Post-classical history

Al-Sulamī (1039-1106)

‘Ali ibn Tāhir al-Sulami is one of the most important Muslim sources for the period of the First Crusade (1096-1099).

He was a Shāfi‘ite teacher and scholar at the Great Mosque in Damascus who in 1105 dictated a series of public lectures calling the Muslims to jihād (holy war). Only parts of the original manuscript from which he dictated, entitled Kitāb al-Jihād (Book of the Holy War), have survived. The manuscript has been partially edited, with a French translation, by Emmanuel Sivan. Al-Sulami’s text is vital to modern understanding of the crusades, representing one of the earliest extant calls to the jihād from the period. However, the impact of his work at the time seems to have been limited. Only later in the twelfth century did calls to the jihād begin to have significant effect.

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