Muawiyah I

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Muawiyah I
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{{About||other persons named Muawiyah|Muawiya (name)}}

Yazid I>Yazīd ibn Mu'āwiya (son)SufyanidBanu Umayya>Umayyad| father = Abu Sufyan ibn Harb| mother = Hind bint Utbah

Common Era>CEMecca, Hejaz {{smaller>(present-day Saudi Arabia)}}RajabAkbar Shāh K̲h̲ān NajÄ«bābādÄ«, "The History Of Islam", Volume 2, Page 47, February 2001. Islamic calendar#Numbering the years>AH 60 26 April {{Death year and age602}}| death_place = Damascus, Bilad al-Sham| burial_date = | burial_place = Damascus, Bilad al-Sham| religion = Islam}}File:First Fitna map blank.svg|thumb|250px|{{legend-table|style=Rashidun empire under the first Rashidun>four caliphs. The "divided phase" relates to the Rashidun caliphate of Ali during the First Fitna.Rashidun Caliphate strongholds under Ali during the First Fitna.Region controlled by Muawiyah I during the First Fitna.Region controlled by Amr ibn al-AsAmr ibn al-AsMuawiyah I (; 602 â€“ 26 April 680) was the founder and first caliph of the Umayyad Caliphate. He was the first who established the Umayyad dynasty in Islam of the caliphate,BOOK,weblink Sowerwine, James, Caliph and Caliphate Oxford Bibliographies Online Research Guide, 2010, Oxford, 10, 978-0-19-980382-8, The Umayyad Dynasty {{webarchive |url= |date=June 20, 2013 }} at the University of Calgary. and was the second caliph from the Umayyad clan, the first being Uthman ibn Affan.BOOK,weblink Abu Ja'far Muhammad ibn Jarir al-Tabari (trans. Michael G Morony), The History of the Prophets and Kings (Tarikh al-Rusul wa al-Muluk), Vol. 18 Between Civil Wars: The Caliphate of Mu'awiyah A.H. 40, A.D. 661-A.H. 60, A.D. 680, 1987, Albany, New York, 0-87395-933-7, Muawiyah was appointed as the Governor of Syria after his brother Yazid ibn Abu Sufyan died.BOOK, Razwy, Sayed Ali Asgher, A Restatement of the History of Islam & Muslims, 357, In 657, Muawiya's army attacked the army of Ali ibn Abi Talib at the Battle of Siffin. After the death of Ali in 661, Muawiya's army approached that of Ali's son and successor, Hasan ibn Ali. In order to avoid further bloodshed, Hasan signed a peace treaty with Muawiyah.WEB, Ayati, Dr. Ibrahim, A Probe into the History of Ashura',weblink, Ahlul Bayt Digital Islamic Library Project, Muawiyah then assumed power.In power, Muawiyah developed a navy in the Levant and used it to confront the Byzantine Empire in the Aegean Sea and the Sea of Marmara. The caliphate conquered several territories including Cyzicus which were subsequently used as naval bases.A Chronology Of Islamic History 570-1000 CE, By H.U. Rahman 1999, Page 48 and Pages 52-53.

Early life and family

Muawiyah bin Abi Sufyan was born in MeccaBOOK, Ibn Manzur, Mukhtaṣar tārīkh madīnat Dimashq l-Ibn 'Asākir, Summary of the history of Damascus, ar, 7, 356, {{edition needed|date=March 2016}} to Abu Sufyan ibn Harb and Hind bint Utbah (602 CE) into the Banu Umayya sub-clan of the Banu Abd-Shams clan of the Quraysh tribe. The Quraysh controlled the city of Mecca (in the west of present-day Saudi Arabia) and the Banu Abd-Shams were among the most influential of its citizens. In his youth, a stranger looked at Muawiyah and said; I think that this man will rule over his people. Upon hearing him, Hind his mother replied; May I lose him if he were to rule only over his people.Nadia Maria El Cheikh. Women, Islam, and Abbasid Identity. Harvard University Press; 6 October 2015. {{ISBN|978-0-674-73636-8}}. p. 30. His father Abu Sufyan ibn Harb struggled against Islam until Muhammad's army entered Mecca in 630.Muawiyah, Muhammad and Ali shared the same great-great grandfather, 'Abd Manaf bin Qusay, who had four sons: Hashim, Muttalib, Nawfal, and Abdu Shams. Hashim was the great grandfather of Ali and Muhammad. Umayyah bin Abdu Shams was the great grandfather of Muawiyah.{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=81}}Muawiyah and remaining members of his family were open opponents of the Muslims before the ascendancy of Muhammad. Along with his two older brothers, Yazid ibn Abi Sufyan and Utbah, Muawiyah was one of the members of the hunting party of his maternal uncle Walid bin Utbah that pursued Muhammad during the hijra (migration), when Muhammad was hiding in Ghar al-Thawr (Cave of the Bull).BOOK, Al-Mada'ini, Tarikh Al-Khulafah: *Mu'awiya bin Abu Sufyan, {{full citation needed|date=March 2016}}In 630, Muhammad and his followers entered Mecca, and most of the Meccans, including the Abd-Shams clan, formally submitted to Muhammad and accepted Islam.


Ibn Kathir wrote in his book Al-Bidāya wa-n-nihāya: "In terms of his appearance, he was fair and tall, thick, bald with a white head and he had a beard that he used to colour with henna".{{sfn|Ibn Kathir|2012|p=113}}File:Umayyad Caliphate. temp. Mu'awiya I ibn Abi Sufyan. AH 41-60 AD 661-680.jpg|thumb|300px|Coin of the time of Mu'awiya I ibn Abi Sufyan. BCRA (Basra) mint; "Ubayd Allah ibn Ziyad, governor". Dated AH 56 = 675/6 CE. Sasanian style bust imitating (Khosrau II]] right; bismillah and three pellets in margin; c/m: winged creature right / Fire altar with ribbons and attendants; star and crescent flanking flames; date to left, mint name to right.)

Early career in Syria

During the time of Abu Bakr, Muawiyah used to serve under his brother Yazid ibn Abi Sufyan (not to be confused with Muawiyah's son Yazid ibn Muawiya who was the caliph during the period in which Husain ibn Ali was martyred at the Battle of Kerbala). Muawiyah was one of the first to be sent into Syria.ENCYCLOPEDIA, Encyclopædia of Islam, Muʿāwiyah I, VII, 2nd, 263–268, Brill, Bosworth, Al-Tabari, I, 2085 and 2090.BOOK, Al-Baladhuri, Futuh al-Buldan, 108, 117, 119, 126, {{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=6}}In May 636, Emperor Heraclius launched a major expedition against the Muslims, but his army was defeated decisively at the Battle of Yarmouk in August 892 {{webarchive |url= |date=October 11, 2013 }} In the battle, Muawiyah's brother Yazid ibn Abi Sufyan served under Khalid ibn al-Walid and Abu Ubaydah and was in command of one of the wings and Muawiyah was his second in command. Muawiyah's mother Hind also took part in the battle.

Governor of Syria

In 639, Muawiyah was appointed as the governor of Syria by the second caliph Umar after his brother the previous governor Yazid ibn Abi Sufyan and the governor before him Abu Ubaidah ibn al-Jarrah died in a plague along with 25,000 other people.BOOK, Madelung, Wilferd, The Succession to Muhammad A Study of the Early Caliphate,weblink 1998, Cambridge University Press, 978-0-521-64696-3, A Chronology Of Islamic History 570-1000 CE, By H.U. Rahman 1999 Page 40. 'Amr ibn al-'As was sent to take on the Byzantine army in Egypt.With limited resources Muawiyah's marriage to Maysum was politically motivated, as she was the daughter of the chief of the Kalb tribe, that was a large Jacobite Christian Arab tribe in Syria. The Kalb tribe had remained largely neutral when the Muslims first went into Syria.Encyclopedia of Islam Volume VII, page 265, By Bosworth. After the plague that killed much of the Muslim army in Syria, by marrying Maysum, Muawiyah started to use the Jacobite Christians, against the Romans. Muawiya's wife Maysum (Yazid's mother) was also a Jacobite Christian.A Chronology Of Islamic History 570-1000 CE, By H.U. Rahman 1999 Page 72. With limited resources and the Byzantine just over the border, Muawiyah worked in cooperation with the local Christian population.According to some books{{sfn|Holland|2013|p=395}} the town of Caesarea was taken by Muawiyah in 640, when the last Byzantine Roman garrison in Syria and Palestine surrendered. But according to Al-Imam Al-Waqidi, the author of the oldest history books on Islam it was Muawiyah's friend 'Amr ibn al-'As who expelled the Roman army from Caesarea. 'Amr ibn al-'As who along with Muawiyah's brother Yazid ibn Abi Sufyan who later became the governor of Syria, expelled the Roman armies from many Syrian cities and later 'Amr ibn al-'As also moved into Egypt.{{sfn|al-Waqidi|1423|p=575}}Under Muawiyah's governance the Syrian army became a major military force. He picked out the best leaders from various tribes whereas elsewhere in the state the military units were still based along tribal lines. He personally saw to the comfort and the equipment of the troops, increased their pay and paid them on a regular basis when they were on duty. He kept the troops in training by an annual expedition against the Byzantines and therefore kept the Byzantines in a constant state of unease and therefore kept his northern border safe.{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=10}} He encouraged innovations in military technology. Muawiyah's armies used "Minjenique" machines to propel large stones onto enemy ramparts. He modernized the army, introducing specialized units for desert combat and snowy terrains. New forts were also built.Muawiya left the Byzantine and Persian administrative structures intact, being sure not to give his largely non-Muslim subjects any incentive to revolt.BOOK, Sowell, Kirk H., The Arab World An Illustrated History,weblink 2004, Hippocrene Books, 978-0-7818-0990-0, 41, The postal system, which was created by Omar ibn al Khattab for military use, was now opened to the public by Muawiya.{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=40}} Uthman dismissed 'Amr ibn al-'As from governorship of Egypt so Muawiyah asked him to join him in Syria.

Battle of the Masts and expansion in the Mediterranean

(File:Byzantiumby650AD.svg|thumb|560px|left|Byzantine Roman Empire By 650 CE)Muawiya was one of the first to realize the full importance of having a navy; as long as the Byzantine fleet could sail the Mediterranean unopposed, the coastline of Syria, Palestine and Egypt would never be safe. Muawiyah along with Abdullah ibn Sa'd the new governor of Egypt successfully persuaded Uthman to give them permission to construct a large fleet in the dockyards of Egypt and Syria.A Chronology Of Islamic History 570-1000 CE, By H.U. Rahman, 1999, Pages 48-49.The Great Arab Conquests By Hugh Kennedy, page 326. Therefore, to stop the Byzantine harassment from the sea during the Arab-Byzantine Wars, in 649 Muawiyah set up a navy; manned by Monophysite Christians, Copts and Jacobite Syrian Christian sailors and Muslim troops. During his naval expeditions in AH 28 he took Rhodes and later in AH 29 he took Cyprus.{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=10}} He was accompanied by one of his other wives, Katwa, who died in the course of the expedition. Muawiyah had asked Umar once and Uthman twice for permissions to undertake such naval expeditions.{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=10}}The first real naval engagement between the Muslim and the Byzantine navy was the so-called Battle of the Masts (Dhat al-sawari) or Battle of Phoenix off the Lycian coast in 655.The Great Arab Conquests By Hugh Kennedy, page 327.BOOK, Lewis, Archibald Ross, European Naval and Maritime History, 300-1500,weblink 1985, Indiana University Press, 978-0-253-32082-7, 24, BOOK, Kroll, Leonard Michael, History of the Jihad Islam Versus Civilization,weblink 2005, AuthorHouse, 978-1-4634-5730-3, 123, BOOK, Gregory, Timothy E., A History of Byzantium,weblink 2011, John Wiley & Sons, 978-1-4443-5997-8, 183, BOOK, Weston, Mark, Prophets and Princes Saudi Arabia from Muhammad to the Present,weblink 2008, John Wiley & Sons, 978-0-470-18257-4, 61, BOOK, Bradbury, Jim, The Medieval Siege,weblink 1992, Boydell & Brewer, 978-0-85115-357-5, 11, Under the instructions of the caliph Uthman ibn al-Affan, Muawiyah then prepared for the siege of Constantinople.As Uthman ibn al-Affan became very old, Marwan I a relative of Muawiyah slipped into the vacuum and became his secretary and slowly assumed more control and relaxed some of the restrictions on the governors.A Chronology Of Islamic History 570-1000 CE, By H.U. Rahman, 1999, Page 54.

First Fitna

After Caliph Uthman was assassinated in 656, his successor Ali could not arrest and punish the perpetrators. He argued he could not arrest the killers because the killers are in the height of power.وَلكِنْ كَيْفَ لي بِقُوَّة وَالْقَوْمُ الْـمُجْلبُونَ عَلَى حَدِّ شَوْكَتِهِمْ، يَمْلِكُونَنَا وَلاَ نَمْلِكُهُمْNahj Al-Balagha, sermon 167 Ali believed Mu'awiyah used this as an opportunity to seek their political ambitions due to finding Ali's caliphate against their own benefit, as he did not want to acknowledge Ali's rule.Nahj Al-Balagha, sermon 167 Their troops confronted each other in the Battle of Siffin in 657, which was finally resolved by negotiations. These negotiations made Ali's claim to the caliphate dubious and some of his supporters broke away into a group known as the Kharijites. The Kharijite rebellion against Ali culminated in his assassination in 661. At the time, Mu'awiyah already controlled Syria and Egypt, and with the largest force in the Muslim realm, he laid the strongest claim on the caliphate.ENCYCLOPEDIA, Muʿāwiyah I, Encyclopædia Britannica,weblink Donald P., Little,


Muawiyah was crowned as caliph at a ceremony in Jerusalem in 661.BOOK, Avi-Yonah, Michael, History of Israel and the Holy Land By Michael Avi-Yonah, Shimon Peres,weblink 2013-04-30, 2001, Continuum International Publishing Group, Limited, 978-0-8264-1526-4, (File:Umayyad Caliphate. temp. Mu'awiya I ibn Abi Sufyan. AH 41-60 AD 661-680.jpg|200px|thumb|right|Dirham under Muawiyah's Reign)He came to Madina and spoke to the people, saying, "I desired the way followed by Abu Bakr and 'Umar, but I was unable to follow it, and so I have followed a course with you which contains fortune and benefits for you despite some bias, so be pleased with what comes to you from me even if it is little. When good is continuous, even if it is little, it enriches. Discontent makes life grim."{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=33}}He also said in an address which he delivered to the people, "O people! By Allah, it is easier to move the firm mountains than to follow Abu Bakr and 'Umar in their behaviour. But I have followed their way of conduct falling short of those before me, but none after me will equal me in it."{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=33}}Ali's caliphate lasted for around 4 years. After the treaty with Ali's son Hassan, Muawiyah ruled for nearly 20 years most of which were spent expanding the state.Hadhrat Ayesha Siddiqa her life and works by Allamah Syed Sulaiman Nadvi translated by Syed Athar Husain and published by Darul Ishaat Page 47.

Military expeditions

After the peace treaty with Hasan, Muawiyah turned his attention back to the Romans. In 674, Umayyad naval and army forces under the command of Muawiyah's son, Yazid ibn Muawiyah,{{sfn|Ibn Kathir|2012|p=135}} laid siege to the Byzantine capital of Constantinople,{{sfn|Holland|2013|p=400|ps=: "Muawiya looked to keep the Muslims busy, duly renewed the onslaught against the Roman Empire with a vengeance. In 674, he even sponsored a siege of Constantinople itself. In the event, after a blockade of four years, the effort to capture the New Rome had to be abandoned; yet what was striking, perhaps, was not its failure but how close it had come to success."}} but were defeated when the Byzantines introduced Greek fire to the naval battlefield.Treadgold (1997), pp. 325–327. After most of the Arab fleet was destroyed and the Mardaites gained victory in Asia Minor, Muawiyah was compelled to conclude a peace treaty with Byzantium and to pay a yearly tribute to the Emperor.BOOK, Ostrogorsky, George, George Ostrogorsky, History of the Byzantine state, Rutgers University Press, 1957, 112, File:Courtyard and minaret of the Great Mosque of Kairouan, Tunisia.jpg|thumb|The Mosque of UqbaMosque of UqbaFurther west, the Umayyads were keenly aware of Sicily's strategic importance and Muawiya was the first caliph to begin raiding the island in 670. That same year, the Umayyad general Uqba ibn Nafi founded the garrison town Kairouan in Ifriqiya (modern Tunisia). It was used both as a base for military operations and as an administrative centre for north Africa, replacing Carthage.BOOK,weblink Donner, Fred M, "Muhammad and the Caliphate; Political History of the Islamic Empire up to the Mongol Conquest" in The Oxford History of Islam, John Esposito, ed, 1999, Oxford, 35, 0-19-510799-3, A few years later the Umayyads also crossed over into Spain and southern France under the command of Tariq ibn Ziyad and Musa bin Nusayr.{| class="wikitable"Bewley|2002|pp=50-51}}{{sfn|Ibn Kathir|2012|p=21}}! {{longitem|Year{{nobold|{{smaller|(AH)}}}}}} ! External expedition ! Internal issuesKhawarij>Kharijites at Shahrazur.| Kharijites agitation.| Kharijites al-MustawridKurdish issues (Fars).||||||Ibn Kathirpp=55–56}}||||Ibn Kathirpp=55–56}}||| Kharijites.| Walid in central Asia.| Peikund Balkh, Indus.

Leadership style

Welfare state

During the time of Muhammad, the poor were fed in Al-Masjid an-Nabawi in Medina. The revenues of the land in Fadak near Madina were also used for the poor as ṣadaqa, and travelers in need. Later Umar formalized the welfare state Bayt al-mal.BOOK, Ahmad, Abdul Basit, Umar bin Al Khattab - The Second Caliph of Islam,weblink 2001, Darussalam, 978-9960-861-08-1, 44, BOOK, Khālid, Khālid Muḥammad, Khalid, Muhammad Khalid, Men Around the Messenger,weblink 2005, The Other Press, 978-983-9154-73-3, 20, BOOK,weblink Ali, Maulana Muhammad, The Living Thoughts of the Prophet Muhammad, 2011, Dublin, Ohio, 132, 978-1-934271-22-3, The Bayt al-mal or the welfare state was for the Muslim and non-Muslim poor, needy, elderly, orphans, widows, and the disabled. The Bayt al-mal ran for hundreds of years under the Rashidun caliphate in the 7th century and continued through the Umayyad period and well into the Abbasid era. Umar also introduced child benefit and pensions for the children and the elderly.BOOK, Al-Buraey, Muhammad, Administrative Development An Islamic Perspective,weblink 1985, KPI, 978-0-7103-0333-2, 254, The challenge of Islamic renaissance By Syed Abdul Quddus.BOOK, Al-Buraey, Muhammad, Administrative Development An Islamic Perspective,weblink 1985, KPI, 978-0-7103-0059-1, 252, BOOK, Akgündüz, Ahmed, Öztürk, Said, Ottoman History Misperceptions and Truths,weblink 2011, IUR Press, 978-90-902610-8-9, 539, Both Ali and Muawiyah continued the welfare state. Ali was extremely caring towards the poor and when he became caliph the revenue from the land of Fadak continued to go towards the poor.Because of Muawiyah's families previous opposition to the Muslims, before they converted to Islam, there was still some level of resentment towards him. Some of his relatives had been killed in battles fighting against the Muslims. But Muawiyah felt that after his conversion to Islam, for over 20 years, he had been the governor of Syria and expanded the state, confronted the Romans, built up a good administration, a good economy and therefore felt that people should not resent his past.On one occasion, Mu'awiya ascended the minbar and praised Allah. When he wanted to speak, a lad of the Ansar interrupted him and said, "Mu'awiya! What makes you and the people of your house more entitled to this wealth than us! We have no wrong action against you that we know of other than our slaying of your uncle Walid, your grandfather 'Uqba, and your brother Hanzala." Mu'awiya said, "By Allah, nephew, you did not kill them. Rather Allah killed them with angels upon angels at the hands of the sons of their father. That was not a fault nor a loss." The Ansari said, "So where is the fault and loss then?" He said, "You spoke the truth. Do you need something?" He said, "Yes. I look after an old woman and sisters and things have been hard on us." Mu'awiya said, "Take what you can from the treasury." The boy took it and then Mu'awiya resumed his khutba.Muawiya Restorer of the Muslim Faith By Aisha Bewley Page 35 {{webarchive |url= |date=September 20, 2013 }}

Conduct towards non-Muslim subjects

Muawiyah governed the geographically and politically disparate caliphate, which now spread from north Africa in the west to Afghanistan in the east, by strengthening the power of his allies in the newly conquered territories. Prominent positions in the emerging governmental structures were held by Christians, some of whom belonged to families that had served in Byzantine governments. The employment of Christians was part of a broader policy of religious tolerance that was necessitated by the presence of large Christian populations in the conquered provinces, especially in Syria itself. This policy also boosted his popularity and solidified Syria as his power base.BOOK,weblink Marshall Cavendish, World and Its Peoples, 2006, 185, 978-0-7614-7571-2, BOOK, Haag, Michael, The Tragedy of the Templars The Rise and Fall of the Crusader States,weblink 2012, Profile, 978-1-84765-854-8, 20, Muawiya's wife Maysum (Yazid's mother) was also a Jacobite Christian from the Kalb tribe. His marriage to Maysum was also politically motivated, as she was the daughter of the chief of the Kalb tribe, that was a large Jacobite Christian Arab tribe in Syria. The Kalb tribe had remained largely neutral when the Muslims first went into Syria. After the plague that killed much of the Muslim army in Syria, by marrying Maysum, Muawiyah also used the Jacobite Christians, against the Romans.Muawiyah is reported to have said: "I observed the Messenger of Allah perform Wudhoo (ablution) and when he finished, he looked at me and said; 'O Muawiyah! If you get to rule then fear Allah and be just to the people.' Due to that statement of the Prophet I was convinced that I would one day be held accountable for undertaking the task"{{sfn|Ibn Kathir|2012|p=118}}Tom Holland writes {{sfn|Holland|2013|p=402}} Christians, Jews, Samaritans and Manichaeans were all treated well by Muawiyah. Muawiyah even restored Edessa's cathedral after it had been toppled by an earthquake.{{sfn|Holland|2013|p=406}} Savagely though Muawiyah prosecuted his wars against the Romans, yet his subjects, no longer trampled by rival armies, no longer divided by hostile watchtowers, knew only peace at last. Justice flourished in his time, and there was great peace in the regions under his control. He allowed everyone to live as they wanted."{{sfn|Holland|2013|p=402}}John bar Penkaye page 61.

Political finesse

In a manner similar to Byzantine administrative practices, Muawiyah instituted several bureaucracies, called divans, to aid him in the governance and the centralization of the caliphate and the empire. Early Arabic sources credit two diwans in particular to Muawiyah: the Diwan al-Khatam (chancellery) and the Barid (postal service), both of which greatly improved communications within the empire.BOOK, Hitti, Philip Khuri, The Arabs A Short History,weblink 1996, Washington DC, 978-0-89526-706-1, 78, BOOK, Fatah, Tarek, Chasing a mirage the tragic illusion of an Islamic state, 2008, Wiley, 978-0-470-84116-7, 157, Arab Science: Discoveries and Contributions By Edwin Palmer Hoyt - Page 27.Mu'awiya could be seen speaking to the people on the minbar of Damascus wearing a patched garment. Yunus ibn Maysar al-Himyari said, "I saw Mu'awiya riding in the Damascus market wearing a shirt with a patched pocket, going along in the Damascus markets."{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=9}}Muawiyah was very skilled at dealing with the Romans. Abdullah ibn Zubayr, who could see troubles ahead after the death of Muawiyah and was opposed to the appointment of Yazid, later said of Muawiyah: "Truly the son of Hind deployed a dexterity and mental resourcefulness as one will never see after him. When we tried to impose something on him, an irritated lion with claws unsheathed would not show more audacity than him. He knew when to give into us, to even allow himself to be tricked when we tried to do that to him. He was the most artful of men, more crafty than a thief. I wished that we would never lose him, just as a rock remaining on this summit" pointing to the mountain of Abu Qubays outside Mekka.{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=37}}When his friends expressed surprise at the vastness of his gifts to his opponents, he told them "a war costs infinitely more".{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=39}}Muawiya was welcome to his subjects at every hour of the day, including mealtimes.{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=40}} Therefore, he knew what people were thinking and saying.Muawiya and his governors maintained an open table for people to come in and eat. Once an Arab seated at the end of the room did not hesitate to pull to himself a plate which had been placed in front of Muawiya. So Muawiyah said "You plunder very far!" The Arab replied, "After a year of drought, it is necessary to be well placed in order to find pasture!"{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=40}}The deliberations between Muawiyah and the people took place in the community mosque, where the people were free and unconstrained towards the khalif.{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=53}}Muawiya did not rely on the old aristocracy but looked for merit and loyalty. Most of his prominent governors were not even Qurayshi let alone Umayyad. He also had the faculty of winning over and retaining people he distrusted like Amr ibn al As.{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=53}} His most important early governor in Kufa was Mughira ibn Shuba. At Tabri recounted: "Al-Mughira liked things to run smoothly; he behaved well with the people and did not ask sectarians about their sect. All he would say was "Allah has decreed that you will continue to disagree and Allah will judge between His creatures concerning that about which they disagree." So people felt safe with him. Until the Kharijites resorted to violence then the Kufas agreed to expel them.{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=54}}He also paid a lot of attention to the economy and agriculture;{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=55-56}} this allowed him to finance his expeditions.According to al-Qasim bin Mukhaimirah, Abu Maryam al-Azdi said that he entered upon Muawiyah who said: "What blesses us with your presence, O Abu Fulan (Father of so and so a common Arab expression)? " I said: "A hadeeth I heard that I want to tell you. I heard the Messenger of Allah saying: 'Whoever Allah entrusts with authority over the affairs of the Muslims and he neglects the needs and wants of the poor amongst them, Allah will neglect him and his needs and wants." He added that Muawiyah appointed a man in charge of addressing the people's needs upon hearing the Hadith.{{sfn|Ibn Kathir|2012|p=118}}

Appointment of son as successor

One of Muawiyah's most controversial and enduring legacies was his decision to designate his son Yazid as his successor. Yazid was experienced militarily, after taking part in various expeditions and the siege of Constantinople but politically inexperienced. Marwan also wanted Yazid to be the caliph so that he could run things behind the scenes, as he would become the senior member of the Umayyad clan after Muawiyah's death. Mohammad, Abu Bakr and Umar also mistrusted Marwan and he had lived in Taif during their rule, where he became friends with Hajjaj.Tom Holland writes "Tempers in Medina were not helped by the fact that the governor in the oasis was none other than the fabulously venal and slippery Marwan. Rumours abounded that it was he, back in the last calamitous days of Uthman's rule who had double crossed the war band that had come to Uthman. The locals mistrust of their governor ran particularly deep. Nothing he had done had helped to improve his reputation for double dealing.{{sfn|Holland|2013|p=409}}Ibn Kathir wrote in his book Al-Bidayah wan-Nihayah that "in the year 56 AH Muawiyah called on the people including those within the outlying territories to pledge allegiance to his son, Yazeed, to be his heir to the Caliphate after him. Almost all the subjects offered their allegiance, with the exception of Abdur Rahman bin Abu Bakr (the son of Abu Bakr), Abdullah ibn Umar (the son of Umar), al-Husain bin Ali (the son of Ali), Abdullah bin Az-Zubair (The grandson of Abu Bakr) and Abdullah ibn Abbas (Ali's cousin). Because of this Muawiyah passed through al-Madinah on his way back from Makkah upon completion of his Umrah Pilgrimage where he summoned each one of the five aforementioned individuals and threatened them. The speaker who addressed Muawiyah sharply with the greatest firmness amongst them was Abdurrahman bin Abu Bakr as-Siddeeq, while Abdullah bin Umar bin al-Khattab was the most soft spoken amongst them.{{sfn|Ibn Kathir|2012|p=82}}Abdur Rahman bin Abu Bakr and Abdullah ibn Umar were mid level Muslim commanders at the Battle of Yarmouk that took Syria. Abdur Rahman bin Abu Bakr's sister Asmā' bint Abu Bakr also fought in the Battle of Yarmouk and was opposed to Yazid.{{sfn|al-Waqidi|1423|p=352-353}}Muawiyah then delivered a sermon, having stood these five men below the pulpit in full view of the people after which the people pledged allegiance to Yazeed as they stood in silence without displaying their disagreement or opposition for fear of being humiliated. Saeed bin Uthman bin Affan, the son of Uthman also criticized Muawiyah for putting forward Yazeed."{{sfn|Ibn Kathir|2012|p=82}} They tolerated Muawiyah but did not like Yazeed.The following year Muawiyah removed Marwan bin al Hakam from the position of governor in Madina and appointed al-Waleed bin Utbah bin Abi Sufyan.{{sfn|Ibn Kathir|2012|p=83}}Muawiyah warned his son Yazid that Husayn, the younger brother of Hasan ibn Ali, would potentially be a problem for the dynasty. However, according to some sources, Muawiyah advised his son to act towards Husayn "gently". According to a claim by a sunni source, Muawiyah warned Yazid against mistreating Husayn ibn Ali.BOOK, Korom, Frank J., Hosay Trinidad Muharram Performances in an Indo-Caribbean Diaspora,weblink 2003, University of Pennsylvania Press, 978-0-8122-1825-1, 24, His final warning to Yazid was:"As for Husayn what can I tell you concerning him? Be careful not to confront him except in a good way. Extend to him a free hand [literally, a long rope], and let him roam the earth as he pleases. Do not harm him, yet show him the thunder and lightning [of your anger]. Never confront him with the weapons of war but rather bestow on him generous gifts. Give him a place of honor near you and treat him with due reverence. Be careful O my son, that you do not meet God with his blood, lest you be among those that will perish"BOOK, Ayoub, Mahmoud M., Redemptive Suffering in Islam A Study of the Devotional Aspects of Ashura in Twelver Shi'ism,weblink 1978, Walter de Gruyter, 978-3-11-080331-0, 95,


{{over-quotation|section|date=August 2016}}(File:Tomb of Caliph Muawiya Bin Abi Sufyan.jpg|thumb|left|Tomb of Caliph Muawiya Bin Abu Sufyan, Bab Al Saghir Cemetry, Damascus)Muhammad bin Uqbah said that when death approached, Muawiyah said, "I wish I were an ordinary man from the Quraish living in Dhu Tuwa and that I had never been invested with authority as caliph"{{sfn|Ibn Kathir|2012|p=123}}Muhammad bin Seereen said, "When Muawiyah was on the brink of death, he began to mark out the floor. Then he turned his face and marked out another spot on the floor, after which he started to cry and say: "O Allah! Indeed, You said in Your Book "Verily, Allah forgives not that partners should be set up with Him (in worship), but He forgives everything else to whom He wills" [an-Nisa 4:48] Therefore, O Allah, make me amongst those You will forgive".{{sfn|Ibn Kathir|2012|p=123}}Al-Utbi narrated from his father that when Muawiya was dying, he quoted the following verses to those present (in at-Taweel poetry):"Death is inevitable because of what we are; consciousness of what lies after death is much more awful and lurid".Then, he said: "O Allah! Reduce my lapses, pardon the shortcomings and overlook my ignorance, for You are All Forgiving. My mistakes are all my own and not attributable to You; only You can forgive me and grant me refuge"{{sfn|Ibn Kathir|2012|p=124}}It is reported that he passed out and once he regained consciousness, he said to his family, "Fear Allah, for verily He safeguards whoever shows regard for something for His sake and He does not safeguard whoever shows a disregard for something for His sake" and upon uttering this he died.{{sfn|Ibn Kathir|2012|p=124}}Robert Payne quotes Muawiyah in History of Islam as telling his son Yazid to defeat Hussein, who was surely preparing an army against him, but to deal with him gently thereafter, as Hussein was a descendent of Muhammad but to deal with Abdullah al-Zubair swiftly, as Muawiyah feared him the most.BOOK, Dunn, John, The Spread of Islam, 1996, Greenhaven Press, Incorporated, 978-1-56006-285-1, 51, Muawiyah died on 26 April 680.BOOK,weblink History of Islam (Vol 2), Najībābādī, Akbar Shāh K̲h̲ān, 2001, Darussalam, 9789960892887, 47, en, Muawiya used to bring water to Muhammad, and it was in the course of that service that he received the shirt in which he was buried.{{sfn|Ibn Kathir|2012|p=124}}{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=5}} He said, "I used to bring wudu water to the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace. He said "Shall I not clothe you in a shirt? I said, "Yes indeed, by my father and mother! So he removed the shirt he had on and clothed me in it".{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=5}} He kept that shirt for his burial.{{sfn|Ibn Kathir|2012|p=124}}{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=5}}


(File:Sufyanid dynasty genealogy.png|thumb|right|350px|Genealogical tree of the Sufyanids, the ruling family of the caliphate (661–684) established by Muawiyah)By his creation of a fleet, Muawiyah was the driving force of the Muslim effort against Byzantium. His navy challenged the Byzantine navy and raided the Byzantine islands and coasts at will. The shocking defeat of the imperial fleet by the young Muslim navy at the Battle of the Masts in 655 was a critical turning point. It opened up the Mediterranean, considered a "Roman lake", and began a centuries-long series of naval conflicts over the control of the Mediterranean. This also allowed the expansion of the state into north Africa and Spain.Pryor & Jeffreys (2006), p. 25.Treadgold (1997), pp. 313–314. Trade between the Muslim eastern and southern shores and the Christian northern shores almost ceased during this period, isolating western Europe from developments in the Muslim world: "In antiquity, and again in the high Middle Ages, the voyage from Italy to Alexandria was a commonplace; in early Islamic times the two countries were so remote that even the most basic information was unknown"Hugh N Kennedy, The Prophet and the Age of the Caliphates: The Islamic Near East from the 6th to the 11th Century, Harlow, Essex, 2004, pp 120, 122. {{ISBN|978-0-582-40525-7}} Muawiyah also initiated the first large-scale raids into Anatolia from 641 on.Kaegi (1995), pp. 246–247.El-Cheikh (2004), pp. 83–84.Muawiyah greatly beautified Damascus, and developed a court to rival that of Constantinople. He expanded the frontiers of the empire, reaching the very gates of Constantinople at one point, though the Byzantines drove him back and he was unable to hold any territory in Anatolia.Muawiyah had a personal library collection (bayt al-hikmah) that was enlarged by his successors "throughout the Umayyad period.… This first major library outside of a mosque was known to include works on astrology, medicine, chemistry, military science, and various practical arts and applied sciences in addition to religion."{{Citation |publisher = Garland Pub. |publication-place = New York |chapter = Islamic Libraries to 1920 |author = M. Lesley Wilkins |url =weblink |title = Encyclopedia of Library History |publication-date = 1994 |isbn = 978-0-8240-5787-9 }}Muawiyah had a few rare virtues. He was politically adept in dealing with the eastern Roman Empire and was therefore made into a secretary by Muhammad.Sahih Muslim, The book of (Virtues of the companions), narration no. [6409]:168-(2501) numbered by mohammad fo'ad abdul-baqi.BOOK, Jacobsen, Christian, AD 2036 Is the End The Truth about the Second Coming of Christ and the Meaning of Life,weblink 2008, iUniverse, 978-0-595-88128-4, 77, Once peace was established, Muawiya reconciled many of the people who had been fighting each other by his generosity and fairness. Even the most stubborn of opponents would often melt under his generosity and diplomacy. He also managed through fine diplomacy to balance out the tribal rivalries.{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=31}}During Mu'awiya's rule he put into practice the advice that Muhammad had given him, "When you rule, do it well."{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=8}} He was scrupulous about justice and was generous and fair to people of all classes. He honoured people who possessed ability and talent and helped them to advance their talents, regardless of their tribe. He displayed great forbearance towards the rashness of ignorant men and great generosity towards the grasping. He made the judgements of the Shari'a binding on everyone with resolution, compassion and diligence. He led them in their prayers and directed them in their gatherings. He led them in their wars. In short, he proved to be a balanced and model ruler. 'Abdullah ibn 'Abbas stated that he did not see a man more suited to rule than Mu'awiya.{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=8-9}}It must be said, however, that the rise of Mu'awiyah came partly through his family connections to the Umayyad tribe. During the later part of Uthman bin Affan's rule, Ali advised Uthman to keep a check on Mu'awiyah's growing power saying:
I will tell you that everyone appointed by 'Umar bin al Khattab was kept under close scrutiny by him. If (Umar) heard a single word concerning him he would flog him, then punish him with the utmost severity. But you do not do [that]. You have been weak and easygoing with your relatives.Uthman replied:Do you know that Umar kept Mu'awiyah in office throughout his entire caliphate, and I have only done the same." 'Ali answered, "I adjure you by God, do you know that Mu'awiyah was more afraid of Umar than was Umar's own slave Yarfa?" "Yes," said (Uthman). 'Ali went on, "In fact Mu'awiyah makes decisions on issues without [consulting] you, and you know it. Thus, he says to the people. 'This is Uthman's command.' You hear of this, but do not censure him.History of al-Tabari Vol. 15, The Crisis of the Early Caliphate.

Views on Muawiyah

Early non-Muslim literature

The Greek historian Theophanus does not call Muawiyah a king or an emperor, but rather a 'primus inter pares', or in Greek, a protosymboulos, "a first among equals", in the midst of his 'symboulioi'. Theophanus also referred to Umar ibn al-Khattab as "Primus inter pares".{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=53}}After the peace treaty with Hassan, in the book The Great Arab Conquests Hugh Kennedy writes that "The Nestorian Christian John bar Penkaye writing in the 690s, has nothing but praise for the first Umayyad caliph, Muawiya, of whose reign he says 'the peace throughout the world was such that we have never heard, either from our fathers or from our grandparents, or seen that there had ever been any like it'".The Great Arab Conquests By Hugh Kennedy, page 349.

Muslim literature

The traditional medieval Sunni perception of Caliph Muawiyah I has a wide spectrum. It is based on when it was written and who wrote it and where.

Early Medinan literature

In the early literature like Musnad Ahmed 4/216 there are hadith like this one:A narration tells that Muhammad prayed to God in favor of Muawiyah: "Allahumma (O Allah) guide him and guide people by him."The Great History vol. 5, 791: "" This narration is in many hadith (narration) books.Musnad Ahmed 4/216.Sunan at-Tirmidee 3842.Tabaqaat al-Kubraa of Ibn Sa'd 7/292.Shaykh Abdur Razzaq Ibn Abdul-Muhsin Al-Abbaad's book Fiqh Al-Ad'iyyah wal Ad'iyyah wal Adhkaar Vol 2 page 252.Book: Mu'aawiyah Ibn Abee Sufyaan By Abdul-Muhsin Ibn Hamad Al-Abbaad Publisher Dar as-Sahaba Publications Page 9. Al-Dhahabi says that this narration has a strong predication (reference).Talkhis al-ilal al-mutanahiya, narration no. 225. Muhammad Nasiruddin al-Albani (a modern narrations critic) also said: all the men of the predication (reference) are trustworthy and then he explained how the predication is strong.Selselat al-ahadith al-sahiha (the collection of accepted narrations), vol. 4, p. 615, narration no. 1969.{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=4}}Al-Albaani in his saheeh 1969.Even the earliest pro-Shia accounts of al-Masudi are more balanced. al-Masudi in Ibn Hisham is the earliest Shia account of Muawiyah and he recounts that Muawiyah spent a great deal of time in prayer, in spite of the burden of managing a large empire.{{sfn|Bewley|2002|p=41}}Az-Zuhri stated that Muawiya led the Hajj Pilgrimage with the people twice during his era as caliph.{{sfn|Ibn Kathir|2012|p=39}}

Early Abbasid literature from Iraq

Books written in the early Abbasid period like al-baladhuri "The Origins of the Islamic State" provide a more accurate and balanced history.{{according to whom|date=June 2017}}{{unverifiable|date=June 2017}}BOOK,weblink The Origins of the Islamic State Being a Translation from the Arabic Accompanied With Annotations, Geographic and Historic Notes of the Kitâb Futûḥ Al-buldân of Al-Imâm Abu-l-Abbâs Aḥmad Ibn-Jâbir Al-Balâdhuri, Ahmad Bin Yaḥyâ Bin Jabir Al Biladuri (trans. Philip Khuri Hitti), Cosimo, Inc., 2011, 978-1-61640-534-2, 1, Ibn Hisham also wrote about these events.{{vague|date=June 2017}}{{clarify|date=June 2017}}

Later Abbasid literature

After killing off most of the Umayyads and destroying the graves of the Umayyad rulers apart from Muawiyah and Umar Ibn Adbul Aziz, the history books written during the later Abbasid period are more anti Umayyad.BOOK, McAuliffe, Jane Dammen, The Cambridge Companion to the Qur'an,weblink 2006, Cambridge University Press, 978-0-521-53934-0, 166,

Later Abbasid literature from Iran

The books written later in the Abbasid period in Iran are even more anti Umayyad. Iran was Sunni at the time. There was much anti Arab feeling in Iran after the fall of the Persian empire.BOOK, Badiozamani, Badi, Badiozamani, Ghazal, Iran and America Rekindling a Love Lost,weblink 2005, East West Understanding Press., 978-0-9742172-0-8, 118, This anti Arab feeling also influenced the books on Islamic history. Al-Tabri was also written in Iran during that period. Al-Tabri was a huge collection including all the text that he could find, from all the sources. It was a collection preserving everything for future generations to codify and for future generations to judge if it was true or false. It contains text like this:To the following narration (reported by two different Sahabah):Abdullah ibn Umar narrates that he heard Rasulallah (Muhammad) say:"Mu′awiyah shall not die on the path of Islam." Al-Tabari, Muhammad ibn Jarir. Ta'rikh Al-Rusul Wa'l-Muluk. (Vol. 8, Pg. 186). Dar Al-Ma'arif Publications, Cairo, Egypt.Narrated by Jabir bin Abdullah who testified that he heard Rasulallah (Muhammad) say:"At the time of his death, Mu'awiyah shall not be counted as member of my Muslim Ummah."Some of the classical literature by eminent (Sunni) Islamic figures in the Abbasid period records:
I asked my father about Ali and Muawiyah. He (Ahmad Ibn Hanbal) answered: "Know that Ali had a lot of enemies who tried hard to find a fault in him, but they found it not. As such, they joined a man who verily fought him, battled him, and they praised him extravagantly setting a snare for themselves for him. -Abdullah bin Ahmad Ibn HanbalAl-Suyuti, Jalaluddin. Tarikh al-Khulafa/History of the Caliphs. (Pg. 202).Ibn Hajar Al-Haytami, Ahmad ibn Muhammad. Al-Sawa'iq Al-Muhriqah (Ch. 9, Sec. 4, Pg. 197).
Muawiyah's opposition to Ali manifested itself in the following practice instituted during his caliphate,which was the verbal abuse and insult of Ali Ibn Abi Talib during the sermons in the mosques. This was even done on the pulpit of the Mosque of Muhammad in Medinah. (This practice lasted for 65 years and was ended by Umayyad caliph Umar bin Abdul Aziz.)Al-Tabari, Muhammad ibn Jarir. The History of Al-Tabari (Vol. 4, Pg. 188).Ibn Kathir, Ismail bin Umar. Al-Bidayah Wa Al-Nihayah (Vol. 8, Pg. 259; Vol. 9, Pg. 80).Ibn Kathir, Ismail bin Umar. Tarikh Ibne Katheer (Vol. 3, Pg. 234; Vol. 4, Pg. 154).Ali, Ameer. History of the Saracens (Ch. 10, Pgs. 126-127).weblink (Pgs. 151-152). {{webarchive |url= |date=March 24, 2014 }}For example, Tabari recorded:
When Muawiyah Ibn Abi Sufyan put Mughairah Ibn Shubah in charge of Kufah in Jumada AH 41 (2 September - 30 October 661 CE), he summoned him. After praising and glorifying God, he said:BOOK,weblink Abu Ja'far Muhammad ibn Jabir al-Tabari (trans. Michael G Morony), The History of the Prophets and Kings (Tarikh al-Rusul wa al-Muluk), Vol. 18 Between Civil Wars: The Caliphate of Mu'awiyah A.H. 40, A.D. 661-A.H. 60, A.D. 680, 1987, Albany, New York, 122–123, 0-87395-933-7, "I would continue to advise you about a quality of yours – do not refrain from abusing Ali and criticizing him, (but) not from asking God's mercy upon Uthman and His forgiveness for him. Continue to shame the companions of Ali, keep at a distance, and don't listen to them. Praise the faction of Uthman, bring them near, and listen to them."
Saad Ibn Abi Al-Waqqas narrated-
Muawiyah, the son of Abu Sufyan, gave order to Saad, and told him: "What prevents you that you are refraining from cursing Abu Turab (nickname of Ali Ibn Abi Talib)?" Saad replied: "Don't you remember that the Prophet said three things about (the virtues of) Ali? So I will never curse Ali."Ibn Al-Hajjaj, Muslim. Sahih Muslim-(Chapter) Virtues of the Companions; (Section) Virtues of Ali [Arabic Edit.] (Vol. 4, Pg. 1871, Hadith #32); [English Edit.] (Ch. CMXCVI, Pg. 1284, Hadith #5916).{{Primary source inline|date=July 2013}}{{third-party-inline|date=July 2013}}
Nisa'i and Muslim narrate a Sahih hadith, wherein Muhammad summoned Muawiyah who snubbed him and continued eating his meal – Muhammad then cursed Muawiyah with the words: "May Allah never fill his belly!"WEB,weblink Shia Pen, Chapter Eleven: The 'true' merits of Mu'awiya bin Hind: Appraisal of Mu'awiya by Rasulullah [which cited Sahih Muslim hadith number 6298], 2012, 7 October 2017, Sahih Muslim, The Book of Virtue, Good Manners and Joining of the Ties of Relationship. Nisa'i was not the only Sunni scholar who accepted this hadith – there were many others, the foremost being Bukhari and Muslim who compiled the Sahih Muslim.Sahih al-Bukhari, Book #32, Hadith #6298. It has been argued that in the Arabic culture and language the expression is a colloquialism which means a wish that the person's belly be so full of blessings of God (in the form of food) that his belly cannot take any more, or that he wishes the person's blessings to be without an end. However, the two pre-eminent masters of Sunni hadith, Bukhari and Muslim, have rejected absolutely the latter apology for Muawiyah. Further, Nisa'i was murdered when he recited this hadith in the presence of pro-Muawiya Arab-speaking Syrians as it was perceived as a curse of Muawiyah, which debases the unreferenced suggestion that the term was a form of praise and not condemnation.Ibn Khallikan, Al Wafat Al Ayan Imam, under the biography of Nisa'i, section dealing with his murder.

Later Abbasid literature from Syria

Ibn Taymiyyah (1263 to 1328) said: "Muawiyah did not call himself to be a khaleefah and was not given the oath of allegiance to it when he fought Ali. He fought not because he considered himself to be the khaleef or deserving of the khilaafah. This they all agreed upon and he himself would affirm this to whomever asked him. He and his companions did not consider it permissible that they initiate the fight against Ali and his companions. But Ali (may Allah be pleased with him) and his companions believed that Muawiyah and his companions must pledge allegiance and show obedience to Ali, due to his authority such that there be only one khaleefah for the Muslims. Considering them defecting from this obligation he decided that Muawiyah and his companions should be fought until they fulfilled it. All this so that obedience and unity occur. Muawiyah and his companions did not see that it was obligatory upon them and if they were fought against they would consider themselves oppressed because Uthman was killed oppressively as was agreed by all the Muslims at the time and his killers were in Ali's camp, he having authority over them"Book: Mu'aawiyah Ibn Abee Sufyaan By Abdul-Muhsin Ibn Hamad Al-Abbaad Publisher Dar as-Sahaba Publications Page 48.Ibn Kathir (1301-1373) said: "Uthmaan was killed oppressively, may Allah be pleased with him. Muawiyah was demanding that Ali hand over Uthman's killers so that he may take vengeance from them, as he was also an Umayyid. Ali was asking Muawiyah for respite until he had established himself and then he would hand them over. At the same time he was requesting Muawiyah to surrender Shaam to him. However Muaawiyah refused that until Ali surrendered those who killed Uthman."Book: Mu'aawiyah Ibn Abee Sufyaan By Abdul-Muhsin Ibn Hamad Al-Abbaad Publisher Dar as-Sahaba Publications Page 42.According to Ibn Katheer in his book Al-Bidayah wan-Nihayah, Imam Ahmed was asked about what had happened between Muawiyah and Ali, he recited the Verse "That was a nation who has passed away. They shall receive the reward of what they earned and you of what you earned. And you will not be asked of what they used to do" Al-Baqarah 2:134.{{sfn|Ibn Kathir|2012|p=121}}

Modern Sunni literature

{{undue weight|section|date=June 2017}}Despite his endeavours in the expansion of the caliphate and the establishment of the Umayyad dynasty, the persona of Caliph Muawiyah I evokes a controversial figure in standard Islamic history whose legacy has never quite been able to shed the taint of his opposition to the Rashidun Caliph, Ali ibn Abi Talib.The late (Sunni) theologian Mawdudi (founder of Jamaat-E-Islami) wrote that the establishment of the caliphate as (essentially) a monarchy began with the caliphate of Muawiyah I. It wasn't the kind where Muawiyah was appointed by the Muslims. Mawdudi elaborated that Muawiyah wanted to be caliph and fought in order to attain the caliphate, not really depending upon the acceptance of the Muslim community. The people did not appoint Muawiyah as a caliph, he became one by force, and consequently the people had no choice but to give him their pledge of allegiance (bay'ah). Had the people not given Muawiyah their allegiance at that time, it wouldn't have meant so much as losing their rank or position, as much as it would have meant bloodshed and conflict. This certainly couldn't have been given preference over peace and order. Following Hasan ibn Ali's abdication of the caliphate, all the Muslims (including the Sahabah and Tabi'een) gave their pledge of allegiance to Muawiyah I, bringing an end to civil war. That year was called the Aam Al Jamaat (Year of Unification). As Mawdudi pointed out, Muawiyah's own speech during the initial days of his caliphate expressed his own awareness of this:Mawdudi, Sayyid Abul Ala. Khilafat Wa Mulukiyyat (Caliphate and the Monarchy). (Ch. V, Pgs. 158-159) Idara Tarjumanul Quran Publishers.By Allah, while taking charge of your government I was not unaware of the fact that you are unhappy over my taking over of government and you people don't like it. I am well aware of whatever is there in your hearts regarding this matter but still I have taken it from you on the basis of my sword… Now if you see that I am not fulfilling your rights, then you should be happy with me with whatever is there.

Shia view

Muawiyah I is a reviled figure in Shia Islam for several reasons. Firstly, because of his involvement in the Battle of Siffin against Ali ibn Abi Talib, whom the Shia Muslims believe was Muhammad's true successor; secondly, for the breaking of the treaty he made with Hasan ibn Ali, after the death of Hasan ibn Ali, one of broken terms being appointing his son Yazid as his successor; thirdly, because they believe that he is responsible for the killing of Hasan ibn Ali by bribing his wife Ja'dah binte Ash'as to poison him whereas the Sunni texts do not say that his wife killed him; and fourthly because some Shia think that he distorted their interpretation of Islam to match his rule; whereas the Sunnis do not say that he distorted Islam, as he was a political leader at a certain time in history to whom Hassan and Hussein also gave their allegiance, whereas they say that Islam is based on the Quran and the teaching of Muhammad and its main center of learning was in Madina not in Syria and they say that Islam was completed at the time of Muhammad and use the verses "This day I have perfected for you your religion and completed My favor upon you and have approved for you Islam as religion" Quran 5:5.Surat Al-Ma'idah [5:3] - The Noble Qur'an - القرآن الكريم {{webarchive |url= |date=September 25, 2013 }} "Indeed, it is I who sent down the Qur'an and indeed, I will be its guardian." The Holy Qur'an, Chapter 15, Verse 9.Surat Al-Hijr [15:9] - The Noble Qur'an - القرآن الكريم {{webarchive |url= |date=September 27, 2013 }}Quran Surah Al-Hijr ( Verse 9 ) Fifthly, for the deaths of various Companions of Muhammad who fought alongside Ali in the Battle of Siffin.Al-Masudi, vol. 2, p. 47.Tārikh (Concise History of Humanity) - Abu'l-Fida, vol. 1, p. 182.Iqdul Farid - Ibn Abd Rabbāh, vol. 2, p. 11.Rawzatul Manazir - Ibne Shahnah, vol. 2, p. 133.Tārikhul Khamis, Husayn Dayarbakri, vol. 2, p. 238.Akbarut Tiwal - Dinawari, p. 400.Mawātilat Talibeyeen - Abul Faraj IsfahāniIsti'ab - Ibne Abdul Birr.According to Shia view, Muawiyah opposed Ali, out of sheer greed for power and wealth. His reign opened the door to the persecution of Ali's supporters, slaughtering of his followers,Tarikh Tabri vol. 18, p. 201; al Istiab, vol. 1, p. 49, Chapter: Busar; al Isaba, vol. 1, p. 289, Translation no. 642, Busar bin Irtat; Asadul Ghaba, vol. 1 p. 113, Topic: Busar bin Irtat; Tarikh Ibn Asakir, vol. 3, p. 225; Tarikh Asim Kufi, p. 308. and unlawful imprisonment of his supporters,al Bidaya wa al Nihaya, vol. 8, p. 52; Asad'ul Ghaba vol. 1, p. 846, Dhikr Umro bin Hamiq; Tarikh Yaqubi, vol. 2, p. 200, 50 H; Al Bidayah wal Nihayah, vol. 8, p. 52, death of Amro bin al-Hamiq al-Khazai. which only worsened when Yazid came into power and the Battle of Karbala ensued. Muawiyah is alleged to have killed many of Muhammad's companions (Sahabah), either in battle or by poison, due to his lust for power. Muawiyah killed several historical figures, including the Sahabah, Amr bin al-Hamiq, Muhammad ibn Abi Bakr,al Bidaya wa al Nihaya, vol. 8, p. 48, Dhikr 50 Hijri; al Istiab, vol. 1, p. 363; al Isaba, vol. 4, p. 623, Translation no. 5822; Asadul Ghaba, vol. 1, p. 846, Amr bin al-Hamiq al-Khazai; Tabaqat al Kubra, vol. 6, p. 25; Tarikh Kamil, vol. 3, p. 240 Dhikr 51 Hijri; Risala Abu Bakr Khawarzmi, p. 122; Tarikh ibn Khaldun, vol. 3, p. 12; al Maarif, p. 127; History of Tabari, vol. 18, p. 137. Malik al-Ashtar,Tadhirathul Khawwas, p. 64; Muruj al Dhahab, vol. 3, p. 420; Tarikh ibn Khaldun, vol. 2, p. 191; Tarikh Kamil, vol. 3, p. 179; Tarikh Tabari, English trans., vol. 18, pp. 144-146; Habib al Sayyar, vol. 1, pp. 72; Tabaqat al Kubra, vol. 6, pp. 213. Hujr ibn Adial Bidaya wa al Nihaya, vol. 8, p. 53, Dhikr 51 Hijri; Tarikh Kamil, vol. 3, p. 249, Dhikr 51 Hijri; Tarikh ibn Asakir, vol. 12, p. 227, Dhikr Hujr ibn Adi; Tarikh ibn Khaldun, vol. 3, p. 13, Dhikr 51 Hijri; al Isaba, vol. 1, p. 313, Dhikr Hujr ibn Adi; Asad'ul Ghaba, vol. 1, p. 244, Dhikr Hujr ibn Adi; Shadharat ul Dhahab, vol. 1, p. 57, Dhikr 51 Hijri; Tabaqat al Kubra, vol. 6, p. 217, Dhikr Hujr ibn Adi; Mustadrak al Hakim, vol. 3, pp. 468-470, Dhikr Hujr ibn Adi; Akhbar al Tawaal, p. 186, Dhikr Hujr ibn Adi; Tarikh Abu'l Fida, p. 166, Dhikr 51 Hijri; Muruj al Dhahab, vol. 3, p. 12, Dhikr 53 Hijri; Tarikh Yaqubi, vol. 2, p. 219. (to which the families of Abu Bakr and Umar condemned Muawiyah for,al-Bidaya wa al-Nihaya, vol. 8, p. 55; Kanz al Ummal, vol. 3, p. 88; Tarikh al Islam by Dhahabi, vol. 2, p. 217; Tarikh ibn Khaldun, vol. 3, p. 12; al Isaba, p. 355 Dhikr Hujr; al-Istiab, vol. 1, p. 97. and the Sahaba deemed his killer to be cursed)Qadhi Abi Bakar al-Arabi. 'Awasim min al Qawasim', p. 341; Allamah Muhibuddin al-Khateeb. and Abd al-Rahman bin Hasaan (buried alive for his support of Ali).Bidayah wal Nihayah, vol. 8, p. 52; Tarikh Kamil, vol. 3, p. 245; History of Tabari, vol. 18, p. 151.According to the Shia Muawiyah was also responsible for instigating the Battle of Siffin, the bloodiest battle in Islam's history, whereas many early history books state that Ali went north to Syria, to make the Syrians give him allegiance. In the Battle of Siffin over 70,000 people (among them many of the last surviving companions of Muhammad) were killed. Notable among the Companions who were killed by Muawiyah's forces in the battle of Siffin was Ammar ibn Yasir, an old man of 95 at the time of his death. Shia Muslims see his being killed at the hands of Muawiyah's army as significant because of a well-known hadith, present in both the Shia and Sunni books of hadith, narrated by Abu Hurairah and others, in which Muhammad is recorded to have said: "The transgressing party shall kill you",ENCYCLOPEDIA, Jami` at-Tirmidhi,weblink Narrated Abu Hurairah: that the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: "Rejoice, 'Ammar, the transgressing party shall kill you.", Vol. 1, Book 46, Hadith 3800, Sahih Muslim{{Hadith-usc|Muslim|41|6968|e=6970}} and ''Sahih al-Bukhari.The killing of the two children of Ubaydullah ibn Abbas the ancestor of the Abbasids can also be found in Sunni books from the Abbasid period and Shia texts.Sunni: Tarikh Kamil, vol. 3, p. 194, Dhikr 40 Hijri; Shadharath al Dhahab, p. 64, Dhikr 58 Hijri; Tarikh Taabari, English trans., vol. 18, pp. 207-208; Murujh al Dhahab, vol. 3, p. 30; al Istiab, vol. 1, p. 49, Chapter: Busar; Tarikh ibn Asakir, vol. 10, p. 146; Asad'ul Ghaba, vol. 1, p. 213, Dhikr Busar; Tarikh Islam by Dhahabi, vol. 2, p. 187. Shia: 21:6 Secrets of Muawiyah from Al-Amali: The Dictations of Sheikh al-Mufid.

See also

{{Campaignbox Arab–Byzantine Wars}}




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