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harra_battle.pdf THE BATTLE OF THE HARRA Some Socio- Economic Aspects The numerous reports of the revolt against Yazid b. Mu'awiya b. abi Sufyan in Medina and the bloody battle of the Harra (27 Dhii l-Hijja, 63 AH = 26 August, AD 683) contain many details on the preparations for the battle, letters sent by the Caliph to the Ieaders of the rebels, speeches of the Ieaders and the battle itself, as well as about rebels killed on the battlefield or executed at the order of Muslim b. 'Uqba, the commander of the army sent by Yazid to quell the rebellion.! The various accounts, some 1 See Khalifa b. Khayyat, Ta'rikh (ed. Diya' al-Dln aI-'UmarI) (Baghdad, 1386/ 1967) I, 224-225; Ibn Sa'd, Tabaqdt (Beirut, 1377/1957) v, 38-39, 144-147, 170-172, 177, 215, 225-226, 255-256, 259-260, 263-267, 270, 274-275, 277-280, 295-296, 298; al-Baladhuri, Ansdb al-ashriif (ed. M. Schloessinger) (Jerusalem, 1938) rvb, 19·-46; al-Ya'qubi, Ta'rikh (al-Najaf, 1384/1964) II, 237-238; al-Dlnawari, al-Akhbdr al-tiwdl (ed. 'Abd al-Mun'im 'Amir Jamal al-Din al-Shayyal) (Cairo, 1960), 264-267; al-Fakihi, Ta'rikh Makka, Ms. Leiden Or. 463, fol. 400a; Mus'ab b. 'Abdallah alZubayri, Nasab Quraysh (ed. Levi-Provencal) (Cairo, 1953), 133, 215, 222, 228, 256, 282, 361, 371, 384; al-Tabarl, Ta'rtkb (Cairo, 1358/1939) IV, 366--381; Ibn Qutayba, 'Uyiin al-akhbiir (Cairo, 1343/1924) I, 202; Ibn 'Abd Rabbihi, al-Tqd al-farid (ed. Ahmad Amln, Ahmad al-Zayn, Ibrahim al-Abyarl) (Cairo, 1381/1962) IV, 387-390; al-Mas'fidl, Murii] al-dhahab (ed. Muhammad Muhyl l-Din 'Abd al-Hamid) (Cairo, 1357/1938) III, 17-18; idem, al-Tanbih wa-l-ishrdf (ed. de Goeje) (Leiden, 1894), 304306; Ibn Qutayba, al-Madrif (ed. al-Sawl) (Cairo, 1390/1970; reprint), 153, 172; Ps. Ibn Qutayba, al-Imdma wa-l-siydsa (Cairo, 1331) I, 168-190; Abu l-Faraj, al-Aghdni (Cairo, 1285) I, 12-16; Ibn Ra's Ghanama, Maniiqil al-durar fi maniibit al-zahar, Ms. Chester Beatty 4254, fols. 73b-81a; Ibn 'Asakir, Ta'rikh (tahdhib) (ed. Ibn Badran) (Damascus, 1351) VII, 372-374, 407-413; Sibt Ibn al-Jauzi, Tadhkirat al-khawtiss (alNajaf, 1383/1964), 287-292; al-Dhahabi, Ta'rtkb at-Islam (Cairo, 1368) II, 354-359; idem, Siyar a'liim al-nubald' (ed. As'ad Talas) (Cairo, 1962) III, 217-220; Ibn Kathir, al-Biddya wa-l-nihiiya (Beirut - al-Riyad, 1966) VI, 233-235; VIII, 211-212, 215-224; al-Qurtubi, al-Tadhkira (ed. Ahmad Muhammad Mursi) (Cairo, n.d.), 605-606; alDamiri, Haytit al-hayawdn (Cairo, 1383/1963) I, 60-61; al-Bayhaql, al-Mahdsin wa-Imasdwl (ed. Muhammad Abu I·FaQI Ibrahim) (Cairo, 1380/1961) I, 99-104; Mutahhar b. Tahir al-Maqdisi, ai-Bad' wa-l-tdrikb (ed. C. Huart) (paris, 1919) VII, 13-14; alSuyut], Ta'rikh al-khulafd' (ed. Muhammad Muhyl l-Dln 'Abd al-Hamid) (Cairo. of which contain divergent details or contradictions, help us nevertheless to gain an insight into the consecutive stages of the conflict, the attitudes of different tribal groups and their leaders and the particulars of the military operation. The reports on the factors of the conflict between the Caliph and the people of Medina and the causes of the revolt are, however, meagre and give almost unanimous emphasis to the religious motives of the clash. Some scattered details, occurring in fragmentary accounts outside the generally known sources, may shed new light on the roots of the conflict and the factors which were responsible for the battle of the Barra. I Some details of the relations between Yazid and Medina may be surveyed in the following lines. In the short period beginning with the investiture of Yazid as Caliph and ending with the battle of the Barra, there were frequent changes of governors in Medina. The governor appointed by Mu'awiya, al-Walid b. 'Utba, was deposed shortly after Yazid ascended the throne because he failed to prevent the escape of the two Qurashi Ieaders, al-Husayn and 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr.? His successor, 'Amr b. Sa'Id al-Ashdaq.! also failed to get an oath of allegiance from 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr or to seize him. He was then ordered by the Caliph to send against him a troop levied from among the people listed in the paymentroll.s A supplementary passage records the composition of the force sent by 'Amr b. Sa'Id: four hundred soidiers, groups of the mawiili bani umayya and groups not listed in the payment Iist.> The people enrolled in the diwiin were reluctant to set out for Mecca in order to fight 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr.s Abu Mikhnaf stresses in his report that the majority of 1371/1952), 209-210; al-Diyarbakri, Ta'rikh al-khamis (Cairo, 1283) II, 302-303; alSamhudi, Wafd" al-wafd bi-akhbdr dar al-Mustafd (ed. Muhammad Muhyi l-Din 'Abd al-Hamid) (Cairo, 1374/1955) I, 125-138; Ibn al-'Imiid, Shadhardt al-dhabab (Beirut, n.d.; reprint) I, 71; Khalil b. Aybak al-Safadi, Tamdm al-mutiin Ii sharh risdlat Ibn Zaydiin (ed. Muhammad Abu l-Fadl Ibrahim) (Cairo, 1389/1969),208-212; al-Tsami, Simt al-nujiim al-iawdli (Cairo, 1380) III, 88-94; and see £[2, s. v. al-Harra (L. Veccia Vaglieri). 2 3 4 J. Wellhausen, Das arabische Reich und sein Sturz (Berlin, 1902; reprint), 92. Al-Baladhuri, op. cit. rvb, 23, lines 9-10. See al-Baladhurl, op. cit. tvb, 23, lines 18-19: ... kataba i/a "amri bni sa'tdin al-ashdaqi ya'muruhu an yuwajjiha i/a 'abdi lldhi bni I-zubayri jayshan min ah/i I-'ala'i wa-l-diwdni ... (al-Baladhuri records it from the report of al-Waqidi). 5 Al-Baladhuri, op. cit. rvb, 25, lines 15-21. 6 Ps. Ibn Qutayba, op. cit. I, 184: ... fa-daraba 'alii ah/i l-diwiini l-ba'tha i/a makkata wa-hum kdrihilna li-l-khurilji, 34 THE BATTLE OF THE HARRA the recruited force preferred not to join the force and sent instead hired men, who ought to fight in their place. Most of the force sympathized with 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr. 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr sent against them troops recruited from among the people of al-Hijaz who were imbued with a fighting spirit and religious zeal and convinced that they were fighting for a just cause." It was no wonder that the force sent by the governor of Medina under the command of 'Amr b. aI-Zubayr (the brother of 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr) was defeated; 'Amr b. al-Zubayr was captured and treacherously and cruelly executed. The sympathy of wide circles of the Muslim community was indeed with 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr. There were some doubts about the stability and duration of the Umayyad rule and an apprehension that 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr may succeed in grasping the power from the Umayyads. This feeling of uncertainty was rife even among some Umayyad officials. The governor of Medina, 'Amr b. Sa'id, according to one tradition, sent a messenger to 'Abdallah b. 'Amr b. aI-'A.~ (who stayed in Egypt) inquiring about it. 'Abdallah b. 'Amr b. aI-'A.~, well known for his knowledge, piety and his ability to foretell future events because he was acquainted with the "Book of Daniel", answered that the rule would continue to be in the hands of the Umayyad Caliph and that 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr would not succeed in his effort to seize authority in the Muslim Empire. This led 'Amr b. Sa'Id to take several measures so as to get hold of 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr by stratagem and deceit.f 'Abdallah b. al-lAbbas proved to have had a sound evaluation of the situation after the death of Mu'awiya: He assured the people in his presence that the Umayyad rule would endure and summoned them to give the oath of allegiance to Yazid.? These stories may be spurious, but they help us to gauge the trends in some influential circles of the Muslim community. 'Amr b. Sa'id failed to seize 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr, or to compel him to give the oath of allegiance to Yazid. He was deposed (in Dhii l-Hijja, 61 AH) and explained to the Caliph the causes of his failure: He did not have at his disposal regular troops by which he could have subcued 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr. Yazid rightly reprimanded him, asking why 7 See al-Baladhurl, op. cit. rvb, 24, lines 14--16: ... wa-kdna aktharu l-jayshi budalii'a min al-'atii'i wa-jufluhum yah wauna bna l-zubayri "abda ttat«. fa-siirii hattii ntahau itii makkata, fa-akhraja ilayhim "abdu lliihi bnu l-zubayri rijdlan min ahli l-bijiizi, dhawi dinin wa-fadlin wa-ra'yin wa-thabdtin wa-basti'ira ... ; cf. Ps. Ibn Qutayba, op. cit. I, 184 inf. 8 Al-Tabari, op. cit. IV, 365-366; Ibn Ra's Ghanama, op, cit., fol. 72b. 9 Ps. Ibn Qutayba, op. cit. I, 166 inf.-167 sup. 35 he did not ask for a military force to be despatched from AIWalid b. 'Utba was reinstated as governor of Medina in 61 AH and was the official leader of the Qajj in that year.U 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr feigning loyalty to Yazid, and hinting that he would be ready to undertake some acts of reconciliation, complained to the Caliph of the rudeness ofal-Walid b. "Utba and asked to replace him by a milder governor. Yazid responded, deposed al-Walid b. 'Utba and appointed 'Uthman b. Muhammad b. abi Sufyan, The pilgrimage ceremony was still officially led by al-Walid b. 'Utba in 62 AH.12 'Uthman b. Muhammad, an inexperienced and lenient young man, remained in the office of the governor only eight months.U He tried to start a new policy of appeasement with the malcontent Medinans, who openly manifested their sympathy for 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr. He despatched, at the Caliph's order, a representative deputation of the nobles (ashriif) of the city to Damascus, the capital of the Empire. They were welcomed by the Caliph and granted munificent gifts. However, when they returned to Medina they circulated shocking stories about the Iicentious behaviour of the profligate and corrupt Caliph, stirred the people against him and threw off his allegiance.l+ The Ieaders of the rebellion, 'Abdallah b. Hanzala.i> 'Abdallah b. al-Mutr,16 Ma'qil b. Sinan 17 and others, were heedless to the warnings and advice of the Cf. al-Tabarl, op. cit. IV, 367; al-Baladhurl, op. cit. rvb, 29, lines 12-18. Khalifa, op. cit. I, 225 penult.-226, ll. 2-5; al- Tabarl, op. cit. IV, 366. 12 Al-Baladhuri, op. cit. rvb, 29 penult.-30 sup. (and see p. 19, lines 15-16); al- Tabari, op. cit. IV, 368 sup., 369, line 3 from bottom; according to Khalifa, op. cit. I, 227, line 7 the hajj was led in 62 AH by 'Uthman b. Muhammad b. abi Sufyan, 13 Waki', Akhbdr al-quddt (ed. 'Abd al-'Azjz Mustafa al-Maraghi) (Cairo, i366/ 10 11 1947) 14 I, 123. See Khalifa, op. cit. I, 227-228; Ibn Ra's Ghanama, op. cit., fol. 74a (quoted from Khalifa); al-Tabari, op. cit. IV, 368; al-Baladhurl, op. cit. rvb, 31; Ibn 'Asakir, op. cit. VII, 372; Ibn Hajar, al-Isdba (Cairo, 1328) II, 299, No. 4637 (quoted from Khalifa); Ibn 'Abd Rabbihi, op. cit. IV, 387 inf.-388; al-Dhahabi, Ta'rikh II, 354. 15 See on him E[2, s.v. 'Abd Allah b. Hanzala (Zettersteen-Pellat). 16 See on him E[2, s.v. 'Abd Allah b. Muti' (Zettersteen-Pellat); and see al-Fasl, al-t lqd al-thamin (ed. Fu'ad Sayyid) (Cario, 1385/1966) v, 287/288 (and see the references given by the editor). 17 See on him Ibn Qutayba, al-Ma'iirif, 129; Ibrl 'Abd al-Barr, al-Isti'iib (ed. 'Ali Muhammad al-Bijawl) (Cairo, 1380/1960), 1431, No. 2460 (and see the list of the Qurashites killed when in bonds on the order of Muslim b. 'Uqba after the defeat at al-Harra; the list is given according to the accounts of Ibn Ishaq, al-Wiiqidi and Wathim a); Ibn Hajar, al-Isaba III, 446, No. 8136. 36 THE BATTLE OF THE HARRA messengers sent to Medina or friendly persons writing to them from They tried to dissuade them from getting involved in a clash with the force which the Caliph prepared against them. But the Medinan malcontents felt that they were united in their resistance to the licentious Caliph and that his messengers merely attempted to undermine this unity.t? It may be pointed out that this so-called unity was not totaI: The 'Alids remained neutral and did not join the rebels.2o 'Abdallah b. 'Umar stressed the legitimacy of the oath of allegiance to Yazid.t! Persons like 'Abdallah b. al-'Abbas, Abu Barza, and 'Abdallah b. 'Umar denied that the struggle between 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr and the Umayyads was for the cause of God: Both parties fought, in their opinion, to gain their lot in this world.22 When 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr asked the wife of 'Abdallah b. 'Umar to prevail upon her husband that he should join him and grant him the oath of allegiance, he argued that his decision to come out in revolt against the impious Mu'awiya, his son and his family was due to the fact that the latter appropriated for themselves the revenues (fay', belonging, of course, by right to the believers - K.); he did it for the cause of God, His Prophet, the Muhajiriin and the Ansar. When the wife brought 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr's message to Ibn 'Umar, the latter remarked that 'Abdallah b. aI-Zubayr desired no more than the grey mules on which Mu'awiya performed his pilgrimage.23 There was almost no Sahiibt who took an active part in the revolt of Medina.s+ The opinions of the pious about the two parties struggling in order to gain authority, power and a share of this world is in full agreement with Wellhausen's conclusion that the religious formulation given to the rebels' arguments against the Umayyads was used as a cover for their 18 Of special interest is the role played by 'Abdallah b. Ja'far, who interceded with Yazid for the Medinans (see e.g. Ps. Ibn Qutayba, op. cit., 169 inf.-170; these details were omitted in Zettersteen's entry on 'Abdallah b. Ja'far in EI2). 19 See e.g. al-Baladhurl, op. cit. rvb, 32: ... ya nu'manu qad ji'tana bi-amrin turidu bihi tafriqa jamd'atind wa-ifsdda rna aslaha lldhu min amrind ... ; Ibn Sa'd, op. cit. v, 145; al-Tabarl, op. cit. IV, 369; Ps. Ibn Qutayba, op. cit. I, 170. 20 Ibn Sa'd, op. cit. V, 215; cf. Ibn Kathir, op. cit. VIII, 218. 21 Ibn Sa'd, op. cit. V, 144; al-Dhahabi, Ta'rikb II, 355, sup.; Ibn Ra's Ghanama, op. cit., fol. 72a; al- 'Isamr, op. cit. III, 90 inf. 22 Al-Fakihi, op. cit., fol. 402a, inf.-402 sup.; cf. al-Baladhuri, op. cit. v, 195196 (ed. S.D. Goitein); Ibn Ra's Ghanama, op. cit., fol. 72a; al-Hakim, al-Mustadrak (Hyderabad, 1342) IV, 470. 23 Abu I-Faraj, op. cit. I, 12. 24 See al-Tsami, op. cit. III, 91: ... wa-lam yuwdfiq ahla l-madinati 'ala hiidhti l-khal'i ahadun min akdbiri ashdbi rasali lliihi(~). 37 desire to gain political authority and power.2S There seems, however, to have been a considerable difference in aims and objectives between the rebels of Medina and those who resisted the Umayyad authority and prepared their rebellion under the leadership of 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr in Mecca. II The widely current report, as recorded in the sources, is that the cause of the revolt in Medina was the fact that the Medinan Ieaders were reluctant to give the oath of allegiance to Yazid after they had seen his licentious behaviour when they paid a visit to his court. A quite different account of the causes of the revolt in Medina is given in al-Ya'qiibi's (d. 292 AH) Ta'rikh,26 where it is related that Yazid appointed 'Uthman b. Muhammad b. Abi Sufyan as governor over Medina. Ibn Mina, who was in charge of the estates of Mu'awiya (~awiifi mu'iiwiyata), came to 'Uthman and informed him that the people of Medina did not Iet him collect the crops of wheat and dates and carry them (scil. to the Caliph - K.) as he had been in the habit of doing every year. The governor, 'Uthman b. Muhammad, summoned a group of people from Medina and rebuked them harshly for their deed. They rose in revolt against him and against the Banii Umayya in Medina and expelled them from the city; on their way out the expelled Umayyads had stones thrown at them. A similar report is recorded by al-Samhiidi (d. 911 AH) in his Wafii' al-wafii.s" It is, as al-Samhiidi remarks, a summary (mulakhkhas) of an account of al-Waqidi, as given in his "Kitiib al-lfarra". Ibn Mina in this report carries the title "'iimi/'alii sawcft l-madtna", "the official in charge of the estates of al-Madina". "There were at that time many sawaft in Medina," the report says. Mu'awiya yielded from the estates of Medina and its environs (a'riirjuhii) crops amounting to a hundred fifty thousand wasq of dates and a hundred thousand wasq wheat. After the appointment of 'Uthman b. Muhammad by Yazid, Ibn Mina came with a party (of labourers - K.) from the Barra, betaking himself to the lands (amwiil) of Mu'awiya. He led the party unhindered until he reached the area of the Balharith b. al-Khazraj and proceeded to till (naqaba) the fields in their territory. The Balharith came out and had an argument with Ibn 2S Wellhausen, op, cit., 102-103. Ed. Muhammad 27 I, 127-128. 26 Sadiq Bahr al-'uliim (al-Najaf, 1384/1964) II, 237. 38 THE BATILE OF THE HARRA Mina, stating that he had no right to carry out his work and that his action was an unlawful innovation (/:ladath) and (constituted - K.) an injury (¢arar) for them. The governor, having been informed by Ibn Mina about the conflict, asked three men of the Balharith to grant Ibn Mimi a permit to pass their territory. They gave their consent, but when he came with his party to work, the Balharith barred him from the estates. When he complained to the governor, the latter ordered him to "gather those he could" against them (i.e. against the Balharith - K.) and attached to this troop some of (his) soldiers (ba'¢a jundin). He ordered him to cross their lands "even if they had to do it on their bellies" (wa-lau 'alii butiinihim; sci1. on the bellies of the Balharith - K.), as the wording of the account puts it. When Ibn Mina proceeded next day with his party to the estates of Mu'awiya, he was confronted by a party of Ansar who came aided by a group of Qurashites and prevented him from carrying out his work. The situation became serious and Ibn Mina returned to the governor, reporting the events. The governor communicated with the Caliph and urged him to take steps against the people of Medina. The Caliph decided to dispatch a military force against Medina. Al-Waqidi's brief report, as given by al-Samhiidi at the end of the ninth century (AH) can be supplemented by additional details from a combined account recorded by Abu l-'Arab (d. 333 AH) at the end of the third century and based mainly on the authority of al-Waqidi.P' The first sentences of the account are almost identicak-? the account differs, however, on some important particulars of the story. The clashes of Ibn Mina and his labourers with the Balharith, says the account, continued for a month. They sometimes allowed him to carry out some work; sometimes they gathered against him and no work could be done at alPo After Ibn Mina complained to the governor, the latter summoned three men from the Balharith: Muhammad b. 'Abdallah b. Zayd, Zuhayr b. abi Mas'Iid and Muhammad b. al-Nu'man b. al-Bashir. They gave their consent and Ibn Mina came with his labourers and did some work. A group of people of Medina: al-Miswar b. Makhrama.U 'Abd al-Rahman 28 Abu l-IArab, Kitdb al-mihan, Ms. Cambridge Qq. 235, fols. 5Ia-65a; see on the author: Sezgin, GAS I, 356-357. 29 The difference in the quantities of the crops recorded here (51,000 wasq dates and 100,000 wasq wheat) may probably be traced back to a clerical error. 30 See al-Mihan, fol. 51b: ... wa-dararun "alaynd, fa-makathii 'ala dhdlika shahran, yaghdii bnu mind wa-yariihu bi-tummdlihi fa-marratan ya'bauna "alayhi ... 31 See on him Mus'ab b. 'Abdallah, op. cit., 262-263; Anonymous, al-Ta'rikh al-muhkam, Ms.Br.Mus., Or. 8653, fol. l1lb; Ibn Hajar, al-Isaba III, 419, No. 7993; 39 b. 'Abd al-Qari,32 'Abd al-Rahman b. al-Aswad b. 'Abd Yaghuth,33 'Abdallah b. Muti' and 'Abdallah b. abi Rabi'a.s+ went to "these people" (apparently the Balharith who gave their consent to resume the work of Ibn Mina - K.), incited them35 and asked them not to permit Ibn Mina to till in their estatesss except by their consent and willingness. The rest of the story agrees with al-Samhudi.s? The force of Ibn Mina, aided by soidiers supplied by the governor, was barred from work by a QurashiAnsarl troop. Some divergence can be noticed in an additional passage recorded by Abu I-'Arab, on the authority of al-Waqidi.s'' A delegation composed of ten Qurashites and a group of Ansar called on the governor, 'Uthman b. Muhammad, and complained about the actions of Ibn Mina and the fact that he had gathered a force against them. They were disappointed to find that the governor himself was behind Ibn Mina and his actions. The conversation between the governor and the delegation became harsh and the governor decided to write to the Caliph on the hostile attitude of the Medinans towards the Caliph. The Caliph despatched to the Medinans a sharp letter warning them of the consequences of their actions and threatening that he would use force against them. The account recorded by Abu I-Arab gives us a better insight into the attitudes of the land-owners in Medina, and the contacts between the Ansar and the Qurashites in Medina in order to make a common cause against what they regarded as the unlawful claims of the Umayyad ruler and his unjust appropriation of their estates. Ibn 'Abd al-Barr, al-Isti'iib, 1399, No. 2405; al-Baladhurl, Ansdb al-ashrtif Iva (ed. M. Schloessinger),index. 32 See on him Ibn Hajar, al-Isdba III, 71, No. 6223; Ibn 'Abd al-Barr, op. cit., 839, No. 1433. 33 See on him at-Fast, op. cit. v, 342, No. 1712; Ibn Hajar, op. cit. II, 390, No. 5081; Mus'ab b. 'Abdallah, op. cit., 262. 34 See on him Mus'ab b. 'Abdallah, op. cit., 318. 35 In text r-" P.r---; I could not find a suitable interpretation of this word in this context. 36 The term in this passage is: ... wa-qdlii ld tada' iihu yanqub fi haqqikum iIla bi-tibi nafsin minkum 37 ... It may be remarked that here, in this version, the phrase "and gather against them whom you can" has an additional word: "min mawdlikum" "from among your mawalt", 38 Fol. 52a, line 6: qdla l-wdqidi: fa-haddathani usdma bnu zaydin al-laythi 'an muhammadi bni qaysin ... 40 THE BATTLE OF THE HARRA III Some of the words or terms recorded in the account of al-Waqidi are obscure and vague. An attempt should be made to elucidate the meanings of these words in order to enable a more accurate understanding of the text. The account says that Ibn Mina was in charge of the sawaft of Medina and adds that there were at that time many ~awiifiin Medina. The word sawiift usually denotes "a public land", "state domains",39 Saleh A. elAli, referring to the passage discussed here, remarks that al-Waqidi "probably included in these ~awiifithe public lands and the seven endowments which had belonged to the Prophet. Nevertheless they did not exploit them for their own personal purposes, otherwise they would have aroused opposition and the sources would have mentioned that the Prophet granted several Muslims some of the uncultivated lands either for dwelling, or for cultivation, or for other purposes."40 But sawaf; in this account, and generally in this period, does not only denote state domains or public land. I~!afii implies in fact confiscation of land and property+t The confiscated property could be transferred or given as gift. So, for instance, 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr confiscated the property of Mu'awiya in Mecca; one of the courts confiscated was given by him as a gift to his son It is implausible to assume that there were "state domains" in Mecca and Medina, as Medina was not conquered by force, and the Iand of Medina was divided by the Prophet himself and alotted to the people of the ~ahaba. The clue for the understanding ofthe term is given by al-Ya'qiibi. Mu'awiya, al-Ya'qtibi reports, 39 See Lekkegaard, Islamic Taxation in the Classical Period (Copenhagen, 1950), 49-51. 40 Saleh A. eI-Ali, Muslim Estates in Hidjaz in the First Century AH., JESHO 2 (1959), 251. The explanation of Muhammad Muhyl l-Din 'Abd al-Harnid, the editor of al-Samhudl's Wafd' al-wafd, of the word "~awdfi" as palm trees (I, 127, n. 1) is erroneous and it is useless to discuss it. H. Lammens (Le Califat de Yazid ler [Beirut, 1921],219) translates sawdf]: "domaines de Mo'awia", 41 See al-Tabarl, op, cit., Glossarium, s.v. ~afd: sdfiyatun id quod confiscatum est, al-sawdfi = praedia confiscata. 42 Al-Azraqi. Akhbdr Makka (ed. F. Wiistenfeld) (Leipzig, 1858; reprint), 460: •.. i~!afdlld fi amwdli mu'iiwiyata fa-wahabahd li-bnihi hamzata; and see ibid., 452. Sawiifl as recorded by al-Azraqi and al-Samhudi denote lands and property belonging to and administered by the Caliph. The term usually refers to the property of the Umayyads confiscated by the 'Abbasids. See e.g. al-Azraql, op. cit., 461 penult.: ... hattd ustufiyat hina kharajat al-khildfatu min bani marwdna ... ; 467: ... istafdhu amiru l-mu'minina abii ja'far, wa-kdna fihi haqqun qad kana badu bani umayyata shtardhu fa-stufiya minhum ... ; and see 453: ... fa-lam tazal fi l-sawdfi hattd raddahd 41 confiscated the property of people and appropriated it for himself.43 The true character of Mu'awiya's sawiift in Medina is explicitly exposed in another passage of al-Ya'qiibi. Stressing the appropriation of stateestates in the conquered territories by Mu'awiya, al-Ya'qiibi says: "He was the first to own ~awiifi in the whole world, even in Mecca and Medina and an amount (of crops - K.) of dates and wheat was carried to him every year."44 The sawaft were thus identical with the amwdl mu'iiwiya, the private possessions of Mu'awiya in Medina. Ps. Ibn Qutayba in his al-Imiima says that Ibn Minii.4S came with a party46 of men from the Harra proceeding towards the estates of Mu'awiya tyurtdu l-amwiila llau kiinat li-mu'iiwiyatat. The true character of these sawaft, or amwiil, is indicated in an explanatory sentence added by the author: "These were estates acquired by Mu'awiya and orchards of date-palms, which yielded hundred sixty thousand wasqs."47 It is indeed the way of acquisition (iktisiib) which brought about the conflict between the Medinans and the Caliph. The reports about Mu'awiya's sawiift are corroborated by numerous reports concerning his purchase of courts, palaces.sf estates and lands l-mut asimu bi-ildhi ... ; and see 449, 460, 463, 464, 467: .. .fa-hiya I-yauma fi 1sawdfi, Comp. al-Samhudl, op. cit. II, 699, lines 11-12: fa-sdrat badu fi l-sawdfi, wa-kdnat al-dawdwinu flhii wa-baytu l-mdli ... ; ibid. II, 721: ... anna ddra marwdna sarat fi l-sawdfi, ay li-bayti l-mdli ... ; and see ibid. II, 729-730. About the "~awafi daulati bani umayya" in Egypt see al-Muhasibi, A'rndl al-quliib wa-l-jawdrib (ed. 'Abd al-Qadir Ahmad 'Ata) (Cairo, 1969),230-231. 43 AI-Ya'qiibi, op. cit. II, 221, lines 1-2: ... wa-stasfd amwdla l-ndsi fa-akhadhahd Ii-nafsihi; comp. ibid., lines 18-20: ... ba'da an akhraja mu' dwiyatu min kulli baladin md kdnat muliiku fdrisa tastasfihi li-anfusihd min al-diyti'i I-'amirati wa-ja'alahu sdfiyatan li-nafsihi fa-aqta'ohu jamd' atan min ahli baytihi. And see about an attempt at confiscation of the property of 'Abdallah b. 'A.mir b. Kurayz: Mus'ab b. 'Abdallah, op. cit., 148 inf.; al-Fasi, op. cit. v, 189. 44 Al-Ya'qubi, op. cit. II, 222, lines 9-13: ... wa-fa'ala mu'dwiyatu bi-l-shami wa-l-jazirati wa-I-yamani mithla md fa'ala bi-L'lrdqi min istisfti'i md kana Ii-I-muliiki min al-diyti'i wa-tasyirihd Ii-nafsihi khiilisatan wa-aqtaahd ahla baytihi wa-khassatahu; wa-ktina awwala man ktinat lahu l-sawdf] fi jami'i l-dunyd hatui bi-makkata wa-Imadinati, fa-innahu kana fihimd shay'un yuhmalu fi kulli sanatin min ausdqi I-tamri wa-l-hintati; and see D.C. Dennet Jr., Conversion and the Poll Tax in Early Islam (trans!. by Fauzi Fahurn Jadallah; revised by Ihsan 'Abbas) (Beirut, 1960), 65, No. 76 (and see the note of the editor, ibid.). 45 Ps. Ibn Qutayba, op. cit. I, 169 (in text: Ibn Mithd, a clerical error). 46 In text erroneously: bi-sirdhin. 47 I, 169: ... wa-kdnat amwdlan iktasabaha mu'iiwiyatu wa-nakhilan minhii mi' ata alfi wasqin wa-sittina alfan. 48 See al-Samhiidl, op. cit. III, 962: ... wa-amma qasr bani jadilata yajuddu mu- fa-inna 42 THE BATTLE OF THE HARRA in Medina+ and his activities of cultivation and irrigation. 50 Mu'awiya's business transactions were carefully planned and thoughtfully worked out.>! * * * "dwiyata bna abi sufydna bandhu li-yakiina hisnan, wa-lahu bdbiini: bdbun shdri'un 'ala khatti bani jadilata ... we-kana Iladhi waliya bind'ahu li-muiiwiyata l-tufaylu bnu abi ka'bin l-ansiiriyyu wa-fi wasatihi bi'r /:!a' .... See the story about the purchase of a part of the orchard of Bi'r l:Ia' by Mu'awiya, ibid. III, 962, sup., 963 inf. And see ibid. II, 741: ... wa-ktinat hddhihi l-ddru (i.e, dar al-rabi", named dar hafsa - K.) qati'atan min rasiili l/ahi ~alla lldhu "alahyi wa-sallam li-t uthmdna bni abi I-'a$i 1thaqafiyyi fa-btii'ahd min wuldihi mu'dwiyatu bnu abi sufydna .... (See on 'Uthman b. abl l-'A~: Ibn Sa'd, op. cit. VII, 40; I, 313; VIII, 51). Sa'Id b. al-'A~ enjoins his son 'Amr to sell only his palace in al-Arsa after his death to Mu'awiya, arguing that it is merely a leisure resort, not an agricultural farm (Abii l-Faraj, op. cit. I, 17: ... innamd ttakhadhtuhu nuzhatan wa-laysa bi-mdliny; and see the story of the acquisition of Arsa by Mu'awiya: al-Samhudl, op. cit. III, 1056-1057; Yaqut, Mu'jam al-bulddn, s.v. Arsa (see the report about the building of the palace by Sa'Id b. al-'A~, the digging of a well, the planting of orchards and the qualities of these orchards). And see about the building of the fortress Oasr Khall by Mu'awiya: al-Samhudi, op. cit. IV, 1289-90; and see ibid. II, 699 (cf. ibid., 701) about the purchase of the court of 'Umar (or the court of 'Abd al-Rahman b. 'Auf) by Mu'awiya, About a court of Mu'awiya in Medina see Ibn 'Asakir, op. cit., Ms. Zahiriyya, op. cit. IX, fol. 109b (... wa-Iahu ddrun bi-l-madinati tashra'u 'alii baldti l-fdkihati ... ). About two courts, dar alnuqsdn and dar al-qatirdn, built by Mu'awiya see al-Samhiidi, op. cit. II, 750. About the purchase of the court of Sufyan b. al-Harith b. 'Abd al-Muttalib by Mu'awiya see al-Samhudi, op. cit. II, 758 (he attached it to the musalld of the Prophet); comp. al-Fakihi, op. cit., fol. 458a (Mu'awiya proposes Khalid b. al-'A~ to sell him his property. The answer of Khalid is significant: "Do you think that a man would sell the place where his father is buried?"). 49 See about the purchase of the lands of al-Zubayr as recorded in al-Fasawl's alMa'rifa wa-l-ta'rikh, Ms. Esad Ef, 2391, fol. 129a; and see about an estate bought by Mu'awiya from Qays b. Sa'd b. 'Ubada: al-Dhahabi, Siyar a'ldm al-nubaki' III, 70 (ba'a qaysu bnu sadin mdlan min mu'dwiyata bi-tis'tna aljan). About the purchase of Thaniyat al-Sharld see al-Samhudl, op. cit., 1066-1067; cf. Saleh A. el-Ali, op. cit., 256. About the purchase of Bughaybigha see: al-Samhiidi, op. cit. IV, 1150-1152. so See al-Samhiidi, op. cit. III, 937-938; ibid., IV, 1232 (saddu mu'awiya); III, 985, 987 ('aynu l-azraq); and see Majd al-Din al-Fayruzabadl, al-Maghdnim al-mutdba fi mo'dlim Tdba (ed. Hamad al-Jasir) (al-Riyad, 1389/1969), 295-296. About the irrigation of raudat bani umayya and amwdl bani umayya see al-Samhiidi, op. cit. III, 1075. It may be stressed that Mu'awiya employed a special agent in charge of his estates; in this passage the estates are called "al-diyd" (al-Samhiidi, op. cit. IV, 1276 sup.: qdla mu'iiwiyatu bnu abi sufytina Ii-tabdi l-rahmdni bni abi ahmada bni jahshin, wa-kiina wakilahu bi-diyd'ihl bi-l-madinati, ya'n: audiyatan shtardhd wa-ltamalahd ... ); cf. al-Baladhurl, op. cit. Iva, 110 inf.-111 sup. (ed. M. Schloessinger) (Jerusalem, 1971). 51 See al-Jahshiyari, Kitdb al-wuzarii' wa-l-kutttib (ed. al-Saqa, al-Abyarl, alShalabi (Cairo, 1357/1938), 26: ... ittakhidh Ii fjiya'an wa-la takun bi-l-ddriim 43 It is evident that these palaces, fortresses, courts and estates needed manpower for maintenance and cultivation. This was provided by captives taken in the wars of conquest and by siaves.52 Groups of skilled Iabourers were brought from the conquered provinces to Mecca and Medina.O Mu'awiya is said to have been the first Caliph to use forced labour. 54 The mawiilt were entrusted with various duties and carried out different kinds of work, as imposed on them by their patrons. Consequently the mawiilt society was not based on egalitarian principles; among a group of mawiill, attached to a certain family or clan, there were great differences of rank and position. They were considered Ioyal and reliable. When Mu'awiya complained to Ziyad of the attitude of his relatives, Ziyad advised him to rely upon mawiili, because they were more apt to provide aid, more prone to forgive and more grateful (than others - K.).55 Possessing a multitude of mawiilt was considered a sign of strength; families and clans vied among themselves in acquiring mawiili. Some of these mawiilt were absorbed into the clans who strived to gain a firm and strong position.56 Referring to the contest between the Sufyanids and the Merwanids, each attempting to outnumber the other, 'Abd al-Rahman b. al-Hakam argues against Mu'awiya: "If you found none but negroes, you would strive to outnumber us by (adopting and attaching - K.) them" (scil. to your clan - K.).57 In the battle of the Harra the mawiilt fought as a special military formation under the command of Yazid b. Hurmuz,58 under their own banal-mijddb, wa-ld bi-qaysariyyata l-mighrdq, wa-ttakhidhhii bi-majdri l-sahdbi fa-ttakhadha lahu l-butndn min kilrati "asqaldn .... As for his policy of purchasing property in Mecca see JESHO 15 (1972), 84-85; and see Ibn Hajar, al-Isiiba II, 291, No. 4597. Cf. for Syria: al-Baladhuri, op. cit. Iva, 50, lines 5-7; 52, lines 7-12. 52 See Saleh A. el-Ali, op. cit., 252; and see JESHO 3 (1960) 334. About "the black and the red" ial-humriin wa-l-siidiint servants (ghilman) of Mu'awiya working in his estates see: al-Baladhurl, op. cit. rva, 42 inf.-43 sup. 53 See about labourers who made baked bricks for the houses of Mu'awiya in Mecca: al-Azraqi, op. cit., 496 ult.-497, lines 1-2; al-Fakihl, op. cit., fo1. 503a: kana ya'malu fihti nabatun baatha bihim mu'tiwiyatu bnu abi sufydna (r) ya'maliina I-ajurra Ii-diirihi bi-makkata 54 ... ahadun qablahu. See al-Ya'qubl, op. cit. II, 221, line 1: ... wa-banii wa-shayyada l-bina'o wal-ndsa fi bina'ihi wa-lam yusakhkhir sakhkhara 55 56 man ta' ashshaba i/ayhim li-yata'azzaz u bihi. 57 Al-Baladhurl, op. cit. Iva, 53, lines 12-13: ... [au [am tajid illd l-zanja la- Al-Baladhuri, op. cit. Iva, 23, lines 17-18. See e.g. al-Baladhurl, op. cit. v, 163, lines 7-8: ... wa-hum yadummiina takaththarta 58 bihim "alaynii. See on him Khalifa b. Khayyat, Tabaqdt (ed. Akram 1;>iya' l·'Umari) (Baghdad, a 44 THE BATTLE OF THE HARRA ner;59 they were entrusted with the defence of the section of the ditch, dug by the Medinans against the approaching Syrian army, stretching from Ratij60 until the quarter of the Banu 'Abd Their force was divided into squadrons (kariidis) positioned behind each other.62 They were assaulted by a unit of the Syrian army and called upon to surrender; the commander, Yazid b. Hurmuz, refused and decided to continue the fight.63 It is remarkable that the mawiilt fought in such a steadfast and courageous manner, while the Bami Haritha, who were freemen, forsook their quarter and opened it treacherously, permitting the Syrians to attack their brethren in Medina.s+ Some commentators of the Qur'an stated indeed that verse 14 of Siirat al-ahziib: "If the enemy had entered from all sides and they had been exhorted to treachery, they would have committed it, and would have hesitated thereupon but little," referred to the shameful deed of the Banu Haritha.o> The number of the Umayyad mawdli, the mawiili bani umayya, or mawiilt mu'iiwiya, seems to have been considerable. This can be gauged from a unique report recorded by Ibn Ra's Ghanama. The direct cause of the expulsion of the Umayyads from Medina and the throwing off of the allegiance of Yazid, says the report, was a clash between the people of Medina and the mawiili mu'iiwiya. A powerful flow of water poured one day into Medina and the people hurried to direct the water into their fields (itii amwiilihim). The mawdli mu'iiwiya went out (apparently in order to divert the water into the estates of Mu'awiya - K.) and the people started to fight them (apparently preventing them from carrying out their work - K.) and a clash ensued between them (wa-kharaja mawiili mu'iiwiyata fa-qiitalahum ahlu l-madtnativ. The event took place at the time when Yazid was denigrated (by the opposition - K.) and Ibn aI-Zubayr already had thrown off his allegiance to him, the report remarks. The people of the market hoisted a banner (ja-'aqada ahlu 1387/1967), 249 (... kana ra'sa l-mawdli yauma l-harra ... ), 255; al-Baladhurl, op, cit. rvb, 35, line 5. 59 Abul-'Arab, op. cit., fo1. 53a, ult. 60 See about Ratij: al-Samhudi, op. cit. IV, 1215. 61 See Abu I-'Arab, op. cit., fo1. 53a (from Dhubab until Mirbad al-Na'am, the market of the cattle); al-Samhudi, op. cit. I, 129; IV, 1206, line 1. 62 Abu I-'Arab, op. cit., 53a ult.-53b, line 1: ... qad saffa ashdbahu karddisa, badahum khalfa badtn, i/ti ro'si l-thaniyyati ... 63 Abu l..'Arab, op. cit., fo1. 53b. 64 Al-Samhudi, op. cit. I, 130, penult; Abu l-fArab, op. cit., fol. 53b, inf. 65 Al-Suyuti, al-Durr al-manthiir (Cairo, 1314) V, 188,; al-Samhudi, op. cit. I, 131; al-Dlnawarl, op. cit., 265. 45 l-siiqi riiyatan), fought the mawiilt mu'iiwiya and killed (probably some of - K.) them. This caused an upsurge among the people of Medina and they expelled the governor.66 Whatever the historical value of this report, it helps us to gain an insight into the character and the duties of a special group established by the ruler, the mawdli mu'iiwiya. Some of these rnawdli muiiwiya took part in the expedition against 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr, as mentioned above. The Umayyads expelled from Medina Ieft the city accompanied by their mawdli. Important details about the formation of. some groups of mawdli can be deduced from the story about the dismissal of the governor of Medina, 'Amr b. Sa'id. When al-Walid b. 'Utba was reinstalled as governor of Medina (in 62 AH) he arrested some three hundred mawiilt and servants (ghilmiin) of the deposed governor. 'Amr secretly sent a messenger to those arrested, and promised to provide them with camels which would halt in the market of Medina; on a given sign the arrested would break the door of the jail, mount the camels and join him in Syria. The plan was indeed carried out successfully.o? These mawiilt thus had personal Ioyalty and attachment; they were not the official guard of the governor, they were the personal property of 'Amr b. Sa'id. The opinion of the new governor, al-Walid b. 'Utba, seems to have been different: He considered them as property of the state, which had consequently to be transferred to the successive governor. For 'Amr b. Sa'Id had fraudulently appropriated to himself the payments sent by the Caliph to the people of Medina and had used these sums for the acquisition of servants and slaves. This was one of the causes for the fact that relations between the people of Medina and the rulers deteriorated and that they felt bitterly about their governor.68 Further instances of Umayyad mawiili, who identified themselves with their masters and fought bravely for their cause, are recorded. A maulii of 'Utba b. abi Sufyan fortified himself with a group of fifty men in Ibn Ra's Ghanama, Al-Tabari, op. cit. op. cit., fol. 74b. 366-367; Ibn Ra's Ghanarna, 66 67 IV, op. cit., fol. 72b. There is however a remarkable report recorded by Ibn Junghul, in his Ta'rtkb (Ms. BM Or 5912, I, I 62b) , according to which the rebelling Medinans under the command of 'Abdallah b. Hanzala arrested the slaves ('abid) of 'Amr b. Sa'Id and got hold of property, possessions and produce in Medina after the return of the deputation from Damascus in 62 AH. The 300 slaves managed to escape according 'Amr b. Sa'Id and succeeded in joining him. 68 Ps. Ibn Qutayba, op. cit. I, 189, lines 17-18. to a plan devised by 46 THE BATTLE OF THE HARRA al-Ta'if; he later surrendered and was executed by 'Abdallah b. aI-Zubayr in Mecca.s? The role of the mawiili in the struggle between 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr and the Umayyads can be deduced from the story of al-Miswar b. Makhrama. He transferred weapons and coats of mail from Medina to Mecca and distributed them among his trained and steadfast mawdli in order to fight the Syrian troops sent by Yazid, They surrounded him during the fight, trying to defend him; later they abandoned him, but they succeeded in killing several Syrian soldiers.t? The reports quoted above help us to elucidate to some extent the meaning of the two key expressions: "sawdft mu'iiwiya" and "mawdlt mu'iiwiya", The battle of the Harra with its sad result is closely linked to the sawiif] and the mawiili of the Umayyads. IV The Medinans, Ansaris and Qurashites, barring Ibn Mina from access to the estates of Mu'awiya (i.e. the estates of Yazid - K.), argued that his action constitutes hadath and darar. This would indicate that in their opinion the rights of Mu'awiya to these estates were unfounded and his ownership caused damage to their rights. This argument was explicitly formulated in the talk of the deputation of Ansaris and Qurashites who called on the governor of Medina. "You know, they said, that all these estates belong to us and that Mu'awiya preferred others in the granting of payments and did not give us even a dirhem, let alone more.70a This was so until the time when we were pressed by hard time and oppressed by hunger, that Mu'awiya (by exploiting our distress - K.) bought it (i.e. our Iand - K.) by a hundredth of its (realK.) value"."! It is evident that the former landowners considered the acquisition of their property in such a way as an iniquitous transaction by which they were afflicted; they referred to it by the expressions "hadath" and "darar" and considered it void. In their opinion Mu'awiya's ownership was not Iawful and they apparently demanded the restitution of their rights. In a talk with 'Abdallah b. Ja'far, who interceded for the people of Medina, Yazid responded partly to the demands of the Medinans by promising to grant them as an exceptional favour two payments every 69 Al-Baladhurl, op. cit. tvb, 30, lines 12-15. 70 Al-Dhahabl, Siyar a'liim at-nubata'nn, 263. 70a On the delay of payments to the Ansar, Ibn Hajar, al-Isdba I, 194, No. 902. 71 Ps. Ibn Qutayba, op. cit. I, 169. see Ibn 'Asakir, op, cit. III, 369; 47 year (in summer and in winter) and to fix the price of wheat in Medina at a rate equal to that in Syria.72 Yazid also undertook to repay fully the amounts withheld by Mu'awiya.T' In a slightly different version, in which the terms of Muslim b. 'Uqba were formulated, the two former promises, that of making the price of wheat the same as in Syria and that of giving them two payments a year, are supplemented by a promise to repay the amounts dishonestly taken by 'Amr b. Sa'id.74 The Medinans rejected the terms of the Caliph as conveyed by Muslim b. 'Uqba, The rebelling Medinans had, however, no political programme, nor a plan of action. 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr claimed sagaciously and shrewdly that he demanded only to adhere to the idea of the shurii.75 It is remarkable that it was a courageous mauld, Abu Hurra, who dared accuse 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr of striving to declare himself caliph, not caring to act according to the principle of shiirii which he advocated; he consequently parted company with Ibn al-Zubayr.?» The Medinans, in contradistinction, proclaimed that they would not swear the oath of allegiance to Yazid, as reported in the current sources."? They were overconfident of their victory. They thought that if Syrian troops faced them even for a month they would kill not even one of the Medinans.78 They exerted themselves in imitating the Prophet in their military tactics and strategy and dug ditches in Medina, basing their defence on this device.t? as did the Prophet in the Battle of the Ditch. They were asked by their leaders to swear the oath of fighting until death.s? as did the Companions of the Prophet at al-Hudaybiyya. They heedlessly let the Umayyads and their mawiilt leave Medina, credulously convinced that 72 Lammens, op. cit., p. 242 reads according Mahdsin wa-l-masdwi (I, 101) ¥I and translates: to the version of al-Bayhaqi's al"Le calife s'engage a faire vendre chez vous le froment, au prix du fourrage." The text in Ps. Ibn Qutayba, op. cit. I, 170: an aj'ala l-hintata 'indahum ka-si'ri l-hintati "indand; wa-I-hintatu "indahum ... and I, 189: an aj'ala si'ra l-hintati 'indakum ka-si'ri l-bintatt 'indana ... seems to be preferable. 73 Ps. Ibn Qutayba, op. cit. I, 170. 74 Ibid. I, 189. 75 See al-Baladhurl, op. cit. rvb, 16, line 9; 17, line 6; comp, ibid., 29, line 15; 27, lines 11-12; and see ibid. v, 195, lines 9-13; Ibn Ra's Ghanama, op. cit., fol. 73a. 76 Al-Baladhuri, op. cit. rvb, 27; v, 188. 77 See Ibn Sa'd, op. cit. v, 144, line 18; al-Tabarl, op. cit. IV, 370. 78 Ibn Sa'd, op. cit. v, 146: kunnd naqiilu : lau aqdmii shahran md qatalii minnd shay'an. 79 Ps. Ibn Qutayba, op, cit. I, 173; Abu I-'Arab, op. cit., fol. 53a; al-Samhudi, op. cit. IV, 1205. 80 Ps. Ibn Qutayba, op. cit. I, 173; Abu 1·'Arab, op, cit., fol. 53a. 48 THE BATTLE OF THE HARRA they would fulfil their solemn oath not to help the Syrian force if it proceeded against Medina, and that they would even try to persuade the Syrian force not to attack Medina.s! They could have successfully used the Umayyads as hostages when they faced the attack of the Syrian force against Medina, as Marwiin himself rightly estimated.sThe Medinan leaders who succeeded in escaping the massacre of the Harra were deeply shocked, disappointed and embittered. They compared their defeat after a short battle, lasting less than a day, with the resistance of 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr which lasted six months; the fighting force in Medina numbered two thousand zealous fighters, while 'Abdallah b. al-Zubayr fought with a small force and a troop of Khawarij.O It was again Marwan who soundly assessed the fighting forces in his talk with Muslim b. "Uqba, He explained that the common people in Medina had no fighting spirit and that only few of them would fight with resolution and conviction; they also lacked weapons and riding beasts, he remarked.s+ The battle of the Harra is thus seen to be the result of a conflict between the owners of estates and property in Medina and the unjust Umayyad rulers who robbed them of their property. 81 82 83 84 See al-Tabarl, op. cit. IV, 373, lines 5-6; Ps. Ibn Qutayba, op. cit. I, 171. Ibid. See Ibn Sa'd, op. cit. V, 146, inf.; Ps. Ibn Qutayba, op. cit. I, 1711, 181. Ps. Ibn Qutayba, op. cit. I, 172. 49