IMC 2007: Sessions

Session 1326: Islamic Egypt

Wednesday 11 July 2007, 16.30-18.00

Moderator/Chair:Dionisius A. Agius, Department of Arabic & Middle Eastern Studies, University of Leeds
Paper 1326-aÉlites coptes du Caire médiéval
(Language: Français)
Adel Y. Sidarus, Universidade de Évora
Index terms: Genealogy and Prosopography, Islamic and Arabic Studies, Language and Literature - Other, Social History
Paper 1326-bSultan Barquq and his Complaining Subjects in the Royal Stable of Mamluk Cairo
(Language: English)
Fumihiko Hasebe, Faculty of Letters, Keio University, Tokyo
Index terms: Islamic and Arabic Studies, Social History
Paper 1326-cFranciscan Missions in Islamic Egypt (13th-15th Centuries): Friars’ Engagement for the Knowledge of Islam in Western Medieval Europe
(Language: English)
Fulvia Serpico, Department of Arts & History, Università di Lecce
Index terms: Crusades, Religious Life, Sermons and Preaching, Social History

Paper a: En abordant l’âge d’or de la littérature copte arabe médiévale au XIIIe siècle, dont les protagonistes viennent presque exclusivement du Caire médiéval, on est frappé par la récurrence d’écrivains appartenant à des familles de notables accumulant, sur plusieurs générations, des hautes fonctions d’État avec des charges ecclésiastiques. Notre propos est d’identifier trois de ces familles du Caire ayyubide dont les membres se sont particulièrement détachés sous ces différents aspects.
Si la famille des Banu l-‘Assal est bien connue de l’histoire littéraire, deux autres ne le sont que fort mal. Il s’agit d’abord de la double lignée des Banu l-‛Amid / Banu Kalil, et puis des Banu l-Muhadhdhib, parmi lesquels al-Sana’ Anba Butrus al-Rahib et son fils al-Nushu’ Abu Shakir Ibn al-Rahib se sont particulièrement distingués.
A part l’intérêt pratique évident d’une telle approche généalogique et prosopographique pour l’histoire religieuse et littéraire interne des Coptes, les nouveaux éléments qui seront présentés jetteront certes une nouvelle lumière sur l’histoire socio-religieuse du Caire médiéval.
:Paper b: In 1387, Sultan Barquq, the founder of the Circassian Mamluk Dynasty, moved the royal mazalim sessions for hearing petitions from Dar al-‘Adl, the time-honored building at the center of the Citadel of Cairo that was symbolic of a Mamluk sultan’s power, to the Royal Stable situated in the peripheral and lower enclosure of the Citadel. Thereafter, he utilized the stable area as a stronghold of his new rule. This paper examines the background, political intention, and social meaning of this important change, with special attention to various actions of urban and rural people during the two reigns of the sultan.
Paper c: St. Francis voyage in Egypt in 1219 during the fifth crusade, represents for the history of West-East relations, an important event that offers a new reading of the exchanges between islamic and christian religion. After his visit to the Sultan Malik al-Kamil, a slow and capillary diffusion of franciscan “missions” starts all over East. What does really mean the term of “mission”? How do Grey Friars face with local reality (urban, religious, social contest)? Several sources (both western than eastern) provide different points of view and interpretations about the “meeting” of these two religions. Sermons and preaching of franciscan friars such as Raimondo Lullo and Ruggero Bacone, contain different elements about “the Knowledge of the Other”, here meant as different people with different religion and life. Elements as: interest, curiosity, comparation and not only confutation and dispute. Who were Muslim for Franciscan Friars? Which heritage did St. Francis leave in Islamic World? This paper examines the presence of friars in the islamic Egypt during the Ayyubide (1174-1254) and Mameluc (1254-1517) domination, in the cities of Damietta, Alessandria, Cairo, making use of sources as preaching, sermons, official papal bulls, official statistics of the Order on the western sides, and arabian local historicians on the eastern side, considering the entire period of the crusades and longer. Often the presence of westerns friars is not officially registered because for these parts of Fraciscan Province (Holy Land Province existed since 1217), is very difficult to analyse a “geographical strategy for the installation” such as for other parts of first Christian East. We know of a first stable installation in Egypt since 1231, when Pope Gregorio IX wrote an official document to the Sultan Malik al-Kamil and after 1291, with Acri’s fall, the presence ad diffusion of franciscan friars in Egypt changes. At the same time, several moments of exchange between Islamic World and Medieval West, have to be considered very important for the mutual knowledge. A mutual acquisition that is not only the result of violence and dispute, but of confrontation and tolerance too.