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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Love for Three Oranges, or, The Askiya's Dilemma: The Askiya, al-Maghili and Timbuktu, c.1500 A.D
Authors:Blum, Charlotte
Fisher, Humphrey
Periodical:The Journal of African History
Geographic term:West Africa
Songhai polity
Religion and Witchcraft
History and Exploration
External link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/183032
Abstract:The authors argue that, during the crucial decade of Songhay history which followed the death of Sunni Ali, Askiya Mu.hammad pursued, sometimes quickly and sometimes hesitantly, three distinct 'Islamic' options, in contrast to the 'received tradition' which sharply differentiates between the reign of the last 'sunni's' and the first of the 'askiyas'. Askiya Mu.hammad began his reign in 1493 in alliance with the court clerics of the imperial capital in Gao, who were accustomed to 'mixing' Islamic and traditional practices. After his pilgrimage (c. 1496-1498) he sought out the advice of the radical Muslim scholar from the Sahara, al-Magh»il»i. The strong positions of al-Magh»il»i against the Jews and also the Mas»ufa, a Berber group strongly associated with Timbuktu, led the 'askiya' to his third choice, the urbane and tolerant Islamic practice of the famous centre of Muslim scholarship. The authors advance this as a new interpretation of predominantly old available evidence, and they suggest, on the one hand, the complexity and multiplicity of Islamic practices in the Niger Buckle region around 1500 AD and, on the other, the necessity of choice among the three options. They are concerned with the decade between Askiya Mu.hammad's ascendancy to power and al-Magh»il»i's departure before 1504. Notes, ref., sum.