The Arab Caliphate was formed as a result of the unification of Arab tribes, the center of which was the Arabian Peninsula.
In the V-VI centuries. in southwestern Arabia there was a crisis of slavery, and among the nomadic tribes, the decay of the primitive system was observed. Tribal discord intensified, which was the cause of the wars. Sheikhs (heads of tribes) and saids (tribal elders) seized the best pastures and livestock. The right to hold public office has become a hereditary privilege of the rich. The economically leading region was the Hijas (agricultural region of the Red Sea coast), along which the main trade and caravan routes passed. This area became the center of the union.
A characteristic feature of the formation of the state among the Arabs was the religious coloring of this process: a close connection between the formation of statehood and the emergence of a new religion – Islam. The political and religious movement was led by the prophet Muhammad (570-632). He proclaimed the need for a cult in a single God-Allah and a new social order that excluded tribal strife. The head of the Arabs was to be a prophet – the messenger of Allah on earth. Ultimately, Muhammad managed to enlist the support of a wide variety of social groups.
In the 20-30s. VII century. the design of the Muslim community of Muhammad in Medina was completed. A religious and supra-tribal organization was created – the nucleus of the emerging state. Muhammad himself acted as a prophet, leader, military leader and judge. With the help of Islam and military units, tribal separatism was gradually overcome. The closest relatives and companions of Muhammad gradually entered the privileged group, from which, after the death of the prophet, new sole leaders of the Muslims – caliphs (substitutes of the prophet) – emerged.
Caliph Omar (634-644) completed the political unification of Arabia. In the VII-VIII centuries. other caliphs carried out the conquest of the Middle East, Central Asia, Transcaucasia, North Africa and Spain. As a result, a feudal empire was formed – the Arab Caliphate with its center in Damascus.
There are 2 stages in the history of the Caliphate: Damascus (Syrian), when the Umayyad dynasty (661-750) was in power and Baghdad (Mesopotamian), when the Abbasids ruled (750-1055). They study the main stages of statehood.
The empire was fragile. Already from the middle of the VIII century. the process of disintegration begins and the formation of “small” caliphates occurs: Cordoba (Spain), Cairo (Egypt), etc. In the XI century. The Seljuk Turks captured Baghdad and deprived the Caliph of the secular power, although they recognized him as their spiritual head.
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