The period of Muslim conquest and rule over Iberia/al-Andalus that began in 711 CE has strong resonance in popular Muslim memory (e.g. consider that many well-known cities in the Arab world have neighbourhoods called 'al-Andalus'), yet it is striking that there are no surviving contemporary Muslim accounts (Arabic language) of the conquest and its immediate aftermath. Rather, the most important contemporary account we have is a Latin source: the Mozarabic Chronicle, which is dated to 754 CE at the latest and until the past three decades or so tended to be neglected as a source, perhaps because of its relative lack of detail compared to much later Arabic accounts and its linguistic difficulties.
For the earliest surviving Arabic accounts, we have to go more than a century later to Egypt, with the writings of what Eduardo Manzano Moreno calls the "Egyptian tradition" of the Maliki school of jurisprudence and then an "Andalusian tradition that picks up on this tradition" (being in the same school of jurisprudence and utilising many of the same sources). The former is represented in the work of Ibn Abd al-Hakam (died 871 CE), and the latter in the work of Abd al-Malik bin Habib (died 852-853 CE). It is the latter's writings that are the focus of this post, and they can be considered the earliest surviving Andalusian Arabic/Muslim writings on the history of al-Andalus. Yet from the outset it should be noted that neither author- in the writings that have come down to us- made the conquest of al-Andalus and its history the primary focus of his work. Ibn Abd al-Hakam's book was primarily focused on the conquest of Egypt, whereas Abd al-Malik bin Habib's work (Kitab al-Tarikh) is a universal history spanning from the time of the creation of the world. As such, the history of Iberia is only a minor part of their works.
Abd al-Malik bin Habib was born in al-Andalus though his date of birth is unknown and it is not certain where precisely he was born (he might have been born in the area of Cordoba or Elvira, with his family perhaps originating from Toledo). The prominent Arabic Andalusian historian Ibn Hayyan says that Abd al-Malik bin Habib's father was a jurist, while the Maghribi scholar al-Qadi Iyadh notes that both the father and son worked as perfume sellers (Arabic: عطّار, which could also be translated as pharmacist). It seems likely that Abd al-Malik bin Habib spent some time studying in Cordoba before journeying to the East in 823/824 CE to broaden his studies, most notably in Egypt. It is also known that he was in Jerusalem and Medina (and from the latter it seems reasonable to infer that he performed the Hajj pilgrimage)
Upon his return to Spain he would attain a prominent jurist advisory position under the Umayyad amir Abd al-Rahman II, and he retained this position until his death around the beginning of the reign of Abd al-Rahman II's successor Muhammad I. Among specific cases in which Abd al-Malik bin Habib intervened was a blasphemy case involving his brother Harun bin Habib, whom Abd al-Malik sought to exculpate. Ultimately Abd al-Malik's defences of his brother were successful and Abd al-Rahman II ordered for his release.
It is known that Abd al-Malik bin Habib wrote numerous works on diverse subjects, including jurisprudence and Islamic history. His importance in medieval Arabic historiography of al-Andalus regarding the initial conquest is shown by the considerable number of narrations attributed to him by later authors. However, often these citations do not correspond with the Kitab al-Tarikh as it has come down to us, which might suggest that he wrote other works pertaining or touching on the history of al-Andalus.
In turn, the Kitab al-Tarikh as it has come down to us has raised some issues of authenticity. As noted above, Abd al-Malik bin Habib's death is dated to 852-853 CE, but the account of rulers following the conquest of al-Andalus goes as far as the reign of the Umayyad amir Abdallah (888-912 CE), well after Abd al-Malik bin Habib's death. Therefore, it is clear that the section dealing with Andalusian history has been at least partially continued by a later author/redactor if we assume it is mainly the work of Abd al-Malik bin Habib.
Yet it is not only this aspect of the work that leads to the supposition of significant interpolation or that the work was not written by Abd al-Malik bin Habib. Both Reinhart Dozy and Claudio Sánchez Albornoz (the latter following Dozy, and was notably not an Arabist but rather relied on translations when assessing Arabic works on al-Andalus) also drew attention to the predictions of ruin to come upon on Cordoba, which wass the capital of the Umayyad emirate of the time. Dozy argued that the work was written after 888 CE or around 891 CE, suggesting that the prediction was contemporaneous with the rebellion of Omar bin Hafsun against Abdallah when the threat of Omar's seizure of Cordoba seemed real. Dozy attributes this prediction to the Ibn Abi al-Raqa' whose name appears cited in this section of the Kitab al-Ta'rikh.
For Sánchez Albornoz, it was impossible that Abd al-Malik bin Habib could write predictions of future ill for the Umayyad dynasty in Spain. Sánchez Albornoz also went further in his arguments against Abd al-Malik bin Habib's authorship of the work, noting that certain passages in this section begin with the words: "Abd al-Malik/Abd al-Malik bin Habib said." In other words, if Abd al-Malik bin Habib wrote the Kitab al-Ta'rikh, why cite himself in the third person? Sánchez Albornoz also sees the hand of Ibn Abi al-Raqa' at work, claiming he was a student of Abd al-Malik bin Habib and that he engaged in significant addition, alteration and distortion in transmitting the teachings of Abd al-Malik bin Habib.
Jorge Aguadé, who produced an edition of the entire Kitab al-Ta'rikh and rightly noted that one ought to take the whole work into consideration and not just the section on al-Andalus, defended the overall authenticity of the work and was particularly critical of Sánchez Albornoz and his lack of expertise in analysing Arabic sources. For example, in response to the third-person citation argument, he correctly pointed out that it is in fact standard practice for medieval Arabic authors to employ this form of citation when they cite something they have written elsewhere. Aguadé also identified the figure of Ibn Abi al-Raqa' and noted that he could not have been a student of Abd al-Malik bin Habib, but was rather an Egyptian contemporary of Abd al-Malik's called Ali bin Sulayman bin Bashir al-Ikhmimi (died on 7 Rajab 223 AH/4 June 838 CE). The citation of him, which only occurs once in the Kitab al-Ta'rikh (i.e. in this section on al-Andalus), should be taken as no more than what it appears to be: a citation that is probably indirect in nature.
As for the person who actually transmitted the version of the Kitab al-Ta'rikh and likely made interpolations through adding to the list of rulers of al-Andalus after Abd al-Malik bin Habib's time, Aguadé identifies this person as Abd al-Malik bin Habib's student Yusuf bin Yahya al-Maghami, whose own role is shown towards the end of the book (for example) where he poses a series of questions to Abd al-Malik bin Habib, with these taking the form of "I asked Abd al-Malik" or "I asked him."
With regards to the predictions, Aguadé points out that there is no reason to consider these as later interpolations. Near the beginning of his work, Abd al-Malik bin Habib declared his intention to discuss the future of al-Andalus until the rise of the Hour and the signs associated with the end-times, saying:
"I describe their reports [i.e. the prophets before Muhammad], lifespans, what took place in the time of each prophet among them and what God brought about in them, item by item, and type by type, until the time of the Prophet (SAWS). Then I will describe what took place in his time until God (Almighty and Exalted is He) brought about his death, and I will describe how the caliphs followed on in succession after him, noting their reports, stories and lifespans until the time of al-Walid bin Abd al-Malik bin Marwan (may God have mercy on them). Then I return to the conquest of al-Andalus, the triumph of Musa bin Nusayr's client Tariq over it, and then I mention a number of those who have ruled it until today, and who will rule it until it should come to perdition and what should come after its perdition until the Hour should arise per the narrations and the signs, if God Almighty wills."
Abd al-Malik bin Habib therefore makes clear that the predictions concern misfortunes. Looking more specifically at the predictions, Aguadé notes that they are quite cryptic in nature and do not offer enough concrete specifics to deem them vaticinia ex eventu ("prophecies after the event") in reference to the turmoil in the late ninth century CE caused by Omar bin Hafsun. Rather, these predictions should be examined in comparison within a much wider milieu of Islamic literature about future tribulations. For instance, the book contains predictions of a descendant of the Prophet Muhammad's daughter Fatima coming to rule al-Andalus, in whose time Constantinople will be conquered. It is possible this descendant of Fatima is a Mahdi-like figure, as some other Islamic eschatological literature predicts a conquest of Constantinople by the Mahdi and continues to have resonance until today (cf. David Cook on this matter). To this discussion one might add that if the Kitab al-Ta'rikh was written towards the end of Abd al-Malik bin Habib's life, it may be possible to link some of the predictions with events that occurred in Abd al-Malik bin Habib's own lifetime: for example, the Viking raids on southern Spain that occurred in 844 CE and led to devastation in the Seville area.
Turning to an overview of Abd al-Malik bin Habib's account of the conquest of al-Andalus, we note the following sections:
(i) The initial conquest itself spearheaded by Musa bin Nusayr's client Tariq bin Ziyad.
(ii) Musa bin Nusayr's entry into al-Andalus.
(iii) The finding of treasures including Solomon's table and Musa's other exploits in al-Andalus.
(iv) Musa's return to the East and his final days.
(v) The rulers of al-Andalus spanning its days as a province of the Umayyad caliphate, then its existence as an independent Umayyad emirate beginning with Abd al-Rahman I, and continuing through to Abd al-Malik bin Habib's time and continued by al-Maghami.
(vi) Predictions concerning the future of al-Andalus and the endtimes.
It is likely that a historian will be generally disappointed with Abd al-Malik bin Habib's account in so far as he/she wishes to determine what 'really' happened during the conquest of al-Andalus. Many of the stories seem legendary, especially with regards to Musa bin Nusayr's exploits. Moreover, many of the traditions are not relayed via native Andalusian sources but rather Maliki jurists in the East.
I present below a translation of the section of Abd al-Malik bin Habib's Kitab al-Ta'rikh dealing with the conquest of al-Andalus. I supply annotations where necessary regarding sources and context. Any suggested amendments to the translation are welcome.
Some Further Reading
Abd al-Ghanni Masto (ed.), Kitab al-Ta'rikh, (al-Maktaba al-Asriya, Beirut, 2008). I use this edition of the Arabic text as the basis for my translation. Online access here.
Aguadé, Jorge (ed.), Kitāb al-Ta'rīj, (Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, Madrid 1991). I particularly recommend the introduction for the details of Abd al-Malik bin Habib's life and the discussion of the Kitab al-Ta'rikh's authenticity (pp. 15-107), though it is written in Spanish and so is not immediately accessible for the English-language reader who does not know Spanish.
Christys, Ann, "The History of Ibn Habib: al-Andalus in the Last Days," in "Cultures of Eschatology" (De Gruyter, 2020), pp. 319-336.
Moreno, Eduardo Manzano, "Las Fuentes Árabes Sobre La Conquista de al-Andalus," Hispania, LIX/2, número 202 (1999), pp. 389-432.
Sánchez-Albornoz, Claudio, En torno a las orígenes de feudalismo, (new edition from Ediciones Istmo, Madrid, 1993, with three volumes combined in one).
Chapter on the Conquest of al-Andalus
Abd al-Malik bin Habib said: Ibn Wahb told us[i]: Musa bin Nusayr sent his client Tariq to Talsaman and ordered him to scout the coastlines and its docking places, and to place on them an outpost in the hope that it might catch the Romans'[ii] ships and thus find in them a shaykh with knowledge. He did so, and thus he captured one such man and said to him: "Do you have knowledge as to who will conquer al-Andalus?" He replied: "A people called the Berbers, who adhere to your religion, will conquer it with you." So Tariq wrote about that to Musa bin Nusayr, so the latter mobilised the Berbers and sent 1000 men from among them to Tariq. Musa wrote to Tariq, Musa being among the most knowledgeable people in astronomy: "You will come to a rock on the seashore, so load your ships there, and among those you have, request for a man who knows the names of the months in Syriac, so when it is 21 Ayar, which in the non-Arab calendar is May, then take the initiative upon the blessing and help of God, and proceed on the basis of His support and granting of victory, until you come upon a little red mountain, at the bottom of which is a spring to its east, next to which is an idol statue in the form of an ox. Break that statue and proceed to a tall blond man, who has a squinting eye and withered hands, and arrange for him to go in your vanguard."
So when the letter reached Tariq, he wrote to Musa bin Nusayr: "I will go where you have ordered me to go. As for the description of the man you have ordered me to seek, I have not found his description except in myself."
Then Tariq marched with 1700 men, and then the Berbers rallied to him such that they became 12000 men of the Berbers with the exception of 16 men from among the Arabs, for these latter military contingents did not join up with him until after he conquered al-Andalus. So Tariq proceeded with the 1700 in Rajab of 92 AH.[iii]
The king of al-Andalus at the time Tariq came there had launched a coup against an enemy of his, and he had appointed one of his lords[iv] as successor- a man called Theodemir,[v] who had ownership of all of the region of Tudmir, which was thus named after him and ascribed to him. So when Theodemir learned of Tariq's arrival with the Muslims he had, he wrote to Roderic who at the time was king of al-Andalus: "Upon our land have come a people and we do not know if they have descended from the sky or come out from the earth." When that message reached Roderic, he went to confront Tariq with 70,000 fighters. He had with him calves to carry his wealth and baggage while he was on his couch between two riding animals. He was wearing a cap crowned with pearls, ruby and emerald. He also had riding animals carrying the ropes, as he had no doubt about taking them prisoner.
When Tariq received news that he was approaching him, he stood out among his companions, praised and commended God, and then incited the people to jihad and made them long for martyrdom. Then he said: "Oh people: where is the escape? The sea is behind you and the enemy is in front of you. So by God you can only be truthful and patient, but I am going to confront their tyrant myself. I will not rest until I encounter him or I am killed before him."
Roderic was among the Asbahan. The Asbahan are called Spaniards in al-Andalus. They are the Goths, the kings of the non-Arabs of al-Andalus. Tariq marched towards Roderic, and Roderic did likewise towards Tariq. So they fought fiercely. Then the tyrant Roderic's entire army was routed, so the people obtained countless quantities of gold, silver and goods, the value of which is not known. But on that day the people engaged in ghulul,[vi] then they sailed the sea intending to head for Tangier. So when they were in the middle of the sea, they heard a caller crying: "Drown them, for they have committed ghulul." So they reached for the Qur'ans, hung them on their necks, and then prayed to God (Almighty and Exalted is He) and entreated Him. Then a caller made his call, so the ship capsized on them, and only those whom God willed survived.
Then Musa bin Nusayr departed intending for al-Andalus to come to his client Tariq in the month of Rajab. He was extremely angry with the latter. He proceeded towards al-Andalus with 10,000 men, so Tariq met him and sought to appease him, so he was content with Tariq and gave in to him.
An account of the Tabi'in[vii] who entered al-Andalus
Besides those who are not known, around 20 men from among the Tabi'in entered al-Andalus. With these men and others besides them Musa bin Nusayr headed to Africa.
Musa bin Nusayr bin Abd al-Rahman bin Zayd was born in 19 AH[viii] during the caliphate of Omar bin al-Khattab (may God be pleased with him).
Mu'awiya bin Abi Sufyan had appointed Musa's father Nusayr to be in charge of his bodyguard, but he did not fight with him. So Mu'awiya said to him: "What has stopped you from going out with me against Ali when I have bestowed power on you and you have not recompensed me for it?" He said: "It has not been possible for me to be thankful to you through ungratefulness towards the one who is more deserving of my thankfulness than you." Mu'awiya replied: "And who is that?" He said: "God- Almighty and Exalted is He." Mu'awiya replied: "And how do you not have a mother?"[ix] He said: "And how has He not made you aware of her? Disregard the matter and proceed." So Mu'awiya lowered his head for a while and then said: "I ask for God's forgiveness." And he was content with Nusayr.
Mu'awiya used to say as a proverb: "A strike with a sword in might is more dear to me than a strike with a whip in humiliation."
This proverb is an oddity for the one who seeks the material world. As for the perspective of the one who seeks the Hereafter, striking with a sword in obedience to God Almighty is more pleasant and desirable than striking with a whip in disobedience to God.
"Might is but obedience to God alone.
It is the pillar and the impenetrable, fortified fortress,
And obedience to Him is might, protection and impenetrability,
The one who disobeys Him has no hope for might.
al-Layth bin Sa'ad[x] said: When Musa bin Nusayr came to Africa before his conquest of al-Andalus, he had a group of people with him, and he brought out a son of his called Abdullah to some of its districts. The latter brought him 100,000 captives. Then he himself headed to another district and brought 100,000 captives so the fifth share on that day reached 60,000 captives.
al-Layth said: "The likes of the sabaya[xi] Musa took had not been heard of in Islamic history."
Abu Shayba al-Sadfi[xii] said: Marwan bin Musa bin Nusayr came from al-Sus al-Aqsa,[xiii] and he was bringing large numbers of sabaya. So when his messenger reached Musa, the seniors of the people came out with the latter to receive him, so when the two met, Marwan bin Musa said: "Order for each one who meets me with my father to have a servant girl, one by one." So when he ordered for that, Musa heard the people arguing and shouting and saw that they were bustling about, so he said: "What is going on?" They said: "Your son Marwan has ordered for each of the people to have a servant girl." Musa said: "Order for each of them to have a male servant from me, one by one." So all the people departed, and each one of them had a male-servant and female-servant.
An account of the gold, silver, emerald, ruby, peridot and other things only known by God that Musa bin Nusayr found in the city of Toledo on the day he conquered it
Abdallah bin Wahb told us on the authority of al-Layth bin Sa'ad that when Musa bin Nusayr conquered al-Andalus, he proceeded on his way conquering the towns both right and left, until he came to Toledo, which was the royal city. In it he found a house called the house of the kings, and he opened it and found in it 25 crowns crowned with pearls and rubies. The number accorded with the number of the kings who ruled al-Andalus. Whenever one of their kings died, his crown would be placed in that house, and on the crown was written the name of its owner and how long he lived until the day he died, and how long he remained in rule. So it is said that the number of Muslim rulers of al-Andalus from the day it was conquered until the day it should come into perdition would correspond to the number of kings of the non-Arabs who were in it: i.e. 25 kings.
Next to this house in which he found the crowns was another house that had 24 locks upon it. Whenever a king took power, he put a lock on it, just as the one before him did, until the time of the rule of Roderic, during whose state al-Andalus was conquered. Shortly before the conquest of al-Andalus, Roderic said: "By God, may I not die with this house concealed. I must open it so I can know what is inside it." So the Christians, deacons, and bishops gathered to him and said to him: "What do want by opening this house? Consider what you have thought is inside it and you have come to desire, and then take that from us. Do not bring about an event upon us that none of the kings before you brought upon us, for they were people who knew about and were aware of what they did." However, he insisted on opening it because of pre-determined fate. Inside it he found a wooden ark, and he found in it depictions of the Arabs who were wearing turbans, carrying Arab bows, and had girded themselves with decorated swords. They also found in this home a document in which it was written: "If this home is opened and entered into, these people who are thus described and depicted will enter this land, gain control of it and dominate it." So the Muslims' entry upon them was in that year of theirs.
Musa had ordered for stakes to be set for his horses under the walls of the house but the stakes rebounded and did not go in when struck, and lo and behold, there were sheets of gold and silver around the house.
Abu Shayba al-Sadfi said: I saw two men carrying a carpet woven with gold, silver, pearls and rubies. But when it became heavy for the two of them, they laid it down and brought the axe upon it, so they cut it into two halves, so they took one half and left the other. I saw the people come upon it and not pay attention to it since what they had in their hands was finer than it.
Description of the table of Solomon (God's blessings and salutations be upon our prophet)
Abdallah bin Wahb told us on the authority of al-Layth bin Sa'ad: that when Musa bin Nusayr's client Tariq conquered Toledo, he found in it the table of Solomon the son of David (peace be upon them both), decorated with jewels and joined with silver, and adorned with pearls and ruby. No one knows what its price is. He also found another table of onyx that also has no price.
Abd al-Hamid[xiv] said: I asked my father about the description of the table as he had seen it and looked at it: "It was made of a mixture of gold and silver, displaying yellowness of gold and the whiteness of silver. Its surrounding was adorned with pearls, rubies and emerald." I said: "How large was it?" He said: "It was put on the strongest mule possible, but the mule did not advance one leg of a journey with it before its feet collapsed."
Abd al-Hamid said: Then Musa left Toledo with a group of men, raiding and conquering the towns, and the seniors of the people of Galicia came to him seeking conciliation from him, so he reconciled with them and attacked the Basques and thus penetrated into their land, until he came upon a people bald like cattle. Then he turned towards the Franks, and then he came to Zaragoza, and he found in it what is countless in number and the extent of which is not known.
Then he proceeded until he came to a fortress so his people had an encounter there and they fought fiercely until his people were routed. Musa thus ordered for pavilions and revealed his daughters and women such that they became prominent and Musa became prominent in the frontlines, such that his people could see him. Then he raised his hands to God (Blessed and Almighty is He) and proceeded to pray to God (Almighty and Exalted is He), implore Him and weep. He spent an extended amount of time doing this while his people were standing. The sheathes of the swords had been broken in front of him. Then God granted him conquest and gave him victory, and no army belonging to Musa was ever defeated until he died- God's mercy be upon him.
Abd al-Hamid said: then Musa bin Nusayr proceeded in the land of the enemy until his people got tired, things became unbearable for them and they said: "Where do you want to go with us? Our reliance is what we have in our hands. Where do you want to extirpate us from this world and seek something greater than what God has granted us in conquest?" So Musa laughed, and then he turned to them and said: "By God if you were to obey me I would proceed with you until I should make you stop at Constantinople and conquer it if God wills."
Ibn Rabi'a[xv] said: All the people committed ghulul on that day except four men alone, who were among the tabi'in: Abu Abd al-Rahman al-Haballi, Ibn Shamasa, Hanash al-Sin'ani and Ayadh bin 'Uqba al-Fihri.
He said: I was informed about a man who committed ghulul with gold and jewellery on that day. He placed these things in pitch and melted them down. Then death came upon him and he began shouting as he was in the throes of death: "The pitch, the pitch."
He also told me on the authority of Abd al-Hamid on the authority of his father that he said: "A woman who sold perfume came to al-Andalus, so she left with 500 captives. As for the gold, silver, jewels and vessels she left with, their number is countless and knowledge of it is unknown.
He said: and an old man of sturdy nature and tongue came to us from Medina and told us about al-Andalus, so I said: "How did you know this?" He said: "Because by God I was among those taken captive in it. The one who bought me only bought me with pepper seeds that were less than a handful."
He said: a servant who belonged to al-Walid the Amir al-Mu'minin told me: I was close by him and in front of him was a basin as he was performing ablution, when a messenger from the governor of Khorasan came for him reporting on the conquest of one of its towns, so I informed him and he said: 'Take the letter from him.' So he read it and had not reached the end of it when a messenger came from Musa bin Nusayr reporting on the conquest of al-Sus al-Aqsa by his son Marwan, so he read it and had not reached the end of it when another messenger reached him from Musa regarding the conquest of al-Andalus, so he praised and lauded God. Then he turned to me and said: 'Keep hold of the door for me and do not let anyone enter." I did do and he had a small son of his crawling in front of him.
He continued: so al-Walid prostrated himself to God and in thanks to Him. The little boy crawled towards the basin and fell in it so the little one became bewildered and shouted in it, but al-Walid did not notice him and I remained unable to help him because al-Walid had ordered me to keep hold of the door, so he prolonged his prostration until I feared the little boy's death. Then he raised his head and called out for me, so I entered and took the little boy and indeed al-Walid embraced him.
Then Musa went out raiding on his own after he conquered the town of Tangier, al-Khadra'[xvi] and other places, and he proceeded until he came to a land tottering with its people. This was at the Deaf Sea, so he proceeded alongside the sea, until he came to a bridge on which there was an idol of copper in the hand of which were a bow and arrows, so when the people approached it, it fired an arrow and killed a person, then it fired another and killed another person, then it fell and so the people advanced. Behold it was an idol of copper.
Then it was said to Musa: "In these sands is a fortress in which there are wonders." So he proceeded to it and tried to take it but could not gain control of it, so he ordered for building a structure, until they gained a view over it. So when the people who were building the structure took a prolonged view of the fortress and what was in it, they were affected with laughter and threw themselves over, so they fell down dead. Then Musa called out: "Whoever climbs will receive 100 dinars." So a man climbed and when he had a view over it, he was affected with laughter and then threw himself over, so when Musa saw that he said: "This is from some of the wonders of the devils." So he turned away from that fortress.
Ja'afar bin al-Ashtar[xvii] said: "I heard my father say: I was with Musa bin Nusayr so we besieged a big fortress for around 20 days and we did not gin control over it. So when that matter became prolonged for us, Musa called out to us: "Be on alert." So he stood up among us, praised and commended God and then said: "I go forth at the front of the ranks, so when you see that I have cried the takbir and made for the attack, cry the takbir and attack." So the people said: "Subhanullah, Musa has lost his mind as he orders us to attack that rock, when we don't see anything except walls, and what has no path to it." Then he was at the forefront of the ranks, then he proceeded to pray, supplicate and weep, while we were standing and waiting for him to cry the takbir, until he cried the takbir, so the people cried the takbir, and then he attacked, so we attacked, so a part of the fortress that was near us collapsed, so the people entered and took out a countless number of captives, goods and jewels."
Abu Bakr[xviii] told us on the authority of Abd al-Wahhab and said: then Musa bin Nusayr proceeded and then there was an idol on a river of water pointing with its finger. Then he proceeded to an idol behind the first idol, and behold it was pointing with its finger to the sky. Then he proceeded to a third idol that pointed with its finger to what is underneath its feet. So when he came to this third idol, he said: "Dig." So they dug and behold there was a sealed bottle, so Musa ordered for it to be opened. So it was opened, and then a strong wind came out from it, so Musa said: "Do you know what this is?" They replied: "No." He said: "This is one of the devils that the prophet Solomon (peace be upon him) imprisoned." Then he proceeded until he came to one of the islands of the sea and found on it 16 green jars sealed with the seal of Solomon (peace be upon him), so he ordered for one of the jars, and it was broken, and out of it came a devil. It was shaking its head and saying: "By the One who ennobled you with truth, oh prophet of God, with prophethood, I will no longer sow corruption on Earth after that and I will not harm anyone." So he ordered for the rest of the jars to be returned to their places and this was done.
Ibn Habib said: and some of the mashayakh of the people of Egypt told us that Musa bin Nusayr came to a river in the first half. On it were male idols on its right bank, and on its left bank were female idols. Then he proceeded until he came to a land tottering with its people. So the people became frightened and turned away from him. Then he proceeded until he came to a place, in which there were domes of copper, so he ordered for one of the domes to be broken, but out from it came a devil shaking its head and saying: "Peace be upon you, oh prophet of God. You tormented me in this world." So when the devil knew he was not Solomon, he approached him directly, so Musa knew that it was one of the devils imprisoned by Solomon (peace be upon him), so he ordered for the domes to be left alone, and this was done.
Then he proceeded until the people came upon great darkness so the people marvelled at that. Then he came to a town on which was a copper fortress, so he turned his attention to it and went around it, but he could not enter it, so he called out: "Who can climb this fortress and get a reward of 500 dinars?" So a man climbed but when he got on top its walls he fell down, then he called again: "Who can climb this fortress and get a reward of 1000 dinars?" So another climbed, and did likewise. Then he called for a third time: "Who can climb this fortress and get a reward of 1500 dinars?" So the third man climbed so he was afflicted with the likes of what afflicted his two companions. Musa said: "This is a great matter." So he contemplated and then said: "Take it easy, the news will come to you on the basis of what you love, if God wills." Then he ordered for the catapults to be set against that fortress, and this was done. Then he said: "Fire." So when the stone hit the fortress, they cried out and made noise and said: "Oh king, we are not your goal, nor are we among those you wish for. We are a people of the Jinn, so leave us alone." Musa said to them: "So what has happened to my companions?" They said: "They are with us, just as they were." He said to them: "Bring them out to us." They said: "Yes." So they were brought out to them, so Musa asked about their state of affairs and what was done to them. So they said: "We did not realise what state we were in or what power afflicted us." So Musa said: "Praise be to God the Lord of the Worlds."
Then he proceeded with his people and conquered everything he passed by until he came to the surrounding Ocean that no one has ever sailed or explored in great depth. He ordered them to bring three eagles, so when they explored carefully, they should send forth one eagle. Then they should explore carefully again and send a second eagle, and when they explored carefully again, they should send forth a third eagle. So they did what he ordered them to do, so they sent forth the first eagle and it proceeded as God willed and did not return. Then they sent forth the second so I proceeded forth and it did not return, and then they sent forth the third eagle, so it explored carefully and then it returned and it fell on the boat, so they knew that there is nothing behind them or in front of them.
Abd al-Malik said: Musa bin Nusayr's entry into al-Andalus took place one year after Tariq's entry. He stayed in al-Andalus for two years and one month. Then he returned to Africa, and he was riding a mule called al-Kawkab. So when he came to the table, he turned his attention to the city of Cordoba and said: "Ahh! How good and noble you are, and how wondrous is your affair, and may God curse you after two hundred years." Then he proceeded until he crossed to al-Khadra', and he ordered for the calves so they carried the jewels, gold, silver and various clothes of al-Andalus.
Musa bin Nusayr's entry into al-Andalus was in Jumada al-Awla of the year 93 AH,[xix] and he was sixty years old at the time. He stayed in Africa for 16 years as governor, and he departed from it in the year 95.
When Musa entered Africa, he found that it had suffered a severe drought, so he ordered the people to fast and come out, the men separately, the women separately, the youth separately, the cows separately, the oxen separately, the sheep separately, the young sheep separately and the dhimmis[xx] separately, and they gathered in one assembly. So he prayed to God (Almighty and Exalted is He), and the people prayed with him, and the people wept and the women and youth wept, and the cows, calves, sheep, young sheep and dhimmis cried out, such that it seemed as though the heavens had fallen on the Earth. Thus he stood until midday, and he addressed the people in a sermon and he did not mention the Amir al-Mu'minin in his sermon, so it was said to him: "Will you not pray for the Amir al-Mu'minin?" He said: "This is not the place to pray for the Amir al-Mu'minin, but rather one should pray here to God (Almighty and Exalted is He)." So they received rainfall to quench their thirst.
Then Musa bin Nusayr left Africa and appointed his son Abdullah as successor over it, and Musa took with him 100 men from the seniors of the Berbers, 20 lords of the Romans and 100 lords of al-Andalus. They went with him bearing the various kinds of curious items, gold, silver, jewels, peridot and slaves that were present in each land, as well as what could not be counted and the likes of which had not been heard of. He then reached Egypt, and there was not one nobleman, jurist or great one in that land who did not meet him. He paid Sulayman bin Abd al-Malik 10000 dinars. Then he left Egypt heading for Palestine, so he was met by the family of Ruh bin Zanba', so he stayed with them. I have been informed that they slaughtered 50 camels for him. Then he left their presence but some of his companions and his son's young offspring stayed behind with them, and he granted Ruh bin Zanba' a very large number of female and male servants as well as other things.
al-Walid fell ill with his illness from which he died, and he wrote to Musa ordering him to hurry up to meet up with him before he should die, whereas al-Walid's brother Sulayman wrote to him asking him to proceed slowly since al-Walid was at the very end of his life. But Musa went by the instruction of al-Walid's letter and did not go by the instruction of Sulayman's letter. He was earnest in his journey, so Sulayman vowed that if he gained power over Musa, he would surely crucify him, but al-Walid ordered Musa to hurry in order to deprive Sulayman and thus he responded to him, whereas Sulayman wanted him to slow down so as to deprive al-Walid's son of what he brought.
Abd al-Malik said: Thus do people draw to themselves, and the material world draws them to itself, for it takes from them what it has given them and they do not take from it what they have given it.
So Musa arrived before al-Walid's death, and brought him the curiosities from pearls, rubies, peridot, female and male servants, and the table of Solomon (God's blessings be upon our prophet and him). He also brought him the crowns decorated with pearls and ruby. So al-Walid took all that and ordered for Solomon's table to be broken into pieces and this was done, and he turned his attention to the jewels it contained and all the onyx the crowns contained and placed them in the treasury.
al-Walid died not long after and the succession was entrusted to his brother Sulayman, who sent for Musa and then berated him with his tongue and said: "By God, I should blunt your power, weaken you and humiliate you." So Musa said to him: "As for your words about blunting my power and debasing me, that is in God's hands and belongs to God, not to you, and in Him I seek help against you." So Sulayman ordered for him to be seized, and he was made to stand in a blazing hot summer day, and Musa was a large, fat and fleshy man, so he stood until he fell unconscious, and Omar bin Abd al-Aziz was present. Omar said: No day passed by for me that was more distressing for me than this one, on account of his justice and the impact of what he did in the path of God, and what God granted in conquest at his hands. So Sulayman looked at Musa when he fell unconscious and said: "Oh Abu Hafs, I am quite sure that you abandoned the oath of loyalty to me." He said: "Sure oh Amir al-Mu'minin." Sulayman said: "Who will keep him in custody?" So Yazid bin al-Muhallab arose and said: "Oh Amir al-Mu'minin, I will keep him in my custody." He said: "Keep him in your custody, and do not trouble him." He said: so Yazid departed with him, and offered him a riding animal, so he rode it. So he stayed with him for some days and relations between Musa and Sulayman improved, and the former ransomed himself from the latter with 1,000,000 dinars.
Then Yazid had a chat in the evening with Musa and said to him: "Oh Abu Abd al-Rahman, how many do you reckon to be among your clients and the people of your household?" Musa said to him: "Many." Yazid said to him: "Are they a thousand in number?" Musa said to him: "One thousand, and another thousand etc." until he was short of breath. So Yazid said to him: "So you are in the state of affairs you have described and you are letting it all go to waste? Have you not established yourself in your enduring might and your position of authority and refrained in what you have been presented with? But if you have attained satisfaction, fine, and if not, you are still in your state of might and position of authority" Musa said: "By God, if I had wanted that, they would not have got anything out of me until the Hour should arise, but I have preferred God (Almighty and Exalted is He) and I have not considered it right to abandon obedience and the group."[xxi]
He said: I have been informed that Sulayman said to Musa: "What were you relying on when you went out and confronted your enemy?" He said: "On prayer and patience in the encounter." He said: "So which horses did you consider to be best in that land?" He said: "The blonde horses." He said: "Which of the nations were fiercest in fighting?" Musa said: "They are too many for me to describe." He said: "Tell me about the Romans." Musa said: "They are lions in their fortresses, eagles on their horses, women in their convoys. If they see an opportunity, they seize it, and if hey see that they are being overcome, they are mountain goats heading into the mountains, not considering defeat to be shameful." He said: "Tell me about the Berbers." Musa said: "They are the most similar of nations to the Arabs in confrontation, bravery, patience, chivalry and nobleness, but they are the most treacherous of people, having no concept of fulfilment or a pact." He said: "So tell me about the people of al-Andalus." Musa said: "Kings of luxury, and knights who are not cowardly." He said: "So tell me about the Franks." He said: "They have numbers, readiness, toughness, harshness, might and bravery." Sulayman said: "So tell me how the war went between you and them. Was its tide in your favour or against you?" He said: "As for this matter, by God no banner of mine has been defeated, nor were my forces destroyed, nor have the Muslims suffered calamity with me from the time I reached 40 years of age until I reached the age of 80." He said: so Sulayman laughed and admired his words.
Then Sulayman ordered for a large basin to be brought and he began staring at it intently. So Musa said to him: "You are wondering at something that is not wondrous. By God I reckon it is not worth 10,000 dinars. By God I sent your brother al-Walid a bull-shaped vessel[xxii] made of peridot in which milk could be poured such that it would turn green, and in which white hair could be seen. He valued it at 100,000 dinars, and indeed it is among the cheapest things I sent him. I got hold of such-and-such and such-and-such." So he began enumerating the jewellery, pearls, rubies and emeralds he found such that Sulayman became astonished.
Abd al-Hamid told us on the authority of his father and said: Sulayman went out for a stroll to some of his property, and Musa bin Nusayr went out with him, and then he wished to have a dhud[xxiii] of sheep and they estimated that there were 1000 sheep or thereabouts in this property. Sulayman marvelled at the large number of them, so he turned to Musa and said: "Do you have something like these sheep?" Musa laughed and said to him: "By God, I have seen that the lowest of my clients has many times this number of sheep." Sulayman replied to him: "The lowest of your clients?" He said: "Yes, by God." He repeated these words multiple times, and then said: "These sheep are not among what God granted me and my hands in booty. 1000 sheep would be sold for 10 dirhams, each 100 for a dirham, and the people would pass by the cows and sheep and not pay attention to them. I saw the dhud of camels valued at a dirham, and I saw the attractive infidel, his wife and his children valued at 50 dirhams."
Then Sulayman performed the Hajj and Musa went out with him. Musa was among the people most knowledgeable in astronomy. So when they came to Medina, Musa said to some of those who were dear to him: "Tomorrow, surely a man whose renown has reached the East and West will die." So Musa died on the next day. Maslama said prayers for him. May God have mercy on the companions, forgive those who followed them[xxiv] with ihsan,[xxv] and may God be pleased with them and us in His mercy. Amen, Lord of the Worlds.
An account of the rulers of al-Andalus[xxvi] from the day it was conquered until the year 275 AH, and an account of news of misfortunes and what was seen in some of the lands from misfortunes that happened to them in olden times
Abd al-Malik told us on the authority of Ibrahim bin al-Mundhir al-Hazami on the authority of al-Waqidi and said: from the day Tariq conquered al-Andalus until he left it, he stayed there for a year. Then after him Musa bin Nusayr stayed for two years and some months. Then Abd al-Aziz bin Musa stayed there for two years, then al-Hurr bin Abd al-Rahman al-Thaqafi for two years and eight months, then al-Samh bin Malik al-Khawlani for two years and nine months, and then Anbasa bin Suhaym al-Kalbi for four years and five months, then Yahya bin Salama for two years and six months, and then Hudhayfa bin al-Ahwas al-Absi ruled it for a year, then Othman bin Abi Nis'a al-Khath'ami for five months, then al-Haytham bin Obayd for four months, then Abd al-Rahman bin Obaydallah for two years and eight months. Then Abd al-Malik bin Qatan al-Fihri ruled it for four years, then Uqba bin al-Hujjaj al-Saluli for five years and two months, then Balaj bin Bishr al-Qaysi for 11 months, and then it was ruled after him (but it has also been said with him) by Tha'alaba bin Salama al-Amili for those five year. Then Abd al-Rahman bin Habib, Umayya, Qatan, Yusuf and those affiliated with them revolted against the latter, so they fought him and he died seven days after the battle. Then Abu al-Khattar ruled it for two years, and then it was ruled by Abu Thawaba al-Jadhami for a year, then Yusuf bin Abd al-Rahman for seven years and nine months. Then it was ruled by Abd al-Rahman bin Mu'awiya bin Hisham bin Abd al-Malik bin Marwan (may God be pleased with them all): for he entered al-Andalus, so Yusuf marched against him, so he encountered Abd al-Rahman at al-Masara of Cordoba, but Abd al-Rahman bin Mu'awiya defeated him and seized control, and he entered the palace from that day of his, and allegiance was given to him on the day of al-Adha, and it was Friday of the year 138.[xxvii] He ruled for 33 years and four months.
Abdallah bin al-Shimar told me that his father Shimar used to teach the children of Abd al-Rahman bin Mu'awiya, and that he himself used to hang out with them, and that he had been circumcised with them. He also told me that he used to come to the al-Sidda gate[xxviii] and enter when he was a boy, in order to come to the amir Abd al-Rahman while he was in his meeting, and he did not find anyone obstructing him.
Then his son Hisham bin Abd al-Rahman bin Mu'awiya became ruler. He ruled for seven years and ten months, and he was a person of commendable conduct and gave much charity.
Then his son al-Hakam bin Hisham bin Abd al-Rahman became ruler for 27 years and one and a half months, then he died on Thursday 26 Dhu al-Hijja 206.[xxix]
Then his son Abd al-Rahman bin al-Hakam bin Hisham became ruler on Friday night, and he remained ruler for 31 years, three months and four days. Then he died on Thursday night, and he (may God have mercy on him) was a generous amir endowed with insight and culturally refined.
Then his son Muhammad bin Abd al-Rahman bin al-Hakam became ruler on Thursday night on 4 Rabi' al-Awal of the year 238,[xxx] and he ruled for 35 years minus one month and four days.
Then he died on Thursday night at the beginning of Rabi' al-Awal of the year 273.[xxxi]
Then his son al-Mundhir bin Muhammad bin Abd al-Rahman became ruler on Sunday at noon, four days after his father died. This was so because he was away from Cordoba on some of his father's expeditions. He ruled for 23 months.
Then his brother Abdallah bin Muhammad has ruled after him as a weak ruler, as he has undone every bond contracted by his father and grandfather in treaty. In his rule, sadnesses have followed in succession, dependents and property were being taken seized, the markets have become stagnant, and prices have become high. The situation has become such that the vile one has become mighty in his rule, and the amir lowly, in accursed, corpulent, fat, vanquished, lowly Cordoba, to which in the end of times people from the Berbers will flee, corrupting the civilised and steppe areas.
It is also said: Cordoba the harlot, woe to her for the second epic battle, the very obscene, the divorcee, the one of prisons and dishes, having no pact or covenant, upon which tribulation will when the raiding cavalry and the intense noise will come to it from the distant places at the hands of Dhu al-Khartum,[xxxii] a man of the people of calamity, in whose vanguard will be the Muslims and in whose rearguard will be the idolaters, so the people will take refuge in Carmona, so what an accursed gathering she is.
It was also said: Seville of the brave youth, accommodating of children and dependents, granting asylum to the foreigner and forces its people to ask the question, which will be seized in the end times by men coming from afar, knights raiding it like eagles.
It was also said: Toledo of the ruins, built on chaos and fighting. When they conciliate with the people of idolatry no rabble or sovereignty will remain for them. At the hands of its people, corruption will appear, and the people will leave that land.
It was also said: Écija of injustice, mentioned in cursing and disgrace, whose best ones will depart and whose evil ones will remain.
Ka'ab said: the beginning of this Ummah is prophethood and mercy, then kingship, tyranny, haughtiness and corruption, as the people bite each other for this world as the asses bite each other, in that day when the people will be outwardly brothers but secretly enemies, in that day when the man fasts and he gets nothing but hunger from his fasting, and he prays and gets nothing but sleeplessness and hardship out of it, in which he performs the Hajj but his Hajj is not accepted, and in which he gives charity but his charity is not accepted, and in which he gives zakat but his zakat is not accepted, in that he has 100 dinars or 50 dinars so he gives ten in charity so the people can see that he gives charity and gives zakat.
Abd al-Malik said: Talaq bin al-Samh al-Ma'afari told me on the authority of Damam bin Isma'il[xxxiii] and said: I heard al-Ala' bin Kathir and Abdallah bin Sulayman saying that the Messenger of God (SAWS) said: "There are five things that if you take up, then I seek refuge in God that you should take them up or they should come upon you: obscenity does not spread among a people without God imposing upon them the plague and pains that were not among their predecessors, and they do not cheat the measure and balance without God seizing them by the years and harshness of death and tyranny of authority. Nor do they prevent the zakat of their wealth without God depriving them of rain from the sky, so were it not for the cattle, they would not be given water to quench their thirst at all. Nor do they violate a pact of God and a pact of His Messenger without God imposing their enemy on them, such that the latter seize some of what is in their hands. Nor do their leaders rule unjustly without God putting them at loggerheads with each other."
It has also been narrated that the Messenger of God (SAWS) said: "Just imagine how things will be for you when your youth become grossly immoral, your women transgress, the ignorant among you become numerous, your gross immorality causes havoc and your jihad is impeded." They said: "Is that possible, oh Messenger of God?" He said: "Yes, and even worse than that. Just imagine how things will be for you when the believer remains in the neighbourhood, alone, abandoned, deprived, hated and with harm done to him just as harm is done to the corpse of the donkey. Just imagine how things will be for you when the instruments and wines become supreme and the last of this Ummah curses its first?" They said: "Oh Messenger of God, do they at least pray?" He said: "Yes, and how many a person who prays without having morals. Just imagine how things will be for you when God makes you go to loss and imposes upon you the one who shows you no mildness or mercy?" They said: "Is that possible, oh Messenger of God?" He said: "Yes, and worse than that."
It was also said: Cordoba the whore, hated by God. When to her gather the nations of the lands and the evil, fornication and corruption become great in it, then God will bring His force upon it. So when you see the tribulations have arisen in al-Andalus, you must have regard for your earning of gold, silver and noble steeds. Then the evil between the two mountains will move about: that is, between the red mountain and the black one, and the beginning of that will be in the new month, which is the month of Ramadan, then there will be the month that follows it, and then the month that follows that. Then there will be a great epic battle in Cordoba at the complex of the house of oppression. So oh people of Cordoba, beware for your women and children and do not make them dwell near the complex of the house of oppression, nor near the grand mosque, for there will be an epic battle in which neither a youth nor a woman will be shown mercy. It will take place on Thursday at some point between noon prayer and afternoon prayer until sunset, and the safest of places in Cordoba will be the hill that is called the hill of Abu 'Abda, on the site of the church.
Ibn Abi al-Raqa' said: a man from the Ahl al-'Ilm[xxxiv] informed me that the site of the church is part of what is next to the home of Asbagh bin Khalil.[xxxv]
I also heard Abd al-Malik bin Habib say: "When the Umayyad state collapses and it is ruled by a man from the mawali[xxxvi] or the Berbers, there will be a gathering in that man's state, and in another state of the Umayyads there will be the people of Carmona, and then Cordoba will be ruined such that only crows will inhabit it. The king will move to Seville, and the Caliphate will fall out of the hands of the progeny of al-Abbas, and the matter will be transferred to the descendants of Abu Talib, until the Antichrist emerges, and the one entering[xxxvii] from Quraysh- from the offspring of Fatima- will enter and the people of al-Andalus will hand over rule to him,[xxxviii] so in the time of this descendant of Fatima Constantinople will be conquered, and at the hands of this descendant of Fatima the Christians in Cordoba and its districts will be killed, and captivity will befall their offspring, such that the servant will be driven with a goad and the beardless one with a whip."
Ibn Abi Shimir told me that he heard Hassan speaking about this.
Abd al-Malik said: I was informed on the authority of al-Bara' bin 'Azib[xxxix] that he said: the Messenger of God (SAWS) said: "There is nothing of the acts of disobedience that the nations have not committed that a people of this Ummah will also not commit in the end of time, in addition to two qualities: excavating the graves and marrying the dead."
SAWS also said: "I seek refuge in God from a time in which the small of them gains mastery, the big one of them becomes hopeful and their times come near."
On the authority of Anas bin Malik, that he said: "The matter will only become more difficult, and the people will only become more avaricious, and the hour will only arise upon the worst of the people."
Also on the authority of Anas bin Malik, that the Messenger of God (SAWS) said: "This world will not pass away until the jinn share with you in your offspring." They said: "Oh Messenger of God, how will we know that our children are among their children?" He said: "Through lack of shame and lack of mercy, and the least of them in shame is the one who allows himself to be sodomised."
Also on the authority of Anas bin Malik, that the Messenger of God (SAWS) said: "In my Ummah will arise buriyun." They said: "Oh Messenger of God, and what are buriyun?" He said: "Men of astuteness in their material world, and of violation in what concerns their Hereafter. They will die having no morals."
Also on the authority of Anas bin Malik, that the Messenger of God (SAWS) said to Ibn Mas'ud: "Just imagine how things will be for you if you were to be among scum of the people whose pacts and trusts have been corrupted and who have disputed among themselves and become thus." He said: "So how should I act if I live to see that oh Messenger of God?" He said: "Be among those who stick to your home until certain death or an erring hand comes upon you."
Abd al-Malik said: I was informed that the Messenger of God (SAWS) said: "My Ummah will be tormented in this world with seven forms of torment: a people among them will be swallowed up, a rock will be sent upon a people and the wind will be sent upon people among them, such that it will cast them into the sea. A people among them will be drowned by rain, and the sword will be imposed on a people among them: this means the tribulations and epic battles, and upon a people will be sent snakes and scorpions that have wings so they will eat them up, and a people among them will remain in frivolity and falsehood so they will be transformed into apes and pigs." It was said: "And when will that be oh Messenger of God?" He said: "When they drink wines, wear silk, female singers entertain them, and men become content with men,[xl] and women with women, and they impede the Book of God and His limits."
I was also informed on the authority of Abu Hurayra that he said: "Hunger will afflict the people until man brings his servant and says: "Give me through this boy a bowl of dates." But he will not give him."
I was also informed that the Messenger of God (SAWS) said: "The nations are about to call upon each other against you." They said: "And will this be because of our small numbers, oh Messenger of God?" He said: "No, by God. You will be many but you will be like the flowing scum. Fear will be removed from the hearts of your enemies and cast into your hearts." They said: "And why is that, oh Messenger of God?" He said: "Because of love of life and hatred of death."
He (SAWS) said: "Affliction is about to come upon the people of Islam in particular, while the people of the other religions around them will be secure and cheerful, such that some peoples will convert to Judaism and others to Christianity."
I was informed on the authority of Ibn Mas'ud[xli] that he said: "A time will come upon the people in which man will be happy with his lack of wealth and his child just as man is happy with abundance of his wealth and his child." It was said: "So what wealth is better on that day?" He said: "Just arms and the just horse, upon which you disappear where they disappear."
Abd al-Malik said: al-Makfuf told me on the authority of al-'Ala on the authority of Anas bin Malik and said: I said to Aisha (may God be pleased with her): "Oh mother of the believers, tell me about the convulsion." She said: "Oh Anas bin Malik, as a result you will live in sadness and die in sadness, and you will be resurrected with that sadness in your heart." I said: "Tell me, oh mother of the believers." She said: I heard the Messenger of God (SAWS) say: "When they deem fornication permissible, take up usury, drink wines, and play instruments, God will become angry in His heaven and say to the earth: "Shake." So if they repent, fine, and if not, God will level the earth upon them." Aisha said: "And the earth shook in the time of the Messenger of God (SAWS) so the Messenger of God (SAWS) ascended the pulpit and said: "Oh people, indeed God has sought for you to return to what will please Him, so do so." I said: "Oh Messenger of God, are we to perish when the just are among us?" He said: "Yes, if the evil is great." I said: "Oh Messenger of God, will this be so even as they pray?" He said: "The one in whom there is no good may pray." I said: "Oh Messenger of God, will this be so even as they bear witness that there is no deity but God?" The Messenger of God (SAWS) said: "Indeed the truth of there is no deity but God is refraining from things God forbids." He said: "So when the servant says there is no deity but God but he does not care about what detracts from his religion in the justice of his material world, God says to him: you have lied, you have lied, you are not among the people of this pronouncement." I said: "Oh Messenger of God, is this possible?" He said: "Yes, and worse than that, if they do not command what is right and do not forbids what is wrong, as then a people who have no morals becomes predominant, women become content with women, and men with men, and evil becomes great among them, and the person of chivalry is lacking among them, and the just one is incapable among them, and the liar among them is believed, while the traitor is trusted, and the trusted is deemed a traitor, and there is stinginess with the dinar and dirham, and bonds of kinship are cut, and fornication becomes great, along with earning of usury and drinking of forbidden drinks. If they do that, they can expect the torment by morning and evening."
He said: and some of them told me that Ata' bin Yasar said: "Among the signs of the approach of the Hour is rain without plants, the resurrection of the dead (i.e. the people of fornication ascend), and that the voices will be loud in the mosques with the appearance of the children of fornication and death coming upon people unawares."
On the authority of Abu Hurayra[xlii] who said: "The Hour will not arise until knowledge diminishes and disorder becomes frequent. They said: Oh Messenger of God, and what is disorder?" He said: "Killing.""
[i] Arabic: حدّثنا, an expression normally used to indicate direct oral transmission from the source. It might be supposed that Ibn Wahb here appears to be Abdallah bin Wahb, a well-known Egyptian scholar. However, Abdallah died in 813 CE, well before Abd al-Malik bin Habib travelled to the East, and it seems unlikely he communicated the information directly to Abd al-Malik bin Habib. Either there is an error in transmission of the text, or the author conveys a misleading impression of direct transmission of the information.
[ii] In Arabic source material, "Romans" (Arabic: الروم) is often used as a synonym for Christians.
[iii] i.e. April-May 711 CE.
[iv] Lit. "kings."
[v] A Visigothic lord remembered for a striking a dhimmi pact arrangement with the Muslim conquerors. He is mentioned in the Mozarabic Chronicle.
[vi] Unlawful taking of war spoils and booty (e.g. in excess of what you are allotted per the rules of division).
[vii] An Arabic term meaning "the followers," referring to the generation of followers of Prophet Muhammad's companions.
[viii] 640 CE.
[ix] This phrase is not literal in its meaning but is rather intended as an expression of displeasure with Musa's father and disparagement of him. It should be noted that many Arabic Andalusian writings replicate similar anecdotes of Musa's father's refusal to fight against Ali in the civil war that ultimately led to the end of the Rashidun Caliphate and the rise of Umayyad caliphate under Mu'awiya bin Abi Sufyan. The anecdote is not necessarily an expression of Shi'a sympathies or partisanship for Ali but rather intended to indicate the righteousness of Musa's father.
[x] An Egyptian jurist (died 791 CE), an example of the influence of the Egyptian tradition on Abd al-Malik bin Habib's historiography noted by Moreno.
[xi] Captives (usually referring to women and children) who would normally be enslaved.
[xii] He appears to be otherwise unknown.
[xiii]The far west of Morocco.
[xiv] Abd al-Hamid bin Abi Oways, originally from Medina and a student of Malik bin Anas. He died in 231/232
[xv] Appears to be otherwise unknown.
[xvi] Algeciras in southern Spain, known in Arabic as 'al-Jazira al-Khadra" (lit. the Green Island).
[xvii] Appears to be otherwise unknown.
[xviii] Appears to be otherwise unknown.
[xix] February-March 712 CE.
[xx] The Jews and Christians under a dhimma pact with the Islamic state, paying a poll tax and abiding by certain restrictions.
[xxi] By the "group" here is meant 'the group of the Muslims': in the sense of loyalty to the caliph's authority. By revolting, one 'separates' from the group of the Muslims.
[xxii] This is the only rendering I can think of here.
[xxiii] A term generally used for a number of camels, though the precise number is not agreed on in writings. According to Lane, the number range "of best repute" is from three to ten.
[xxiv] Referring to the Tabi'in.
[xxv] When the intentions are driven by sincere faith.
[xxvi] The rulers up until Abd al-Rahman bin Mu'awiya (Abd al-Rahman I) were governors ruling al-Andalus as a province of the Umayyad Caliphate. Following that Caliphate's collapse in around 750 CE, Yusuf al-Fihri (the last governor) ruled it as an independent fiefdom until being deposed by Abd al-Rahman I.
[xxvii] c. 14 May 756 CE, with Adha here referring to Id al-Adha.
[xxviii] One of the gates of the Umayyad palace in Cordoba.
[xxix] 22 May 822 CE.
[xxx] 25 August 852 CE.
[xxxi] Early August 886 CE.
[xxxii] Lit. "the one of the large nose."
[xxxiii] A Talaq bin al-Samh and a Damam bin Isma'il al-Ma'afari occur multiple times as sources in Ibn Abd al-Hakam's work.
[xxxiv] "The people of knowledge": i.e. scholars of Islam.
[xxxv] A Cordoban jurist (died 851-852 CE).
[xxxvi] Native Iberian converts to Islam and their descendants.
[xxxvii] Arabic: الداخل. This plays on the title of the first Umayyad amir of Cordoba Abd al-Rahman I (his nickname being الداخل: i.e. "the one who enters", since he entered al-Andalus fleeing from the Middle East).
[xxxviii] The meaning here seems somewhat uncertain.
[xxxix] A companion of Muhammad. Abd al-Malik bin Habib would not have heard from him directly but rather he is giving his name as the first in a chain of narrators reporting the words of the Messenger.
[xl] i.e. Pursue homosexual relationships.
[xli] Another companion of Muhammad.
[xlii] A well-known companion of Muhammad.