Two Queens of Baghdad: Mother and Wife of Harun al-Rashid Nabia Abbott

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The historical and legendary fame of Harun al-Rashid, the most renowned of the caliphs of Baghdad and hero of many Arabian Nights’ tales, has rendered him for centuries a potent attraction for historians, biographers, and littérateurs. Early Muslim historians recognized a measure of political influence exerted on him by his mother Khaizuran and by his wife Zubaidah. His more recent biographers have tended either to exaggerate or to underestimate the role of these royal women, and all have treated them more or less summarily. It seemed, therefore, desirable to break fresh ground in an effort to uncover all the pertinent historical materials on the two queens themselves, in order the better to understand and estimate the nature and the extent of their influence on Harun and on several others of the early Abbasid caliphs. [From "Preface," p. v, by Nabia Abbott]

  • Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1946
  • Pp. ix + 277; frontispiece, 1 map, 1 table
  • Out of Print