The period immediately following the death of Muhammad was a crucial time in the development of the Islamic state. For the first year or more the Muslims were involved in the quelling of revolts and the extending of their control over the Arabian Peninsula. The ridda, as the Arab historians term this period, is extremely impor­tant for the understanding of the growth of Islam. In the military campaigns which were waged at this time the Arab armies were prepare for the Conquest which was to come. All of Arabia was united, as it had not been in the time of Muhammad, by this military action which was partly pacification of rebels and partly aggression. The Ridda which was the greatest threat the newly-born Islamic state had to face, is a period of extreme confusion in the Arabic sources both in regards to chronology· and even the sequence of events. Perhaps because of this problem, the ridda has· been strangely ignored by Western historians and only Gaetani has attempted to do a detailed study of it.

In this thesis I propose to study a number of questions which are important to a better understanding of the early history of the Islamic Umma. I shall attempt to discern if there were any indica­tions of the coming rebellion before the death of Muhammad, and if so, how early they began. In addition to this I shall study the activities which took place immediately upon his death which were relevant to the ridda. The campaign of Khalid b. al-Walid in central Arabia will form the second major portion of the thesis for it was the most important of the Muslim expeditions at this time and the most fully recorded.

Date of Award


Online Submission Date


First Advisor

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Second Advisor

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Third Advisor

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Committee Member 1

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Committee Member 2

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Committee Member 3

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Document Type



156 leaves

Library of Congress Subject Heading 1


Library of Congress Subject Heading 2

Islamic Empire

Library of Congress Subject Heading 3

Kh[229]alid ibn al-Wal[229]id.


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Call Number

Thesis 1970/93