An infographic depicting the expansion of the Islamic state from 622 -750CE, 1-132AH. Please note that square miles in the infographic are an approximation and for illustrative purposes only. Even if accurate figures were available this would not change the line graph.
The main points to note from this infographic are as follows.
- Allah refers to the Treaty of Hudaibiyah which was signed in 6AH as a ‘clear victory’.
إِنَّا فَتَحْنَا لَكَ فَتْحًا مُّبِينًا
“Indeed, We have granted you a clear victory” (Al-Fath, 48:1)
After the signing of this treaty with Quraish the Islamic conquests took off until the entire Arabian Peninsula was under Islamic rule within a few years.
2. When Abu Bakr was elected Caliph, the majority of the Arab tribes had apostatised or rebelled against the Islamic State. Abu Bakr then launched a campaign to bring all the rebellious regions back under Islamic rule. After the Ridda Wars the army was redeployed to start the expansion in to Iraq and Syria. This is why Abu Hurairah said, “By the One Whom there is no god but him, if Abu Bakr had not been appointed as Caliph then Allah would not have been worshipped.” (as-Suyuti)
3. Disunity and civil war stops the conquests.
وَٱعْتَصِمُوا۟ بِحَبْلِ ٱللَّهِ جَمِيعًا وَلَا تَفَرَّقُوا۟
“And hold firmly to the rope of Allah and do not be divided.” (Ali-‘Imran, 3:103)
After Uthman’s assassination and the ensuing civil wars, no expansion of the Islamic State occurred until Mu’awiya was Caliph. After some small expansions the second civil war occurred after the bay’a (pledge of allegiance) became split between the Umayyads and Abdullah ibn Zubair.
Once this civil war was over, Abdul-Malik ibn Marwan reorganised the administration of the state, adopting Arabic as its official language and this paved the way for his son and successor Al-Walid ibn Abdul-Malik to restart the Islamic conquests once again. Spain, Sindh and the rest of North Africa all came under Islamic rule in his time.
There was a period of consolidation of the conquered territories during the time of Umar bin Abdul-Aziz, and then after Hisham ibn Abdul-Malik died, the Umayyads went in to terminal decline. Al-Walid ibn Yazid was assassinated, followed by two coup d’etats, and then the Abbasid rebellion which marked the end of Umayyad rule in 750 or 132AH.