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Conquest of Azerbaijan by arabs and the dissemination of islam

In 20-30s of the 7th century three greatest states of that period – Sassanid and Byzantine empires and Khazar Khaganate fought for the confirmation of supremacy in the Caucasus. Azerbaijan, which was politically subordinated to the Sasanian Empire possessed essential significance in the Northern frontiers of the Empire. That is why, it was obvious that Azerbaijan became the arena of destructive Iranian – Byzantine – Khazarian wars. Intervening to the territory of the Sasanian Empire, Byzantine emperor Irakly I (610-640) destroyed the properties of Sassanids in the South Caucasus and even captured the most important centre of North-Western kustak – Qanzak. Byzantine troops destroyed the one of the major temples of Zoroastrianism in Qanzak and in the latest two years the troops of two allies – Byzantine and Khazarians were able to destruct even the capital city of the Sasanian Empire – Ktesifon. At the end of long lasted Iranian – Byzantine wars (603-628) Azerbaijan became under the influence of Byzantine – Khazarian block and Northern Azerbaijan was completely subordinated to Khazaria, whose troops helped to Byzantine in above – mentioned war.

The end of the destructive war for both sides coincided with the shape of new conquerors–Arabs in the historical arena. The ground for these conquests created socio–economic and religious–ideological revolution, which were implemented by the prophet Muhammad at the end of 20s of the 7th century in Arabic society. So, prophet Muhammad united most parts of Arabic tribes under the new religion–Islam, in 630. Prophet Muhammad, who satisfied with the dissemination of new religion–Islam at the early period, began to conduct decisive policy and fought against heathenism/paganism after the conquest of political power. Firstly, there was given a chance to the leaders of tribes, their members and other heathens to convert to Islam voluntarily, but after the determined period they were obliged to convert to Islam, otherwise they were withdrawn from the tribes.

Islam orders five major obligations or the “pillars of belief” (arkan-ad-din) to the believers: Admission of the symbol of belief (Shahadet) in monotheism (tovhid) and the prophet mission of Muhammad. It’s expressed in such way; “There is no god except Allah, and Muhammad is the prophet, sent by the God” (“La ilahe illallah, Muhammadun Rasulallah”); Daily praying (namaz); Observance/maintenance of fast (oruc) during the whole month of Ramadan; Obligatory alms (zakat); Pilgrimage to Mecca (Hajj); Even, when Prophet Muhammad was in life his revelations and homilies were written on papers, stones or bones. In the presence of prophet Muhammad’s successors or chalips (“deputy”, “substitute”) these revelations and sermons/homilies were gathered under the name of Koran, or more certainly Qur’an (“reading” “declamation”), which became the holy book of Muslims.

New monotheist religion was shaped in such way and it summed up lots of elements of previous beliefs of the Middle East, such as heathenism, Zoroastrianism, Judaism and the Christianity. For instance, Islam confessed the existence of angels and accepted Bible story about the creation of first human beings – Adam and Eva by the God and their withdrawing from the Paradise. Prophet Muhammad kept the belief of pagan Arabs about the spirits of the nature – djins, who were the creation by Allah in Islam and they were created from “flame” before human beings. As in Zoroastrianism there has been belief in divs who was subordinated to the Devil, the enemy of people and God.

It’s essential to mention Islamic teaching about prophets (in Arabic: Rasul), each of whom was sent to the determined nation: Adam, Noah, Ibrahim (Avraam), Musa (Moisey), Isa-al-Masih (Issus Christos).

Simultaneously, Koran was not examined only as a new book and Islam only as new religion. Otherwise, this – sole and eternal belief to monotheism was revealed to Avraam, Moisey, David, Issus and other prophets, but sometimes laterite had been forgotten. That’s why, prophet Muhammad was chosen as guide and restorer of initial belief by God, and Koran was the book of God, which was existed forever. This evidence makes us understand, why Islam, as religious system achieved such wide dissemination among various nations in a short time.

Muslim conquest, which began since 7th century deeply changed the historical destiny of peoples, settled in the large territory from the Atlantic ocean till India. Arabs, the centre of political supremacy intervened these lands and conquered them not because of peaceful aims, although they concluded “peace treaties” with the governors of some conquered lands. Of course, exterior shell of these conquests consisted of converting of heathens to real belief (“war for belief” – jihad, gazavat), but this was only an execute for conquering neighbourhood nations and countries.

First campaign of Arabs, beyond Arabian peninsula began in the presence of the prophet Muhammad, but more wide expansions were realized in the governance of caliphates – Abu – Bekr (632-634), Omar (634-644) and Osman (644-656).

The victory of Arabs in Nehavend, in spring of 642 opened the way not only to the East, i.e. to Rey and Horasan, but also to the North of Azerbaijan. Due to differ this Sassanid province from the further Arabic-Turkish name of Azerbaijan, we should call the above- mentioned area as Adurbadagan/Adurbaygan. The province of Sasanian Empire – Adurbaygan stretched the territory among the Urmia Lake, the river of Aras and Caspian Sea. The capital of this province was Ardabil.

Arabs, who captured most of cities and countries in the Middle East without any difficulty, encountered with great resistance in many areas of Azerbaijan. The first step of interference to Azerbaijan after Nehavend was the conquest of Abhar and Qazvin. Qazvinians invited mountainous people from Deylem due to resist to Arabs, but these people did not fought against them and after the victory of Arabs they expressed their desire to serve Arabs.

In the next year military troops attacked to other lands of Azerbaijan. According to the Arabic historian of the 8th century, al- Bazauri, Huzeyfa b.al-Yaman arrived in Ardabil and there he fought with the defenders of the city, as well as with local marzban too. Local governor Isfandiyar and his brother Bahram intensely resisted to Arabs, at the result of which there were sent other troops under the leadership of Bukeyr and Utba to Ardabil. Isfandiyar was obliged to conclude agreement. According to this treaty, the population of Azerbaijan had to pay land and poll-taxes to Arabs, as well as each family had to keep one Arabic soldier for twenty-four hours period. Instead of it, the people were guaranteed for individual security and the unviability of their religious temples and homes. This campaign of Al-Bazauri coincided in the year of 22 of Hijri, i.e. in 642-643 AD.

In 23/644 the Marzban of Azerbaijan, Isfandiyar came to the aid of Rey, which was considered as the break of above-mentioned treaty by Arabs. So that, caliph Omar ordered to Utba Farkad to intervene to the western part of Azerbaijan from Mosul or Shahrazur, and Bukeyr b.

Abdullah from Hamadan as well; Isfandiyar was overwhelmed in the battle with Bukeyr, taken part near the inhabited zone of Carmizan. He was captivated and his soldiers escaped to mountains, continued their fought independently. At this time, Utba appeared in the west. Bahram, the brother of Isfandiyar did his best to prevent his interference but he also lost the battle. So, Isfandiyar requested to conclude treaty.

In 644-645s,   utilizing  the   vague   political circumstances in Caliphate after the death of caliph Omar, the population of Azerbaijan rebelled against Arabs and refused to obey to arrangements of concluded treaties with Arabs. By the order of new caliph, Osman (644- 656) there was sent an army under the leadership of al-Valid ibn Ukba to Azerbaijan. It was the beginning of the second phase of Arabic conquest in over Azerbaijan, in which the country was conquered with more heavy arrangements of treaty. According to a new treaty, the population of Azerbaijan had to pay cizya in the amount of 800 thousand silver coins per year along with contribution.

After that, al-Valid sent the army consisted of 6 thousand soldiers to the northern parts of Azerbaijan through the river of Aras under the leadership of Salman ibn Rabia and Habib ibn Maslam was sent to Nakhichevan. Habib concluded treaty with the people of Nakhichevan, taxed to them cizya and kharac, but the army of Salman, passing from the Bicheneq passage moved in the direction of Baylakan. “And moved Salman ibn Rabia to Arran and captured Baylakan without fought and taxed to them cizya and kharac”. Later, Arabic troops attacked to Barda, its population resisted for a long time, but then had to conclude treaty with the same arrangements as Beylakan people. After that, Salman crossed the left shore of the Kura, captured cities and concluded treaties with the governors of Gabala, Sheki, Kambechena, Kheyzan, Shirvan, Maskat, Lakz, Filan and Tabasaran. Finally, in 652 Derbent was conquered, at the result of which the conquest of the whole Azerbaijan was over. According to al-Kufi, Derbent (al-Bab), how it was astonishing, had been captured without great loses, but it happened, as the author mentioned, thanks to Khazars, who were attracted by Islam. When Muslims entered to Al-Bab, the city was abandoned.

Nevertheless, soon the population of Derbent and Shirvan rejected to obey to the treaty, concluded with Arabs. Due to prevent the interference of Khazarian troops to Derbent, Salman ibn Rabia again attacked to Derbent in 652-653 s. Then the Arabic army continued their campaign through the capital of Khazar Khaganate, Belendjer. But Arabic troops lost the battle and Salman was killed.

After the receiving news about the defeat of Arabs and the death of their leader, great part of Azerbaijan separated from the Caliphate.

That is why, Caliphate again sent the army under the leadership of Habib ibn Maslam to the Caucasus in 655. Habib ibn Maslam appealed to the governors of various areas with the demand of subordination from Dabil, the residence of Arabic governor. But, these peaceful demands weren’t responded. Soon Habib was replaced by Khuzayfa ibn Yaman, whom caliph Osman appointed the ruler of Azerbaijan, Arran and Armenia. In order to govern the subordinated Northern provinces easily and the new ruler moved his residence from Dvin (Dabil) to Barda, which was situated in the centre of above-mentioned provinces. Khuzayfa was in Medina at that time and Sultan ibn Zafir governed in Barda from his name. The northern part of Azerbaijan, which had been resisting to Arabic invasion for ten years was subordinated to Caliphate in a year namely at the result of ibn Zafir’s activity.

The map of relationship between conquerors and obeyed population was shaped differently. According to the materials of Arabic authors, there is created impression that relations between conquerors and subordinated people were not determined by their religious identity, but by their behaviour in a concrete situation, i.e. religious relationships between Arabian-Muslims and obeyed population were put into the second stage, after political and economic relations.

During the Arabic expansion and at the religion – Islam brought to the East by them were examined in two types of conquest of foreign population: “forcible” and “peaceful”, which considered the concluding of peace treaty and voluntary subordination. The first type of conquest was applied in the circumstances, when local population of some areas did not want to obey to Arabs and the conflict was solved by force means, i.e. “forcible”, by the means of weapons behalf on Muslims, which gave them great priorities in front of captured territories. It meant that the destiny of “forcible” subordinated population and their properties were presented to winners. In these occasions, by the decision of the commander of army the part of population were killed or turned into slaves, others were departed from their native lands and their lands and properties were confiscated after taking khums – 1/5 of the trophy behalf on all society.

For non-Muslims the treaty, concluded with Caliphate consisted of the opportunity for peaceful solution of the conflict, chance to protect their own life, the life of their family and their properties. The treaty was composed in the form of message of Arabic military commander to the local government or religious community.

After the introduction, there was compiled basic part of the treaty, where were presented two suggestions to the local population: either they should convert to Islam, or obey only in political spheres, but in this case they had to pay poll-taxes, participate in military actions on the Arabic side as soldiers or assisting powers.

So, after ten years of resistance Arabs conquered Northern and Southern parts of Azerbaijan, as well as other territories of the world, included them to Caliphate by the treaties, which regulated their relations with obeyed nations. According to these treaties, local population had to either convert to Islam or had to pay poll-tax – cizya instead of it. Differing from the southern part of Azerbaijan – Adurbadagan, which was completely lost its independence, the northern part – Albania subordinated to Arabs only as vassal. Preserving his independence and power by recognition of the hegemony of Caliphate and by paying taxes, Javanshir did his best to maintain relations with Byzantine.

Varaz Grigor, who witnessed plenty of wars and passed from various trials, according to Moisey Kalankatlu inclined to the vassalian dependence on Arabs and that is why “voluntarily went to meet Arabs”. Javanshir did not join to his father and chose another way. Still in 654, he sent a letter to Byzantine emperor Constantine II, where he asked the emperor to adopt Albania under his patronymic. There was written such phrases in the letter: “Magnificent and powerful tsar of Romans (i.e Byzantine), Constant, the ruler of marine and lands, the parapet of Albania, Javanshir together with subordinating me Eastern country greet you. I ask you to adopt the subordination of farther nation for our submissiveness”. Byzantine Emperor accepted this letter with satisfaction, as intensified Arabic invasions made him find allies.

After the conquest of eastern provinces of the empire by Arabs, the danger from the South made Constant II to search support in the eastern part of Caucasus. Javanshir met with the emperor of Byzantine, Constant and concluded agreement with him, despite of the coming danger of Arabs in the village of Kinkivar. In this case, the emperor  gave an order where he wrote to Javanshir that he was glad to see Albanian parapet under his patronomy and noticed that, “our sons will be tightly connected with your successors with great love and close friendship””. In this order, the governor of Albania was mentioned as the “owner of Gardman and the prince of Albania, parapet Javanshir”. Albanian historian wrote that Constantin II gave Javanshir silver throne along with Byzantine title of “proton – patriky”. The emperor also ordered to sent 1200 “Albanian men” the title of patriky, since Javanshir could shared these titles whoever he wanted.

Agreement with Byzantine was not the sign of solid and durable policy of Javanshir, but his anti-Arabic policy.

In 662, khazars overwhelmed Arabs near Balancar and then attacked to Albania. But there they met with the troops of Javanshir, that’s why had to retreated. After two years, in 664 khazars again invaded to the country, plundered all areas till the river of Aras. Javanshir had to conclude treaty with khazars and recognize himself the vassal of this khaganate. Due to make much more durable relations he even married to the daughter of Khazar Khagan.

Nevertheless, objective circumstances – the essence of Arabic empire and its power obliged Javanshir to take into consideration Caliphate, which was much more magnificent than Byzantine at that time.

Interior fought of 50-60s in Caliphate resulted with the murder of the last “righteous” caliphs – Ali ibn Abu Talib (656-681). The power was concentrated in the hands of the governor of Syria and the founder of Omeyyads (661-750), Muavia I. The fifth caliph moved the capital to Damascus, which was located near Byzantine and Caucasus. The circumstances of Albania became strained. Because of aggravated days in the Byzantine, the empire could not help to Albania.

Political revolution in Caliphate, which was resulted with coming to the throne of the Omeyyads, made Javanshir change his policy. So, Javanshir who lost his hopes and the aid of Byzantine, which could resist to Caliphate with difficulty decided to subordinate to the “owner of the South” in order to prevent further Arabic invasions to his motherland. With this aim he visited the capital of Omeyyads, Damascus in 667 and 670 and met here with caliph Muavia. Although he was greeted with respect in both visits, Javanshir had to accept hard arrangements, presented him by Muavia I. So, according to these arrangements Javanshir had to pay 2/3 of the country taxes to the treasure of Caliphate.

Thanks to his correct strategy and politics, Javanshir was able to preserve his “prince tytle”, previous ruler in Albania, its independence in interior affairs, especially he could protect the country from further Arabic invasions. Muavia I,   was also satisfied with that, Javanshir separated from the alliance with Byzantine as well as caliph was glad that, there was the country and the prince in the most important region, i.e. near the frontiers of Byzantine Empire and Khazar Khaganat, which was under the dependence of Caliphate. Political circumstances gave chance to Javanshir to take supplementary privileges from Caliph and strengthen his positions. Namely in these hard conditions for South Caucasian peoples, Albania was only under vassal dependence of Caliphate, gave her only taxes and was able to preserve its prince authority.

The activity of Javanshir, which was directed to the protection of his authority did not satisfy all aristocracy of Albania. So, in 680 (according to some sources, in 681) he became the victim of pro- Byzantine princes’ alliance, who disagreed with his policy. The successor of Javanshir became his nephew – Varaz Trdat I (680-699). According to Moisey Kalankatlu, exactly, caliph Yazid I (680-683) appointed him the “governor of Eastern provinces and the ruler of kingdom of Albania”.

Sedition in the centre of Caliphate after the death of Muavia I (680) weakened the positions of this empire and its army, which defended northern frontiers of the Caliphate. In this case, the murder of Javanshir gave a suitable condition to his relative, Khazar Khagan – Alp Ilitver to intervene Albania. Khazarian army, led by Khagan himself destroyed all lands and cities till the province of Uti, plundered and took trophies. In 681, Varaz Trdat I sent Albanian Catholic Eliazar and then the episcope Great Ketman Israil for negotiations with Khazar Khagan. Great Ketman could not only make peace, but also was able to convert Khagan to Christianity. But, the concluded agreement was cancelled because of new campaign of Khazar Khagan to Albania and Iberia (Eastern Georgia) in 685. Simultaneously, there began the campaign of Byzantine to South Caucasus in 686, which lasted till 689. Soon, Arabic invasions were also restored in the territories of above mentioned countries.

During the reign of caliph Mervan I (684-685), the founder of the branch of Mervanids of the dynasty of Omeyyads, Albania refused to pay per-year taxes to Arabs.

In 680, khazarians, Arabs and Byzantines again began the fought for South Caucasus. According to the arrangements of the treaty concluded between caliph Abd al-Malik ibn Maarvan (685-705) and Byzantine Emperor Yustinian II (685-695 and 705-711) in 689, Albania, Kartly and Armenia became under the influence of both magnificent rivals and the taxes, gathered from these countries had to be divided into equal parts. As Moisey Kalankatlu informed, Albania “paid taxes to three nations – khazars, taziks (Arabs) and Greeks (Byzantines) at that time”. In 692 Justinian II concluded the treaty with caliphate and attacked to Syria, but soon had to retreated. After this event, Arabs did not take into consideration of Byzantine and in 693 caliphate appointed his brother Muhammad ibn-Marvan the governor of al-Djazira, Azerbaijan and Armenia. But, despite of these actions, the positions of Arabs in Albania was very weak. The population of Albania had to pay taxes to Khazar and Byzantine along with Caliphate, which disagreed the people.

In this difficult case, the prince of Albania, Varaz Trdat I decided to continue Javanshir’s policy, which ended with failure. Regulating his relations with Khazars and Arabs, Varaz Trdat I, together with his sons Gagik and Vardan directed to Constantinople’s in order to ask the emperor to decrease taxes in 699. Here he was declared guilty because of the relations with Caliphate and was sent into prison till 705.

When Varaz Trdat came back to Albania, he restored the payment of taxes to Arabs and Byzantine. Due to completely subordinate Sheruye, who came to the throne during the absence of Varaz Trdat in Albania, caliph sent an army under the leadership of Maslam ibn Abd al- Malik. Marvan captivated Sheruye and all other guilty people from Albanian nobility and sent them to the capital of Caliphate – Damascus. After the assassination of Sheruye Albania began to be governed by caliph’s governors. The rule over the country was centralized directly in the hands of caliph’s governor, at the same time the prince and Catholics of Albania became the advisors of this governor, who had no any right to make independent decisions. So, in 705 Albania lost the legitimacy of vassal and whole Azerbaijan – both North and South were completely subordinated to Caliphate.

So, since 705 Albania lost his political independence as well as its vassalage came to the supremacy of Arabs and it was called the regions of Arran. Namely since this period Albania, together with other conquered regions, especially Armenia, Eastern Georgia and the part of contemporary Daghestan was included to the new created province, under the administrative name of Arminiyya. This name, which were mentioned in all Arabic sources was the result of inheritance by Arabic conquerors the pre-Arabian administrative system of Byzantine Armenia, established in the mid of the 6th century, i.e. after the reforms of Justinian I.

It’s obvious that, new conquerors, who succeeded to the former Byzantine administrative system, preserved its former administrative name of “Arminiyya”. Along with these objective causes, Eastern part of South Caucasus was called Arran in Arabic authors’ “books” and Syrian written materials. Academician Z.M.Bunyatov related this unit with religious factors. Armenia scientist A.N.Ter-Qevondyan also joined to this thought and called the people of these regions “sole group of Christian nation of North part”, as it was mentioned in the work of Syrian author.

Preserve of administrative name of “Arminiyya” was maintained by Arabic conquerors, as Armenian church struggled against Byzantine (the rival of Caliphate) in the 7th century. Soon, Armenian Church was able to lead over Albanian Christian church (which lost its statehood at the beginning of the 8th century) namely by the aid of Caliphate.

Nevertheless the historians preserved pre-Arabic, Sassanid names of these territories – Azerbaijan (Adurbadagan), which was summed up all “Northern kust” during Sassanid reign, but only the territory of historical Azerbaijan during Arabic governance. Namely such image of historical geography of the Caspian Sea was described by Arabic geographer and voyager of the 10th century Ibn Khaukal. He called all coastal lands from Derbent to Gilan Azerbaijan.

Along with Albania, Syunik, the city of Tiflis, which was under the subordination of Muslims since 644 and the territories of mountainous people were also included to the Arabic province-Arran.

The South part of Azerbaijan – Adurbadagan was united under the sole governance with another Arabic province – Al-Jazeera.

The heads of provinces, who were appointed by caliph gathered civil and military authority in their hands in early years. They were the commanders of the Arabic troops, located in provinces, as well as they led over the officers, such as amils (tax officer) and gazies (head of court). Later the provinces began to be governed by divan, located in the main city and which was led by amir or vali. The function of amil,amir and gazi had not been already implemented by the sole person, but by various officers.

Arabs relied on the troops, located in main cities (mahals) – Ardebil, Beylagan, Derbent, Barda, Nakhichevan, Maragha and others.

Main part of local aristocracy, which lost their privileges and military- administrative authority expressed their disagreement at that period.

Arabic Caliphate, which was in the level of magnificence and power in the beginning of the 8th century, fought against khazars in order to strengthen its positions in strategically essential regions, as Azerbaijan and her neighbourhood countries. Derbent, which was the main arena of early Arabic – khazarian wars (108-717) was passed from hand to hand.

In 707/708, the governor of Armenia, Muhammad ibn Marvan sent his nephew – the son of Caliph Abdulmalik – Maslama for conquering pre-Caspian regions.

Maslama became famous in the battles against Byzantine and directed “against Turks of Azerbaijan”, captured cities and castles and arrived in Derbent (al-Ban). Destructing the castle and its walls, Maslama captured this strategically essential castle and then returned to the capital; he was rewarded by his uncle – caliph. Maslama ibn Abdulmelik was the governor of North provinces during 709-732 with two breaks and he led the wars against both foes of Caliphate – Khazar and Byzantine. The campaigns of Arabs expanded: Maslama fought under the castle walls of Derbent, Belencer and Constantinople, at-Tarik fought in far countries of the West and Kuteyba faught in Central Asia. In 717, Arabs had to prevent khazarian invasion, which was coincided with the reign of caliph Omar II (717-720). In 720/721 30 thousandth khazarian troops again attacked to the territory of Caliphate. At this campaign gipchags and other Turkish tribes helped them but this attack was also prevented by Arabs.

In the year of 104 Hijri (722/723), caliph Yazid ibn Addulmalik appointed al-Carrakh al-Hakami, who was not concerned to Omeyyad dynasty the governor of Azerbaijan and Armenia instead of his brother Maslama. After a little rest around Barda, Al-Carrakh crossed the river Kura and reached to Derbent, where he overwhelmed khazarian troops. After capturing Derbent Arabic general al-Carrakh directed to Belencer, conquered the capital city of Khazar khaganate and settled the captives around Gabala. Then al-Carrakh returned to Sheki with big trophies and many captives, gave rest to his army here.

Both fighting sides made campaigns against each other for the end of 20s of the 8th century. At the beginning of 730-731s 300 thousandth khazarian troops, by the aid of other Turkish tribes intervened to Azerbaijan through Derbend and Daryal passages; Plundering all cities and villages on their way, they reached to Ardebil, where was located Arabic army. So, in the bloody battle near Savalan Arabs were defeated.

Khazarians occupied most of cities and villages of Azerbaijan, Arran and Armenia in a short time. This danger obliged Caliphate organized much strongest army against khazars. New appointed commander Sayd al-Kharashi called voluntary people to join to his army for “holy war”.

Passing from al-Djazira Sayd was able to withdraw khazars from Khilat, Barda, Baylakan, Varsan, Ardabil as well as tens of cities and castles.

In 732/733 Marvan ibn Muhammad, the brother of caliph Maslama and who was appointed the governor of Azerbaijan and Armenia arrived in Arran with his 120 thousandth troops and settled the camp near Kasak (Kazakh). He began his campaign by liberating Shabran and Derbent from khazar supremacy and then Marvan directed to khazarian towns such as Belencer, Babandar and Samandar. Marvan could arrive in the capital city of Khazaria, located near Itil (Volga) and convert part of the population, as well as the Khagan to Islamic religion.

40 thousand captivated Khazars were settled between Samur and Shabran by Marvan.

Due to strengthen the positions of Arabs in Derbent region, Maslama divided Derbent into 4 zones and located there 24 thousandth Arabic troops. Invasions of Marvan, as well as tax policy, implemented by Caliphate pestered not only khazars, but also local population. As sources informed (al-Kufi, Ibn al-Asir and “Derbent-name”) according to the arrangement of the agreement, signed between Marvan and mountainous people in 738, Arabic governor received “100 slaves, 20 thousand grain from Kumik and Tuman, 14 thousand grain and 40 thousand dirhams from Kura and Miskindj, 20 thousand grain and 50 thousand dirhams from Shirvan per year. All these means were gathered and kept for the military officers and soldiers of the city (Derbent – I.M.)”.

In the proceeding years khazars were scared to attack to Azerbaijan. Only in the years of the governance of weakened Omeyyad dynasty, khazar utilized from the sedition in the centre of Caliphate and intervened to Arran.

Abbasids (750-1258) also considered South Caucasus strategically essential region. In the early period of the governance of Abbasid dynasty (763-765s) khazars plundered the areas of Arran and Eastern Georgia. In these years either Arabs or khazars overwhelmed in the battles. First Abbasid caliph Abu-1-Abbas as-Saffakh gave the authority Azerbaijan and Armenia to his brother Abu Safar. The last one became the caliph under the name of al-Mansur (754-775) and appointed Yazid as-Sulami the governor of these lands. During 763-764s as-Sulami fought with khazar troops twice.

Finally, after the next Arabic-khazarian war, happened during the reign of caliph Harun ar-Rashid at the end of the 8th century, there was concluded peace treaty, which ended Arabic-khazarian war, lasted about hundred years. This plundering war, which weakened Caliphate and destroyed local population weakened the positions of Caliphate in the Caucasus. Arabs could create stable governing system here only during the ruling of Harun ar-Rashid (786-809).

About Ismayil bey Zardabli

Author of t extbook for the higher educational institutions "THE HISTORY OF AZERBAIJAN, from ancient times to the present day"