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Joukowsky Institute for Archaeology



Joukowsky Institute for Archaeology & the Ancient World
Brown University
Box 1837 / 60 George Street
Providence, RI 02912
Telephone: (401) 863-3188
Fax: (401) 863-9423
[email protected]

Posted at Dec 06/2010 03:14PM:
ian: He's so crazy loco - one of you has to want to write on him.

al-Hakim was a Caliph of the Fatimid dynasty, who ruled from 996-1021.  His reign is especially noted for its period persecutions against and forced conversions of all non-Islamic Egyptians, even the 'people of the book' (ahl al-Khitab), who were usually protected under Islamic law, as well as policies against the Sunni Egyptians.  At one point he even had curses against the Companions of the Prophet placed on buildings in Cairo.  This harsh rule only occurred for part of his time as Caliph, however, and by the end of his rule,  he had relaxed his previous restrictions against Christians and Jews, allowed them to rebuild their destroyed places of worship, and removed the curses against the Companions from Cairo.  al-Hakim was also important in the emergence of the Druze sect of Islam during the later part of his rule.  His reign ended when he disappeared into the desert, probably assassinated. 

-Sophie VH