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Honouring the Prophet's Family: A Comparison of the Approaches to Political Legitimacy of Abū’lḤasan ʿAlī al-Marīnī and Aḥmad al-Manṣūr al-Saʿdī

Honouring the Prophet's Family: A Comparison of the Approaches to Political Legitimacy of Abū’lḤasan ʿAlī al-Marīnī and Aḥmad al-Manṣūr al-Saʿdī

Chapter:
(p.107) 6 Honouring the Prophet's Family: A Comparison of the Approaches to Political Legitimacy of Abū’lḤasan ʿAlī al-Marīnī and Aḥmad al-Manṣūr al-Saʿdī
Source:
The Articulation of Power in Medieval Iberia and the Maghrib
Author(s):
Stephen Cory
Publisher:
British Academy
DOI:10.5871/bacad/9780197265697.003.0006

Although the fourteenth century Marīnids openly acknowledged their Berber identity, by the end of the sixteenth century, sharīfian descent had become a requirement for Moroccan rule. This chapter examines the political propaganda of the Marīnid sultan Abū’l-Ḥasan ʿAlī (r. 731–752/1331–1351) and the Saʿdī sultan Aḥmad al-Manṣūr al-Dhahabī (r. 986–1012/1578–1603). It considers similarities and differences between their political propaganda in light of their differing historical circumstances, particularly the relative power of sharīfian movements during their respective reigns, as well as the importance of holy lineages, monarchical treatment of the shurafāʾ, and the role of ceremonies in political legitimation. It argues that the Saʿdī ability to convince Moroccans of their sharīfian lineage connected with a larger trend to equate political power with descent from the Prophet and reinforced their authority. In contrast, the Marīnids contributed to their own downfall through their inconsistent policies towards honouring the shurafāʾ.

Keywords:   Marīnids, Morocco, sharīf, Sharīfism, Saʿdīs, bayʿa

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