Al-Hakam I

Al-Hakam I bigraphy, stories - Emir of Cordoba

Al-Hakam I : biography

– 822

Al-Hakam Ibn Hisham Ibn Abd-ar-Rahman I () was Umayyad Emir of Cordoba from 796 until 822 in the Al-Andalus (Moorish Iberia).

Al-Hakam was the second son of his father, his older brother having died at an early age. When he came to power, he was challenged by his uncles Sulayman and Abdallah, sons of his grandfather Abd ar-Rahman I. Abdallah took his two sons Ubayd Allah and Abd al-Malik to the court of Charlemagne in Aix-la-Chapelle to negotiate for aid. In the mean time Sulayman attacked Cordoba, but was defeated and driven back to Mérida where he was captured and executed. Abdallah was pardoned, but was forced to stay in Valencia.

Al-Hakam spent much of his reign suppressing rebellions in Toledo, Saragossa and Mérida. The uprisings twice reached Cordoba. An attempt was made to dethrone Al-Hakam and replace him with his cousin Mohammed ibn al-Kasim. When the plot was discovered, in 16 November 806 72 nobles (accounts talk of 5,000) were massacred at a banquet, crucified and displayed along the banks of the river Guadalquivir. Such display of cruelty was not unusual during this period, with the heads of rebel leaders or Christian killed in expeditions to the north being put on show at the gates of Cordoba.

In 818 he crushed a rebellion led by clerics in the suburb of al-Ribad on the south bank of the Guadalquivir river. Some 300 notables were captured and crucified, while the rest of the inhabitants were exiled. Some moved to Alexandria in Egypt, some to Fez and Crete. Others joined the Levantine pirates.Nagendra Kr Singh, International encyclopaedia of Islamic dynasties, Anmol Publications PVT. LTD., 2002

Al-Hakam I died in 822 after having ruled for 26 years.


Al-Hakam was the son of Hisham I, Emir of Cordoba and a concubine named Zokhrouf.Fagnan, E. (trans. & ed.) (1893) Histoire des Almohades d´Abd el-Wahid Merrakechi (Algiers) p. 15.

Al Hakam was the father of: Moorish Spain page at Medieval Lands

  • Abd ar-Rahman II, Umayyad Emir of Córdoba 822–852
  • al-Mughira
  • Said
  • Umayya
  • al-Walid bin al-Hakam . He led an army to attack Galicia in 838.Barrau-Dihigo, L. (1989) Historia politica del reino Asturiano (718-910), p. 138.

Al-Hakam had a concubine named Ajab. She established a foundation for lepers in the suburbs of Cordoba.Caroline Goodson, Anne E. Lester, Carol Symes, Cities, texts, and social networks, 400-1500: experiences and perceptions of medieval urban space, Ashgate Publishing, Ltd., 2010 The leper colony was funded by the proceeds of the Munyat ‘Ajab, an estate built for or named after Ajab.D. Fairchild Ruggles, Gardens, landscape, and vision in the palaces of Islamic Spain, Penn State Press, 2003 Ajab was the mother of:

  • Abu Abd Al-Malik Marwan

Another concubine was named Mut’a. She established a cemetery which was still in existence in the 10th century.