Biography of King of la taifa de Granada Abdallah ibn Buluggin (ca. 1055-?)

King of the taifa of Granada, born about 1055 and died in Agmat (Morocco) on unknown date. During his reign he/she suffered harassment by Alfonso VI of Castile and was the first monarch of taifas who handed over his Kingdom to the Almoravids.

Son of Buluggin ibn Badis and grandson of Badis ibn Habbus, Abdallah inherited the Kingdom of Granada to the death of his grandfather in 1073. He/She had one older brother, named Tamin al - Muizz, who apparently never named heir by Badis, but his death took over power in Malaga (Badis had appointed there a vizier to govern it until the coming of age of Tamin, who happened at the time). Almost at the same time Sinhaya of Granada sheikhs proclaimed Abdallah, who, like his grandfather, took the titles of al - Muzaffar and al - Nasir and adopted the kunya of Abu Muhammad. It is very likely the choice of Abdallah by the sheikhs to respond to his youth, and these put as tutor to one of them, named Simaya, who ruled as Grand Vizier until 1082.

The city of Baza, which had tilted between the kingdoms of Toledo and Granada, wanting to disassociate itself from the Kingdom of Granada between 1073 and 1066 offered sovereignty to al-Mutasim of Almería, which took advantage of the eventual war between the taifa of Granada and Seville and the inability to address the issues of the new King of Granada Baza and seized asset and its surrounding forts, including the castle of Siles. Granada Abdallah signed a truce with al - Mutasim why the second returned Siles to Granada and in return obtained the fortress of Sant Aflay, located between Fiñana and taverns.

After the death of Badis ibn Habbus on the Kingdom of Granada Spanish pressure intensified and Alfonso VI conquered Alcalá la Real and sent Pedro Ansúrez to ask the monarch Ziri pariahs. Abdallah refused to pay tribute to Castile and this fact was used by Ibn Ammar, vizier of the Kingdom of Seville, maximum enemy of Granada, to ally Seville with Castile and Granada; the Allies built the fortress of Belillos as a base of operations for attacks and Abbad al - Mu' mu'tadid Seville developed from this square displays of force against Abdallah. When the situation was untenable and the monarch Ziri was about to give in to the pariahs, al - Ma' Muni of Toledo it took over Córdoba (1075) and Sevillians diverted your attention towards this matter, allowing Abdallah grab Belillos and evade taxes, although not for long. In 1078, when the Seville people Cordoba, Ibn Ammar returned to understand with Alfonso VI so this up-to-date pariahs to Granada; This time Abdallah was forced to give up, but in negotiations with the Castilians did reduce the tribute of 30,000 meticals which asked for Alfonso VI, to 10,000 annual meticals and the exchange of strategic places of steppe, Castro del Río y Martos by Alcalá la Real and the plaza de Bedmar, which although it belonged to the Du-l-Nun of Toledo, it was granted to Abdallah by Alfonso VI (this fact attests to the power that Alfonso VI already exerted on toledano realm).

The withdrawal of Ibn Ammar (1082) of Seville Court led to an understanding between the kingdoms of Granada and Seville. The successor of Abbad, Muhammad al - Mu'tamid and Abdallah partnered to take resolutions before their main common enemy: the Castilians. This Alliance, but did not lead to shared weapons facts, served to keep the peace between the two kingdoms, although friction existed among them, the most important of which was the takeover of Jaén from Seville. With the advent of the Almoravids in 1086 opened new gaps between the different taifa.

In 1082 Abdallah took the reins of Government, irrespective of its vizier Simaya. This cost him hostilities with the Governors of Guadix and Almuñécar. Simaya moved to Almeria and was intrigued at the Court of al - Mutasim. Until that same year it was Abdallah who fight against his brother Tamin, who eventually emphasized his independence of the Zirid Kingdom and even conquered fortresses belonging to Granada; Malaga attacks by land and sea against Almuñécar and Jete it countered by Abdallah conquering a score of castles of Tamin. The malagueño apologised to Abdallah and this was enough to the Granada sovereign betray him Riana and Jotron and strengths of Cártama, Mijas, Comares and camera. However, the victories obtained by Abdallah in 1082 did not resolve disputes, in which years later had to intervene as an arbitrator the Almoravid emir Yusuf ibn Tashufin.

The conquest of Toledo by Alfonso VI (1085) the different Kings of taifa showed its inability to deal with Alfonso VI and for the first time joined together to seek help from the Almoravids. Abdallah chose as Ambassador alfaqui Ahmed ibn Jalaf al - Gassani, which, along with other notables of Seville and Badajoz, traveled to Morocco to meet with the Almoravid emir. The advent of the Almoravids to the Iberian Peninsula and their victory over the Christians at the battle of Sagrajas (1086) changed the course of events and, for some years, under the protection of the Almoravids, Abdallah declined to pay the outcasts to Alfonso VI.

In 1086 Abdallah, estranged from al - Mutasim of Almería for hosting Simaya in his court, attacked its territory, conquering the fortress of al - Munturi and strengthening the defenses of the entrances to the Zirid realm. Although Abdallah achieved some victories, such as the Torralbas, it was himself who proposed the peace, and even dismantled seven fortresses that had risen against their enemy.

The Almoravid presence on the Peninsula caused internal dissensions in Granada and formed parties in favor or against them, who tried to take advantage of the new situation. Abdallah went up taxes to cover the military campaigns of the Africans (mainly those of Sagrajas and Aledo), which was used by Ahmed ibn Jalaf to try to take advantage in your favor, causing new problems internally in the Zirid realm, until Abdallah was able to impeach him. However rebellions multiplied in the taifa of Granada and the Tamin from Malaga, you should add those of the regular army Zanata, the Jews of Lucena and some sectors of the Court. On the other hand, at the end of the Decade (on 1088/1089), the Granada monarch, who had nothing clear the intentions of the Almoravids, it agreed to pay Alfonso VI annuities which had evaded during the previous three years, but, fearful of new riots occur if taxes rose again, it paid the 30,000 meticals from its own coffers. When Yusuf ibn Tashufin learned these facts wrote Abdallah reproaching him for his performance. June 1090 Yususf third traveled to al - Andalus and met in Cordoba with al - Mu'tamid of Seville to study the case of Abdallah and his collusion with the Christians. Yusuf called Abdallah, who failed to appear. Then he/she wrote to its governors to cease their obedience to the Zirid and pass to the Almoravids; Meanwhile, he/she advanced to Belillos equipped with fetfas (decisions of the muftis on the conformity of some point with the Koranic provisions) against Abdallah by their dealings with Christians and their illegal taxes. This, understanding that the population learns of the taifa (each for their own reasons) expected excited the advent of the Almoravids, came out to meet Yusuf and surrendered September 8, 1090. He/She was later banished to the Maghreb, where, under the Dominion of the Almoravids, wrote his memoirs.

The sources described Abdallah ibn Buluggin as a cowardly and scary, monarch that the Government gave to ignorant viziers, connoisseur of rhetoric and the profane sciences, good versificador and excellent calligrapher. His memories work is raised as a history of the Zirid dynasty and at the same time is the autobiography of a dethroned monarch. Although the work had no great impact in his time, today is a key work in Spanish historiography.


LÓPEZ DE COCA CASTANER. "The Taifa kingdoms", in history of Andalusia, vol. II. Madrid-Barcelona, 1980.

JOVER ZAMORA, J.M. (dir). "The Taifa kingdoms. Al - Andalus in the 11th century,"in history of Spain Menéndez Pidal, vol. VIII-I. Madrid, Espasa Calpe, 1994.