Biography of Abd al-Malik (ca. 973-1008)

Military leader of al - Andalus, firstborn son of Almanzor, born approximately in the 973 and died in 1008. It governed, occupying the position of hachib, since the death of his father in 1002 until the date of his death. His Government was characterized by the maintenance of the previous situation, since roughly followed the Government guidelines set by his father.

Son of Muhammad ibn Abi Al - Mansur Ammim, better known by its name in the chronic Christian of Almanzor, Abd al Malik was linked to the decisions of the Government of his father from a young age, was declared heir to official form in 991 to the age of eighteen, when Almanzor ruled absolutely and was at the Summit of his powerrelegating the reigning Caliph, Hisham II, to the background, since he only enjoyed a relative religious authority.

In the year 996 the mother of Hisham II, Subh, tried to remove part of the caliphal treasure, with the idea of financing a movement against Almanzor and their descendants, to return control of the situation to his son of the Alcázar of Córdoba. The plot was discovered and with the support of the conceptualisation, Almanzor decided to move the caliphal treasure to Medina al - Zahira. Move as huge treasure was Abd al Malik who fulfilled the order of his father on 24 May of the year 986.

Abd al - Malik was actively involved in military actions undertaken by his father, accompanying him and directing expeditions against the Christian kingdoms of the North of the peninsula; also directed the armies of Almanzor, in the campaigns in North Africa, in the year 1000 led the army that conquered, on behalf of Hisham II and the amiri caudillo, the city of Fez.

In the year 1002 Abd al - Malik had served his father as in the Caliphate, in this time had to face a series of problems, on the one hand the Christian kingdoms that paid outcasts to his father felt disconnected from their commitments; on the other hand in Cordoba emerged a movement against the amiri regime, led by Umayyad clienteles and important officers of Slavic origin who saw with bad eyes the power they accumulated the Berbers brought by Almanzor in North Africa, called the effective occupation of the power from Hisham II. Abd al - Malik faced difficulties with energy and forced Christians to continue to maintain their commitments. Thus the Regent of León, Mendo González, Sancho of Castile and Ramon Borrell de Barcelona had to pay parias to the new leader of al - Andalus, which made them realize that Abd al - Malik was a weak ruler and was a worthy successor to his father, though not so intelligent.

With regard to Cordoba the Caliph himself, delivered to a dissolute life in court, refused to change the rules that their Government had governed and declared in the main mosque, delivering the full authority to Abd al - Malik. Therefore as Almanzor the power of his son was all during all his Government and it can be said that the regime founded by Almanzor was extended during the Government of this.

Since the first year of his Government of Abd al - Malik showed that he possessed a strong experienced Warrior, general character, was harder than its predecessor, as since his youth had participated in numerous campaigns and war was an essential part of their existence. In 1002 launched a double attack against Leon, from Galicia and directly over this Kingdom from their border, although not obtaining the expected results, since Leon received the support of the counts of Castile and Saldaña, deeply divided Christians, were forced to spend a significant amount of money and pledged to provide men in successive campaigns undertaken by the amiriThis is why Leon names in the expedition carried out by Abd al - Malik against Catalonia in the year 1003.

The expedition against Catalonia was carried out to curb the expansive anxieties of the count of Barcelona Ramón Borrel that supported by his brother Armengol, count of Urgel, tried to increase his Kingdom at the expense of Muslim territories. Abd al - Malik was able to stop the catalan count, and forced him to sign peace. Despite this victory could guess a certain weakening of the Caliphate military power, since the blows suffered by the Christian kingdoms were less impressive times of Almanzor. In this way many kingdoms of Northern peninsular became bolder in their actions, as in the case of the count of Castile, Sancho I García of good charters, which supported the Regent of León against Abd al - Malik and years later, while Muslim campaigns were directed at Ribagorza, in 1006, initiated a policy of alliances to take responsibility for the resistance. In 1007, Abd al - Malik seized Clunia and received the title of al - Muzaffar ('the victorious'), but the fruits of Sancho policy would be in the campaign of 1008, where the armies of Abd al - Malik suffered a tremendous defeat.

In the autumn of 1008, after the bitter defeat, Abd al - Malik returned to Córdoba suffering from a serious illness which led him to death on October 20 of that year. There has been speculation with his brother and successor, Abd al Rahman ibn Sanchul, poisoned you to seize power, although this theory is not proven.

Bibliography

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Martin, J.L. "The medieval Spain", in Manual of the history of Spain. José Luis Martín, vol II. Madrid: History 16.