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Les conversions à l’islam en Asie mineure, dans les Balkans et dans le monde musulman

 | 
Philippe Gelez
, 
Gilles Grivaud

Aires balkaniques et micrasiatiques (XIe-XIXe S.) : études de cas

The Formation of Muslim Principalities and Conversion to Islam during the Early Seljuk Expansion in Asia Minor

La formation des principautés musulmanes et la conversion à l’islam au début de l’expansion seldjoukide en Asie Mineure

Alexander Beihammer

Résumé

L’histoire de la pénétration de l’islam en Asie Mineure au Moyen Âge a été construite selon des catégories intellectuelles conformes aux réalités des relations politiques et militaires de l’époque contemporaine. L’examen des sources chrétiennes et musulmanes assure que les notions de frontières étanches entre Byzantins et Seldjoukides n’existaient pas, tant en matière d’alliances familiales que d’affiliations confessionnelles. Néanmoins, en dépit de ces échanges, il reste à déterminer le rôle tenu par les Turcomans dans le processus de propagation de l’islam, car les pratiques religieuses et les attitudes idéologiques de ces nomades restent encore des questions ouvertes à la recherche.

Texte intégral

  • 1 In this article, “Turkmen” is used in the commonly accepted sense of “Islamized pastoralists belong (...)

1Raising the question of conversion to Islam in Asia Minor during the period of the early Seljuk expansion from the middle of the eleventh until the end of the twelfth century unavoidably involves us in the scholarly discussion about the basic problems concerning the nature of the Turkish intrusion into this geographic area and the first encounters between Turkmen warriors and nomads, on the one hand, and, on the other, various indigenous groups unified and dominated by the Byzantine-Orthodox elite of Constantinople.1 The topic is highly complex with respect to the available source material, which almost exclusively consists of historical narratives reflecting diverging viewpoints and literary traditions - Byzantine, Armenian, Syriac, local and universal Muslim, Seljuk dynastic - as well as in the discrepancies in modern interpretations. A common feature of the latter is that they examine the phenomena in question by alternatively focusing on either the Byzantine or the Turkish point of view - a demarcation which, by and large, corresponds to modern divisions of scholarly disciplines, i.e. Byzantine studies as distinct from Turkish or Islamic studies. A further subdivision is due to the long-lasting impact of national historiographies and the collective memories, stereotypes and patterns of thought resulting from them.

Modern scholarly traditions

  • 2 For Turkish approaches to the Seljuk Turks in the context of historical research in the late Ottoma (...)
  • 3 Turan Osman 1993, pp. 1-44, mentions the Büyük Türk muhacereti, i.e. the “great Turkish migration”.
  • 4 Strohmeier Martin 1984, pp. 91-101 (concerning the concept of Anadoluculuk in the work of Mükrimin (...)
  • 5 Turan Osman 1993, pp. 37-44. The author especially emphasizes the rapid and complete character of t (...)

2The foundations of the modern Turkish scholarly tradition of research on Seljuk history were laid by a series of influential intellectuals and academics of the early Republican period, who published most of their work between the 1930s and the 1970s. Perhaps the most important among them were Mehmet Fuad Köprülü (1890-1966), Mükrimin Halil Yınanç (1900-1961), Ibrahim Kafesoğlu (1914-1984), Osman Turan (1914-1978), Mehmet Altay Köymen (1915-1993), Faruk Sümer (1924-1995), and Ali Sevim (born 1928).2 This school of thought was deeply influenced in various ways by a key concept of Turkish nationalism that presented Anatolia as the Turks’ natural homeland (vatan) and final destination after a centuries-long process of migration.3 According to this view, in the eleventh century, after centuries of Arab invasions and decades of civil strife, Asia Minor was a vast, empty and devastated area, in which new political and cultural entities based on Turkic-nomadic traditions of Central Asia and on Muslim elements adopted in the core lands of Islam could be swiftly established.4 In this way, a process of rapid and profound Turkification of the whole region was inaugurated.5

  • 6 Ibid., pp. xviii-xxii.
  • 7 Ibid., pp. xxiv-xxx, and Ocak Ahmet Yaşar 2006b, pp. 15-16.
  • 8 Turan Osman 1993, pp. 37-44.

3In Osman Turan’s view, the actual driving force of the Oghuz Turks’ expansion and establishment in Anatolia was their conversion to Islam, which because of the moral and material superiority of its high culture proved to be of special attractiveness for the Turks in Transoxania and became their “common national religion” (umûmî ve millî din). The new Turkish Muslims, in turn, with their inherent vigour and dynamism, rescued Muslim civilization from its state of decay, in which it had been trapped since the tenth century, thus bringing about a complete renewal and strengthening in the religious, cultural, and political spheres.6 Islam is thus considered an indispensable part of or even a precondition for the immigration of pastoralizing Turkish nomad tribes and the creation of political entities characterized by a Turkish-Muslim high culture in Asia Minor. This process resulted in the identification of a Seljuk state with an Anatolian territory, which within a short time came to be called “Turkey”. Expressions like Selçuklu Türkiyesi, “Seljuk Turkey”, Türkiye Selçukluları, i.e. “the Seljuks of Turkey”, and Türkiye Selcuklu devleti, i.e. “the Seljuk state of Turkey”,7 promote the notion of a culturally and linguistically homogeneous nation with a collective identity and a common homeland bearing this people’s name. Accordingly, in Turan’s view the Islamization of Anatolia did not result from a long-lasting process of co-existence and acculturation, but rather from sudden and massive displacements of indigenous populations in conjunction with a gradual absorption of the remaining elements by the numerically predominant Turkish conquerors and settlers.8

  • 9 Sümer Faruk 1967 and Divitçioğlu Sencer 1994.
  • 10 Divitçioğlu Sencer 1994, pp. 85-95.
  • 11 Kafali Mustafa 2002, p. 416.

4Another important approach in modern Turkish research, which seems to prevail in more recent publications and frequently contradicts older religiously-oriented Islamic interpretations of the Seljuk period, combines anthropological models constructed on the basis of nomadic tribal societies with the idea of a clearly discernible Oghuz Turkish cultural legacy.9 This concept underlines the existence of specific Turkish institutions, social structures and identity markers engendering the transition from tribal coalitions to warrior groups and Turkish-Muslim principalities. In this framework, the role of Islam is often downplayed and thus the Turkish warriors are presented as only superficially Islamized, using religion as nothing more than an ingredient of ideological legitimization.10 The notion of ethnic and cultural continuity, of course, also serves to construct links with later Turkish states, such as the Anatolian beyliks and the Ottoman Empire. An extreme version even goes as far as to assert that what had begun with Alp Arslan and the Seljuk commanders in Anatolia during the 1070s and 1080s was eventually accomplished by Atatürk’s victory in the War of Independence in 1922.11

  • 12 Vryonis Speros 1971, pp. 1-68 and 1975, pp. 41-71.
  • 13 Vryonis Speros 1971, pp. 85-113.
  • 14 Cahen Claude 1968, 1974 and 2001.
  • 15 See, for instance, Cahen Claude 1968, p. 1-8 (the Turkish migrations from the sixth century onwards (...)
  • 16 For discussion of eleventh-century Byzantium, see Angold Michael 1997, pp. 13-97, Cheynet Jean-Clau (...)

5It goes without saying that these views are in sharp contrast with the modern Greek master narrative, as is mainly represented by Speros Vryonis’ (1928-) seminal work on the decline of medieval Hellenism in Asia Minor published in 1971. Here, Byzantine Asia Minor is portrayed as an extremely prosperous region deeply permeated by Constantinopolitan and Byzantine cultural values, the Greek language, and the Orthodox faith, and characterized by thriving urban and commercial centres, demographic vitality, a wellfunctioning administrative system, and a firmly established ecclesiastical organization.12 Accordingly, the arrival of the Turks appears as a disruptive invasion of culturally inferior nomadic tribes, which could not be rebuffed because of a profound internal crisis arising from a fierce power struggle between the civil and military aristocracy and the ensuing decay of the defence system in the eastern provinces.13 In Europe, the work of the French Orientalist Claude Cahen (1909-1991),14 who, while eschewing nationalistic views, still shared some of the basic premises of the Turkish scholarly tradition,15 did not find many successors until recently. Instead, European historians either focused on the internal situation in Byzantium, achieving thus a better understanding of the eleventh-century crisis, or on the Crusades.16 In this framework, the Turks appear in a rather undifferentiated and superficial manner as a dangerous threat jeopardizing the integrity of the Byzantine Empire and stubbornly opposing the Crusaders on their march to the Holy Land.

  • 17 Vryonis Speros 1971, pp. 143-216, and Turan Osman 1993, pp. 37-44.
  • 18 Vryonis Speros 1975, pp. 60-61, and Turan Osman 1993, pp. 229-236. For the transformation from Byza (...)
  • 19 Vryonis Speros 1975, pp. 61-64, and Turan Osman 1993, pp. 79-82.
  • 20 Vryonis Speros 1971, p. 176, and Balivet Michel 1994, pp. 30-80.
  • 21 Vryonis Speros 1971, pp. 223-244, and Balivet Michel 1994, pp. 47-53. For Christian defectors takin (...)
  • 22 Vryonis Speros 1971, pp. 363-396 and 1975, pp. 64-69, Balivet Michel 1991, 1995, pp. 11-24 and 1999 (...)

6The core issue of Islamization, which along with other phenomena of mutual cultural permeation lies at the heart of the transformative process from Byzantine to Turkish Asia Minor, was treated by the aforementioned scholarly traditions within the broader framework of their preconceived heuristic models, and thus received widely differing interpretations. There seems to be a certain consensus as to the basic factors and parameters determining the process of religious change in Asia Minor: the destruction and displacement of portions of the indigenous Christian population caused by the Turkish raids in conjunction with the decay of ecclesiastical institutions and a massive intrusion of Turkic-nomadic elements;17 the establishment and promotion of Muslim institutions by the Turkish-Muslim elite from the middle of the twelfth century onwards;18 an attitude of tolerance on the part of the rulers towards their Christian subjects and their institutions combined with material incentives to encourage conversion;19 co-existence and intermixture between the Turks and the indigenous population;20 the integration of non-Muslim magnates, officials, scholars and artisans in the court culture of the Turkish elite;21 and elements of syncretism in the popular religious culture and the missionary activities of dervish brotherhoods as reflected in the biographies collected in Aflākī’s Manāḳib al-‛ārifīn.22 The forces stemming from the concurrence of these phenomena, according to differing viewpoints, are perceived as a gradual dissolution of pre-existing structures or as fruitful interactions between co-existing religious and cultural groups.

Conquests and jihad ideology

  • 23 Peacock Andrew C. S. 2010, pp. 99-127.
  • 24 Wittek Paul 1938. For recent discussions of the issue, see Kafadar Cemal 1995 and Lowry Heath 2003.

7As regards the earliest stage of this development, one of the most basic issues remains the question as to whether or not there existed a clearly defined religious identity among the first Turkmen raiders coming to Asia Minor. In other words, did these people, apart from some attitudes and ideas adopted through their political experiences in the Islamic central lands, possess a clear Muslim consciousness comparable to the Sunni orthodoxy projected with the aid of theologians and the authority of the Abbasid caliphate by the heads of the Great Seljuk Empire in Iran and Iraq?23 Did they, as a consequence, draw on a clear concept of jihad or Holy War against the infidels while carrying out their raids on Christian territories, and thus present themselves as adherents of the Muslim faith? Notwithstanding the fact that the lack of sufficient evidence does not permit any definite answer to these questions, the view prevailing in modern scholarship is that Islam, in one way or another, did play an important role during the Turkish conquests. Strong emphasis placed on the religious aspect can be seen in the context of the well-known gazi-theory of Paul Wittek (1894-1978), which presents Holy War as the driving force of belligerent warriors involved in the formation of the early Ottoman emirate.24

  • 25 Turan Osman 1993, pp. 37-44.
  • 26 Ibid., pp. 123-133.
  • 27 Vryonis Speros 1971, pp. 145, 161-162, 177-178.
  • 28 Mélikoff Irène 1960, I, p. 191 [translation], II, pp. 9-10 [text]. The text creates imaginary bonds (...)
  • 29 Mélikoff Irène 1960, p. 141: “Chez ces farouches conquérants animés par l’esprit de prosélytisme, o (...)

8In contrast to Ottoman studies, however, where this theory repeatedly became the object of severe criticism, the scholarly discourse on the Seljuk conquests in Asia Minor, apart from the aforementioned shift to Turkish tribal elements, stagnated and remained as it had been in the 1970s. Many Turkish scholars consider Islamization (islamlaşma) as an indispensable component of the Turkification (türkleşme) of Asia Minor25 and thus underline the significance of specifically Islamic aspects and identity markers in the self-presentation, behaviour and collective memory of the Turks, as reflected in their interactions with the Christian population during the conquest period or in the emergence of lieux de mémoire related to the martyrdom of Turkish chieftains.26 Speros Vryonis also points to the key role of Muslim Holy War, but sees it primarily as a destructive force disastrous for the indigenous population, its places of worship, and the ecclesiastical organization.27 A text frequently referred to in order to support these views is the so-called Dānishmend-nāme, a Turkish epic romance dealing with the deeds of Melik Dānishmend, the conqueror of the northeastern Anatolian plateau around the basin of the Halys (Kızıl Irmak) River and founder of a eponymous local dynasty, who in later Turkish collective memory came to be transformed into a legendary champion of jihad continuing the tradition of the Arab hero Sayyid Baṭṭāl of Malatya.28 Some of the most remarkable characteristics of this warlord were his enthusiasm in convincing Christian opponents to side with him and to adopt Islam and his willingness to use unrestricted violence against all those stubbornly insisting on their faith. The circle of his closest companions, therefore, largely consisted of converted Christians, who by no means fell short of their lord in fulfilling the role of jihad warriors.29

  • 30 For details, see Mélikoff Irène 1960, pp. 53-70.

9The problem is that this romance, with its morale-boosting content and religious frame of reference, apparently addresses an audience possessing a fully developed concept of Muslim ghāzī fighters, which served to dignify the memories of the conquest period and to legitimize Turkish-Muslim rulers as heirs of an age-old jihad tradition in Anatolia going back to the time of the early caliphate. The earliest version of the romance is ascribed to a certain Mawlānā Ibn ῾Alā, who in 642/1245 or somewhat later fixed the oral tradition about Melik Dānishmend in written form and dedicated his work to the Seljuk sultan ʽIzz al-Dīn Kaykā’ūs II, thus linking the legendary hero of the conquest period with the Seljuk sultanate. In 762/1360-1 this text was thoroughly reworked by ῾Ārif ʽAlī, governor of Tokat, who revised it linguistically, rearranged its content, and adorned it with descriptions and poems reflecting the atmosphere of a Turkmen-nomadic lifestyle and Islamic mysticism in fourteenth-century Anatolia. In the late sixteenth century the chronicler ʽAlī of Gelibolu composed a paraphrase of this work, thus integrating its legendary material into the Ottoman historiographical tradition.30 The historical and geographical circumstances as well as numerous individuals mentioned or described in this text certainly echo the conditions of the conquest period or later chronological layers, and point to the intermingling of a factual core with epic features, narrative patterns, and literary conventions of the Arabic heroic cycle and Turkish-Persian poetic tradition. One should be extremely cautious in accepting the spirit and atmosphere expressed therein as reflecting genuine attitudes prevailing in the conquest period.

Christian sources

  • 31 John Skylitzes, Synopsis, pp. 442-500 (covering the period from the 1040s to 1057), John Skylitzes, (...)
  • 32 Matthew of Edessa, Armenia; for this author’s conception of history, see MacEvitt Christopher 2007, (...)

10Contemporary or later chronicles and historiographical texts are, no doubt, more reliable than the Turkish epic tradition, but it would be highly misleading to consider the information provided by them as containing trustworthy references to eleventh- and twelfth-century realities. First and foremost, one has to bear in mind the broad range of languages, literary conventions, ideological concepts, and social frameworks reflected in a body of historical narratives originating from a geographical area extending from Constantinople to Baghdad. Only by taking into account their particularities and by comparing the evidence provided by different traditions may the present-day observer be able to assess the degree of historicity of these narratives. While Byzantine historians primarily focus on imperial policy and the internal conflicts of the ruling elite,31 the authors of non-Chalcedonian denominations concentrate on the fate of their own co-religionists and ecclesiastical leadership in the east. The Armenian monk Matthew of Edessa and the Jacobite Patriarch Michael the Syrian, for example, present the major events of their respective communities in the eastern borderland stretching from Antioch, Edessa and the Upper Euphrates region to the Armenian provinces in Transcaucasia.32 The selective coverage provided by these sources largely excludes the central Anatolian plateau, the Pontus region, and western Asia Minor south of Bithynia, of which we find no more than some isolated glimpses when an imperial campaign or another military event is mentioned in the chronicles.

  • 33 Michael the Syrian, Chronique, III, pp. 158-159. For other sources on the Turkish attack against Me (...)
  • 34 Michael the Syrian, Chronique, III, p. 154: “de même leur seconde invasion eut lieu par l’ordre du (...)

11Some examples may illustrate the modes of perception and interpretative patterns applied to the phenomenon of conversion in these sources. Let us start with a failed attempt at conversion leading to the martyrdom of a courageous Christian citizen in the city of Melitene, as portrayed in the chronicle of Michael the Syrian.33 As part of his presentation of the Turkish raids, which he primarily views as a sign of God’s anger against the heretic, i.e. “Chalcedonian”, Greeks,34 he relates in detail the Turkish attack on Melitene/Malatya in the winter of 1057-58 as the first great disaster that afflicted his community after Sultan Ṭughril Beg started to launch invasions into the Byzantine regions of Armenia. Reliable historical facts, such as the lack of suitable fortifications, which forced the inhabitants to take refuge in the surrounding mountains, and the harsh climatic conditions of the winter season, which caused the death of both townspeople and raiders, are combined with an account of the martyrdom of the deacon Peter, a scribe of ecclesiastical manuscripts and schoolmaster, who was captured by marauding Turks looking for hidden treasure. The starting point of the episode was a cultural misunderstanding, namely the inability of the Turks to perceive the true meaning of the manuscripts preserved in Peter’s office. Their precious decoration made them erroneously think that Peter was the “head of all Christians”, and thus they started torturing him and forcing him to trample a cross under his feet. Peter steadfastly resisted, and met a horrible death. The literary elaboration of this event draws on the binary opposition between cruel barbarians on the one hand and on the other a courageous Christian who even under the most adverse circumstances proved strong enough to keep his faith.

  • 35 For the first phase of this development until 1124, see Vest Bernd Andreas 2007, pp. 1308-1777. For (...)
  • 36 Vest Bernd Andreas 2007, p. 1309.
  • 37 Ibn al-Athīr, Tārīkh, VII, p. 19: the Muslim judge of the fortress of Buzāʽa and about 400 noblemen (...)

12The episode does not fit very well with the other details provided by the description of this raid, which presents the Turks as being primarily interested in gaining booty through pillage and devastation, not as warriors of the Muslim faith. Neither Michael the Syrian nor any other contemporary source provides evidence pointing to a concept of Holy War or to specific Islamic elements as the driving force in the conduct of the Turkmen warriors. The local population in the regions afflicted by the early Turkish raids obviously faced a number of serious threats to their life and property, but forced conversions could hardly have been an issue of primary importance at that time. Things changed, however, when the Turkmens permanently established themselves in central and eastern Anatolia and started to build up new political units with Islamic characteristics. Because of its crucial importance as a strategic key point at the junction between the central Taurus and the upper Euphrates region, at the end of the eleventh century Melitene/Malatya became a focus for discord between crusaders, local Armenians and Turkish potentates, and was successively conquered by Melik Dānishmend in 1102 and by the Seljuk ruler Kılıc Arslan I in 1106. As the residence of the sultan’s widow and her son Ṭughril Arslan, the city continued to be a target of competing Muslim forces, so in 1124 it was conquered again by the Dānishmendid ruler Gümüştekin. Over the next decades the city was held by several princes of the same dynasty and had to endure an incessant series of attacks, until Kılıc Arslan II in late 1177 eventually managed to incorporate it into the Seljuk realm.35 These vicissitudes certainly had their impact on the Jacobite Christian community of Malatya, and it can be assumed that the high degree of insecurity ensuing from an almost constant state of warfare in the region made the issue of forced or voluntary conversions a crucial problem in the eyes of Michael’s co-religionists. Peter the deacon in all likelihood was indeed killed by the Turkish invaders,36 but rather than being seen as an early victim of religious fanaticism, he was styled by Michael the Syrian as a paradigmatic model of religious steadfastness for later generations of Christians constantly exposed to the dangers and threats of Muslim military action in the region. In the general framework of aggressive acts against the local population during campaigns, forced conversions certainly did occur from time to time. Similar phenomena also occurred in Byzantine campaigns in Muslim territory, as for example during the 1138 expedition of Emperor John II in northern Syria.37

  • 38 For a list of individuals known as defectors who permanently or temporarily took refuge at the Byza (...)
  • 39 Anna Comnena, Alexias, p. 198 (referring to Elchanes, Turkish lord of Apollonias, who in about 1092 (...)

13As for the period of the early Turkish raids in Asia Minor, the available evidence shows that high-ranking Seljuk or other Turkmen commanders were much more attracted by the Byzantine imperial court and the Christian-Roman cultural sphere than the other way round. Hence we have various examples of Turkish prisoners and defectors who were integrated into the Byzantine military elite, received court titles and adopted the Christian faith.38 Similar phenomena can be observed with respect to Turkish emirs who, trapped in a dangerous deadlock, preferred to surrender, in view of the generous rewards offered by the imperial government. In some cases this decision could culminate in the beneficiary’s baptism.39

  • 40 Ibid., pp. 222-223 and 326.
  • 41 Ibid., p. 258: ἀλλὰ τοῖς προσήκουσι βασιλεῦσι χρᾶται παρασήμοις βασιλέα ἑαυτὸν ὀνομάζων καὶ τὴν Σμύ (...)
  • 42 Ibid., p. 225: εἰ δέ σοι δοκεῖ καὶ τὰ τέκνα ἡμῶν συναφθῆναι, προβεβλήσθω μέσον ἡμῶν ἔγγραφος ἡ περὶ (...)
  • 43 Ibid.

14A particularly noteworthy case was, of course, that of the emir of Smyrna, Tzachas (Çaka). According to Anna Comnena, he established an independent rule over the coastal region between Klazomenai (modern Kilizman) and Phocaea (modern Foça), as well as the islands of Chios and Lesbos, and further consolidated his position through an alliance with the Seljuk Sultan Kılıc Arslan I.40 On the other hand, in his residence at Smyrna he made use of the title of basileus and other symbols of imperial self-representation.41 Consequently, while negotiating in Chios with the commanders of the imperial army about a peace agreement, amongst other things he proposed a marriage between one of his children and a child of the emperor so that he could establish bonds of kinship with the imperial dynasty.42 In Tzachas’ case, the process of cultural and ideological integration into the Byzantine-Christian cultural sphere was particularly advanced, for he had been taken prisoner at a young age and given to Emperor Nikephoros Botaneiates, who included him in the circle of his entourage, bestowing upon him the title of protonobelissimos.43

  • 44 Ibid., pp. 126-127.
  • 45 Beihammer Alexander 2011, p. 608.
  • 46 Anna Comnena, Alexias, p. 221.
  • 47 For Tzachas / Çaka, see Kurat Akdes Nimet 1966, Savvides Alexis 1982, pp. 9-24, 1984, pp. 51-66, Br (...)

15Anna’s account does not provide any indication, but it can be assumed that his belonging to the innermost circle of the imperial government presupposed his previous conversion to Christianity, something that may have been simply a natural step for a young foreign prisoner who had ambitions to become part of the Byzantine aristocracy. The Sarakenos Tatikios, who as prisoner of war had come into the service of Alexios’ father John Komnenos and thereafter made an impressive career as military commander under the first Komnenian emperor,44 or, even at an earlier stage, the Seljuk commander Chrysoskoulos-Arīsghī, a brother-in-law of Sultan Alp Arslan, who as a result of internal power struggles in 1070 had fled to the court of Romanos IV and became a close companion of John’s older brother Manuel Komnenos,45 are examples which illustrate how widespread the phenomenon of cross-cultural transitions had become at the Byzantine court. Tzachas is hence a representative example of a potentate of Turkmen origin, who in the course of his political life underwent a twofold process of integration from the Turkish to the Byzantine and back to the Turkish cultural sphere. The difference was that in the case of his second shift he did not return to the environment of nomadic warriors, but established himself as a warlord in the heart of Byzantine ports and urban centres. His military forces consisted of soldiers belonging to the local population in the coastal towns of western Asia Minor46 and of Turkish warriors, who seem to have gathered around him after his expulsion from the Byzantine capital as a result of Alexios I’s rise to power. The use of Byzantine symbols of authority in conjunction with his close contacts with the Seljuk court of Konya shows that Tzachas’ power base and legitimization strategy rested on the two main sources of political influence in western and central Anatolia at that time. Accordingly, Tzachas’ rule in Smyrna and the adjacent regions can be characterized as an intermediate form of lordship oscillating between a Byzantine and a Turkish-Muslim outward appearance.47

  • 48 Matthew of Edessa, Armenia, p. 104.
  • 49 Ibid., pp. 104-105.
  • 50 Beihammer Alexander 2011, pp. 615-616.

16As regards known instances of Christian apostates to Islam, these are rather few during the early period of the Turkish expansion and, if they occur at all, remain largely restricted to the eastern borderlands. Armenian potentates and warlords in the frontier zone were much more exposed to Turkish pressure and, therefore, were forced to find modes of co-existence at quite an early stage of their contacts with the new enemies. This is illustrated, for example, by the demeanour of the Bagratid king of Kars, Gagik-Abas II, who, according to Matthew of Edessa, shortly before his abdication in 1064 received an envoy from Sultan Alp Arslan “dressed up in a black garment of mourning”, thus demonstrating his grief over the death of the sultan’s predecessor Ṭughril Beg and his friendly disposition towards the Seljuk dynasty. When the sultan came in person to Kars, he dressed Gagik “in royal clothes”, which obviously means that he bestowed honorary robes upon him, thus enforcing a formal investiture of the Bagratid king and a recognition of the sultan’s suzerainty.48 The latter aspect is also highlighted by an opulent banquet offered to the sultan on the occasion of his visit to Kars. The Armenian chronicler, of course, is eager to present the king’s attitude as a clever device “to rid himself of the sultan”, but also admits that with Gagik’s flight to Emperor Constantine IX Doukas the enslavement of the Armenian nation was accomplished. The land was destroyed and the people were “subjected to servitude under infidel peoples and alien savages”.49 The downfall of the last king of Kars, although he eventually shrank from collaborating with the Seljuk sultan, marked the Armenian people’s subjugation to Muslim rule.50

  • 51 Bar Hebraeus, Chronography, p. 218 (dated 460 a. h. = 1067 November 11-1068 October 30 at the time (...)

17The first known case of conversion is attested by the chronicle of Bar Hebraeus, referring to the Armenian commander Aristakis (Arīstākīs), who in 1068 was trapped along with a contingent of 200 soldiers by Turkish warriors who, in order to save their lives, expressed the wish to go to the sultan and become Muslim. The Armenians were received with honour, circumcised, and awarded very generous annual incomes. Despite these advantages, the commander eventually escaped and returned to the Christian faith.51 Conversion here appears as an act of desperation subsequently to be corrected. Just as in the case of Peter the deacon, the story conveys a clear moral message. Even when one’s life is threatened and one is forced to succumb to the Muslim faith and its temptations, it is never too late to repent. It is remarkable that the text refers to material advantages, such as generous salaries and an honorary position at the sultan’s court, which may in fact have formed an important incentive for high-ranking aristocrats to convert to the enemy’s religion. Again, it does not seem very likely that this episode actually happened in that way in the late 1060s but, just as Peter the deacon did in the ecclesiastical sphere, Aristakis served as an example for members of the military class.

  • 52 For this personality, see Yarnley C. J. 1972 and Vest Bernd Andreas 2007, pp. 1445-1511. For the ex (...)
  • 53 Matthew of Edessa, Armenia, p. 137: “In this period [521 Arm. era = 1072-3] the impious and most wi (...)
  • 54 Michael the Syrian, Chronique, III, p. 173: “mais n’ayant pu résister aux Turcs, ce misérable aband (...)
  • 55 Matthew of Edessa, Armenia, pp. 152-153: “the wicked Philaretus rose up and went in homage to sulta (...)

18The most renowned Christian apostate in the period of the early Turkish raids was no doubt the Armenian lord Philaretos Brachamios, who began his career as an officer in the Byzantine army in the 1050s, was appointed to a leading command post among the eastern troops by Romanos IV in 1069, and from about 1073 onwards began to build up a semi-independent lordship expanding from Marʽash in the Jayḥān valley towards Cilicia and the upper Euphrates region, which included a number of important urban centres, such as Kaysūn, Raʽbān, Melitene, Edessa, and Antioch.52 This individual receives a very bad press in almost all available sources.53 The accounts agree that in early 1086, when his territory was reduced to Marʽash and Edessa and was coming under increasing pressure from Sulaymān b. Kutlumush and other Turkish-Muslim potentates in the region, Philaretos eventually decided to submit to Sultan Malik Shāh. The versions of Michael the Syrian and Matthew of Edessa agree that Philaretos’ conversion to Islam has to be seen in connection with this event, but the two authors provide differing explanations for the motives and exact circumstances of the Armenian lord’s behaviour. While the former presents the conversion as the ultimate goal of his trip to the sultan’s court in Khurāsān,54 the latter, despite his overwhelmingly negative attitude towards this figure, asserts that Philaretos originally submitted to the sultan in order to secure the survival of his heavily curtailed lordship and the safety of his Christian subjects. Only when he eventually incurred the sultan’s anger did he decide, in an act of desperation, to adopt the Muslim faith.55

  • 56 Anna Comnena, Alexias, pp. 186-187: καθ᾿ ἑκάστην δὲ τῶν Τούρκων ληιζομένων τὰ πέριξ, ἐπεὶ μὴ ἄνεσις (...)
  • 57 Ibn al-Athīr, Tārīkh, VI, p. 293.

19This version exhibits clear parallels with the aforementioned submission of King Gagik II of Kars to Sultan Alp Arslan in 1064 and seems to be much more in accordance with the initial situation described: the Armenian potentate, abandoned by most of his followers and deprived of his political power, was forced to find effective protection from a supreme authority recognized by most of the local rulers in the region. Anna Comnena presents an independent version of the events that connects Philaretos’ intention to convert to Islam with the conquest of Antioch by Sulaymān b. Kutlumush.56 Reportedly it was the Armenian lord’s son who, having failed to dissuade his father from his purpose to convert, set off for Nicaea and called on the Seljuk ruler to take possession of the city. Though highly illogical, Anna’s version, too, is in line with the aforementioned versions, in that she portrays the conversion as an act resulting from deep despair. The reason behind this odd interpretation can be clarified using Arabic sources which refer to an imprisonment of Philaretos’ son and the latter’s conspiracy to hand the city over to Sulaymān.57 Hence the idea that the Seljuk attack on Antioch was triggered by an internal conflict in Philaretos’ family is shared by Muslim sources as well and can be considered a historical fact, and it was only the details concerning the potentate’s conversion that were placed in a new context by the Byzantine historian, obviously with the intention of presenting it in the most scandalous way possible.

  • 58 Ibid.

20All in all, none of the available versions reflects a clear knowledge of the historical circumstances in which Philaretos’ conversion occurred; rather they present different narrative reconstructions written in hindsight and aiming to convey moral messages to their readers. In doing so, they converge in agreeing that the event occurred at the lowest point of Philaretos’ career and when he was in a state of despair, and was thus a self-destructive act of surrender to treacherous forces that led to material and spiritual moral decay, which in turn caused the complete collapse of his lordship. There are no reports about this or other Christian converts to Islam in eleventh-century Asia Minor in Muslim sources, so that we cannot make any comparison between the opposing viewpoints. Nevertheless, Ibn al-Athīr’s account of Sulaymān b. Kutlumush’s conquest of Antioch agrees with the Christian tradition in that coalitions and collaborations between individuals were important factors for the successful outcome of military actions, in this case the support of the governor of Antioch offered to the invading forces of Sulaymān that prepared the ground for a more benevolent treatment of the local population. In this atmosphere the boundaries between the vanquished and the victors could be more easily overcome and advanced forms of cooperation could be achieved. In the case of Antioch, the chronicler explicitly mentions that Sulaymān “showed kindness to the people and was just”, and forbade his soldiers to violate the property of the inhabitants. The described course of action illustrates the Seljuk lord’s transition from a warlord to a territorial ruler interested in establishing a permanent and well-ordered administrative system.58

Muslim sources

  • 59 Noth Albrecht 1994.

21The Muslim sources for the Turkish expansion in Asia Minor provide rich information about the rise of the Seljuk Empire and the social and political background of the various warrior groups involved in the invasions, but they are rather inaccurate and elusive as regards the effects of hostilities and raids, the coexistence between the indigenous population and intruding Turkmens, and the individual stages in the transformation from Byzantine administration to newly established principalities of Muslim character. As shown above, phenomena of Islamization, in one way or another, certainly did occur on all these levels, but in contrast to the early Islamic futūḥ (conquest) literature, in which the summoning to Islam and related issues constitute a permanently recurring motif in the narratives,59 they are nowhere treated in any systematic way.

22First and foremost, this is due to the overarching intention of the available accounts, which consist of (1) dynastic histories presenting the rise of the Seljuk dynasty from a band of warriors among the Oghuz tribes of Transoxania and Khurasan to a supreme power in the Muslim world, (2) universal histories integrating the activities of the Turkmen tribes into the events determining the political developments in the territories between Syria and eastern Iran, and (3) local histories relating the activities of Seljuk rulers and Turkish commanders to the extent that they affected the fates of the cities forming the subject of these texts. The material of these sources, therefore, is largely limited to the central Muslim lands and the major urban centres in Syria and Iraq. This, to a certain degree, includes the old Byzantine-Arab borderland in Cilicia, the upper Euphrates region, the Taurus mountain range, and Armenia, but has very little to say about the interior of the Anatolian highlands, let alone the western and northern regions along the Aegean and Black Sea coasts. Another problem is the highly complicated textual history of these works, which, though frequently traceable to contemporary witnesses and drafts, in most cases come down to us in the form of more recent versions. These in turn exhibit several stages of reworking, in which original tendencies and perspectives were altered and material was added or removed.

  • 60 Cahen Claude 1949.
  • 61 Rashīd al-Dīn Faḍlallāh, Jāmi (1960) and Jāmi (2001).
  • 62 Al-Bundârî, Histoire.
  • 63 Muḥammad al-Rāwandī, Ráḥat.
  • 64 adr al-Dīn al-usaynī, Dawlat.
  • 65 Ibn al-Athīr, al-Kāmil, introduction, pp. 1-10 and Bar Hebraeus, Chronography, introduction, pp. xx (...)

23Since the relevant studies of Claude Cahen on this subject, it has generally been accepted that the oldest layer of a genuine Seljuk historical tradition is a Persian Malik-nāma ( “The King’s Book”) which included material up to the death of Sultan Ṭughril Beg and was dedicated to his successor Alp Arlsan.60 Between the middle of the twelfth and the early fourteenth century this core piece, most likely on the basis of differing revisions and Arabic translations, was integrated, elaborated and continued by a whole series of writers. Among them were Ẓahīr al-Dīn al-Nīshāpūrī, the author of a Saljūq-nāma datable to about 1175, a version of which, quite close to the original but enriched with his own and previous additions, is transmitted in the Jāmi‛ al-tawārīkh of the early fourteenth-century Ilkhānid writer Rashīd al-Dīn Faḍlallāh,61 ʽImād al-Dīn al-Iṣfahānī, who in 579/1183-84, on the basis of the memoirs of Anūshirwān b. Khālid (c. 1133), wrote a history of the Iraqi Seljuks, published in the form of the thirteenth-century abridgement Zubdat al-Nuṣra by al-Bundārī,62 Muḥammad al-Rāwandī, who in about 599/1202-03 composed the compendium Rāḥat al-ṣudūr wa-āyat al-surūri,63 and Ṣadr al-Dīn al-Ḥusaynī, who (most probably erroneously) is mentioned in the only surviving manuscript as author of an Arabic work entitled Akhbār al-dawlat al-Saljūqiyya written after 622/1225.64 Furthermore, extensive parts of the Malik-nāma and other material referring to the Seljuks in both Asia Minor and the Islamic central lands are transmitted in the universal chronicles of Ibn al-Athīr (c. 1231) and Bar Hebraeus (c. 1286), who in all likelihood used two different versions with diverging tendencies as sources.65 The discrepancies among the various versions show us the particularities of each revision, but it is very difficult to say when and in what circumstances these changes were made. As a result, the question as to what reflects immediate knowledge of contemporary developments and what is later interpretation still needs much further clarification.

  • 66 Al-ʽAẓīmī, Tarihi and Kamāl al-Dīn Ibn. al-Adīm, Bughyat, Tarihi and Zubdat.
  • 67 Ghars al-Niʽma, Mir’âtü’z.
  • 68 Mīrkhwānd, Geschichte.
  • 69 Ibn Bībī, Histoire, Histoire abrégée, El-Evāmirü and Seltschukengeschichte.
  • 70 Karīm al-Dīn Maḥmūd-i Aksarāyī, Müsâmeret (1944) and Müsâmeret (2000).

24Additional material can be found in the chronicles of Aleppo written by al-ʽAẓīmī (d. shortly after 1160/61) and Kamāl al-Dīn b. al-ʽAdīm (d. 1262),66 as well as in the universal chronicle Mir’āt al-zamān by Sibṭ b. al-Jawzī (d. 1257), who included much material concerning the policy of Ṭughril Beg, Alp Arslan and Malik-Shāh taken from the eleventh-century account of Ghars al-Niʽma (d. 1080/1088).67 The reports transmitted by Ẓahīr al-Dīn and other authors continued to be used and elaborated in the Persian historical tradition of the fourteenth and fifteenth century, the most important representative of which is perhaps the Rawḍat al-ṣafā of Mīrkhwānd.68 The local historiography of the Seljuk dynasty of Rūm did not start before 680/1281-82, when Ibn Bībī wrote his al-Awāmir al-ʽalā’iyya fī l-umūr al-ʽalā’iyya covering the period from Ghiyāth al-Dīn Kaykhusraw I’s rise to power in 1192 until 1280.69 Lacking reliable sources, the author explains, he was not able to treat the period prior to this date. For this reason we do not possess any Anatolian Seljuk interpretation of the foundation period, but at least it becomes clear from this statement that, apart from the aforementioned texts, there was no other material circulating at that time. This is also confirmed by Karīm al-Dīn Maḥmūd-i Aksarāyī, the author of Musāmarat al-akhbār wa-musāyarat al-aḥyār written in 723/1323, which mainly covers the events after the end of Ibn Bībī’s chronicle up to the first quarter of the fourteenth century, but adds an extensive introduction based on the older Saljūq-nāma tradition.70

  • 71 Luther Kenneth Allin 2001, pp. 3-14.

25A basic characteristic of all these works is the attempt of bureaucrats and men of letters of the Arabic or Persian tongue belonging to the Seljuk ruling class to present the rise and development of this dynasty in the light of the principles, values and conceptions of Islamic political traditions and ideologies, thus describing a Turkmen warrior elite and their followers as a powerful force chosen by God to take over the supreme royal authority in the Muslim world and to put an end to the rule of their morally inferior opponents.71 In this context it comes as no surprise that, alongside a number of morally more or less neutral reports about the destructive actions of marauding bands of Turkmens, the idea of legitimacy and integration into the spiritual and institutional framework of the Muslim world was also applied to the conquered territories of Asia Minor. Hence, the arrival and establishment of Turkish rulers in Asia Minor is presented as resulting from an official bestowal of rights of suzerainty on the part of the caliph and the Seljuk sultan as the highest religious and secular authorities in Islam, thus creating the impression that, as early as the years following the Battle of Manzikert in 1071, officially sanctioned political formations came into being which from the outset had a fully defined Islamic outward appearance and structure.

26In particular, the version of Ẓahīr al-Dīn/Rashīd al-Dīn ascribes the foundation of a number of Turkmen principalities, which during the twelfth century dominated the political landscape of eastern Anatolia, to a decision made by Sultan Alp Arslan immediately after the Battle of Manzikert. Reportedly, it was the Byzantine emperor’s refusal to pay the tribute agreed upon during his captivity which caused the sultan to order his emirs to invade and take possession of the Byzantine territories:

  • 72 Rashīd al-Dīn Faḍlallāh, Jāmi (1960), pp. 38-39, and Jāmi (2001), pp. 52-53.

When the king of the Romans reached his own country, the Satan of disappointment nested in his heart and the demon of temptation in his brain and so he showed deficiency and delay in the sending [of the money] to the treasury. When they revealed this state of affairs to his majesty the sultan, he ordered the emirs to invade the provinces of the Romans; each district they were to conquer and take possession of would belong to him [i.e. one of them] and his children and grandchildren; except for him, nobody would have access to or control over it […] Authority and dominion was established in the best possible way. Each year they made their summer quarters in a pleasant steppe land and spent their time in pleasure. Sometimes discord occurred among them and because of pride and arrogance contentions made their appearance.72

27The text clearly expresses the idea of an official bestowal of hereditary rights of unrestricted sovereignty by the Great Seljuk sultan upon his leading military commanders. Because of the emperor’s disobedience, the Turkmen chieftains are entitled to seize his territories and to lay claims to exclusive dominion over them. In addition, the report stresses the persistence of two constant features characterizing the structural particularities of these principalities, namely the maintenance of pastoralist patterns and an inherent instability due to the hostile relations among them. In particular, the catalogue comprises (a) Emir Saltuq ruling over Erzurum (Arzan al-Rūm) and its dependencies, (b) Emir Artuq ruling over Mārdīn, Āmid, Manzikert, Melitene (Malaṭya) and Kharput (Khartapert), (c) Emir Dānishmand ruling over Kaisareia (Qayṣarīya), Tzamandos (Zamandū), Sebasteia (Sīwās), Gabadonia (Dawalū), Dokeia (Tūqāt), Neokaisareia (Nikīsār) and Amaseia (Āmāsiya), (d) Emir Chāwuldur ruling over Germanikeia (Marʽash) and Sarūs (Saros/Sayḥān River?), and (e) Emir Mangūjak Ghāzī ruling over Erzincan, Kamākh, Koloneia (Kūghūnīya) and other districts. All in all, the area covered by this list stretches from Cappadocia and the northern Pyramos (Ceyhan) Valley along the Euphrates river and the Anti-Taurus mountain range as far as the province of Basean and the regions bounded by the Lykos (Kelkit) and the Halys (Kızılırmak) rivers. The concept of a well-defined distribution of territories evokes the image of a common allegiance to the supreme rule of the Seljuk sultanate, which, in turn, appears as an overarching central power trying to unify and impose its control over a great variety of disparate warrior groups, Turkmen chieftains and Seljuk princes.

  • 73 Al-ʽAẓīmī, Tarihi, p. 16.

28It is striking, however, that neither this nor most of the other early Muslim reports on the Seljuk expansion in Asia Minor refer to Sulaymān b. Kutlumush before his expedition to Antioch. The only exception is the mid-twelfth century author AẒīmī (d. after 1160- 61), who in the report of the year 467/27 August 1074-15 August 1075 briefly notes: “Sulaymān b. Quṭlumush conquered Nicaea and its territories (Nīqīya wa-a‛mālahā).”73 Many scholars took this piece of information at face value, so the year 1075 became a sort of official birthday of the Seljuk sultanate in Asia Minor. An extended, albeit legendary, version of this report can be found in an anonymous Saljūq-nāma composed in the second half of the fourteenth century. Here Sulaymān is said to have originally been granted the rule over Syria and Diyār Bakr, but was not able to impose his authority, so decided to start fighting the Romans:

  • 74 [Anonymous], Tarihi, pp. 36 (text) and 23-24 (translation).

Good luck supported him and good fate was with him. The Turkmens of Khurāsān headed towards him. At first he came to Antioch, but was not able to conquer the city. Thus he went to the Romans. First he took Qūniya from Mārṭā and Kūstā and Qal‛a-i Kavālah from Rūmānūs Makrī. Within a short time he seized well-fortified fortresses in the region (qal‛ahā-yi muḥkam-rā ki dar ān nāḥiyat) and brought them to Islam. He took the treasures of the kings of the Romans with his sword. The hearts of the infidels filled with fear of him. He took [all territories] from Kūniya to Īznīk with his bravery. No army was able to resist him. They brought tribute (kharāj) from the cities of the infidels (az shahrhā-yi kuffār) to Konya. The powerful men of the Romans at his court put their heads on the bottom.74

  • 75 Turan Osman 1993, pp. 50-53.

29The image of Sulaymān is further developed into that of a powerful conqueror and champion of ghazā, who managed within a short time to gain wealth and a strong lordship and was paid respect by the Byzantines. The problem is that none of our Byzantine authorities explicitly mentions or implicitly suggests any form of actual control by the Turks over Nicaea and other urban centres in Bithynia prior to about 1080. Even then the available statements are so elusive that it is virtually impossible to gain a clear image of the way in which this takeover may have taken place. The only thing that seems to be certain is that Sulaymān, after he and his brothers failed to succeed in the rivalries of Turkmen warlords in Syria, in 1075 fled with his companions to the interior of Asia Minor and may have reached the western provinces of Phrygia and Bithynia quite quickly, where he came in contact with the local Byzantine aristocracy and military elite, among them Nikephoros Botaneiates and other rebels.75

  • 76 Matthew of Edessa, Armenia, p. 129.
  • 77 Ibid., p. 135.
  • 78 Nikephoros Bryennios, Histoire, p. 145.

30Twelfth-century Christian texts, despite their diametrically opposed perception of the events, reflecting the viewpoint of the defenders and victims, in some points share the ideas expressed by the Seljuk chronicles. Matthew of Edessa, who presents the Byzantine defeat of Manzikert as the “beginning of the second devastation and final destruction of our country by the wicked Turkish forces”,76 construes Diogenes’ death as an event causing the sultan’s anger. The sacrilegious crime against Alp Arslan’s treaty partner demonstrates the Romans’ godless nature and prompts the sultan to nullify all existing agreements and to send his soldiers to new raids on Christian territory.77 In a very similar way, Nikephoros Bryennios remarks that when the Turks learned what had happened to Diogenes, they violated the agreements and treaties which he had concluded for the benefit of the Romans and started to pillage the whole east.78 Michael the Syrian was the first Christian historian to create a direct causal link between the Battle of Manzikert and the further Turkish expansion into the interior of Asia Minor. He agrees with Matthew that the immediate result of the sultan’s military success was the Turks’ holding sway over Armenia, a view which is confirmed by the data provided by other sources regarding the overall outcome of Alp Arslan’s campaigns in the years 1064-1071, by means of which most major strongholds from Caucasia to Vaspurakan were subdued to direct Seljuk rule. Moreover, Michael is in accordance with the Saljūq-nāma of Ẓahīr al-Dīn/Rashīd al-Dīn in referring to an official appointment of Sulaymān by Alp Arslan:

  • 79 Michael the Syrian, Chronique, III, p. 172.

Their sultan, Alp Arslan […] sent his cousin Sulaymān to the lands of Cappadocia and the Pontus and gave him the authority to proclaim himself sultan. When he came, the Romans took to flight before him. He seized the cities of Nicaea and Nikomedeia and ruled over them, and the whole region was filled with Turks. When the caliph of Baghdad learned about this, he sent a banner and other objects, and he himself crowned Sulaymān and proclaimed him sultan, that is king, and thus his authority was confirmed. The Turks, therefore, had these two kings, one in Khurāsān and the other one in the land of the Romans, apart from these of Margiane.79

31Alp Arslan here appears as the dynasty’s supreme head, conceding to his relative territories in Byzantine Asia Minor. A striking difference from the Muslim chronicles lies in the fact that Sulaymān is presented as bearing the title of sultan, which the Abbasid caliph, with Alp Arslan’s permission, reportedly bestowed upon him by handing over the insignia of office. It can be safely assumed that, during the consolidation of the Seljuk state of Konya during the reigns of Sultan Masʽūd I (1116-1155) and his successor Kılıc Arslan II (1155-1192), official investitures by the caliph came into being, so that Michael the Syrian was actually describing accession procedures of his own time. As this projection of an Islamic conceptual framework back to the conquest period has been more or less uncritically adopted by most modern historians, the opinion prevails that the encounter between Byzantines and Turks in Asia Minor from the first moment onwards evolved along clearly defined dividing lines, juxtaposing a Christian and a Muslim sphere, as it was during the centuries of the Arab raids. In fact, the grey zone seems to have been much broader in eleventh- and twelfth-century Anatolia, and it certainly took about two or three generations until the Turkish principalities in Anatolia developed a well-defined Islamic institutional framework.

  • 80 Sevim Ali 1988, pp. 29-54 and Sevim Ali, Yücel Yaşar 1989, pp. 40-81.
  • 81 Sümer Faruk, Sevim Ali 1988 and Hillenbrand Carole 2007, pp. 26-110 and 114-125.
  • 82 Hillenbrand Carole 2007, pp. 123-125.
  • 83 Bar Hebraeus, Chronography, pp. 206-207.
  • 84 Gautier Paul 1977.

32Equally important for an adequate interpretation of the available data is to distinguish between accounts referring to the Seljuk elite operating in the central Islamic lands and the Turkmen war lords active in Asia Minor. The former appear as initiators and/or supreme commanders of large-scale invasions, such as the campaigns of 1048, 1055, 1064 and 1071 in the Armenian provinces and upper Euphrates region,80 and as partners in diplomatic contacts with the Byzantine emperor. In the framework of these activities, Muslim accounts frequently underline the religious incentives motivating the sultans’ mode of action. To this end, they employ a terminology that increasingly draws on notions of jihad and the binary opposition between Muslim fighters and infidel foes. This tendency culminates in the Muslim descriptions of the Battle of Manzikert, in which Sultan Alp Arslan appears as an idealized champion of Islam and as a model of a generous king showing compassion to his defeated enemy.81 Emperor Romanos IV, as portrayed after his release from Seljuk captivity as a loyal subject of the sultan, escorted by Turkish soldiers and travelling under the banner of Islam, stands as an example of a Christian lord who was overwhelmed by the supreme power of Islam.82 Other aspects emphasising the sultan’s role as promoter of Sunni Islam are reflected in the accounts of Ṭughril Beg’s attempt to reconstruct the destroyed mosque of Constantinople and of his antagonism with the Shiite Fatimids of Cairo.83 These Muslim reports are partly confirmed by a short Byzantine treatise referring to a religious dispute between a Christian envoy and Muslim theologians at the court of Sultan Malik Shāh in about 1073.84 At an early stage the Seljuk elite in the central lands of Islam started to promote their image as protectors of Sunni Islam and as heirs of the Muslim jihad tradition.

  • 85 Peacock Andrew C. S. 2010, pp. 48-53.
  • 86 See, for instance, Ibn al-Athīr, al-Kāmil, pp. 13-25.
  • 87 For details, see Beihammer Alexander 2009.

33In contrast, Muslim accounts of Turkish warriors of inferior standing constantly insist on ethnic, rather than religious, identity markers, presenting them as al-Ghuzz, “Oghuz”, al-Atrāk al-Ghuzziyya, “Oghuz Turks”, al-Turkumān, “Turkmens”, and the like.85 These people are usually depicted as cruel pillagers and skilful politicians establishing alliances with local authorities in the context of internal power struggles, but there are no allusions to a specific Muslim ideology.86 This is in line with the observations of contemporary Christian reports, which, while describing the Turkish raids, show almost no interest in the enemies’ capacity as representatives of the Muslim faith, but usually refer to a broad range of ethnographic stereotypes closely related to the nomadic tribes of the steppes as well as to the widely known motif of divine anger and the barbarians’ role as God’s instrument to punish the people for their sins. Eleventh-century authors like Michael Attaleiates and John Skylitzes draw a sharp semantic distinction between the “Turks” or “Huns”, who emerged as a new political power from the northeastern breeding grounds of barbarian tribes, and the “Saracens”, a term including both Arabs and Persian Muslims, who came to be subdued by the new power. Attaleiates and later on Anna Comnena further distinguish between Turkish warriors termed “Turks” and members of the Seljuk nobility designated as “lords of Persia”. The categorization of Muslim sources thus reappears in contemporary Byzantine narratives as well. The Byzantines obviously perceived the Great Seljuk Empire and the Turkmen emirates on Anatolian soil as different entities.87

Twelfth-century developments

  • 88 Beihammer Alexander 2011b, pp. 14-36.

34Things changed in the decades following Alexios I’s accession to the imperial throne, with the establishment of a new system of government in Constantinople, the beginning of the Crusades with all their repercussions on ideological attitudes and political constellations in the Near East, and of course with the gradual consolidation of Turkish-Muslim principalities in Asia Minor. As early as the 1130s one comes across a clear identification of the empire’s Turkish adversaries with the “descendants of Hagar” and “the offspring of Ismail”, i.e. the Muslims, in panegyric poems composed by Theodore Prodromos on the occasion of John II’s campaigns in the east. Accordingly, the Byzantine emperors are presented as God-chosen saviours of the state and defenders of the Christian faith. In the course of the twelfth century this tendency becomes increasingly stronger both in historiographical texts of the Comnenian period, such as those of Anna Komnene and Niketas Choniates, and in various official speeches composed by the leading court rhetoricians of the time.88

  • 89 Niketas Choniates, Historia, pp. 37-38.

35On the other hand, the fact that the overwhelming majority of the population and the cultural substrate in Asia Minor continued to be shaped by Byzantine and Christian characteristics seems to have enabled the maintenance of a sense of affinity between populaces and elites on either side of the border zone. It does not come as a surprise, therefore, that despite the strong presence of Turkmen nomads along the fringes of the Anatolian plateau, and the frequent campaigns and the hostile attitudes propagated by the official spokesmen of the imperial government, both the court elite in Constantinople and the provincial population adopted an ambivalent stance towards Turkish-Muslim political entities. The first statements in Byzantine historical texts concerning local groups having undergone a process of cultural and linguistic assimilation to their Turkish neighbours as a result of day-to-day interaction refer to the borderland at Lake Pousgouse (present-day Beyşehir gölü) during the 1130s, that is, about half a century after the permanent establishment of Turkmen elements in the Anatolian plateau.89

  • 90 Beihammer Alexander 2011a, pp. 617-630.

36Byzantine chronicles and panegyrics from the period in question, apart from the general tendency in Byzantine imperial ideology to present the empire’s military action as a just war aiming at the restoration of imperial rule in regions traditionally belonging to it, also express reactions to a very dangerous threat to the Comnenian elite: in the 1130s we come across the first instances of members of the ruling dynasty who for political reasons temporarily or permanently defected to the Seljuks of Konya or other Turkish rulers in Asia Minor. Defection and sometimes even conversion proved to be an efficient means of expressing discontent and exerting pressure on one’s own relatives, compatriots and co-religionists.90

  • 91 Ibid., pp. 618-622.
  • 92 Georgios Sphrantzes, Memorii, pp. 208-211.
  • 93 Stavrides Theoharis 2001, pp. 258-293 and Kafescioğlu Çiğdem 2009.

37In 1130 Emperor John II’s brother, the sebastokrator Isaac, took refuge with Byzantium’s most dangerous eastern enemy of that time, Gümüshtekin Ghāzī, son and successor of Dānishmend. To judge from the report of Michael the Syrian, his aim was to establish a broad coalition of local forces against his brother and the Byzantine government, something that eventually failed. A longer-lasting effect was that with his presence in the east Isaac established close personal bonds with Turkish rulers, engendering a sort of mental cross-fertilization. Thus the ground was prepared for the flight of his son John, which occurred in 1140 during the Byzantine siege of Neokaisareia (Niksar). This time, the refugee opted for full integration into the environment of the court that sheltered him by marrying a daughter of Sultan Masʽūd of Konya and converting to Islam. In his account of the incident Niketas Choniates tries to downplay its significance by insisting on John’s irrational behaviour and uncontrollable passion, which urged him to make this decision.91 Given that John had already accompanied his father during his eight-year sojourn in Asia Minor, one may safely assume that the conversion of the emperor’s nephew did not result from anger and thoughtlessness, but rather from a gradual process of acculturation that took place during the 1130s. The Seljuk dynasty of Konya had a number of court officials of Greek descent and Christian allies like the Armenian Rupenids of Cilicia, something that makes it very unlikely that there was a spirit of coercion compelling him to convert. Most probably, he actually made the deliberate decision to cut ties with his Comnenian past and adopt a new identity as a high-ranking Muslim dignitary at the sultan’s court. In the collective memory of post-Byzantine historical thought, it was exactly this puzzling individual who eventually served as a link between the Comnenian emperors and the house of Osman, being presented in the so-called Chronicon maius of Pseudo-Sphrantzes, in fact the sixteenth-century author Makarios Melissenos, as one of the forefathers of Sultan Meḥmed II.92 This genealogical device is certainly a later fabrication supporting Ottoman claims to the Byzantine heritage, yet John was still a paradigmatic forerunner of fifteenth-century Palaiologan converts who were to play a prominent role in Meḥmed II’s empire after the fall of Constantinople, such as the Grand Viziers Maḥmūd Pasha and Rūm Meḥmed, whose mosques still appears as impressive landmarks in the urban development of post-Byzantine Istanbul.93

Conclusion

38In sum, the existing bibliography on matters of conversion during the early stages of Seljuk expansion in Asia Minor is dominated by largely outdated and unsatisfactory interpretative patterns of national and religious exclusiveness. Statements about the desolate and sparsely populated appearance of Byzantine Anatolia, the massive influx of Turkmen nomads expelling indigenous populations, the great extent of destruction and depredation, the deep-rooted changes in pre-existing social, political and administrative structures, the quick establishment of Muslim institutions, and so on, all support the idea of clear-cut boundaries between a Byzantine-Christian and a Turkish-Muslim sphere, be it in the sense of the gradual decay of a previous politico-cultural entity or of the irresistible expansion of a new vital power building up a new homeland. Anthropological approaches to nomad groups and a better understanding of social conditions in Asia Minor go a long way towards elucidating many aspects of the transformation process, but concepts concerning co-operation and gradual blending of indigenous and nomadic elements, such as have been developed with respect to the early Ottoman emirate, have hardly been applied to eleventh-century Anatolia. A serious methodological shortcoming observable in almost all studies on early Seljuk Asia Minor is the tendency to extract pieces of information from the available narrative sources and to harmonize them with overarching theories of historical thought without proceeding to an analysis of the actual meaning and intention of the reports from which the relevant evidence is taken. A thorough re-examination of this rich material of historical traditions will be a key task for future research.

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Notes

1 In this article, “Turkmen” is used in the commonly accepted sense of “Islamized pastoralists belonging to the Turkish Oghuz tribe”, while “Seljuk” always refers to the clan and dynasty of that name. For details and etymological matters, see Divitçioğlu Sencer 1994, pp. 53-57. My warmest thanks, as always, to Professor Chris Schabel (University of Cyprus) for linguistic advice. This article is dedicated to the memory of Jean Schotz, who met an untimely and violent death.

2 For Turkish approaches to the Seljuk Turks in the context of historical research in the late Ottoman and Republican periods, see Strohmeier Martin 1984 and Başan Aziz 2010, pp. 1-20. For an overview of more recent bibliography, see Ocak Ahmet Yaşar 2006b, pp. 15-16. Some of the most important monographs and manuals written by the said scholars include: Köprülü Fuad 1943, Yinanç Mükrimin Halil 1944, Kafesoğlu İbrahim 1953, Turan Osman 1965 and 1993, Sümer Faruk 1967, Köymen Mehmet Altay 1991, 1992 and 2000, Sevim Ali 1988 and 1990 and Sevim Ali, Yücel Yaşar 1989.

3 Turan Osman 1993, pp. 1-44, mentions the Büyük Türk muhacereti, i.e. the “great Turkish migration”.

4 Strohmeier Martin 1984, pp. 91-101 (concerning the concept of Anadoluculuk in the work of Mükrimin Halil Yınanç, who rejected both the traditional dynastic historiography of the Ottoman Empire and the ideas of Panturkism and Ottomanism, concentrating thus on the formation of a Turkish nation in Anatolia and the continuities between the Seljuk period and modern Turkey). For further details, see Yinanç Mükrimin Halil 1944, pp. 161-187.

5 Turan Osman 1993, pp. 37-44. The author especially emphasizes the rapid and complete character of this process by referring to huge masses of Turkish migrants, who within a few decades after the onset of the Turkish raids overran most parts of Anatolia and established a new homeland there, being politically united by the state founded by Sulaymān-shāh b. Kutlumush.

6 Ibid., pp. xviii-xxii.

7 Ibid., pp. xxiv-xxx, and Ocak Ahmet Yaşar 2006b, pp. 15-16.

8 Turan Osman 1993, pp. 37-44.

9 Sümer Faruk 1967 and Divitçioğlu Sencer 1994.

10 Divitçioğlu Sencer 1994, pp. 85-95.

11 Kafali Mustafa 2002, p. 416.

12 Vryonis Speros 1971, pp. 1-68 and 1975, pp. 41-71.

13 Vryonis Speros 1971, pp. 85-113.

14 Cahen Claude 1968, 1974 and 2001.

15 See, for instance, Cahen Claude 1968, p. 1-8 (the Turkish migrations from the sixth century onwards and the ghāzī ideology as historical preconditions of the Seljuk expansion), p. 64-66 (Asia Minor exhibits a demographic decrease during the Byzantine period and “was incapable of offering a solid and united front”).

16 For discussion of eleventh-century Byzantium, see Angold Michael 1997, pp. 13-97, Cheynet Jean-Claude 1998 and the contributions gathered in Vlyssidou Vassiliki 2003. Crusader historians refer to the Seljuk Turks mainly in the context of the passages through Asia Minor in 1096-1098, 1147, and 1190 and the wars with Turkish potentates in northern Syria. See, for instance, Asbridge Thomas 2004, pp. 113-240, and Tyerman Christopher 2006, pp. 124-147, 317-329 and 417-430.

17 Vryonis Speros 1971, pp. 143-216, and Turan Osman 1993, pp. 37-44.

18 Vryonis Speros 1975, pp. 60-61, and Turan Osman 1993, pp. 229-236. For the transformation from Byzantine to Turkish-Muslim urban structures, see Özcan Koray 2010.

19 Vryonis Speros 1975, pp. 61-64, and Turan Osman 1993, pp. 79-82.

20 Vryonis Speros 1971, p. 176, and Balivet Michel 1994, pp. 30-80.

21 Vryonis Speros 1971, pp. 223-244, and Balivet Michel 1994, pp. 47-53. For Christian defectors taking refuge at Turkish courts, see Beihammer Alexander 2011b, pp. 614-630.

22 Vryonis Speros 1971, pp. 363-396 and 1975, pp. 64-69, Balivet Michel 1991, 1995, pp. 11-24 and 1999, pp. 21-29, 205-215, and Aflākī, Manāḳib.

23 Peacock Andrew C. S. 2010, pp. 99-127.

24 Wittek Paul 1938. For recent discussions of the issue, see Kafadar Cemal 1995 and Lowry Heath 2003.

25 Turan Osman 1993, pp. 37-44.

26 Ibid., pp. 123-133.

27 Vryonis Speros 1971, pp. 145, 161-162, 177-178.

28 Mélikoff Irène 1960, I, p. 191 [translation], II, pp. 9-10 [text]. The text creates imaginary bonds of kinship between the Arab and the Turkish hero: “et l’émir ʽÖmer [the brother of Sayyid Baṭṭāl] avait aussi une fille qui fut donnée en mariage au fils de Miẓrāb [a famous commander of troops from Khwarizm], ʽAlī; elle mit au monde un enfant qui fut appelé Melik Aḥmed, mais comme il devint fort intelligent et fort sage on le surnomma Melik Dānişmend”. For details, see Mélikoff Irène 1960, introduction, pp. 71-170, and Turan Osman 1993, pp. 123-128.

29 Mélikoff Irène 1960, p. 141: “Chez ces farouches conquérants animés par l’esprit de prosélytisme, on ne trouve aucun sentiment de discrimination ou de haine raciale: toute distinction entre vainqueurs et vaincus s’efface dès que le Mécréant est devenu musulman.” As central protagonists of the romance fighting on the side of Melik Dānişmend appear Artukhī, the converted son of the Christian lord of Amaseia, whose personality combines several epic features with memories related to the historical figure of the Turkmen commander Emir Artuk (ibid., pp. 122-126), and Efromiya (< Greek Εὐμορφία), the converted daughter of a Christian lord and wife of Artukhī, who recalls elements of Amazon women in the Turkish epic tradition in conjunction with the historical memory of Morphia, the daughter of Gabriel, the last Christian lord of Melitene (ibid., pp. 129-131). In addition, the text refers to several other faithful companions of Christian origin, such as the spy Yaḥyā bin ʽIsā (ibid., pp. 126-127), and former enemies who converted to Islam, such as Aḥmed-i Serkīs, the brothers of Toqat, and Pānīc, the nephew of Mikhā’īl (ibid., pp. 128-129).

30 For details, see Mélikoff Irène 1960, pp. 53-70.

31 John Skylitzes, Synopsis, pp. 442-500 (covering the period from the 1040s to 1057), John Skylitzes, Συνέχεια (covering the period 1057-1079/80), Michael Attaliates, Historia, pp. 33-36, 59-195, 198-199 and 206-207 (covering the period from the 1040s to 1078), John Zonaras, Epitomae, pp. 634-641, 683-724 and 756-758 (covering the period from the 1040s to 1118), Nikephoros Bryennios, Histoire, pp. 86-207 and 236-311 (covering the years 1071-1079/80), Anna Comnena, Alexias (covering the years 1073-1118), John Kinnamos, Epitome and Deeds (covering the years 1118-1176) and Niketas Choniates, Historia and Annals (covering the years 1118-1206).

32 Matthew of Edessa, Armenia; for this author’s conception of history, see MacEvitt Christopher 2007, Michael the Syrian, Chronique, III, pp. 149-413, and Bar Hebraeus, Chronography, I, pp. 195-352.

33 Michael the Syrian, Chronique, III, pp. 158-159. For other sources on the Turkish attack against Melitene, see Matthew of Edessa, Armenia, pp. 92-93 and Bar Hebraeus, Chronography, pp. 212-213. For an analysis of the raid, see Vest Bernd Andreas 2007, pp. 1298-1315.

34 Michael the Syrian, Chronique, III, p. 154: “de même leur seconde invasion eut lieu par l’ordre du Seigneur […]. Les Grecs prévalurent de nouveau sur la Syrie, la Palestine, l’Arménie et la Cappadoce; et aussitôt qu’ils régnèrent, ils renouvelèrent promptement leurs mauvaises habitudes, et se mirent à persécuter tyranniquement les fidèles dans ces contrées. Alors, Dieu fut justement irrité contre eux, et pour cela, il excita et fit sortir les Turcs dans cette seconde invasion”.

35 For the first phase of this development until 1124, see Vest Bernd Andreas 2007, pp. 1308-1777. For the rest, see Cahen Claude 2001, pp. 11-18, 20-21 and 23-32.

36 Vest Bernd Andreas 2007, p. 1309.

37 Ibn al-Athīr, Tārīkh, VII, p. 19: the Muslim judge of the fortress of Buzāʽa and about 400 noblemen from among the inhabitants converted to Christianity.

38 For a list of individuals known as defectors who permanently or temporarily took refuge at the Byzantine court, see Beihammer Alexander 2011b, pp. 606-614.

39 Anna Comnena, Alexias, p. 198 (referring to Elchanes, Turkish lord of Apollonias, who in about 1092 surrendered to Emperor Alexios I): ὁ δὲ Ἐλχάνης ἀποχρῶσαν ἀπάρτι πρὸς αὐτὸν μὴ ἔχων δύναμιν τὴν μὲν πόλιν ἐθελοντὶ παραδίδωσιν, αὐτὸς δὲ μετὰ τῶν καθ᾿ αἷμα προσηκόντων αὐτομολεῖ πρὸς τὸν βασιλέα καὶ μυρίων μὲν ἐπαπολαύει δωρεῶν, τυγχάνει δὲ καὶ τοῦ μεγίστου, τοῦ ἁγίου φημὶ φωτίσματος. Ibid., p. 326 (referring to the negotiations between the Byzantine general Manuel Boutoumites and the Seljuk commanders of Nicaea): ἐς τοσοῦτον συνηλάθησαν οἱ βάρβαροι ὡς μὴδὲ τῶν κρηδέμνων Νικαίας προκύψαι θαρρεῖν. ἅμα δὲ καὶ τὴν τοῦ σουλτάνου ἀπεγνωκότες ἔλευσιν, βέλτιον ἐλογίσαντο τῷ αυτοκράτορι παραδοῦναι τὴν πόλιν καὶ εἰς ὁμιλίαν περὶ τούτου μετὰ τοῦ Βουτουμίτου ἐλθεῖν […] ἀκροασάμενοι τοίνυν τοῦ χρυσοβούλλου, δι᾿ οὗ ὑπισχνεῖτο ὁ βασιλεὺς οὐ μόνον ἀπάθειαν, ἀλλὰ καὶ δαψιλῆ δόσιν χρημάτων τὲ καὶ ἀξιωμάτων τῇ τε ἀδελφῇ καὶ τῇ γυναικὶ τοῦ σουλτάνου, ἥτις θυγάτριον, ὡς ἐλέγετο, τοῦ Τζαχᾶ, καὶ πᾶσιν ἁπλῶς τοῖς ἐν Νικαίᾳ βαρβάροις. See also ibid., pp. 328-329 (negotiations between the Byzantine officers Monastras and Rodomeros and Seljuk dignitaries).

40 Ibid., pp. 222-223 and 326.

41 Ibid., p. 258: ἀλλὰ τοῖς προσήκουσι βασιλεῦσι χρᾶται παρασήμοις βασιλέα ἑαυτὸν ὀνομάζων καὶ τὴν Σμύρνην οἰκῶν καθαπερεὶ βασίλειά τινα.

42 Ibid., p. 225: εἰ δέ σοι δοκεῖ καὶ τὰ τέκνα ἡμῶν συναφθῆναι, προβεβλήσθω μέσον ἡμῶν ἔγγραφος ἡ περὶ τούτου συμφωνία, ὡς ἔθος τοῖς Ῥωμαίοις καὶ ἡμῖν τοῖς βαρβάροις ἐστί.

43 Ibid.

44 Ibid., pp. 126-127.

45 Beihammer Alexander 2011, p. 608.

46 Anna Comnena, Alexias, p. 221.

47 For Tzachas / Çaka, see Kurat Akdes Nimet 1966, Savvides Alexis 1982, pp. 9-24, 1984, pp. 51-66, Brand Charles M. 1989, pp. 2-3, 15-17 (with similar conclusions regarding Tzachas’ adoption of the Christian faith, but a much sharper distinction between the Byzantine and the Muslim-Turkish sphere, which at least during the early formation period could not yet have been that clear) and Durak Koray 2009, p. 73, n. 69.

48 Matthew of Edessa, Armenia, p. 104.

49 Ibid., pp. 104-105.

50 Beihammer Alexander 2011, pp. 615-616.

51 Bar Hebraeus, Chronography, p. 218 (dated 460 a. h. = 1067 November 11-1068 October 30 at the time of Romanos’ IV takeover in Constantinople). I could not detect any traces of this episode in older sources and thus it remains open to question from where the author took the information about this incident.

52 For this personality, see Yarnley C. J. 1972 and Vest Bernd Andreas 2007, pp. 1445-1511. For the extent of his realm, see Michael the Syrian, Chronique, III, pp. 173-174.

53 Matthew of Edessa, Armenia, p. 137: “In this period [521 Arm. era = 1072-3] the impious and most wicked chief Philaretus, who was of the offspring of Satan, began his tyrannical rule; for, when Diogenes fell, this perfidious man, who indeed was a precursor of the abominable Antichrist and possessed a demonical and extremely monstrous character, tyrannically ruled over the land.”

54 Michael the Syrian, Chronique, III, p. 173: “mais n’ayant pu résister aux Turcs, ce misérable abandonna sa foi, descendit à Bagdad, et dans le Khorasan, et se fit musulman.”

55 Matthew of Edessa, Armenia, pp. 152-153: “the wicked Philaretus rose up and went in homage to sultan Malik-Shāh the conqueror, in order to solicit his benevolence and peace on behalf of all the Christian faithful […] Now, when the sultan Malik-Shāh learned of all this in Persia, he removed Philaretus from his presence and treated him with contempt. So Philaretus, in complete despair, at that moment abjured his Christian religion, renouncing the faith of Christ”.

56 Anna Comnena, Alexias, pp. 186-187: καθ᾿ ἑκάστην δὲ τῶν Τούρκων ληιζομένων τὰ πέριξ, ἐπεὶ μὴ ἄνεσις τούτῳ ἐδίδοτο, ἐσκέψατο προσελθεῖν τοῖς Τούρκοις καὶ περιτμηθῆναι, ὡς ἔθος αὐτοῖς. ὁ δὲ υἱὸς αὐτοῦ ἐνέκειτο τοῦτον σφόδρα τῆς παραλόγου ἀνακόπτων ὁρμῆς […].

57 Ibn al-Athīr, Tārīkh, VI, p. 293.

58 Ibid.

59 Noth Albrecht 1994.

60 Cahen Claude 1949.

61 Rashīd al-Dīn Faḍlallāh, Jāmi (1960) and Jāmi (2001).

62 Al-Bundârî, Histoire.

63 Muḥammad al-Rāwandī, Ráḥat.

64 adr al-Dīn al-usaynī, Dawlat.

65 Ibn al-Athīr, al-Kāmil, introduction, pp. 1-10 and Bar Hebraeus, Chronography, introduction, pp. xxxvii-xli.

66 Al-ʽAẓīmī, Tarihi and Kamāl al-Dīn Ibn. al-Adīm, Bughyat, Tarihi and Zubdat.

67 Ghars al-Niʽma, Mir’âtü’z.

68 Mīrkhwānd, Geschichte.

69 Ibn Bībī, Histoire, Histoire abrégée, El-Evāmirü and Seltschukengeschichte.

70 Karīm al-Dīn Maḥmūd-i Aksarāyī, Müsâmeret (1944) and Müsâmeret (2000).

71 Luther Kenneth Allin 2001, pp. 3-14.

72 Rashīd al-Dīn Faḍlallāh, Jāmi (1960), pp. 38-39, and Jāmi (2001), pp. 52-53.

73 Al-ʽAẓīmī, Tarihi, p. 16.

74 [Anonymous], Tarihi, pp. 36 (text) and 23-24 (translation).

75 Turan Osman 1993, pp. 50-53.

76 Matthew of Edessa, Armenia, p. 129.

77 Ibid., p. 135.

78 Nikephoros Bryennios, Histoire, p. 145.

79 Michael the Syrian, Chronique, III, p. 172.

80 Sevim Ali 1988, pp. 29-54 and Sevim Ali, Yücel Yaşar 1989, pp. 40-81.

81 Sümer Faruk, Sevim Ali 1988 and Hillenbrand Carole 2007, pp. 26-110 and 114-125.

82 Hillenbrand Carole 2007, pp. 123-125.

83 Bar Hebraeus, Chronography, pp. 206-207.

84 Gautier Paul 1977.

85 Peacock Andrew C. S. 2010, pp. 48-53.

86 See, for instance, Ibn al-Athīr, al-Kāmil, pp. 13-25.

87 For details, see Beihammer Alexander 2009.

88 Beihammer Alexander 2011b, pp. 14-36.

89 Niketas Choniates, Historia, pp. 37-38.

90 Beihammer Alexander 2011a, pp. 617-630.

91 Ibid., pp. 618-622.

92 Georgios Sphrantzes, Memorii, pp. 208-211.

93 Stavrides Theoharis 2001, pp. 258-293 and Kafescioğlu Çiğdem 2009.

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