨l¨n, al-Qalå’id, 1:68. For bibliography on different aspects of this episode, see Talmon-Heller, “Arabic Sources,” 103, n. 1.

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Jsrc 007 talmon heller islamic piety in medieval syria mosques, cemeteries and sermons under the zan  

Jsrc 007 talmon heller islamic piety in medieval syria mosques, cemeteries and sermons under the zan  

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