After the surrender of the city, the commanders disputed the terms of the peace agreement. According to chronicles, the Greek man Jonah, who guided Khalid on the short cut to Antioch, got his fiance, but she committed suicide. With this defeat, Thomas could no longer afford any more breakout attempts. Map detailing the Rashidun Caliphate's invasion of Levant. 2006. Khalid offered Jonah the daughter of Emperor Heraclius, whom he refused. Khalid and Qa'qa flung the gate open and the remainder of Khalid's men entered the city. [30], The Greek, Jonah, who had helped Khalid enter the city by the East Gate, showed him a short-cut to Antioch. Abu Ubaidah maintained the city had capitulated, through the peace agreement between him and Thomas. ISBN, "Byzantium in the Seventh Century: the Transformation of a Culture". [26], At the Eastern Gate, Thomas assembled more forces than at the other gates, so that Khalid would be unable to move to Shurahbil's assistance and take command in that decisive sector. Damascus was the first major city of the Byzantine (Roman) empire to fall in the Muslim conquest of Syria. The Siege of Damascus (634) lasted from 21 August to 19 September 634 ADb[›] before the city fell to the Rashidun Caliphate. During the subsequent skirmish, Thomas broke through a section of the Muslim line and nearly killed Shurahbil, only to be shot in the eye with an arrow. He sent envoys to the Jabiya Gate to talk with Abu Ubaidah, the second in command to Khalid, and offered to surrender the fort peacefully and to pay the Jizya. Khalid took the remaining cavalry at night to the Eagle Pass, where he routed the Romans before returning to besiege the city. The fall of Damascus shocked the Byzantines, and the fall of Syria cut the Byzantines' land route to Aegyptus, which was now vulnerable to be occupied. [12], Strategically located, Damascus attracted merchants from all over the world. Khalid ibn al-Walid 's Rashidun army fought its way towards Damascus before besieging the city in August 634. Suppressing several internal revolts, Abu Bakr sought to expand the empire beyond the confines of the Arabian Peninsula. In 612, Heraclius expelled the Persians from Anatolia. Muslim practice was specific: if a city surrendered, the inhabitants would be spared, but if a city resisted, the resisters would be killed. Jonah also converted to Islam. After the murder of the last Rashidun Caliph, Caliph Ali in 661, Mu'awiya installed himself as the caliph of the Islamic empire founding the Umayyad dynasty. 2008. His 16,000 infantry and 4,000 cavalry were well-supplied due to their domination of the local countryside, while Damascus' defenders began to starve. In the Ridda wars (Arabic for the Wars of Apostasy), Abu Bakr quelled the revolt. [35], Khalid argued that he had conquered the city by force. 573) « Year 633; The following pact was drawn up and signed by Khalid bin Walid: In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful. [2], In April 634, Abu Bakr invaded the Byzantine Empire in the Levant and decisively defeated a Byzantine army at the Battle of Ajnadayn. From the East Gate, Khalid and his men fought their way towards the center of Damascus, killing all who resisted. [43], Trade and economics prospered in the city and under the Umayyads, Damascus remained one of the most dazzling cities of the world, until in 750, when it fell to the Abbasids. When Mohammed died in June 632, Abu Bakr was elected to the newly-formed office of Caliph, becoming Mohammad's political and religious successor. There, at what is known as the Battle of Ajnadayn. He was there faced by Shurahbil with his corps of about 5,000 men. Khalid sent a few hundred horsemen to the Eagle's Pass to the north to act as scouts and watch for any Byzantine relief force, while the other half was sent to repel any sortie made by the Romans. Damascus was the first major city of the Byzantine empire to fall in the Muslim conquest of Syria.. [24], At the East Gate, the situation also became serious, for a larger Roman force had been assigned to this sector. While Heraclius focused his attention on the internal affairs of his empire, the Sassanid Persians conquered Mesopotamia, overran Syria in 611 AD, and entered Anatolia to occupy Caesarea Mazaca. [28], The heaviest fighting occurred at the Thomas gate, where Thomas again commanded the sally in person. Rafay was unable to withstand their attacks. Try watching this video on, or enable JavaScript if it is disabled in your browser. On August 25, 750, the Abbasids, having already beaten the Umayyads in the Battle of the Zab in Iraq, conquered Damascus after facing little resistance. Dharar bin al-Azwar commanded 2.000 horsemen from the mobile guard to patrol in the empty areas[Clarification needed]. Routledge. Generals, Kings A. ISBN, "John of Damascus on Islam: The "Heresy of the Ishmaelites."". The last of the Roman–Persian Wars ended in 628, after Heraclius concluded a successful campaign against the Persians in Mesopotamia. [36] The three-day truce had passed; Khalid's cavalry attacked the convoy during a heavy rain. This relief force pushed the Muslim cavalry back, but Khalid was alerted to its arrival by one of the scouts. The city was chosen as the capital of Islamic Syria. Located in the southwestern corner of the country, it has been called the ‘pearl of the East,’ praised for its beauty and lushness. They have this guarantee on behalf of Allah, the Messenger of Allah, the Caliph and the Muslims, from whom they shall receive nothing but good so long as they pay the Jizya. In Antioch, Emperor Heraclius learned of the siege, sending 19,000 troops to relieve the city on 9 September. [citation needed] Thomas tried to save Damascus for one last time. [38], Caliph Abu Bakr died in Madinah, making Umar his successor. Take your favorite fandoms with you and never miss a beat. [32] This part of the wall was the strongest, no guard was stationed at the top. The Siege of Damascus occurred from August to September 634 AD when the army of the Arab Rashidun Caliphate besieged the major Byzantine stronghold of Damascus, Syria. At Jabiyah, Abu Ubaidah ibn al-Jarrah drove the Byzantines back into the city, while, at the Eastern Gate, the large Byzantine contingent drove the Arabs back. Arabic was also established as the official language, giving the Arab minority of the city an advantage over the Greek-speaking Christians in administrative affairs. Around twenty miles west of Jerusalem they met an army sent by Constantinople. Muslim conquest of Syria, two 7th-century battles in Damascus between Arab Muslim armies and Byzantines . To isolate Damascus, Khalid cut the lines of transportation and communication to northern Syria. We have also been recommended for educational use by the … On September 18 (19 Rajab, 13 Hijrah), a disaffected monophysite bishop of Damascus sent a Greek named Jonah to inform Khalid about a festival celebration in the city that night.e The festivities offered Khalid an opportunity to capture the city in a surprise attack on the relatively lightly defended walls. [Clarification needed], . In 611, during the Byzantine-Sassanid War of 602-628, Heraclius became the emperor of the Byzantine Empire[4] after overthrowing Phocas. Khalid ibn al-Walid Amr ibn al-As Shurahbil ibn Hasana Abu Ubaidah ibn al-Jarrah Rafay ibn Umayr Yazid ibn Abi Sufyan Ubadah ibn al-Samit. [40], The dome of Damascus' treasury in the Umayyad Mosque, While the Arabs administered the city of Damascus, the population of Damascus remained mostly Christian—Eastern Orthodox and Monophysite—with a growing community of Arab Muslims from Makkah, Madinah, and the Syrian Desert.[41]. Ancient History Encyclopedia, 04 Jun 2020. Its instructions were to reconnoiter for any Byzantine relief columns. This was the last attempt by Thomas to break the siege. [22] It has since come to be known as Battle of the pass of Uqab. [21] That force proved insufficient and soon surrounded by the Byzantine troops. If the Byzantine garrison had sallied out against the Muslim army, historians suspect the defenders would have broken through the Muslim lines and lifted the siege. At this point, Thomas commanded a slow and steady withdrawal, and his men were continually showered with arrows. When the Muslims enter, they (the people) shall have safety for themselves, their property, their temples and the walls of their city, of which nothing shall be destroyed. Routledge. The Muslim armies marched north and laid siege to Damascus. The timely arrival of Khalid with his reserve of 400 veteran cavalry and his subsequent attack on the Roman flank, marked the turning point in the sally at the Eastern Gate.