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  • Print publication year: 1977
  • Online publication date: March 2008

3 - The Patriarchal and Umayyad caliphates

from Part I - The rise and domination of the Arabs
During a momentary pause, 'Umar paid homage to Abū Bakr, Muhammad's intimate friend and collaborator, by grasping his hand as was the custom when a pact was concluded, and his example was followed by others. Abū Bakr thus became the successor of the Messenger of God and in this way the caliphate was founded, an institution which had no equivalent, and was destined never to have any, outside the Muslim world. As soon as the rebellion in Arabia had been suppressed, Abū Bakr sent the tribes he had just subdued to carry war into the lands beyond the borders. The Caliph 'Uthmān therefore decided to have the exact and definitive Qur'anic text established by a committee of experts. During the Umayyad Caliphate poetry explored new paths. The last of the Umayyads, Marwān II, had gained military experience during the campaign in the Caucasus, and his unusual energy had earned him the nickname of al-Himār.
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The Cambridge History of Islam
  • Online ISBN: 9781139055024
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