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CHAPTER SIX

of established religion. Here, popular piety, local interests, and Zangid and Ayy¨bid domestic and foreign policies converged, contributing to the consolidation of the cult of the holy dead, and the visitation of the sites of their blessed activity or martyrdom. As we have seen, it was a cult inclusive of all social groups, incorporating ulamå as well as commoners. Ibn Shaddåd’s comment on Muslim veneration of a site sanctied by the Latin Franks during the decades of their rule in northern Syria (see p. 189, above), suggests the inuence of the Frankish conquest and rule on the intensication of the cult of holy sites throughout the region. Several modern scholars have explored that line of investigation. Emmanuel Sivan eloquently argues for the connection between the Crusades and the enhanced sanctity of Jerusalem in Islamic thought and politics.140 Elchanan Reiner regards the development of Jewish (primarily Ashkenazi) pilgrimage routes, values and traditions in medieval Palestine to be a mirror image of contemporary Latin pilgrimage.141 Joseph Sadan suggests that pilgrimage to prophets’ graves in central Syria thrived, because those in Palestine were difcult to access during the crusading period, while Jean-Michel Mouton highlights the translation of relics endangered by the approaching Franks to a safe haven in adjacent Muslim territory, and its byproduct—new sites for pilgrimage.142 Inadvertently, the Franks ‘contributed’ to the Muslim cult of graves in another way: they enriched the repertoire of Muslim saints and graves of saints by taking their toll of Muslim martyrs of jihåd. Yet, the inuence of the Latin conquest is hard to isolate from the other factors. For one, saint and grave veneration were known in Islam long before the Crusades, and were widely practiced in areas that had never come under their inuence. Two, traditions about the special virtues of Syrian personalities and places had been in circulation for centuries, perhaps even since the Islamic conquest.143

140

Sivan, “Le caractère sacré,” 149–150; idem, “Faåil.” Reiner, “A Jewish Response”; idem, “Overt Falsehood,” 159, 161, 171. 142 Sadan, “Le tombeau,” 71–72; Mouton, “Reliques,” 247. Shortly before the fall of Ascalon to the Franks, the remains of Óusayn were discovered there. In the summer of 548/1153, they were translated to Cairo by the Få†imids (al-Maqrz, Khi†a†, 1:427; Stewart, “Popular Shiism,” 55). 143 On this last point see Cobb, “Virtual Sacrality,” 36; Sadan, “Le tombeau,” 71–72; Mouton, “Reliques,” 247. 141

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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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