Posted by: asianshock | March 4, 2011

Abbasid Dynasty before the Crusades and Post-Crusade Jerusalem

The Abbasid Dynasty ruled from 750-969 and was based in Baghdad. They attempted to wipe out any reminder of the Umayyid dynasty which included Abbasid Caliph Al-Ma-mun trying to take credit for building the Dome of the Rock in 9th cen. Al-Ma-Mun also continues polemic against Christians. Islams had a problem with the Christians saying that there were multiple Gods.
After the Abbasids came the Fatimids who ruled out of Egypt from 969-1099. This was during a period of upheaval but the population of Jerusalem continued to increase. The Welfare of the Jews and Christians in Jerusalem depended on the ruler at the time. In 1009, Caliph al-Hakim, who was crazy, ordered the destruction of all Jewish and Christian places of prayer. During this time, the Byzantine Christians were advancing south and had captured the Muslim territory of Syria. Also, the Selijuqs occupied Jerusalem for a brief period between 1070-1098. The Fatimids lead a 40 day siege to take Jerusalem back from the Selijuqs. All this infighting weakened them, making them susceptible to the Crusaders.

Saladin began to rule Jerusalem after he defeated the Crusaders at the Battle of Hattin. He allowed Jews to settle and gave the Holy Sepulcher to the Greek orthodox. However, after Saladin died, his successors had trouble holding onto to power. This lead to 7 different Crusades that tried to take Jerusalem back. The 5th crusade in 1219 managed to get the Jerusalem walls dismantled. However, after the 8th crusade which failed, the last Crusade outpost, Akko falls in 1291.
Jerusalem was now just a back country town with very few people. A grassroot movement of slaves called the Mamluk established themselves in Jerusalem. They turned the city into a religious center. They built schools, hostels, and hospices. Rabbi Moses ben Nachman makes aliyah in 1267 CE to Jerusalem. This begins Jewish mysticism and the belief of a spiritual temple.
Ottoman Jerusalem extends from 1516-1918. The Ottomans take Constantinople in 1453. Selim I defeats the Mamluks in 1517 at Marj-Dabik and Jerusalem peacefully surrenders in 1516. Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent ruled Jerusalem from 1520-1566. He rebuilt the walls of Jerusalem, fixes up the Temple Mount (Haram) and establishes a shari’a court. It made the rule of the land based upon religious text.


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