The Caliphates of Mūsā Al-Hādī (785–786) and Hārūn Al-Rashīd (786–809)

Andrew Marsham

in Rituals of Islamic Monarchy

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print May 2009 | ISBN: 9780748625123
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748653157 | DOI:
The Caliphates of Mūsā Al-Hādī (785–786) and Hārūn Al-Rashīd (786–809)

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When al-Mahdi died suddenly and unexpectedly, Hārūn Al-Rashīd duly had Mūsā recognised as caliph, but Mūsā was to reign for only a short period. He died after fourteen months of being the caliph. As a result, accounts of the events of his short caliphate were shaped during the caliphate of Hārūn Al-Rashīd, who reigned for the next twenty-three years. This chapter discusses the caliphate of Mūsā Al-Hādī and Hārūn Al-Rashīd. The first chapter discusses the succession to Hārūn Al-Rashīd and the ‘Meccan settlement’. The second section focuses on the witness clause of the agreement of 802. This was a list of witnesses to an agreement intended to prevent conflict within the imperial elite. The list also illustrates the strict hierarchies of the early Abbasid court, in which the proximity to the caliph was determined by seniority of position in the imperial elite.

Keywords: Hārūn Al-Rashīd; Mūsā; caliphate; Mūsā Al-Hādī; succession; Meccan settlement; witness clause; agreement of 802; Abbasid court

Chapter.  6052 words. 

Subjects: Society and Culture

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