For faster navigation, this Iframe is preloading the Wikiwand page for Barquq.


Sultan of Egypt and Syria
First reign1382–1389
PredecessorAs-Salih Hajji
SuccessorAs-Salih Hajji
Second reign1390–1399
PredecessorAs-Salih Hajji
SuccessorAn-Nasir Faraj
Bornc. 1336
Kasa, Circassia[1]
Died20 June 1399 (aged c. 63)
  • Khawand Fatima
  • Sitti Hajar
  • Tandu Khatun
  • Khawand Shirin
  • Qunnuq-Bey
  • Khawand Baraka
  • Sul
  • Khawand Hajj Malak
ReligionSunni Islam

Al-Malik Az-Zahir Sayf ad-Din Barquq (Arabic: الملك الظاهر سيف الدين برقوق; ruled 1382–1389 and 1390–1399; born in Circassia) was the first Sultan of the Circassian Mamluk Burji dynasty of Egypt. He deposed sultan al-Salih Hajji to claim the throne for himself. Once in power, he placed many of his family members in positions of power. Rebelling governors in 1389 restored Hajji to the throne but Barquq was able to reclaim the throne shortly after and ruled until his death in 1399 and was succeeded by his son. The name Barquq is of Circassian origin and is his birth name.[1]

Early life

Barquq was of Circassian origin,[2][1] and was acquired as a slave, presumably after a battle, and sold to a bathhouse in Crimea.[1] According to one narration, while trying to escape and secretly go to Constantinople, he was attacked by Bulgarian bandits and sold to Egypt, while according to another narration he was directly brought from Crimea to Egypt.[1] In Egypt, he became a mamluk in the household of Yalbugha al-Umari in approximately 1363–64 (or 764 on the Islamic calendar).[3] During the reign of Sultan al-Mansur Ali, when Barquq held considerable influence in the Mamluk state, he brought his father to Egypt in March 1381. His father, originally a Christian,[1] converted to Islam, adopted the name Anas and became the first father of a first-generation mamluk to be mentioned by the Mamluk era sources because of his Muslim faith; the fathers of first generation mamluks were typically non-Muslims. Anas was promoted to the rank of emir of one hundred (the highest Mamluk military rank) and was known for his piety, kindness and charitable acts. He died ten months after his arrival to Egypt.[4]

Rise to power

Since 1341, the Mamluk empire had been ruled by the descendants of al-Nasir Muhammad. However, none of them were strong enough to exert effective control. Many of the rulers were minors at the time of their accession, and would act as puppets for one or another competing Mamluk faction.

This happened in 1377, when the sultan al-Ashraf Sha'ban, who had ruled in his own stead since 1366, was overthrown and killed. The rebelling Mamluks replaced him on the throne with his seven-year-old son. When that puppet sultan died, he was replaced by the younger brother.

Barquq was a member of the faction behind the throne, serving in various powerful capacities in the court of the boy sultans. He consolidated his power until in November 1382 when he was able to depose sultan al-Salih Hajji and claim the sultanate for himself. He took the reign name al-Zahir, perhaps in imitation of the sultan al-Zahir Baybars.[5]

First reign (1382–1389)

Mamluk Barquq copper fals Damascus 1382 1389, in the British Museum. Note the Fleur-de-lis motif[6]

Barquq placed many of his own family in positions of power to the detriment of fellow Mamluks, attempting to solidify his position. He sponsored the construction of the Mosque-Madrasa of Sultan Barquq in the center of Cairo. Completed in 1386, it was a pious foundation designed to serve as both a khanqah and a madrasa. It is one of the three dominant Islamic monuments clustered on the street Bayn al-Qasrayn in Fatimid Cairo. Although often called the Mausoleum of Barquq, only his daughter is buried there.[7]

Barquq ended the public holiday in Egypt celebrating the Coptic New Year Nayrouz.[8]

The central caravanserai of the famous Cairo souk Khan El-Khalili was founded in the first year of his first reign, though it was founded by his emir, Djaharks el-Khalili.


Early on, the 1386 Zahiri Revolt threatened to overthrow Barquq, though the conspiracy was discovered before any agitators could mobilize. The year 1389 saw the revolt of two Mamluk governors from the northern end of the empire, Mintash, governor of Malatya, and Yalbogha al-Nasiri, governor of Aleppo (not to be confused with Yalbogha al-`Umari). After securing Syria they marched toward Cairo. Barquq attempted to escape, but was captured and sent to the castle of al-Karak. Meanwhile, the two governors restored Hajji to the throne, who now took the reign name al-Mansur. Fighting developed among the Mamluk factions in Cairo, and Barquq's supporters overcame the rebels. Barquq returned to Cairo in February 1390.[5]

Second reign (1390–1399)

Illuminated frontispiece from the Qur'an commissioned by Barquq for his Complex. This manuscript is part of the National Library of Egypt's Collection of Mamluk Qur'an Manuscripts inscribed in the UNESCO Memory of the World Register

During Barquq's second reign he succeeded in replacing almost all governors and senior officials with members of his own household. Barquq became an enemy of the Turkic warlord Timur after Timur's invasion of Baghdad in 1393, and his intention to invade Syria. Hence, he joined an alliance with the Ottoman Empire after 1393.[9]

Barquq died in June 1399 and was succeeded by his son Nasir-ad-Din Faraj. He was buried in a mausoleum built by Faraj in Cairo's Northern Cemetery.


Barquq's first wife was the daughter of Amir Tashtimur. They married on 17 April 1380, before his accession to the throne.[10] In 1384, he married Khawand Fatima, the daughter of Amir Manjak al-Yusufi.[10][11] On 12 February 1386,[12] he married Sitti Hajar, the daughter of Amir Menglibogha as-Shamsi and Khwand Fatima, daughter of Sultan Al-Ashraf Sha'ban.[12] With her, he had a daughter, Khawand Bairam.[13] She died on 2 April 1430.[12] In 1391, he married the daughter of Amir Ali bin Esendemir, the naib of Syria,[10] and the same year he married the daughter of Ash-Shahabi Ahmad bin at-Tuluni.[10]

Another wife was Tandu Khatun, the daughter of Shaykh Uways Jalayir, ruler of the Jalayirid Sultanate. They married on 11 February 1394.[14] One of Barquq's concubines was Khawand Shirin.[15] She was a Greek, and gave birth to Barquq's eldest son, An-Nasir Faraj.[16] She died in 1399–1400, and was buried in the madrasa of Barquq at Bayn al-Qasrayn.[17] Another concubine was Qunnuq-Bey. She was Turkish and gave birth to Barquq's second son, Izz ad-Din Abd al-Aziz.[10] She died in 1432.[16] One of Barquq's wives was Khawand Baraka. She was a free-born Syrian, and gave birth to Barquq's third son, Ibrahim.[18] Another concubine was Sul, a singer.[19]

Another wife was Khawand Hajj Malak. She descended from elite Turkish origins. Her father was either Ibn Qara or a royal mamluk named Muqbil. After Barquq's death she married Taghribirdi, the father of 15th century historian Ibn Taghribirdi, and gave birth to his daughter Aisha also known as Shaqra. After his death, she married the Abbasid prince Yaqub bin al-Mutawakkil I and gave birth to the future caliph Al-Mutawakkil II. She died in 1429.[20]

One of his daughters, Khawand Sara, born of a concubine,[21] married Nawruz al-Hafizi, the amir kabir on 1 September 1401,[22] and later Muqbil ar-Rumi. She died in 1409–10 on the road to Damascus.[21] Another daughter, Khawand Bairam[21] married Amir Inal Bay ibn Qijmas on 15 September 1401,[22] then Baighut, and then Asanbugha Zarkadash.[13] She died of plague in 1416.[21] Another daughter, Khawand Zaynab, born of a Greek concubine, married Sultan Al-Mu'ayyad Shaykh.[23] She died in 1423.[24]


Sultan Barquq's reign was also marked by trade with other contemporaneous polities. Excavations in the late 1800s and early 1900s in modern-day northwestern Somalia unearthed, among other things, coins identified as having been derived from Barquq. All of the pieces had been struck in either Cairo or Damascus.[25] Most of these finds are associated with the medieval Sultanate of Adal.[26] They were sent to the British Museum in London for preservation shortly after their discovery.[27]

See also


  1. ^ a b c d e f Tekindağ, Şehabeddin. Berkuk Devrinde Memlûk Sultanlığı (XIV. yüzyıl Mısır tarihine dair araştırmalar)
  2. ^ [1], p. 290, at Google Books
  3. ^ Holt, 2014, p. 127
  4. ^ Sharon, 2013, p. 163
  5. ^ a b Holt, 2014, p. 128
  6. ^ Mayer, 1933, pp. 2 n 2, 22, 24
  7. ^ Williams, 2002, pp. 170-172
  8. ^ Margoliouth, 1907, pp. 171−172
  9. ^ The Mamluks, Ivan Hrbek, The Cambridge history of Africa: From c. 1600 to c. 1790, Vol. III, Ed. Roland Oliver, (Cambridge University Press, 2001), 54.
  10. ^ a b c d e Yiğit 2016, p. 559.
  11. ^ Yiğit 2015, p. 338.
  12. ^ a b c Bauden, Frédéric. "The Qalawunids: A Pedigree" (PDF). University of Chicago. Retrieved 15 December 2021.
  13. ^ a b Taghrībirdī, A.M.Y.I.; Popper, W. (1960). History of Egypt, 1382-1469 A.D. University of California Press. p. 11.
  14. ^ Bauden, F.; Dekkiche, M. (2019). Mamluk Cairo, a Crossroads for Embassies: Studies on Diplomacy and Diplomatics. Islamic History and Civilization. Brill. p. 366. ISBN 978-90-04-38463-7.
  15. ^ Yiğit 2015, p. 334.
  16. ^ a b Ben-Bassat, Y. (2017). Developing Perspectives in Mamluk History: Essays in Honor of Amalia Levanoni. Islamic History and Civilization. Brill. p. 165. ISBN 978-90-04-34505-8. Retrieved 2021-11-26.
  17. ^ Karam, Amina (2019-05-22). "Women, Architecture and Representation in Mamluk Cairo". AUC DAR Home. p. 85. Archived from the original on 2021-12-18. Retrieved 2021-12-18.
  18. ^ Morgenstern, M.; Tietz, C.; Boudignon, C.; Anteby-Yemini, L.; Balog, P.Y.; Chaumont, É.; Frenkel, Y.; Frenkel, M.; Giorda, M.C.C.; Großhans, H.P. (2011). männlich und weiblich schuf Er sie: Studien zur Genderkonstruktion und zum Eherecht in den Mittelmeerreligionen (in German). Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht. p. 244. ISBN 978-3-647-54009-2. Retrieved 2021-11-26.
  19. ^ Ekinci, Abdullah; Yavuz, Esra (2021-06-29). "Burcî Memlükleri Döneminde Cariyeler ve Aile Hayatında Etkileri". Atatürk Üniversitesi Kadın Araştırmaları Dergisi (in Turkish). 3 (1): 33–45. doi:10.51621/atakad.807533. S2CID 234429319. Retrieved 2021-11-26.
  20. ^ Banister, Mustafa (2020-10-23). "Princesses Born to Concubines: A First Visit to the Women of the Abbasid Household in Late Medieval Cairo". Hawwa. Brill. 20 (4): 16. doi:10.1163/15692086-bja10009. ISSN 1569-2078. S2CID 228994024.
  21. ^ a b c d Taġrībirdī, A.M.Y.I.; Popper, W. (1976). History of Egypt, 1382-1469 A.D. AMS Press. p. 172. ISBN 978-0-404-58813-7.
  22. ^ a b Massoud, S. (2007). The Chronicles and Annalistic Sources of the Early Mamluk Circassian Period. Islamic History and Civilization. Brill. pp. 424–25. ISBN 978-90-474-1979-2.
  23. ^ Yiğit 2016, p. 560.
  24. ^ D'hulster, Kristof; Steenbergen, Jo Van. "Family Matters: The Family-In-Law Impulse in Mamluk Marriage Policy". Annales Islamologiques. 47: 61–82. Retrieved 2021-12-02.
  25. ^ University of Ghana, Institute of African Studies (1966). Research review, Volumes 3-4. The Institute. p. 67. Retrieved 6 October 2014.
  26. ^ Bernard Samuel Myers, ed., Encyclopedia of World Art, Volume 13, (McGraw-Hill: 1959), p.xcii.
  27. ^ Royal Geographical Society (Great Britain), The Geographical Journal, Volume 87, (Royal Geographical Society: 1936), p.301.


Regnal titles Preceded byHajji II Mamluk Sultan of Egypt 1382–1389 Succeeded byHajji II Preceded byHajji II Mamluk Sultan of Egypt 1390–1399 Succeeded byFaraj
{{bottomLinkPreText}} {{bottomLinkText}}
Listen to this article

This browser is not supported by Wikiwand :(
Wikiwand requires a browser with modern capabilities in order to provide you with the best reading experience.
Please download and use one of the following browsers:

This article was just edited, click to reload
This article has been deleted on Wikipedia (Why?)

Back to homepage

Please click Add in the dialog above
Please click Allow in the top-left corner,
then click Install Now in the dialog
Please click Open in the download dialog,
then click Install
Please click the "Downloads" icon in the Safari toolbar, open the first download in the list,
then click Install

Install Wikiwand

Install on Chrome Install on Firefox
Don't forget to rate us

Tell your friends about Wikiwand!

Gmail Facebook Twitter Link

Enjoying Wikiwand?

Tell your friends and spread the love:
Share on Gmail Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Buffer

Our magic isn't perfect

You can help our automatic cover photo selection by reporting an unsuitable photo.

This photo is visually disturbing This photo is not a good choice

Thank you for helping!

Your input will affect cover photo selection, along with input from other users.


Get ready for Wikiwand 2.0 🎉! the new version arrives on September 1st! Don't want to wait?