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EI Kharidjites

he origins of the h ridj movement Opportunity for the schism was given by the proposal presented to Al by Mu wiya during the battle of iff n (afar 37/July 657) [q.v.] to settle the differences arising out of the murder of thm n which had provoked the war by referring it to two referees who would pronounce judgment according to the ur n While the majority of Al s army readily adopted this proposal, either because they were tired of war or because the ur n-readers (urr ) hoped there would emerge from this ur nic judgment the justification of the furious campaign they had conducted against thm n which had ended in the latters assassination one group of warriors mainly of the tribe of am m vigorously protested against the setting up of a human tribunal above the divine word Loudly protesting that judgment belongs to God alone ( l huma ill li-

ll hi) they left the army, and withdrawing to the village of arr [q.v.], not far from
fa they elected as their chief an obscure soldier Abd All h b Wahb al-R sib [q.v.]. Name: al- rr ya or al-Muakkima (i.e. those who repeat the above phrase This little group gradually increased on account of successive defections: partisans of Al The rebel camp lay along the Nahraw n canal exodus from fa that the haw ridj owe their name he extreme fanaticism of the haw ridj at once manifested itself in a series of extremist proclamations and terrorist actions: they proclaimed the nullity of Al s claims to the caliphate but equally condemned thm ns conduct and disclaimed any intention of avenging his murder; they went farther and began to brand everyone

infidel and outside the law who did not accept their point of view and disown Al as well as thm n many murders Growing: including a number of non-Arabs, attracted by the principle of equality of races Al attacked the haw ridj in their camp and inflicted a terrible defeat on them in which Ibn Wahb and the majority of his followers were slain (battle of al-Nahraw n 9 afar 38/17 July 658 [q.v. ut the victory cost Al dear Not only was the rebellion but

far from suppressed and was prolonged in a series of local risings in 9 and

Al himself perished by the dagger of the h ridj , the husband of a woman whose family had lost most of its members at al-Nahraw n he tradition that a conspiracy

of haw ridj had aimed at killing simultaneously Al Mu wiya and the governor of Egypt Amr b al-, is almost certainly apocryphal.

he wars of the haw ridj under the mayyads form of guerilla warfare They mobilised unexpectedly, swept through the country, surprised undefended towns and then retired rapidly to escape the pursuit of the government troops. The centres of concentration of the haw ridj were the marshy country of the a i around Bara (see al-ba a and around jkh on the left bank of the igris where

their movement had originated, from which they could, if defeated, rapidly gain the mountainous lands of the Iranian plateaus. adjdj dj b suf only overcame (in 9 or 9 99 after long years of effort

which ended in the defeat and death of the last and most remarkable of the Azra leaders

Less serious and less extensive and prolonged, but quite as stubborn as the Azra movement was the insurrection which was called after hab b b az d al- hayb n

(76-7/696-7): only destroyed by the help of an army of picked troops summoned from yria hab b himself perished

Arabia was another field of h ridj activity. They were only destroyed after the intervention of al-adjdj dj but they left the seeds of future movements especially in the eastern part of the peninsula. Owing mainly to the energy of al-adjdj dj h ridjism seemed definitely quelled

Another factor contributed considerably to its failure, namely the fanaticism and intolerance of the rebels, whose religious disputes ended in splitting their ranks and sometimes resulted in the removal of their ablest leaders on the charge of having on some occasion failed to observe the absolute irreconcilableness of their principles eternal feud between the Arab element and that of the Maw l But under the last Umayyads, in the midst of the irreparable collapse of the central government the haw ridj again raised their heads and resumed their exploits this time not in little bands but in large bodies. ended in defeat, it is nevertheless true that the anarchy which they provoked destroyed the eastern rampart of Umayyad power and enabled the Abb sid insurrection to penetrate more easily to the heart of the empire nder the Abb sid caliphs the h ridj movement may be said to be practically extinct in r and adjoining regions. Except for a few local risings promptly suppressed h ridjism no longer presented any serious danger and only survived

as a religious sect, without, however, any remarkable vitality or wide dissemination b iyya