Faculty Scholarly Dissemination Grants


Ibn Darraj al-Qastalli s Poetry on the Occasion of the Santiago de Compostela Campaign


Modern Languages & Literatures


College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Date Range



This paper examines the body of poetry that Ibn Darraj al-Qastalli composed to al-Mansur b. Abi Amir (d. 1002) on the latter's major victory during his Santiago de Compostela campaign. In an earlier paper presentation, I focused primarily on Ibn Darraj al-Qastalli's nuniyyah of 387/997, presented to al-Mansur, but in this paper I intend to examine the larger body of poems that were presented to al-Mansur on the same occasion. While the nuniyyah appears to be the main poem in question on this occasion, my intention here is to examine the function of presenting several odes to commemorate one event and how the various poems presented on this occasion work together. While these odes are typically referred to in the context of the Santiago de Compostela battle, which took place in 997, this paper will focus on the image of the hero and the heroic quest as a formative argument for al-Mansur's power and legitimacy. In addition, the paper will argue that these odes, while appearing to document the battle in question, are not about the battle itself. Rather, in light of the political and historical context, the paper will argue that the odes are serving as the initial step in negotiating and determining the question of al-Mansur's succession in al-Andalus. What is intriguing is that each of the odes presented to al-Mansur on this occasion seems to address a different part of the puzzle, with a delicate balance that the poet is playing with each composition.

Conference Name

Annual Meeting of the American Oriental Society

Conference Location

Boston, Massachusetts

This document is currently not available here.