THE CONQUEST OF THE MAGHRIB
The story of the conquest of the Maghrib is told by many Arab historians, such as at-Tabarî, Ibn-al-Athîr, Ibn-Khaldûn. The later they are, the more elaborate are their stories. The most reliable account comes from the earliest historian, Ibn-’Abdalhakam. This is what I present here, omitting his isnâds and variants.
Conquest of Barqa and Tripoli, by Ibn-cAbdalhakam1
[293-5] cAmr ibn-al-cÂs led his cavalry to Barqa and made a treaty with its inhabitants putting them under a jizya of 13,000 dînârs, allowing them to pay it by selling their children if they want... No tax collector was stationed in Barqa at that time, but they paid the jizya when it was due. In the meantime, cAmr ibn-al-cÂs sent cUqba ibn-Nâfi’ out and he went as far as Zawîla, so that the Muslims gained the whole land from Barqa to Zawîla.
Then cAmr ibn-al-cÂs went on to Tripoli in the West in the year 22 [or 23/643-4], camping on the hill to the east of it, and besieged it for a month without being able to make any headway. A man of the Banû-Mudlij left the camp to hunt with seven companions. They went west of the city opposite the camp and when they returned the heat on them was intense, so they went along the sea shore. The walls went into the sea, but there was no wall barring the city from the sea. Byzantine ships were in the port facing their houses, and the Madlajite and his companions saw that the tide had receded from the town and they found a way into the town from where the sea had gone down. They entered and came alongside a church. There they shouted “Allâhu akbar”, and the Byzantines had nowhere to flee but their ships. cAmr and those with him watched and saw the commotion in the city; so he came up with his army and stormed the town. The Byzantines escaped with only light loads onto their ships, and cAmr plundered what was left in the town.
The people of Sabrata had reinforced their defences when cAmr besieged Tripoli. As long as he was unable to penetrate their defences they thought themselves safe. But after taking Tripoli, cAmr ibn-al-cÂs gathered a heavy force that very night and ordered them to ride fast. At dawn they were in front of Sabrata. The inhabitants had carelessly opened the gate to let their animals go out to graze. So the invaders entered the city and none of the people were saved. The army looted it and returned to cAmr.
Comment: No jizya is recorded for Leptis Magna, a large town in Libya which had a bishop during the Byzantine period. The Christians who were there either left or became Muslim.
The conquest of the Maghrib
The first raid in 646
[Ibn-cAbdalhakam, 297] cAmr wanted to invade the Maghrib; so he wrote to cUmar ibn-al-Khattâb, saying, “God has opened Tripoli for us, and Ifrîqiya is only nine days away. If the Commander of the Faithful wants to attack it that God may open the country by means of him, this will be done.” cUmar wrote back, “It should not be called Ifrîqiya but ‘al-Mufriqa’ [the separater], treacherous to the one who is taken in by it. No one will attack it while I am alive.”
 cUmar died at the beginning of Dhû-l-hijja 23, and Egypt was under two amîrs: cAmr ibn-al-cÂs in the lower country, and cAbdallâh ibn-Sa`d in the upper country. When cUthmân ibn-cAffân became caliph, cAmr ibn-al-cÂs, seeing his inclination to depose cAbdallâh ibn-Sa`d from upper Egypt for his sake, sent him a delegation asking him for that. cUthmân answered, “cUmar put him in charge of upper Egypt, and there was no blood or other relationship between the two. But you know that he is my brother by nursing; so how can I depose him from a post that another gave him?” cAmr was angry and said, “I will not return to my post except on my conditions.” cUthmân ibn-cAffân then wrote to cAbdallâh ibn-Sa`d, appointing him amîr over all of Egypt...  cAmr ibn-al-cÂs died in the year 43.
[311-14] cUthmân sent the Muslims on cavalry raids as they did in the days of cAmr. They attacked the borders of Ifrîqiya and obtained booty. cAbdallâh ibn-Sa`d wrote about that to cUthmân, informing him that they were close to a Muslim fort and would like permission to attack Ifrîqiya. After taking counsel, cUthmân encouraged the attack... So cAbdallâh ibn-Sa`d set out.
The capital of Ifrîqiya at that time was a town called Carthage. It was ruled by a king called Gregory. Heraclius had appointed him, but he repudiated Heraclius and had coins struck with his own image. He ruled from Tripoli to Tangier. Gregory met cAbdallâh ibn-Sa`d and fought against him, but God killed him by the hand of cAbdallâh ibn-az-Zuhayr. Gregory’s army fled, and cAbdallâh ibn-Sa`d send his troops out to collect and divide the booty, which was much. When the leaders of the Ifrîqians saw this they asked cAbdallâh ibn-Sa`d to take a sum of money and leave their country. He accepted it and returned to Egypt, without leaving anyone to rule them... Each horseman got 3,000 dînârs and each footman 1,000...
The daughter of Gregory was allotted to a man of the Ansâr. As he carried her off on his camel he sang, “Daughter of Gregory, go out to pasture. Your mistress awaits you in the Hijâz. You will draw water from the well at Qubâ’.” She exclaimed, “What is this dog saying?” When the words were interpreted to her she threw herself from the camel, broke her neck and died...
A pile of money was placed before cAbdallâh ibn-Sa`d, and he asked the Ifrîqians where it came from. One of them began searching for something until he found an olive. He brought it to him and said, “This is where we get our money from.” “How?” “The Romans do not have olives; so they come to buy them from us, and we get this money from them...
No serious attack on Ifrîqiya took place for 20 years because of the civil war going on between the fourth caliph Alî (656-61) and his opponents. The Byzantines did not make use of this respite to strengthen their position, but instead alienated the people as the following section, resuming Ibn-cIdhârî, describes.
The raid of Ibn-Hudayj in 660-1
[327-9] After cAballâh ibn-Sa`d, Mu’âwiya ibn-Hudayj went to the Maghrib in the year 34. With him was cAbdalmalik ibn-Marwân. They conquered castles and took much booty. He set up a camp at al-Qarn which he made his base until he returned to Egypt...
He sent cAbdallâh ibn-Marwân with 1,000 men against a town called Jalûlâ’. They besieged it for some days, but could do nothing; sos they withdrew. They had only gone a short distance when he saw at the rear of his troops a heavy cloud of dust. He thought it was the enemy pursuing them, and a part of his troops turned to face that direction, while the others held their ranks. Runners hurried to the scene and found that the wall of Jalûlâ’ had fallen. So the Muslims entered and plundered it... Each man received 200 dînârs, while a horseman received one portion for himself and two for his horse. cAbdalmalik said, “I got 600 dînârs for myself and my horse and bought a slave girl with it.”
Mu’âwiya ibn-Hudaj raided Ifrîqiya threee times, the first in the year 34, before cUthmân was killed... the second in 40, the third in 50.
[Ibn-cIdhârî: In 47 (667) Ibn-Hudayj sent an army by sea to Sicily in 200 ships. They took captives and booty and stayed there a month. They brought back to Ifrîqiya with plenty of booty, slaves and statues covered with gold and silver. They divided the spoil and sent the fifth to Mu’âwiya ibn-abî-Sufyân, who sent the statues to India to be sold.]
The campaign of cUqba in 670
[329-33] Then cUqba ibn Nâfi’ al-Fihrî went with Busr ibn-abî-Arta’a to the Maghrib in 46 (666-67). He arrived at Maghmadâsh in the region of Surt, where Busr had reached in 26. There, in his weak health, cUqba was caught by winter. He heard that the people of Waddân had defaulted on the payment Busr ibn-abî-Arta’a had imposed on them when he was sent by cAmr ibn-al-cÂs at the time he was besieging Tripoli. So cUqba ibn-Nâfi’ left his army there under the command of cUmar ibn-cAlî the Qurayshite and Zuhayr ibn-Qays al-Balawî and went with himself and a light contingent of 400 horsement and 400 camel riders and 300 waterskins. When he reached Waddân and conquered it, he cut off the ear of its king. The king asked, “Why did you do this to me after making a treaty with me?” cUqba answered, “I did this to teach you a lesson, so that if you touch your ear you will remember, and will not fight against the Arabs. He then extracted what Busr had imposed on them, 360 slaves.
Then cUqba asked them, “Are there any people beyond you?” They told him of Jarma, which is the largest town of Fazzân. So he rode six nights from Waddân to that town. When he arrived he called the people to accept Islam. They did so, and he camped six miles from it. Their king came out to see cUqba, and cUqba sent horsemen who separated the king from his escort and made him walk on foot to cUqba, even though he was weak and used to an easy life. He arrived spitting blood and said, “Why did you do this to me when I came out to you obediently?” cUqba answered, “To teach you a lesson, so that you will remember not to fight against the Arabs. He then imposed on him a tribute of 360 slaves.
cUqba then travelled to the east, towards the fortresses of Waddân and conquered them one after another until the last of them. Then he asked, “Are there any people beyond you?” They said, “Yes, the people of Khâwâr.” This is a large fortress on a rugged mountain at the edge of the desert, and is the capital of Kuwwâr. He took 15 nights to get there, and when he arrived they barracaded themselves inside. He besieged them for a month, but could do nothing against them. He then went on to the other fortresses of Kawwâr and conquered one after another until the last one, where the king lived. He captured him and cut off one of his fingers. The king asked, “Why did you do this to me?” cUqba answered, “To teach you a lesson, so that when you look at your finger you will not fight against the Arabs.” And he imposed on him a tribute of 360 slaves.
He then asked them if there were any people beyond them, and a guide answered, “I have no knowledge or indication of any.” So cUqba turned back, passing by the fortress of Khâwâr without attacking it or camping there. He went on three days, by which time the people felt safe and opened their city. cUqba camped at a place now called Mâ’ Faras, but found no water there. cUqba and his companions were very thirsty and nearly dying. cUqba then prayed two rak’as and called on God. cUqba’s horse then began to paw the ground until it uncovered some stones where water was flowing, and it began sucking the water. cUqba saw that and called his men to dig there. So they dug 70 holes in the sand, drank and filled their waterskins. Therefore the place was called “Water of the Horse” (mâ al-faras).
Then cUqba returned to Khâwâr by a different road. They had no idea he was coming until he met them when at night when they were calmly resting in their dens. He collected all their children and wealth as booty and killed their fighting men. Then he turned back, camping at the site of present-day Zawîla, then rejoining his army after five months. After his horses and men had rested, he set out for the Maghrib, avoiding the main road and going through the land of the Muzâta and conquering every fortress in it. Then he went to Safar and conquered its citadel and fortresses. He sent horesemen on to Ghadâmis and conquered it. When they returned he moved on to conquer Qafsa and Qastîliya.
He then moved on to Qayrawân, not liking the qayrawân (camp) that Mu’âwiya ibn-Hudhayj had built before; so he rode with his men to the site of present-day Qayrawân. It was a valley full of trees and fruit, with plenty of wildlife, fierce animals and reptiles. He shouted at the top of his voice, “Move on; God will take care of you, for we are settling here.” He did thast for three days, and no wild animal or reptile remained, but all left. Then he ordered his men to clear and mark out the area, and he transferred there the men who had stayed where Mu’âwiya ibn-Hudayj had camped to the present-day Qayrawân. There he stuck his spear in the ground and said, “This is your Qayrawân.”
[Ibn-cIdhârî: cUqba said: “Muslims, you must establish a city that will be the strength of Islam for all time.” They agreed to that and said its inhabitants should be military (murâbtiûn). They added, “Let it be near the sea, so that our jihâd and ribât can be complete”. But cUqba said, “I am afraid that the emperor of Constantinople will attack you there by surprise and take possession of it. Choose rather a place that is away from the sea so that no naval power can attack without your being forewarned. It will still be a ribât if it is not so far as to demand shortening salât for one going to the sea.” When they agreed on that, he said, “Make it near the salt marshes, since your animals are camels and they carry your burdens. If we get rid of them we would still have to carry on raiding and jihâd until God gives us victory. It would be better if our camels could graze at the gate of our stronghold, safe from attacks of the Berbers or the Christians.” The next year cUqba began building the city of Qayrawân.]
The governorship of Abû-l-Muhâjir
[333-5] cUqba inb-Nâfi’ was removed in the year 51 (671) by Muslima ibn-Mukhallad al-Ansârî, who was then governor of Egypt on behalf of Mu’âwiya ibn-abî-Sufyân. Muslima bin-Mukhallad is the first to govern both Egypt and the Maghrib. He became governor in the year 47 (667-8) and he put Abû-l-Muhâjir Dînâr, an Ansâr client, in charge [of the Maghrib] and told him to remove cUqba in the best way. But Abû-l-Muhâjir did not follow this instruction and removed him in a disgraceful way, imprisoning him and putting him in iron chains until a document from the caliph came ordering him to be freed and sent to him. On the way cUqba stopped at Qasr al-Mâ’, did his salât and prayed, “God, do not make me die before making me rule in place of Abû-l-Muhâjir Dînâr... Abu-l-Muhâjir heard of this prayer and from then on lived in fear. When cUqba came to Egypt Muslima ibn-Mukhallad rode out to meet him. He swore that what Abû-l-Muhâjir did to him was opposed to his explicit instructions with regard to cUqba. People told Muslima that he should have kept cUqba in his post, since he was a competent and accomplished man, but Muslima answered, “Abû-l-Muhâjir waited along time without receiving any governorship or great favour; so we wanted to satisfy him.”
When Abû-l-Muhâjir came to Ifrîqiya he refused to stay in the place where cUqba ibn-Nâfi’ had camped, but went two miles further and built his camp there. Before Abu-l-Muhâjir, Muslims were raiding Ifrîqiya and going back to Fusâ. He was the first to stay there after raiding it. He stayed there winter and summer, making it his home. Muslima ibn-Mukhallad had given him the army which he took with him. They stayed with him until Ibn-az-Zubayr was killed, and then left.
cUqba then went to Mu’âwiya ibn-abî-Sufyân and told him, “I conquered the country and built barracks and the mosque. The country was under me; then you sent the slave of the Ansâr and he removed me shamefully.” Mu’âwiya expressed his regret and said, “You know the position of Muslima ibn-Mukhallad with the wronged caliph [cUthmân], how he was his favourite and rose with all his energy to avenge his death. Yet I return you to your post.” —It is said that Mu’âwiya did not restore cUqba ibn-Nâfi1, but his son Yazîd after the death of his father ; that is more reliable, since Mu’Aqiya died in 60 (679-80).
The second governorship of cUqba
[335-7 ] cUqba moved with speed in his rage against Abû-l-Muhâjir. When he reached Ifrîqiya he chained him heavily. He took him along in chains while raiding as far as as-Sûs, whose people are a branch of Berbers called Anbiya. He rode through their land without meeting anyone or finding any opposition.  When cUqba reached the Atlantic, he rode his horse into it up to its neck and said,”God, I swear to you that there is no crossing. If I found a crossing I would cross it.”  He then returned to Ifrîqiya. When he reached its borders he sent most of his companions on leave, keeping only a few with him. At a place called Tahûdha he was met by Kusayla ibn-Lamazm with a large army of Romans and Berbers, who had heard that his troops had left him. There was a heavy battle, and cUqba was killed along with his companions. Abû-l-Muhâjir was killed still bound in chains... That was in the year 63 (682-3).
Then Kusayla and his army camped in a place that cUqba had settled. He subjugated the people around it in the direction of Qâbis and despatched his companions in every direction...
Then [Kusayla] the son of al-Kâhina marched on Qayrawân against cUmar ibn-cAlî and Zuhayr ibn-Qays. They fought a heavy battle and the son of al-Kâhina was defeated and his companions were killed. Then cUmar ibn-cAlî and Zuhayr ibn-Qays returned with their army to Egypt, since a huge Berber force was gathering. Their weaker companions and Ifrîqiyan converts stayed behind in Tripoli... This was in 64 (683-4).
The expedition of Hassân ibn-an-Nu’mân
[338-342] Then Hassân ibn-an-Nu’mân came to the Maghrib, appointed by cAbdalmalik ibn-Marwân in the year 73 (692-3). He brought a big army, stopped in Tripoli and gathered those who had come there from Ifrîqiya or Tripoli, sending ahead Muhammad ibn-abî-Bukayr, Hilâl ibn-Tharwân al-Luwâtî and Zuhayr ibn-Qays. He conquered the countryside and amassed much booty, then went to the city of Carthage, where the Romans were. He was only able to kill a few of their weaker ones and left to fight al-Kâhina. She was then the queen of the Berbers and had control of most of Ifrîqiya. He met here at a river today called Nahr al-Balâ’, where they fought a heavy battle. She defeated him, killed many of his companions and captured 80 men. Hassân escaped and found his way to Anâbulus, settling in some fortresses in the area of Barqa called the fortresses of Hassân. He put Abû-Sâlih over Ifrîqiya, while he ruled Anâbulus, Lûbiya and Marâqiya, as far as Ajdâbiya.
Al-Kâhina treated her prisoners well and then set them free, except for one from the Banû-cAbs by the name of Khâlid ibn-Yazîd. She adopted him as a son and he stayed with her. Hassân sent a messenger to Khâlid who told him, “Hassân asks you why you do not write to us with new about al-Kâhina.” So Khâlid wrote a note to Hassân which he hid inside a piece of bread and gave the messenger, so that the onlookers would think he was giving him food for the road. Al-Kâhina then came out and said, “My sons, your downfall is in what people eat.” And she repeated that. The messenger went to Hassân with the note which gave him the information he needed.
Khâlid then wrote another note and put it in a hole he made in a saddlebow; he polished the cover so that the spot would not show. Then al-Kâhina came out again and said, “My sons, your downfall is in a dead thing coming from plants on the ground.” And she repeated that. The messenger reached Hassân, who summoned his companions to attack her. As he approached her, she came out with her hair hanging down and said, “my sons, look at what you see in the sky.” They said, “We see a bit of red cloud.” She said, “No. By my God, it is the dust of the Arab army.” Then she said to Khâlid ibn-Yazîd, “I adopted you against a day like this. I will be killed. I ask you to take good care of these two brothers of yours.” Khâlid answered, “I am afraid that if what you say is true that they will not survive.” She said, “No. One of them will become greater among the Arabs than he is today. So go and get an assurance of safety for them.” So Khâlid went and reported this to Hassân, who put her two sons under his protection.
With Hassân was a contingent of Butr Berbers. Hassân put al-Kâhina’s oldest son in charge of them and kept him close to himself. Then he and his companions went and met al-Kâhina at the foot of the mountain. She was killed together with most of her soldiers...
[Ibn-cIdhârî: Hassân marched to Carthage, where the Byzantines had an uncountable force. They came out with their king to fight him, but assân defeated them, killing most of them. Then he besieged and conquered Carthage, the capital of Ifrîqiya.. Carthage was a huge city, with the waves of the sea touching its walls.. There are magnificent ruins there of mighty buildings and monuments, pointing to the greatness of bygone peoples. The people of Tunis today still go to look at the wonderful ruins which the passing ages never make less admirable.]
Then Hassân went and settled on the site of present-day Qayrawân, where he built the mosque, set up administrative offices and imposed kharâj on the foreigners in Ifrîqiya and on the Christian Berbers, most of whom were Barânis, except for a few Butr. Hassân stayed there until the country was pacified. Then he left with his booty to meet cAbdalmalik in Jumâdâ II 76 (Sept/Oct 695) or 78... cAbdalmalik was happy with the news of Hassân’s conquests and his booty... It is said that cAbdal’azîz [in Egypt] took all the captives that were with him. He brought Berber girls whose beauty was greater than any ever seen. The poet Nuayb said, “I saw the captives that cAbdal’azîz took from Hassân, 200 girls, each worth 1,000 dînârs.
After Hassân left, the Romans raided Anâbulus. Ibrâhîm ibn-an-Nasrânî fled, leaving its people and the [Christian] dhimmîs in the hands of the Romans, who ruled them for forty nights and quickly ruined the place. The news of this reached cAbdal’azîz ibn-Marwân, who sent Zuhayr ibn-Qays, who had left Hassân. When he stopped in Egypt, cAbdal’azîz ordered him to set out against the Romans... He met the Romans with only 70 men... They fought and Zuhayr was martyred along with all his companions... That was in the year 76 (695-6).
In Amlas, outside Anâbulus, there was a man named cAtiyya ibn-Barbû’ who with his son had fled from the plague. In the desert he met a group of Muslims and asked their help. He led these and 700 others who joined them and attacked the Romans. He defeated them, and they too refuge in their ships, while those who remained fled...
The campaign of Mûsâ ibn-Nusayr
[342-4] cAbdalmalik sent Mûsâ ibn-Nusayr to the Maghrib... and he went in the year 78 (697-8) or 79. He deposed Abû-Sâlih and by a number of expeditions conquered the whole Maghrib. He sent a report of this with his booty to cAbdal’azîz ibn-Marwân, who sent it on to cAbdalmalik...
Mûsâ ibn-Nusayr sent his son Marwân with an army and captured 100,000 people. He then sent his son with another army and captured another 1000,000. Al-Layth ibn-Sa`d was asked, “Who are they?” He said, “Berbers.” When this was reported [in Damascus] people said, “By God, Ibn-Nusayr is mad. Where could he get 20,000 captives to sent to the Commander of the Faithful as his fifth?” Mûsâ ibn-Nusayr heard of this and said, “Let them come and collect the 20,000.”
cAbdalmalik ibn-Marwân died on Thursday, 14 Shawwâl 86 (8 October 705). He was succeeded by his son al-Walîd. Mûsâ’s conquests continued in the Maghrib during the time of al-Walîd, who respected and admired Mûsâ.
Mûsâ ibn-Nusayr send his son Marwân to Tangier to set up a ribât defense on the coast. After much exertion, he and his companions turned back, leaving Târiq ibn-cAmr in charge, with 1,700 men... Târiq managed the ribât for some time; that was in the year 92 (710-11).
The conquest of Andalusia
[344-49] The crossing point to Andalusia [Spain] was held by a foreigner named Julian. He was governor of Ceuta and of a town in Andalusia called al-Jazîra al-Khadrâ’ [Algeciras], which was opposite Tangier. Julian was a vassal of Rodrigo [text: “Ludhrîq”], the king of Andalusia who lived in Toledo. Târiq wrote to Julian in very kind terms and they exchanged gifts. Julian had sent his daughter to Rodrigo to educate her, but Rogrido impregnated her. When Julian heard of that, he said, “I see no better way to punish him that to send the Arabs against him.” So he sent for Târiq, who was in Tilimsân (while Mûsâ was in Qayrawân), and proposed to help him enter Andalusia. Târiq answered, “I cannot trust you unless you send me a hostage.” So he sent him his two daughters, since he had no other children. Târiq settled them under guard in Tilimsân, then went to Julian in Ceuta, at the crossing. Julian was happy to see him and said, “I will lead you into Andalusia.” Across the strait there is a mountain today called Jabal Târiq [Gibraltar], between Ceuta and Andalusia. In the evening Julian came with ships and took a contingent across. They hid there during the day, and in the evening the ships brought the remainder of the troops. The Andalusians had no idea of what was happening and merely thought that the ships were carrying on normal business. Târiq came in the last ship and joined his companions, while Julian and the traders who were with him stayed in al-Khadrâ’ to satisfy his companions and the people of the town.
The people of Andalusia found out about Târiq and his army and their position. But Târiq and his companions marched over an acquaduct from the mountains to a town called Qarâjanna, and pushed on towards Cordoba. He stopped on an island in the sea and left some soldiers there under a slave girl called Umm-Hakîm, the present name of the island. The people there were all vine growers. They took them prisoner and slaughtered one man, cut him up and cooked him in front of his people. In the meantime they had cooked ordinary meat in other pots. After they had cooked the man’s flesh they threw it away without the people seeing this, and ate the meat that they had prepared. The vine growers were watching and had no doubt that they were eating the flesh of their companion. So the spread the news among the Andalusians that the invaders eat human flesh, as they did to their companion...
After Târiq entered Andalusia the army of Cordoba met him. Because his men were so few they rushed on them and fought a heavy battle, but were defeated. Târiq continued killing them until he reached Cordoba. Rodrigo heard of this and brought an army against them from Toledo. They fought in a place called Shadhûna [Sidona], near a river today known as Umm-Hakîm. They fought a heavy battle and almighty God killed Rodrigo and his companions. Mu’attib, a Roman freed slave, formerly in the service of al-Walîd ibn-cAbdalmalik, who was in charge of Târiq’s cavalry, headed for Cordoba, while Târiq went to Toledo and entered it. The first thing he asked for was the table of Solomon son of David, which they were thought to have, but did not have, but had another one... Târiq removed one of its legs which was full of jewels and gold and replaced it with another. The table, for its jewels, was valued at 100,000 dînârs. Târiq took all the jewels, arms, gold, silver and vessels and much wealth besides, such as never was seen before. He carried it all off to Cordoba and settled there. Then he wrote to Mûsâ ibn-Nusayr telling him of the conquest of Andalusia and of the booty he got. Mûsâ wrote to al-Walîd telling him of this and taking the credit for himself. Then he wrote to Târiq telling him not to go beyond Cordoba before he came there, and he blamed him severely.
Very angry with Târiq, Mûsâ-ibn-Nuayr came to Andalusia in the year 93 (711-12) with an important delegation of Arabs, clients and Berber notables... Târiq met him and talked pleasantly to him, “I am only your client. This conquest belongs to you.” Târiq gave him all the loot, an inestimable treasure...
Mûsâ ibn-Nusayr arrested Târiq, put him in chains and wanted to kill him. But Târiq called for Mu’attib and said, “If you take my case to al-Walîd, telling him that I conquered Andalusia and that Mûsâ imprisoned me and wants to kill me, I will give you 100 slaves.” He agreed, and before leaving warned Mûsâ, “Do not do anything fast with Târiq, because you have enemies and his case is known to the Commander of the Faithful. I am afraid how he may react against you.” Mu’attib went and told al-Walîd how Andalusia was conquered by Târiq and that Mûsâ had imprisoned him and wanted to kill him. Al-Walîd wrote to Mûsâ swearing by God that “if you strike him I will strike you, and if you kill him I will kill your son along with you.” He sent the letter with Mu’attib. When he presented it to him in Andalusia and Mûsâ read it he let Târiq go, and Târiq kept his promise to give Mu’attib 100 slaves.
Toledo is halfway between Cordoba and Narbonne. Narbonne is on the border of Andalusia... But it fell back into the hands of the polytheists and they control it today.
The Muslim army overran nearly the whole Iberian peninsula and went into France as far as Poitiers, but was driven back by Charles Martel.
«— Chapter 2
Chapter 4 —»
1Futûh Mir, ed. M. al-Hujayrî (Cairo, 1996).