al-Nu'man III ibn al-Mundhir

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This article is about the medieval ruler. For the Biblical character, see Naaman.

Al-Nu'mān III ibn al-Mundhir (Arabic: النعمان بن المنذر‎‎), also transcribed Na'aman, Nu'aman and Noman and often known by the name Abu Qabus (أبو قابوس), was the last Lakhmid king of Al-Hirah (582 – ca. 602 AD) and a Nestorian Christian Arab.

He was the son of al-Mundhir IV ibn al-Mundhir and Salma the daughter of a Jewish goldsmith from Fadak. He succeeded his father in 580. In later histories, he is celebrated for his patronage of numerous poets. He was also the only Lakhmid ruler to convert to Nestorian Christianity.[1]

Al-Nuʻmān’s rule of al-Ḥīrah was heavily supported by the Sassanid Emperor Khusraw or Kisrá; however Khusraw killed al-Nuʻmān after a conflict arose between them.

According to Arab accounts, he refused to assist Khosrau II during his flight from the usurper Bahram Chobin in 590,[2] and his reign was supported by Khosrau. Nevertheless, discord arose between them. ' The reason for this conflict is unclear, but some historians believe that it occurred because al-Nuʻmān demanded complete Lakhmid independence. Other historians and akhbārs (anecdotal narratives found in literary compendiums) relate that the conflict occurred because al-Nuʻmān refused to marry his daughter, Hind, to Khusraw, after which, Khusraw attacked the kingdom of al-Ḥīrah and killed al-Nuʻmān after capturing him'.[3] (The daughter, Hind bint al-Nuʻmān, was apparently then given protection by the poet Al-Ḥujayjah.[4]) It seems that Al-Nuʻmān was imprisoned around 602 and killed that year or later. Some narratives have Khosrau having al-Numān crushed by elephants; however, according to a Syriac chronicle, Khosrau invited Nu'man to a feast where he was dishonored and trapped;[5] another Syriac chronicle states that Khosrow captured Nu'man along with his sons, who then were poisoned. He was succeeded by Iyās ibn Qubayṣah.[6]

This was the spark that lead to the Battle of Dhi Qar in 609.[7] His destiny after his arrival at Ctesiphon is largely disputed, even in near-contemporary sources; he was either immediately executed or imprisoned for a period of time and then executed, but in 609 he was certainly dead and Iyas his ex-friend was installed, marking the end of the dynasty, although Nu'man's son al-Mundhir tried reviving the kingdom during the Ridda wars and ruled the Bahrain region for a short period of eight months until he was captured.

Al-Nuʻmān ibn al-Mundhir 'was the most famous Lakhmid king because he was celebrated in pre-Islamic poetry and was a patron of the pre-Islamic poet al-Nābighah'.[8]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Bosworth, C. E., ed. (1999). The History of al-Ṭabarī, Volume V: The Sāsānids, the Byzantines, the Lakhmids, and Yemen. Albany, New York: State University of New York Press. p. 371. ISBN 978-0-7914-4355-2. 
  2. ^ Bahram Chobin
  3. ^ Hamad Alajmi, 'Pre-Islamic Poetry and Speech Act Theory: Al-A`sha, Bishr ibn Abi Khazim, and al-Ḥujayjah' (unpublished Ph.D. thesis, Indiana University, 2012), p. 4.
  4. ^ Hamad Alajmi, 'Pre-Islamic Poetry and Speech Act Theory: Al-A`sha, Bishr ibn Abi Khazim, and al-Ḥujayjah' (unpublished Ph.D. thesis, Indiana University, 2012), p. 161 n. 1.
  5. ^ Philip De Souza and John France, War and peace in ancient and medieval history, p. 139; Khuzistan Chronicle 9
  6. ^ Hamad Alajmi, 'Pre-Islamic Poetry and Speech Act Theory: Al-A`sha, Bishr ibn Abi Khazim, and al-Ḥujayjah' (unpublished Ph.D. thesis, Indiana University, 2012), p. 4.
  7. ^ Histoire nestorienne, IIme Partie, p. 536, 546
  8. ^ Hamad Alajmi, 'Pre-Islamic Poetry and Speech Act Theory: Al-A`sha, Bishr ibn Abi Khazim, and al-Ḥujayjah' (unpublished Ph.D. thesis, Indiana University, 2012), p. 4.