The Ordinances of Governance : Al-Ahkam al-Sultaniyya w'al-Wilayat al-Diniyya
By Abu al-Hasan al-Mawardi
Translator : Professor Wafaa H Wahba
Paperback 302 Pages
ISBN : 9781859641408
Publisher : Garnet Publishing
About The Book
An easily accessible translation of Al-Mawardi's unique classical work on the laws of Islamic governance. Based on the example of the first Muslim community of Madina, and concerned more with practice than with theory, it describes the rights, duties and responsibilities of those in authority, including the selection of the Khalifah and his appointment of ministers, amirs of the provinces and the armed forces, Imams of the mosques, judges and court officials, and those responsible for collecting the zakah and other revenues. The book also considers the main issues relating to land ownership, water supplies, criminal law, fair trading, control over weights and measures, and public order.
A vital reference resource for those already exercising authority, as well as for students and researchers of Islamic studies, this book can be studied either as a historical record of Islamic governance in the 5th century AH/11th century CE, or as a description of the exercise of authority which still existed at the beginning of the 20th century CE.
The Ordinances of Government is believed to have been written under commission from one of the caliphs of Baghdad, as indicated in the author’s preface. It has long been recognised as a classic in its field, much discussed by Arab authors and orientalists, quote in courses on Islamic law and government. It contains insights into key issues of Islamic law, including the appointment of sovereigns, officials, judges and military commanders, and their rights, responsibilities and duties; fighting apostates, insurgents and brigands; dividing the spoils of war; boundaries between countries, land reclamation and water supplies; land enclosure, tithes, taxes and alms; crimes and punishments; fornication, theft, drinking and adultery.
Long recognised as a classic in its field.
About The Author
Abu al-Hasan al-Mawardi was a 10th-century jurist who wrote on many subjects, including Qur'anic interpretations, religion, government, public and constitutional law, language and ethics.
The son of a rose-water merchant, lived in Basra from 974 to 1058 AD, a time of political turmoil. Despite ongoing disputes between the Abbasid caliphs and the military powers of the Shi‘ite Buyids, al-Mawardi held the respect of both parties and was often called on to mediate between them. He served as a judge in several districts and was commended as a judge par excellence.
He wrote on many subjects, including Qur’anic interpretations, religion, government, public and constitutional law, language, ethics and belles-letters. His method of working was as an independent thinker, quoting different viewpoints, discussing their merits, and putting forward his own conclusions. Al-Mawardi died in 450 AH (1058 AD).
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