Non-Muslims in the Early Islamic Empire

Non-Muslims in the Early Islamic Empire : From Surrender to Coexistence

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The Muslim conquest of the East in the seventh century entailed the subjugation of Christians, Jews, Zoroastrians and others. Although much has been written about the status of non-Muslims in the Islamic empire, no previous works have examined how the rules applying to minorities were formulated. Milka Levy-Rubin's remarkable book traces the emergence of these regulations from the first surrender agreements in the immediate aftermath of conquest to the formation of the canonic document called the Pact of 'Umar, which was formalized under the early 'Abbasids, in the first half of the ninth century. The study reveals that the conquered peoples themselves played a major role in the creation of these policies and that they were based on long-standing traditions, customs and institutions from earlier pre-Islamic cultures that originated in the worlds of both the conquerors and the conquered. In its connections to Roman, Byzantine and Sasanian traditions, the book will appeal to historians of Europe as well as Arabia and more

Product details

  • Electronic book text
  • Cambridge University Press (Virtual Publishing)
  • Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • 3 b/w illus. 1 map
  • 1139216104
  • 9781139216104

Table of contents

Introduction; 1. The roots and authenticity of the surrender agreements in the seventh century; 2. Shurut 'Umar and its alternatives: the legal debate over the status of dhimmis; 3. The date and the ideology of the Ghiyar code; 4. The enforcement of Shurut 'Umar; 5. The provenance of the modes of subordination of non-Muslims; more

Review quote

'In Non-Muslims in the Early Islamic Empire: From Surrender to Coexistence, Milka Levy-Rubin brings a new approach to the study of the Shurut Umar (Conditions of Umar) and the status of the dhimmis under the early caliphate ... Levy-Rubin's work is an important contribution to a growing body of research that is seeking to understand the development of the early Muslim community in its broader historical context.' Middle East Media and Book Reviews Online ( 'Levy-Rubin's monograph skilfully weaves together analyses of Muslim and non-Muslim sources to bring new light to a subject of early Islamic history that is well trodden by modern scholars but remains poorly understood.' Scott Savran, Review of Middle East Studies '... a very well researched and written book ...' The Muslim World Book Reviewshow more