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Sitt al-Mulk

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Sitt al-Mulk

Sitt al-Mulk (970–1023) (Arabic: ست الملك‎), Ruler (Calipha) of the Fatimids (1021–1023), was the elder sister of Al-Hakim, the sixth Fatimid caliph and 16th Ismaili imam (996–1021).

After the death of their father Ali al-Aziz (975–996), she tried with the help of a cousin to force her brother from the throne, but was arrested by the eunuch Barjuwan. However, she became regent for her brother's son and successor Ali az-Zahir in 1021.

For two years, she continued to wield influence as an advisor after he came of age, as evidenced by the very generous apanages that came her way. After the assumption of power and the elimination of her rivals, she abolished many of the strange rules that Al-Hakim had promulgated in his reign. She also severely persecuted the Druze religion, which believed in Al-Hakim's divinity, eliminating it entirely from Egypt, and restricting it to the mountains of Lebanon. She worked to reduce tensions with the Byzantine Empire over the possession of Aleppo, but before negotiations could be completed she died on 5 February 1023 at the age of fifty-two.

Literature

  • Johanna Awad-Geissler: Die Schattenkalifin. Droemer, München 2007
Preceded by
Al-Hakim bi-Amr Allah
Fatimid Calipha
1021–1023
Succeeded by
Ali az-Zahir
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