By Michael Cooperson

Аль-Мамун (786—833) — багдадский халиф из династии Аббасидов.Сын Харуна аль-Рашида. Мать Мамуна была персидского происхождения. После смерти отца халифом стал его брат Аль-Амин, а Мамун стал губернатором Хорасана. В ходе вспыхнувшей гражданской войны, Мамун в 813 г. захватил Багдад и воцарился. Привлек к управлению государством ученых и основал в Багдаде Дом Мудрости (Бейт аль-хикма), созданную в подражание старинной персидской академии Джундишапура.В 827 г. по его повелению (и при его финансировании) были проведены градусные измерения дуги меридиана в долине Синджар, осуществлён перевод труда Птолемея на арабский язык («Альмагест»); в 829 г. в Багдаде основана астрономическая обсерватория.

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Extra resources for Al-Ma’mun

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In 791, al-Rashid chose al-Amin, who was six years old at the time, as his heir apparent. According to some accounts, al-Amin was six months younger than al-Ma’mun. The confusion on this point seems to be a result of later controversies over the legitimacy of the succession arrangements. This circumstance did not disqualify him from becoming caliph, but it seems to have put him at a disadvantage with regard to his half-brother. This change in venue suggests that the caliph had begun to think seriously about preparing al-Ma’mun for an eventual role in the succession.

Then, they made overtures to the petty kings of the region. Some of these kings were nominally subject to the Abbasids, while others had maintained their independence by playing the Muslims off against the Turks. Al-Ma’mun sent letters to the subject kings affirming their authority in their countries. With the others he exchanged gifts and embassies and was rewarded with promises of loyalty. After decades spent resisting the expansion of the caliphate, the kings welcomed the appearance of al-Ma’mun, whom they thought of as “an Islamic leader whom they could manipulate in their own interests” (El-Hibri, 29).

At first, they reportedly refused to betray a caliph to whom they had sworn an oath of loyalty. Eventually, however, many did agree to throw in their lot with al-Ma’mun. The Abbasid regime had not treated the province kindly, and those Sons who had remained in Khurasan may have felt that their fellows in Baghdad had forfeited any claim to their allegiance. Still, it cannot have been a simple matter for the Sons to take sides against their relatives in Baghdad. Many seem to have avoided choosing sides until the last possible moment.

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