Biography of Sultán de Granada Abu al-Hassan Ali (¿-1485)

Real name Abu Al - Hassan Ali Ibn Nasr, twentieth Nasrid sultan of Granada (1464-1482, 1483-1485). He/She was the son and successor of Abu Nasr Said, brother of Muhammad XIII Zagal and father of the last Nasrid sultan, Muhammad XII (Boabdil el Chico). He/She was nicknamed by the chronic castellanoleonesas with the nickname of Muley make. He/She was born in Granada, date unknown, and died in Mondujar (province of Granada), in 1485. His reign coincided with the beginning of the large military offensive undertaken by the Catholic Kings to regain the last territorial possessions of the Nasrid Kingdom.

Upon access to the throne, Muley make married the Princess Fatima in order to reconcile rival factions. He/She began his reign with firmness, alternating military actions against Castile and León given the civil war in which Henry IV, was immersed with treaties and truces of peace. However, internally, broke out soon discords at various points of the Nasrid Kingdom increasingly reduced. The city of Malaga revolted to his authority, forcing him to renew, in the year 1475, truces with Castilla-León, accepted by the Catholic Kings every time that they were also experiencing serious moments in their kingdoms.

The truce established between both States broke as a result of two aspects: the first internal in nature, and the second external. Abu al - Hassan took as a favorite to a Christian captive's name Isabel de Solís, whom Granada was known with the name of Soraya, situation which aroused immediate suspicion of the sultana Aixa, whose son Boabdil was called to be the heir to the throne one day. Aixa was able to attract the influential family of the Abencerrages, which worked in the shadows to favour the rise of his son and achieve the disrepute of the sultan. To deal with this apparent unpopularity, Muley make again went to war against Castile and León. On the other hand, at the end of the succession war in Castilla-León between Isabel and her niece, Doña Juana la Beltraneja, the Catholic monarchs decided to resume the war against Granada. Initially, the armies of Muley make obtained some important successes, such as the recovery of Zahara, in the year 1481. On 1 March, the Christians took similarly important square of Alhama. The Granada sultan marched over Alhama in order to retrieve it, but their efforts were sterile. At the same time, the interior of Granada situation worsened greatly succeed uprising fueled by Aixa and his allies, forcing Abu al - Hassan to lock up in a well guarded tower to his scheming wife and their son, the heir to Boabdil, who, as soon as the lesser opportunity arose was rescued by the Abencerrages. Despite the efforts of his vizier Abu al - Qasim Benegas, Muley make Granada fled to take refuge in the castle of Mondújar, where his brother Abu Allah Muhammad joined Zagal. After a third attempt to recover the year 1482, Alhama, Muley make retired to Malaga.

Thanks to the Christian disaster in the battle of the Ajarquía, at the beginning of the winter of the year 1483, in which troops under the command of don Lope de Cardenas were literally massacred by the of the Babe, and the incidental capture of Boabdil in Lucena when returning from a military expedition, Muley make could recover the Nasrid throne. The sultana Aixa, withdrawn in the Albaicin, called his son once this was released by the Catholic Monarchs after a substantial ransom payment and commitment of transferring sovereignty over Granada.

With the civil war up again, notables and leaders of different factions of the Kingdom came into scene trying to take advantage in the confrontation between father and son. On the one hand, Boabdil was established in Almeria, supported by the Abencerrajes, while Muley do, quite aged and blind, remained in the Alhambra, supported by his brother Zagal, who took charge of promoting war against Christians and champion the unity between Muslims and non-disintegration of the Kingdom. The babe was about to get to restore unity in the year 1484, when a bold hand punch tried to take possession of Almeria, where his nephew Boabdil was. From Cordoba, Boabdil returned with Christian troops and the civil war restarted once again.

In 1485, Muley make abdicated in favour of his brother, Muhammad XIII Zagal, fulfilling them wishes of the people, withdrawing on Íllora, Almuñécar and Mondujar, where he/she died in that same year.


ARIE, Rachel: The Kingdom of Granada nasri. (Madrid: Mapfre. Ed. 1992).

LADERO QUESADA, Miguel Ángel: Granada: history of an Islamic country (1232-1571). (Madrid: Gredos. 1976).

SECO DE LUCENA, l: the book of the Alhambra. History of the sultans of Granada. (Madrid: Ed. Everest. 1975).