The Umayyad dynasty was the first Islamic dynasty and ruled from 661-750AD. Their reign witnessed the return to leadership roles of the pre-Islamic Arab elite, and the rejuvenation of tribal loyalties. A branch of the Ummayad family, led by Abd ar-Rahman ad-Dakhil, was able to reach Cordoba and to re-establish Umayyad rule in Muslim Spain.
Abd ar-Rahman was the greatest ruler of the Umayyad Arab Muslim dynasty of Spain. The consolidation of power for which he was responsible brought great prosperity to Muslim Spain.
He reigned as hereditary amir (prince) of Cordoba from 912 and took the title of caliph in 929. When he succeeded his grandfather as amir of Cordoba at the age of 21, he set out at once to restore the authority of Cordoba in Spain - an authority that had been curtailed by a host of rebels entrenched in mountain forts throughout the land.
Ten days after his accession he had the head of the first rebel exhibited in Cordoba. After this for the next twenty years he led almost annual expeditions against the rebels, first in southern, then in central and eastern Spain.
In 933 Toledo fell after a bitter siege, and, with its fall, the last Muslim centre of resistance to Cordoban control disappeared. Meanwhile Abd ar-Rahman also had to check threats from the Christian north. The main danger came from the Kingdom of Leon.
An expedition into Muslim territory by the King of Leon, especially his sack of Evora and the massacre of it's Muslim population, produced widespread resentment in Muslim Spain. Abd ar-Rahman decided to counter-attack and, four years later after two successful campaigns he was able to secure his frontiers with Christian Spain.
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