Ahmad Ibn al-Qadi

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For the Egyptian encyclopedist see Shihab al-Din abu 'l-Abbas Ahmad ben Ali ben Ahmad Abd Allah al-Qalqashandi.

Ahmad ibn al-Qadi or Ibn al-Qadi,(December 18, 1552 – December 6, 1616), fully Shihab al-Din abu l-‘Abbas Ahmad ibn Mohammed ibn Mohammed ibn Ahmed ibn Ali ibn 'Abd er-Rahman ibn Abi'l-' Afiyya el-Miknasi ez-Zanati, was the leading writer from Ahmad al-Mansur's court in Morocco next to Abd al-Aziz al-Fishtali. He was also a renowned judge and mathematician.[1]


Ahmad ibn al-Qadi was born in 1552 in the Ibn al-qadi family.[2] These latter belonged to the Zenata Berber tribal confederation, many of whose descendants were established in Fez and Meknes.[2] The ibn al-qadi family gave birth to distinguished people, who, during the previous centuries, had held high political or religious offices and had become famous as islamic scholars.[2]

Ahmad Ibn al-Qadi studied with Abd al-Wahid al-Sijilmasi, the famous Moroccan mufti and Ahmad Baba al Massufi. The jurisdiction of Salé was assigned to him. At the age of 34 he undertook a journey to the east, but his ship was captured by Christians. Ibn al-Qadi spent eleven months in captivity and was released thanks to sultan Ahmad al-Mansur who paid as ransom the equivalent of 20 thousand ounces of gold.[3]


A number of Ibn al-Qadi's works survive to this day. His primary panegyric work is entitled Al-Muntaqa al-maqsur 'ala ma'athir al-khilafat Abi al-Abbas al-Mansur. This work consists mainly of a meditation upon the great character qualities of al-Mansur which, the scholar argues, showed him to be the rightful caliph of Islam. He also composed two collections of biographies of great documentary value: Jadwat al Iqtibas Fi-man halla min al'alam madinata fas (The Torch of learning in the recollection of the most influential notables of the city of Fez) and Durrat al-hidjāl fī asmā’ al-ridjāl.


  1. ^ See entry 'Shihab al-din Abu l-‘Abbas' in Encyclopædia Britannica France
  2. ^ a b c Lévi-Provençal, Évariste (1922). Larose, Emile, ed. Les historiens des Chorfa: essai sur la littérature historique et biographique au Maroc du XVIe au XXe siècle (in French). Paris: Émile Larose. p. 100. 
  3. ^ See entry 'Shihab al-din Abu l-‘Abbas' in Encyclopædia Britannica France


  • Ahmad Ibn al-Qadi al-Miknasi, Al-Muntaqa al-maqsur 'ala ma'athir al-khilafat Abi al-Abbas al-Mansur, Editor: Muhammad Razzouq, Rabat: Mektabat al-Ma'arif, 1986
  • Ahmad Ibn al-Qadi al-Miknasi, Jadhwat al-Iqtibas fi dhikr man halla min A'lam Madinat Fas, Rabat: Dar al-Mansur, 1973
  • Ahmad Ibn al-Qadi al-Miknasi,Durrat al-Hijal fi Asma al-Rijal Alternate title Dhayl Wafayat al-A'yan, Caïro: Dar al-Turath, 1971
  • Durrat al-hidjāl fī asmā’ al-ridjāl, 3 Vols., red. M. al-Ahmadī Abū ’l-Nūr, Tunis and Cairo 1970-1977
  • Stephen Cory, Chosen by God to Rule: The Revival of the Caliphate and Political Legitimacy in Early Modern Morocco (Ph.D. diss., University of California Santa Barbara, 2001).In this dissertation the panegyric role of the works of Ibn al-Qadi and Abd al-Aziz al-Fishtali is analyzed in detail.