Rediscovering al-Azdī

The Futūḥ al-Shām (The Conquests of Greater Syria), usually attributed to Abū Ismāʿīl Muḥammad b. ʿAbdallāh al-Azdī al-Baṣrī, is one of the primary sources used for historians studying the early Muslim expansion into Greater Syria. This study revaluates the Futūḥ al-Shām narrative and the question of its compiler-author, investigating the history of the narrative as text through an analysis of a new manuscript and important parallel texts, and revisiting the evidence and hypotheses previous scholars have put forward on both al-Azdī’s life and the Futūḥ al-Shām narrative’s text. It thus offers an overview of the history of Oriental and Islamic Studies on the basis of one work.