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The 'Fihrids' or 'al-Fihris' or 'Oqbids', were an illustrious Arab family and clan, prominent in North Africa and Spain during the 8th C.

The al-Fihri were originally a Arabian clan Banu Fihr attached to the Quraysh, the tribe of the Prophet.

Probably the most illustrious of the Fihrids was Oqba ibn Nafi al-Fihri, the Arab Muslim conqueror of North Africa in 670-680s, and founder of Kairouan. Several of his sons and grandsons participated in the subsequent conquest of Spain in 712.

As spearheads of the western conquest, the al-Fihris were regarded as the leading aristocratic family of Ifriqiya and al-Andalus, and produced several governors of those provinces, most notably Abd al-Rahman ibn Habib al-Fihri in Africa (745-755) and Yusuf ibn 'Abd al-Rahman al-Fihri in Spain (747-755), who ruled their dominions virtually independently of the Caliphate in the east.

In that moment, the Fihrids almost succeeded in turning the western half of the Islamic world into a private family fief. But the family fortunes declined precipitously after 755. The African branch of the Fihrids descended into bloody family quarrel that ended with them being overrun and extinguished in a Kharijite Berber uprising, while the Spanish branch was eclipsed by the arrival of the fugitive Umayyads from the east and their establishment of the Umayyad Emirate of Cordoba.

The al-Fihri name continued to have a magical effect in Spain, and pretenders drawn from that family continued to challenge Umayyad rule until the end of the century.

The geneaology of the Fihrids [1]:


  1. ^ H. Fournel, 1857, Étude sur la conquête de l'Afrique par les Arabes, Paris, Impermerie Imperiale, p.95


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