Biography of King of la taifa de Badajoz Omar al-Mutawakkil (ca. 1045-ca. 1094)

Last King of the taifa of Badajoz born about 1045 and died murdered in the vicinity of Badajoz to 1094. His reign was prosperous times of peace, followed by the showdown against English expansionism of Alfonso VI. After the arrival to the Peninsula of the almoravides the taifa of Badajoz, like others, was annexed to the North African Empire.

Son of Muhammad al-Muzaffar, was appointed Governor of Evora and even her father ruled the Eastern and the western regions of the United aftasida from Coria to Sierra Morena. On the death of his father in 1068 was declared independent, while the Kingdom of Badajoz passed to his brother Yahya, who was entitled al - Mansur bi-Allah. In October of that year the Kingdom of Badajoz was attacked by Alfonso VI of Castile the refusal of Yahya of paying more taxes to the Christian King, arguing that the outcasts were to be supported also by Omar. Yahya called for help to the Banu Di n-Nun of Toledo and appointed heir to his Kingdom to Abul Hassan Yahya ibn Ismail, thereby excluding Omar of the legacy of al - Muzaffar. Omar sought support of Abul Qasim Muhammad ibn Abbad of Seville, thus starting a war that, according to the Chronicles, left Badajoz devastated and its people in misery.

The war only stopped after the sudden death of Yahya to 1072, when Omar became sovereign of the Kingdom of aftasida of Badajoz and adopted the title of al - Mutawakkil ala-Llah (' the one who only trust in God') - that had used on the coins issued since 1068-. Settled in Badajoz, which moved the ECSC and appointed Governor of Evora to his son al - Abbas. Between 1072 and 1079 developed an intense cultural movement in Badajoz under the patronage of al - Mutawakkil, who gathered in the city to the Andalusian literary elite. It was named vizier to Abd al - Rahman ibn Sahir, exiled from Sevilla and who had participated in the negotiations between Omar and Yahya, carried out immediately after the death of al - Muzaffar; It also gave the same charge to Ibn Al-Hadrami, who later dismissed by the inefficiency that reached the Administration and frequent complaints from the subjects relating to his arrogance and injustice. Following his dismissal did not return to appoint any vizier and personally took over the Affairs of State. The Chronicles speak of a revolt in Lisbon without specifying the date, al - Mutawakkil met by granting his Government to Ibn Jira, who sent to the city with a letter addressed to the Lisbon; rhetoric When the situation calmed, Omar deprived Ibn Jira from your Government.

In 1079 Alfonso VI conquered Coria, with what realm aftasida lost one of its most strategic squares. A year later the Christian pressure was unsustainable for the Kingdom of Toledo and al - Mutawakkil sent his Minister Ibn al - Kallas to the city. The most intransigent of Toledo urged the monarch aftasida to expel from the city to the weak Yahya ibn Ismail and himself to take the Government, as a means of avoiding the Christian conquest; Omar entered the city in June 1080, and remained in it until April of the following year, returning to Badajoz to the impossibility of establishing an effective Government over the extensive Kingdom of Toledo and confront the increasingly more powerful Christian forces. In reality al - Mutawakkil spent not efforts to reinforce the city's defenses and, instead, spent their stay in Toledo to enjoy pleasures, such as already living at the Court of Badajoz and its March took with him the treasures of Toledo alcazar who had belonged to Yahya ibn Ismail.

In 1086 Omar al - Mutawakkil was one of the main promoters of the call to the Almoravids to save the situation of al - Andalus front thrust of Alfonso VI, who the previous year had conquered Toledo. The King of Badajoz, in a letter to the Almoravid emir, Yusuf ibn Tashufin, expressed the despair of the other Kings of the taifas and urged him so that he/she would come to fight the Christians. Omar instructed his caid Abu al - Walid that would meet with the different Andalusi qwwad to make decisions and that he/she subsequently crossed the Strait to request of the wali of Ceuta the use of its ports for embarking the expeditionary troops. Then al - Mutawakkil sent Ibn Muqana meeting qwwad convened by Muhammad ibn Abbad of Seville after which went to Africa to meet with the Almoravid emir. The Almoravids arrived in Al - Andalus 30 June 1086 and headed towards Badajoz to confront the troops of Alfonso VI. The battle of Sagrajas took place October 23, 1086 in the vicinity of Badajoz and therein the Castilian army was severely defeated. THE result of the battle changed the course of events in Al - Andalus: Ségolène Royal, the Almoravids began to annex the different taifa kingdoms. Between 1090 and 1092 fell into the Almoravid orbit the kingdoms of Granada, Cordoba, Sevilla and other small taifas of South and East peninsular.

Al - Mutawakkil attempted to save sovereignty over his Kingdom through a double game that, while he/she had his congratulations to Yusuf ibn Tashufin by the taking of Granada and collaborated with the Almoravids in the conquest of Seville, called for support to Alfonso VI in Exchange for the squares of Lisbon, Cintra and Santarem; the Castilian King took possession of these cities in May of 1093. This made losing popularity to the monarch aftasida and the town of Badajoz requested the concurrence of the Almoravids as a means of saving the Kingdom to islam. The city was not taken, but al - Mutawakkil and his family were lit and imprisoned. Later, he/she was executed along with his sons al - Fadl and al - Abbas accused of having collaborated with the Christians. The Muslim chroniclers differ on the date of these events.

In addition to those mentioned, al - Fadl and al - Abbas, Omar al - Mutawakkil had at least another son, al - Mansur, who went to the Christian side at the end of the days of the Kingdom of Badajoz. Omar was an extremely educated man, who had built at his residence - in the Toledo, both of Badajoz in the short time that remained there - munias or playgrounds that were cultivated all the arts of literature and especially the poetry. Poets of the stature of Ibn Yaj, Ibn Muqana, the brothers al - Qabturnu or philosophers like Ibn al - Sid Al - Batalyawsi or al - Bayi were found in the Court of the King of Badajoz.


DOZY, R. Histoire des Muslim d'Espagne juste la conquête de l' Cordoba pas les Almoravides. Paris, 1932.

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.

LUMP ALBARRAN, M. political history of Extremadura in the Islamic period (713-1248). Badajoz, 1986.