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Friday, 19 February 2016 08:28

This Day in History (30-11-1394)

This Day in History (30-11-1394)

Today is Friday; 30th of the Iranian month of Bahman 1394 solar hijri; corresponding to 10th of the Islamic month of Jamadi al-Awwal 1437 lunar hijri; and February 19, 2016, of the Christian Gregorian Calendar.

 

1819 solar years ago, on this day in 197 AD, Septimius Severus defeated his former ally Clodius Albinus in the Battle of Lugdunum (modern Lyon in France) – the bloodiest battle between Roman armies that resulted in the death of almost 150,000 soldiers – to emerge as the Roman Emperor, thereby ending the year of five emperors.  A ruthless pagan, Septimius Severus persecuted monotheists, especially the followers of Prophet Jesus (AS), and waged war against Iran’s Parthian Empire, sacking the capital Ctesiphon in 197. Like Trajan a century earlier, he was not much successful. Although he briefly annexed the upper part of Mesopotamia in what are now northern Syria and southern Turkey, he failed to subdue the impregnable fortress of Hatra near Mosul in what was then the Iranian province of Khavaran, despite two lengthy sieges.

1430 lunar years ago, on this day in 7 AH, Khosrow Pervez, the powerful 22nd emperor of the Iranian Sassanid Empire, was killed by his own son, Shiruieh (Qobad II), after a string of setbacks against Byzantine or the Eastern Roman Empire, following his early spectacular victories that had taken his armies to the gates of Constantinople and brought Syria, Palestine and Egypt, under his control. He died a humiliating death, as per the prediction of Prophet Mohammad (SAWA), whose epistle inviting him to the truth of Islam he had scornfully torn into pieces. Six years later the Muslims defeated the Sassanids and captured their capital Ctesiphon in Mesopotamia, and within a few years the whole empire was brought into the fold of Islam, with the Iranian people, tired of the tyranny of their rulers, becoming Muslims by conviction

1411 lunar years ago, on this day in 36 AH, the Battle of Jamal took place near Basra in Iraq, between the forces of Islam, led by the Commander of the Faithful, Imam Ali ibn Abi Taleb (AS) and the seditionists led by Talha and Zubayr. The Imam, who was the First Infallible Successor of Prophet Mohammad (SAWA), won a decisive victory after his efforts to persuade the seditionists to return to the fold of Islam failed. Both Talha and Zubayr were killed along with 13,000 seditionists.

1057 lunar years ago, on this day in 380 AH, the well-known Iranian Islamic astronomer and mathematician, Abu-Ja’far ibn Ayoub Tabari Haseb, passed away. He has left behind a book in Persian language titled “Shish Fasl” which presents questions and answers on astronomy.

979 lunar years ago, on this day in 458 AH, the Iranian Sunni scholar of Hadith, Ahmad ibn Hussain Ibn Ali al-Khosrojerdi al-Bayhaqi, passed away at the age of 74 in his native Khorasan. Born in the town of Khosroujerd near Sabzevar (then known as Bayhaq), he followed the Shafe'i school in jurisprudence and the Ash'ari school in theology.  He studied fiqh from Abu’l-Fath Naser ibn al-Hussain an-Nayshaburi, and hadith from Hakem an-Nayshaburi, the compiler of the famous “al-Mustadrik ala as-Sahihayn”. Known as Imam Bayhaqi, he authored several books including “Sunan al-Kubra” (also called “Sunan al-Bayhaqi”), “al-Asma' wa’s-Sifaat” (The Divine Names and Attributes) and “Dala'el an-Nubuwwah” (Proofs of Prophethood)

543 solar years ago, on this day in 1473 AD, Polish astronomer and mathematician, Nicolas Copernicus, was born in Toruri. During his studies in Rome, he came across the Latin translations of Arabic works of Muslim scientists, including those of the Iranian-Islamic genius Abu Rayhan Birouni, who had written about the spherical shape of the earth. Copernicus heavily borrowed from Muslim scientists and is indebted to them for stating for the first time in Europe the orbit of the Earth around the Sun while rotating on its axis. The Christian Church frowned upon his writings and tried to stamp out his writings. He died on May 24, 1543.

417 solar years ago, on this day in 1600 AD, Arequipa, Peru, was destroyed as the Huaynaputina volcano exploded catastrophically in the largest volcanic explosion in South America in historic times. The eruption continued with associated earthquakes into March and devastated the socioeconomic fabric of southern Peru and neighboring Chile and Bolivia. The explosion had effects on climate around the Northern Hemisphere, where 1601 was the coldest year in six centuries, leading to a famine in Russia.

386 solar years ago, on this day in 1630 AD, Shivaji, the Maratha guerilla chieftain of the Bhosle clan who carved out a kingdom in western India, was born. His father was Shahji (a general in the service of the Adel-Shahi and Nizam-Shahi Persianate dynasties of the Deccan), who was named “Shah” by his father in honour of the Muslim mystic “Shah Sharif” of Ahmadnagar, whose prayers had granted the hitherto childless Maloji two sons – the second was named Sharifji. Shivaji was not on good terms with his own father, and rebelled against the Adel-Shahi sultanate of Bijapur, whose famous general of eastern Iranian origin, Afzal Khan, he deceitfully slew at Pratapgarh in 1659 during a supposedly unarmed meeting between the two sides for submission to the central authority and end of insurgency. An expert in guerilla warfare, he was invited to Agra by Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb and according to protocol restrictions were placed on his movements from the mansion where he was lodged. On learning that Aurangzeb was planning to send him and his guerilla forces to the northwestern frontier for the campaign to retake Qandahar (in what is now Afghanistan) from the Safavid Empire of Iran, Shivaji became terrified and fled south without notice. Back in the Deccan, by 1674, he carved out an independent enclave from the declining sultanate of Bijapur and chose Raigarh as his capital, for raiding the territories of the Qutb-Shahis, the Adel-Shahis and the powerful Mughal Empire that brought retaliation from Aurangzeb. The mountainous terrain exhausted Mughal armies and before his death in 1680 at the age or 50, Shivaji had molded the Marathas into a local power. In the areas under his control, he replaced the Persian language with his mother-tongue Marathi for official use. In the next century, the Marathas expanded their power in the north as far as Delhi, Punjab and the borders of Kashmir, bringing them into direct confrontation with the Afghans. Their pillaging and looting had alienated the Sikhs, the Jats, and even fellow Hindu Rajputs, enabling Ahmad Shah Durrani to inflict a crushing defeat on them at the Battle of Panipat in 1761 from which they never recovered and were gradually absorbed by the British.

96 lunar years ago, on this day in 1341 AH, the Islamic scholar and researcher, Seyyed Abu-Bakr Hadhrami Alawi, passed away in Hyderabad-Deccan in southern India at the age of 79. He was of Yemeni origin conducted valuable studies on poetry and literature. He has left behind his collection of poems. His compilations include the Arabic works “ash-Shahab as-Saqeb”, and “Futouhaat al-Baheth”.He was also fluent in Persian and Urdu.

65 solar years ago, on this day in 1951 AD, French author and critic, Andre Gide, died at the age of 82. Born in Paris he spent most of his life in North Africa, especially Algeria, which was under French colonial rule. His impressions of the life of the North African Muslims are portrayed in some of his novels. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1947.

64 solar years ago, on this day in 1952 AD the Norwegian writer, Knut Hamsun, died at the age of 93. Born in a poor family in northern Norway, he started writing at the age of 24. During his two visits to the US, he adopted a critical and disgusting view of American society, which he presented in his book, titled: “The Spiritual Life of Modern America”. The publication of the book; “Hunger” marked a turning point in his works. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1920. Hamsun was against the British and US colonial rule and supported Germany during the two World Wars, even joining the Nazi Party of Adolf Hitler. On Germany’s defeat in World War II, he suffered from mental illnesses till his death.

19 solar years ago, on this day in 1997 AD, the former Chinese leader and architect of economic and political reforms in his country, Deng Xiaoping, died at the age of 92 years after decades of political activities. During his era, China went through major economic and political developments. He guided the closed and socialist economy of China; up to a large extent, toward the market economy through major reforms. In these years, China stepped up its presence in global scenes and adopted a detente policy in its relations with other countries. He resigned from his posts in 1990 due to advanced age and illness, but remained the most prominent Chinese figure till his death.

17 solar years ago, on this day in 1999 AD, Ayatollah Seyyed Mohammad Sadeq as-Sadr was martyred in Iraq, along with two of his sons, by the repressive Ba'th minority regime of Saddam. The people of Iraq demonstrated against this act of state terrorism but were brutally suppressed. He was the father of the present leader of the Sadrist faction of Iraq, Hojjat al-Islam, Seyyed Muqtada Sadr. A year earlier, Saddam had martyred two other leading scholars of the Najaf seminary, Ayatollah Gharavi and Ayatollah Borujerdi.

13 solar years ago, on this day in 2003 AD, an Iranian military plane carrying 275 personnel crashed in southeastern Iran, killing all on board, including some senior commanders.

9 solar years ago, on this day in 2007 AD, for the first time the translation of the holy Qur’an was published in Tamazight, the language spoken by the 25-to-30 million Berber Muslims of North Africa, who are distributed from the Siwa Oasis in Egypt to the Atlantic Ocean coasts of Mauritania, and from the Niger River to the Mediterranean Sea coasts of Libya, Algeria, Tunisia and Morocco. The government of Algeria, which printed 6,000 copies of the Tamazight translation of the holy Qur’an, said it came in response to the increasing need of the Berber community that is not familiar with Arabic to fully understand the meanings of God’s Final Revelation to mankind. Although Ibn Tumart, the founder and spiritual leader of the al-Muwahhidn Movement that ruled much of North Africa and Spain in the 12th-13th centuries had sponsored the translation of the holy Qur’an into the Berber language nine centuries ago, no complete Tamazight translation was known. The Berbers, who have not been Arabicized and have long campaigned for more language and cultural rights, have welcomed the Tamazight translation. Tamazight is an Afro-Asiatic language and the Berbers are fair-skinned indigenous inhabitants of North Africa who were called “barbarians’ by the Romans and became Muslims with the advent of Islam. The majority of them gradually became Arabicized and rose to prominent administrative, military and academic posts including presidents and prime ministers in the present age.

6 solar years ago, on this day in 2010 AD, the destroyer “Jamaraan”, the first advanced Iranian warship, was launched. Equipped with guided sea-to-sea and sea-to-air missiles, torpedo launchers, choppers, electronic navigation, and electronic war devices, its length is 94 meters; it has the capacity to carry 1420 tons of cargo; to sail at 56 km per hour; and to carry 140 sailors. “Jamaran” is a multi-purpose warship whose sophisticated devices were manufactured by Iranian experts.

AS/ME

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