ABULFARAJ [Abu-1-Faraj 'Ali ibn ul-Husain ul-Isbahani] (897-967), Arabian scholar, was a member of the tribe of the Quraish (Koreish) and a direct descendant of Marwan, the last of the Omayyad caliphs.
He was thus connected with the Omayyad rulers in Spain, and seems to have kept up a correspondence with them and to have sent them some of his works.
Astarabad owes its origin to Yazid ibn Mohallab, who occupied the province early in the 8th century for Suleiman, the seventh of the Omayyad caliphs (715-717), and was destroyed by Timur (Tamerlane) in 1384.
As early as 970 the recovery of the territories lost to Mahommedanism in the East had been begun by emperors like Nicephoras Phocas and John Zimisces: they had pushed their conquests, if only for a time, as far as Antioch and Edessa, and the temporary occupation of Jerusalem is attributed to the East Roman arms. At the opposite end of the Mediterranean, in Spain, the Omayyad caliphate was verging to its fall: the long Spanish crusade against the Moor had begun; and in 1018 Roger de Toeni was already leading Normans into Catalonia to the aid of the native Spaniard.
Moawiya, the first Omayyad caliph, chose Damascus for his residence; but in 750 the capital of the empire was removed by the Abbasids to Bagdad.
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