Meaning of 'ABD AL-WADID DYNASTY in English


also called Zayyanid Dynasty, or Banu Zayyan dynasty of Zanatah Berbers (1236-1550), successors to the Almohad empire in northwestern Algeria. In 1236 the Zanatahs, loyal vassals to the Almohads, gained the support of other Berber tribes and nomadic Arabs and set up a kingdom at Tilimsan (Tlemcen), headed by the Zanatah amir Yaghmurasan (ruled 1236-83). Yaghmurasan was able to maintain internal peace through the successful control of the rival Berber factions, and, in the face of the Marinid threat in the west, he formed an alliance with the Sultan of Granada and the King of Castile. After his death, however, the Marinid sultan Abu Ya'qub besieged Tilimsan for eight years (1298-1306). The city was finally taken in 1337 by Abu al-Hasan, and a 10-year period of Marinid domination followed. Recaptured by the 'Abd al-Wadids in 1348, Tilimsan was again stormed by the Marinids in 1352, who ruled for another seven years. 'Abd al-Wadid attempts at expansion eastward into Hafsid Tunis also proved disastrous, and, for a time in the early 15th century, they were virtual vassals of the Hafsid state. The kingdom's chronic weakness may be traced to its lack of geographical and cultural unity, the absence of fixed frontiers, and constant internal rebellions. It further suffered from a shortage of manpower, having to rely on intractable Arab nomads for soldiers. Its economic prosperity was based on the position of Tilimsan along the trade route between the Mediterranean ports and Saharan oases. The 'Abd al-Wadid state collapsed in 1550, when Tilimsan was seized by the Ottoman Turks after a half century of alternating Spanish-Turkish suzerainty.

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