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Genealogy and Knowledge in Muslim SocietiesUnderstanding the Past$
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Sarah Bowen Savant and Helena de Felipe

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780748644971

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2015

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748644971.001.0001

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Ways of Connecting With the Past: Genealogies in Nasrid Granada

Ways of Connecting With the Past: Genealogies in Nasrid Granada

(p.71) Chapter 5 Ways of Connecting With the Past: Genealogies in Nasrid Granada
Genealogy and Knowledge in Muslim Societies

Maribel Fierro

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter examines the case of the Nasrids of Granada in late Muslim Spain. In his biographical dictionary al-Ihata fi akhbar Gharnata, the Andalusi scholar Ibn al-Khatib (d. 776/1374) emphasises the genealogical links of Arab families in Granada in his day with those of ancestors dating from the conquest period. At the same time, the dynasty's genealogy connects through an ancestor to Prophetic times. These prestigious genealogical roots placed the Nasrid kingdom in a solid position to counteract its Christian and Maghribian rivals. Ibn al-Khatib's material focuses on the conquest and on those Muslims who were the first to enter the Iberian Peninsula, that is, the Arab conquerors. This chapter looks at Nasrid elites in Granada and their Arab ancestors among the conquerors. It also describes al-Andalus, considered to be an island surrounded by the sea and by Christians, and at the time of the Nasrids in the seventh/thirteenth and eighth/fourteenth centuries was inhabited by Arabs who took pride in their ancestry linking them to Arabia and Syria.

Keywords:   al-Ihata fi akhbar Gharnata, Nasrids, Granada, Ibn al-Khatib, genealogy, conquest, Muslims, al-Andalus, Arab ancestry

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