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"History at its most vivid and enthralling. a truly magnificent achievement."
- New Statesman

"Fascinating and well-written."
- The Guardian

"A superb history."
- Daily Telegraph

“Hugh Kennedy chronicles the expansion of Islam from the death of Mohammed in 632 to the beginning of the Abbasid Caliphate in 750 (the latter the subject of Kennedy's When Baghdad Ruled the Muslim World, 2005). Relating the story, however, requires care since most sources date, as Kennedy cautions, from 150 to 250 years after the conquests they purport to describe. Kennedy's warnings engage interest as he provides the contexts of late antiquity, which lent advantage to the new religion sweeping out of Arabia. Crucially, Near East populations had been devastated by plague and by a war between Islam's political enemies: the Byzantine Empire and the Sasanian Empire of Persia. Kennedy's attention to these factors deepens his interpretations of the Islamic chronicles, which he describes as frustratingly vague on details of battles but strangely attentive to the division of booty. Explaining the élan that propelled Islam so far, so fast, and so permanently, Kennedy vividly introduces the formative establishment of Islam.”
- Booklist (US)

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Hugh Kennedy studied Arabic at the Middle East Centre for Arabic Studies before reading Arabic, Persian and History at Cambridge. Since 1972 he has taught in the Department of Mediaeval History at the University of St. Andrews.

Very favourable reviews on

Paperback 2007.

421 pages plus colour plates.

Very good condition.

The cost of shipping is $4.95, or $6.95 by tracked mail. If you are on rural delivery and want tracked mail, the shipping cost will be $9.95.

There is of course no charge for shipping if you collect this book from my shop in Palmerston North following the auction.

Payment within seven days, please.
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Shipping options

  • NZ Post$4.95
  • tracked mail$6.95
  • tracked mail for Rural Delivery (RD)$9.95
  • Seller allows pick-ups
  • Seller location: Palmerston North, Manawatu, NZ

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