Al-Mustazhir (1078 – 6 August 1118) (Arabic: المستظهر بالله)) was the Abbasid caliph in Baghdad from 1094 to 1118. He succeeded his father al-Muqtadi. During his twenty-four year incumbency he was politically irrelevant, despite the civil strife at home and the appearance of the First Crusade in Syria. An attempt was even made by crusader Raymond IV of Toulouse to attack Baghdad, but he was defeated near Tokat. The global Muslim population had climbed to about 5 per cent as against the Christian population of 11 per cent by 1100.
In the year 492 AH (1099 AD), Jerusalem was captured by the crusaders and its inhabitants were massacred. Preachers travelled throughout the caliphate proclaiming the tragedy and rousing men to recover from infidel hands the Al-Aqsa Mosque, the scene of the Prophet's heavenly flight. But whatever the success elsewhere, the mission failed in the eastern provinces, which were occupied with their own troubles, and moreover cared little for the Holy Land, dominated as it then was by the Fatimid faith. Crowds of exiles, seeking refuge in Baghdad, joined there with the populace in crying out for war against the Franks (the name used by Muslims for the crusaders). For two Fridays in 1111 the insurgents, incited by Ibn al-Khashshab, the qadi of Aleppo, stormed the Great Mosque, broke the pulpit and throne of the Caliph in pieces, and shouted down the service, but neither the Sultan nor the Caliph were interested in sending an army west.
Al-MustazhirBorn: 1078 Died: 1136
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