Early Islamic History Outline

Caliph, Caliphs, Imam, Imams, Muslim Early History Chart

General Information

  • Muhammad (623-632)
  • Abu Bakr (632-634) father-in-law (Arabic, khalifah, [successor]), khalifat Rasul Allah, [successor to the Messenger of God]), 1st Caliph
  • Umar I (634-644) amir-al-mum-inin (Arabic, [commander of the believers], 2nd Caliph
  • Uthman ibn Affan (644-656) Muhammad's son-in-law, 3rd Caliph
  • Ali Ben Abu Talib (656-661) a cousin and son-in-law of Muhammad, 4th Caliph
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(Shi'ites, Shi'a) (Kharijites, Kharijiyyah) (Sunni, Sunnites)
Ali Ben Abu Talib (656-661) (1st Imam)
al-Hasan (661-669) (2nd Imam)
al-Husayn (669-680) (3rd Imam)
Ali Zayn al-'Abidin (680-713) (4th Imam)
Muhammad al-Baqir (713-733) (5th Imam)
Ja'far al-Sadiq (733-765)
(or Jafar ibn Muhammad) (6th Imam)

(Ismailis, Isma'iliyyah)
(Sevener Shi'ites)

Ismail (died before, 760,)
(7th imam, last for Ismailis)
or Muhammad, his son
(either is considered to still be alive, hiding)


(Fatimids) (through Ismail)

Ubayd Allah al-Mahdi (909- )

al-Qa'im

al-Mansur -972)

Moizz (972- )

Al-Hakim (3rd Fatimid Caliph)

Abu 'Ali al-Mansur al-Hakim (985-1021)
(6th Fatimid Caliph)

al-Mustansir ( -1094)

al-Mustali (1094- ) began Musta'liyyah

he killed brother, Nizar, began Nizariyyah, Nizaris, Khojas

( -1171)

(overthrown by Saladin 1171)

(but endures as the Druzes)

Twelver Shi'ites, Imamiyyah
(Ithna Ashariyya)

Musa al-Kazim (765-799) (7th imam)
'Ali al-Rida (799-818) (8th Imam)
Muhammad al-Jawad (818-835) (9th Imam)
'ali al-Hadi (835-868) (10th Imam)
al-Hasan al-'Askari (868-874) (11th Imam)
had student ibn Nusayr (d.868), began Nusayris, Nusayriyyah
Muhammad al-Mahdi (12th Imam, last)
(considered to still be alive, hiding)


(Buwayhids)

(945- )

Adid ( -1171)

(conquered by Saladin 1171)


Ayyubids

Saladin (1171-1193)

al-Adil (1193-1218)

al-Kamil (1218-1238)

( -1249)

(conquered by Mamelukes 1249)


(Babis)

(1830- )

Ali Muhammad Shirazi ( -1850), started Babism

Mirza Husayn Ali Nuri (c.1863), started Ba'hai

. (c. 650 - c.720) Often called the Puritans of Islam, as they demanded purity of conscience as well as body. They tended to brand everyone who did not agree with them as unbelievers. A sub-sect, the Azraqites, believed in such rigid following of the Koran as to massacre large groups of Muslims who had allegedly committed grave sins. Interestingly, Kharijites were very tolerant of non-Muslims. Umayyad Caliphs (661-750)

  • Muawiyah I ibn Abu Sufyan (661-680)
    related to Uthman
  • Yazid I ibn Muawiyah (680-683)
  • Muawiya II ibn Yazid (683-684)
  • Marwan I (684-685)
  • Abd al-Malik ibn Marwan (685-705)
  • al-Walid I ibn Abd al-Malik (705-715)
  • Suleiman ibn Abd al-Malik (715-717)
  • Umar ibn Abd al-Aziz (717-720)
  • Yazid II ibn Abd al-Malik (720-724)
  • Hisham ibn Abd al-Malik (724-743)
  • al-Walid II ibn Abd al-Malik (743-744)
  • Yazid III ibn Abd al-Malik (744)
  • Ibrahim ibn Abd al-Malik (744)
  • Marwan II (744-750)
    (end of Umayyad)
    (conquered by Abbasids 750)


Umayyad Caliphs of Cordoba
(Spanish Umayyads) (929-1031)

  • Abd-ar-rahman I, escaped to Spain, 756-788

  • Abd-ar-rahman III, as caliph, 929-961
  • Al-Hakam II, 961-976
  • Hisham II, 976-1008
  • civil war (1008-1028)
  • Mohammed II, 1008-1009
  • Suleiman, 1009-1010
  • Hisham II, restored, 1010-1012
  • Suleiman, restored, 1012-1017
  • Abd-ar-rahman IV, 1021-1022
  • Abd-ar-rahman V, 1022-1023
  • Muhammad III, 1023-1024
  • Hisham III, 1027-1031

Abbasid Caliphs of Baghdad (750-1258)
descendants of Prophet's uncle Abbas
Sunnites

  • Abu'l Abbas Al-Saffah 750-754
  • Al-Mansur 754-775
  • Al-Mahdi 775-785
  • Al-Hadi 785-786
  • Harun al-Rashid 786-809
  • Al-Amin 809-813
  • Al-Ma'mun 813-833
  • Al-Mu'tasim 833-842
  • Al-Wathiq 842-847
  • Al-Mutawakkil 847-861
  • Al-Muntasir 861-862
  • Al-Musta'in 862-866
  • Al-Mu'tazz 866-869
  • Al-Muhtadi 869-870
  • Al-Mu'tamid 870-892
  • Al-Mu'tadid 892-902
  • Al-Muktafi 902-908
  • ??? (908, one day)
  • Al-Muqtadir 908-932
  • Al-Qahir 932-934
  • Al-Radi 934-940
  • Al-Muttaqi 940-944
  • Al-Mustakfi 944-946
  • (by about 950, very little power)
  • Al-Muti 946-974
  • Al-Ta'i 974-991
  • Al-Qadir 991-1031
  • Al-Qa'im 1031-1075
  • Al-Muqtadi 1075-1094
  • Al-Mustazhir 1094-1118
  • Al-Mustarshid 1118-1135
  • Al-Rashid 1135-1136
  • Al-Muqtafi 1136-1160
  • Al-Mustanjid 1160-1170
  • Al-Mustadi 1170-1180
  • An-Nasir 1180-1225
  • Az-Zahir 1225-1226
  • Al-Mustansir 1226-1242
  • Al-Musta'sim 1242-1258
  • (conquered by Mongols in 1258)

(Mamelukes)

(first Dynasty, Bahri) (1250-1382)

(second Dynasty, Burji) (1382-1517)

[two Caliphs, but just symbolic]

(defeated by Selim, 1517)

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From about the 13th century various monarchs throughout the Muslim world, particularly the Ottoman sultans, assumed the title caliph indiscriminately without regard to the prescribed requirements of the caliphate. The title held little significance for the Ottoman sultans until their empire began to decline. In the 19th century, with the advent of Christian powers in the Near East, the sultan began to emphasize his role as caliph in an effort to gain the support of Muslims living outside his realm. The Ottoman Empire collapsed during World War I (1914-1918). After the war, Turkish nationalists deposed the sultan, and the caliphate was finally abolished (March 1924) by the Turkish Grand National Assembly.


Caliphs

Advanced Information

Unfortunately, we are not aware of any scholarly texts on this subject which have yet been translated into English. We know that a number of Arabic scholars have written wonderful texts in Arabic, and look for the day when we will be able to add higher quality texts to this presentation.


Also, see:
Islam, Muhammad
Koran, Qur'an
Pillars of Faith
Abraham
Testament of Abraham
Allah
Hadiths
Revelation - Hadiths from Book 1 of al-Bukhari
Belief - Hadiths from Book 2 of al-Bukhari
Knowledge - Hadiths from Book 3 of al-Bukhari
Times of the Prayers - Hadiths from Book 10 of al-Bukhari
Shortening the Prayers (At-Taqseer) - Hadiths from Book 20 of al-Bukhari
Pilgrimmage (Hajj) - Hadiths from Book 26 of al-Bukhari
Fighting for the Cause of Allah (Jihad) - Hadiths of Book 52 of al-Bukhari
ONENESS, UNIQUENESS OF ALLAH (TAWHEED) - Hadiths of Book 93 of al-Bukhari
Hanafiyyah School Theology (Sunni)
Malikiyyah School Theology (Sunni)
Shafi'iyyah School Theology (Sunni)
Hanbaliyyah School Theology (Sunni)
Maturidiyyah Theology (Sunni)
Ash'ariyyah Theology (Sunni)
Mutazilah Theology
Ja'fari Theology (Shia)
Nusayriyyah Theology (Shia)
Zaydiyyah Theology (Shia)
Kharijiyyah
Imams (Shia)
Druze
Qarmatiyyah (Shia)
Ahmadi
Ishmael, Ismail
Early Islamic History Outline
Hegira
Averroes
Avicenna
Machpela
Kaaba, Black Stone
Ramadan
Sunnites, Sunni
Shiites, Shia
Mecca
Medina
Sahih, al-Bukhari
Sufism
Wahhabism
Abu Bakr
Abbasids
Ayyubids
Umayyads
Fatima
Fatimids (Shia)
Ismailis (Shia)
Mamelukes
Saladin
Seljuks
Aisha
Ali
Lilith
Islamic Calendar
Interactive Muslim Calendar


The individual articles presented here were generally first published in the early 1980s. This subject presentation was first placed on the Internet in December 1997.

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