Yazid I
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Yazid I
Yaz?d ibn Mu'awiya
Caliph in Damascus
Drachm of Yazid I, 676-677.jpg
Arab-Sasanian Drachm of Yazid I
2nd Caliph of the Umayyad Caliphate
Reign 26 April 680 – 11 November 683
Predecessor Mu'awiya I
Successor Mu'awiya II
Born 647 (AH 26)[1]
Died 11 November 683 (14 Rabi ul-Awwal AH 64)[1] (aged 36)
Issue Mu'awiya II
Khaled
Atikah
Full name
Yaz?d ibn Mu'awiya ibn Ab? Sufy?n
?
House Sufyanid
Dynasty Umayyad
Father Mu'awiya I
Mother Maysun bint Bahdal al-Kalbiyya al-Nasrania (The Christian)[1]

Yaz?d ibn Mu'?wiya (Arabic: ? ‎; 647 – 11 November 683), commonly known as Yazid I, was the second caliph of the Umayyad caliphate (and the first one through inheritance). Yazid was the caliph as appointed by his father Muawiyah I and ruled for three years from 680 CE until his death in 683 CE.

Rise to power

Yazid's father, Muawiyah, had signed a treaty with Hasan ibn Ali, where Muawiya promised that, among other conditions, Muawiya would give the caliphate back to Hasan when Muawiya died; and if Hasan died before Muawiya, then the caliphate would go to Hasan's brother, Hussain ibn Ali, upon Muawiya's death. However, Muawiya broke that promise and all of the others that he made in the treaty, and he gave the caliphate to Yazid upon his death.[2][better source needed]

The Sunni scholar Sheikh Abdallah Saleh Farsy wrote in his book Maisha ya Sayyidnal Husayn that "Yazid's succession was established by force and contrary to the wishes of the people."[3][4]

After the death of Hasan, Muawiya commanded the people of Syria to accept Yazid as his successor. After that, he ordered Marwan ibn Hakam, then the governor of Medina, to force the people of Medina to accept Yazid as Muawiya's successor. Marwan did not agree with Muawiya's choice; after letting Muawiya know how he felt, Muawiya removed Marwan from his post as governor. Marwan went to Syria and threatened to carry out a coup against Muawiya; Muawiya consoled Marwan with "soothing words," gave him a large amount of money, and appointed pensions for him and his relatives. Marwan returned to Medina and carried out Muawiya's order of forcing the people of Medina to accept Yazid.[5][6]

Oath of allegiance of Yazid

Upon succession, Yazid asked governors of all provinces to take an oath of allegiance to him. The necessary oath was secured from all parts of the country. Hussain ibn Ali and Abdullah ibn Zubayr refused to declare allegiance. Yazid sent Marwan, a soldier in his army, to assist in this task.[7][8] An early historical account of the issue of obtaining bai'ah ( bait ) (pledge of allegiance) by Yazid I was chronicled by the 9th century CE historian Al-Tabari who recorded that Yazid's only concern, when he assumed power, was to receive the oath of allegiance from the individuals who had refused to agree with Muawiyah's demand for this oath of allegiance for his son Yazid. Muawiyah had summoned the people (i.e., the Islamic shura or council) to give an oath of allegiance to him that Yazid would be his heir. Yazid's concern was to bring their attitude (of this refusal) to an end. Yazid's paternal first cousin Waleed bin Utbah bin Abu Sufyan was the governor of Madinah, where Hussain bin Ali and the Hashimite family resided as did Abdullah ibn Zubayr. Yazid had sent his fellow Umayyad kinsman, Marwan bin al-Hakam (who served as a vizier to Muawiyah and now to Yazid), to Waleed bin Utbah bin Abu Sufyan with the following message written on parchment:[9]

Seize Hussain (Grandson of Muhammad), Abdullah ibn Umar (Son of Umar), and Abdullah ibn Zubayr (Grandson of Abu Bakr) to give the oath of allegiance. Act so fiercely that they have no chance to do anything before giving the oath of allegiance. Peace be with you.[9]

When summoned by the governor of Madinah, Waleed bin Utbah, Hussain bin Ali answered the summons. However, Abdullah ibn Zubayr did not. When Hussain bin Ali met Waleed and Marwan (who was present) in a semi-private meeting at night, he was informed of the late Caliph Muawiyah's death and Yazid's accession to the caliphate. When asked for his pledge of allegiance to Yazid, Hussain responded that giving his allegiance in private would be insufficient, such a thing should be given in public. Waleed agreed to this, but Marwan interrupted demanding that Waleed imprison Hussain and not let him leave until he gives the pledge of allegiance to Yazid. At this interruption, Marwan was soundly upbraided by Hussain who then exited unharmed. Hussain bin Ali had his own retinue of armed supporters waiting nearby just in case a forcible attempt was made to apprehend him. Immediately following Hussain's exit, Marwan emphatically admonished his kinsman Waleed, the governor of Madinah, who in turn rebutted Marwan, justifying his refusal to harm Hussain ibn Ali by stating "that on the Day of Resurrection a man who is (responsible) for the blood of Al-Hussain (will weigh) little in the scale of God." As for Abdullah ibn Zubayr, he had left Medina at night heading for Mecca. In the morning Waleed sent men after him, a party of eighty horsemen under the command of a retainer of the Banu Umayyah. They pursued Ibn al-Zubayr but did not catch up with him, so they returned. As for Hussain ibn Ali, Tabari records that he too left for Mecca shortly after, without having sworn any oath of allegiance to Yazid.[10]

Hussain-Ibn-Ali

Coin of the Umayyad Caliphate at the time of Yazid ibn Muawiya. BCRA (Basra) mint; "Ubayd Allah ibn Ziyad, governor". Dated AH 60 = AD 679/680. Sasanian style bust imitating Khosrau II right; bismillah and four pellets in margin/ Fire altar with ribbons and attendants; star and crescent flanking flames; date to left, mint name to right.

Hussain ibn Ali, the grandson of the Prophet Muhammad, along with many other prominent Muslims, not only disapproved of Yazid's nomination for caliph (or leader of Islam) but also declared it against the spirit of Islam as Yazid was oppressive and unjust. While the nomination issue was deliberated upon in Medina, Abdullah ibn Zubayr went with Hussain to Mecca because some prominent Muslims thought that Mecca would be the best base for launching a campaign to build up public opinion against Yazid's nomination. However, before any significant work could be done, Muawiyah died, and Yazid took over the reins of government.[]

Kufa, a garrison town in Iraq, had been Ali's capital, and many of his supporters lived there. Hussain ibn Ali received letters from Kufa expressing its offer of support if he claimed the caliphate. As he prepared for the journey to Kufa, Abdullah ibn Umar, Abdullah ibn Zubayr and Abdullah ibn Abbas argued against his plan, and if he was determined to proceed to Kufa, asked him to leave women and children in Mecca, but Hussein rejected their suggestions. On the way to Kufa, he received the report of Muslim ibn Aqeel's death at the hands of Yazid's men and that the Kufans had changed their loyalties to Yazid, pledging support to him against Hussain and his followers.[]

Ubayd-Allah ibn Ziyad, governor of Basrah, executed one of the messengers and warned the citizens to avoid the insurgency. He sent a message to Hussain, at instruction of Yazid, stating, "You can neither go to Kufa nor return to Mecca, but you can go anywhere else you want." Despite the warning, Hussain continued towards Kufa and during the trip, he and many members of his family were killed by Yazid and Ibn Ziyad army at the Battle of Karbala. So Yazid was also involved in the killing of Hussain. As he ordered Ibn Ziyad to kill Hussain if he does not give oath of allegiance to Yazid.[]

Many Sahaba, the most prominent being Abdullah ibn Zubayr, refused to give their oath of allegiance to Yazid, as they saw it as a usurpation of power and not the proper way of choosing a caliph by the Shura.[11]

Abdullah ibn al-Zubayr

When Hussain was killed in Karbala, Abdullah ibn al-Zubayr started an insurgency in the Hejaz (Mecca and Medina) and the Tihamah. Upon hearing this, Yazid had a silver chain made and sent it to Mecca with the intention of having Walid ibn Utbah arrest Ibn al-Zubayr with it.[12] Umayyad forces tried to end the rebellion by invading the Hejaz in 683. Medina was taken after the Battle of al-Harrah, the Tihamah was invaded and siege was laid to Mecca. Yazid's sudden death in 683, however, ended the campaign and threw the caliphate into disarray and civil war.

Setbacks

During the caliphate of Yazid ibn Muawiya, Muslims suffered several military setbacks. In AD 682 Yazid restored Uqba ibn Nafi as the governor of north Africa and Uqba won battles against the Berbers and Byzantines.[7] Uqba then marched westward towards Tangier and then marched eastwards the Atlas Mountains.[8]

With cavalry numbering about 300, he proceeded towards Biskra, where he was ambushed by a Berber force. Uqba and all his men died fighting, and the Berbers launched a counterattack and drove Muslims from north Africa.[13] That was a major setback for the Muslims, as they lost supremacy at sea and had to abandon the islands of Rhodes and Crete.

Death

Yazid was killed by his own horse after it lost control, or maybe it was some intestinal disease[]. Yazid died at the age of 36 (age 37 in Hijri-Lunar calculation) after he had ruled for three years. He was succeeded by his son Muawiyah II. Yazid was buried in Damascus.

Historical evaluation

Muslim tradition regards Caliph Yazid I as a tyrant who was responsible for three major actions during the Second Fitna that were considered atrocities: the death of Hussain ibn Ali and his followers at the Battle of Karbala, considered a massacre; the aftermath of the Battle of al-Harrah, in which the troops of Yazid's general, Muslim bin Uqbah al-Marri, pillaged the town of Medina; and the burning of the Kaaba during the siege of Mecca, which was blamed on Yazid's commander Husayn ibn Numayr.[14][15][16][17][18][19][20][21]

That view was summed up with the following evaluation of Yazid by a scholar from the Abbasid era:

He was strong, brave, deliberative, full of resolve, acumen, and eloquence. He composed good poetry. He was also a stern, harsh, and coarse Nasibi. He drank and was a reprobate. He inaugurated his Dawla with the killing of the martyr al-Hussain and closed it with the catastrophe of al-Harrah. Hence the people despised him, he was not blessed in his life, and many took up arms against him after al-Hussain such as the people of Madînah - they rose for the sake of Allâh -[22]

Some scholars regard Yazid as a just, noble, religious and administratively efficient ruler and that his nomination by his father Muawiya as caliph was proper.[23] However, this is a minority view, espoused mainly by Salafi revisionists. Notable contemporaries such as Ibn Abbas and Muhammad bin Hanfia regard Muawiya's nomination of Yazid as sincere and proper as Muawiya genuinely believed that Yazid had the qualifications of being the leader of Muslims.[24]

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c Ibn Hajar Al-Asqalani, Ahmad bin Ali. Lisan Al-Mizan: Yazid bin Mu'awiyah.
  2. ^ Nassir, Sheikh Abdillahi Nassir. "Yazid was Never Amirul Muminin". Al-Islam.org. Ahlul Bayt Digital Islamic Library Project. 
  3. ^ Farsy, Sheikh Abdallah Saleh. Maisha ya Sayyidnal Husayn. p. 40. 
  4. ^ Nassir, Sheikh Abdillahi Nassir. "Yazid was Never Amirul Muminin". Al-Islam.org. Ahlul Bayt Digital Islamic Library Project. 
  5. ^ Nassir, Sheikh Abdillahi Nassir. "Yazid was Never Amirul Muminin". Al-Islam.org. Ahlul Bayt Digital Islamic Library Project. 
  6. ^ Farsy, Sheikh Abdallah Saleh. Maisha ya Sayyidnal Husayn. pp. 22-24. 
  7. ^ a b Hitti, Philip K. (1943). The Arabs: A short history. Princeton University Press. ISBN 9780895267061. 
  8. ^ a b Hasan, Masudul (1998). History of Islam. North Haledon, NJ: Islamic Publications International. 
  9. ^ a b The History of Al-Tabari: Vol. XIX (The Caliphate of Yazid bin Muawiyah). Al-Tabari, Muhammad ibn Jarir. (English Translation by I. K. A. Howard). State University of New York Press. (Pg. 7). http://www.alsunnahfoundation.org/Academy/Karbala.pdf.
  10. ^ The History of Al-Tabari: Vol. XIX (The Caliphate of Yazid bin Muawiyah). Al-Tabari, Muhammad ibn Jarir. (English Translation by I. K. A. Howard). State University of New York Press. (Pgs. 7-9). http://www.alsunnahfoundation.org/Academy/Karbala.pdf.
  11. ^ Balyuzi, H. M.: Muhammad and the course of Islam. George Ronald, Oxford (U.K.), 1976, p.193.
  12. ^ Najeebabadi, Akbar Shah (2001). The History of Islam v. 2. Riyadh: Darussalam. p. 110. ISBN 9960892883. 
  13. ^ Glubb, John Bagot (1965). The Empire of the Arabs. Prentis-Hall. 
  14. ^ Al-Tabari, Muhammad ibn Jarir. pp=372-379, Tarikh Al-Tabari Vol. 3.
  15. ^ Al-Tabari, Muhammad ibn Jarir. pp=309-356, Tarikh Al-Tabari Vol. 4.
  16. ^ Al-Tabari, Muhammad ibn Jarir. History of al-Tabari Vol. 19, The Caliphate of Yazid b. Mu'awiyah.
  17. ^ Al-Athir, Ali ibn. pp=282-299, pp=310-313, Ibn al-Athir Vol. 3.
  18. ^ Al-Dhahabi, Muhammad bin Ahmad. pp=30, Tarikh Ul Islam Vol. 5.
  19. ^ Ibn Kathir, Ismail bin Umar. pp=170-207, pp=219-221, pp=223, Al Bidayah Wal Nihayah Vol 8.
  20. ^ Al-Suyuti, Jalaluddin. pp=165, Tarikh Ul Khulafa.
  21. ^ Maududi, Sayyid Abul Ala. pp=181, Khilafat Wa Mulukiyyat.
  22. ^ Al-Dhahabi, Muhammad bin Ahmad. 4:37-38, Siyar A`lâm al-Nubalâ.
  23. ^ Usmani, Maulana Mufti Taqi. Hazrat Muawiya and Historical Facts. Karachi, Pakistan: Idara Al-Mu'arif. pp. 111-112. 
  24. ^ Hazrat Muawiya and Historical Facts by Maulana Mufti Taqi Usmani p. 111-114 (Idara Al-Mu'arif, Karachi, Pakistan).

Further reading

External links

Yazid I
Born: 647  Died: 11 November 683
Sunni Islam titles
Preceded by
Muawiyah I
Caliph of Islam
Umayyad Caliph

680 – 11 November 683
also claimed by Abd Allah ibn al-Zubayr in 680
Succeeded by
Muawiyah II

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.

Yazid_I
 



 

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