The Court of the Caliphs

Published by Weidenfeld & Nicolson on 9th September 2004

From a rebellion planned in a remote desert town to the founding of Baghdad in AD 762, the rule of the Abbasid dynasty was looked back on as the golden era of the Islamic Conquest.

It was a time of military conquests, patronizing poetry and palace building. And in the formal structure of the court – harems, viziers, eunuchs and the tales of the Arabian Nights – the Abbasid caliphate offered a historical ideal to which later empires and their rulers would aspire.