Alternate History

Battle of Fars (Yarmuk)

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Battle of Fars
Location On the plains, south east of the city of Fars
Date 1192AD
Attacking Army Ummayad Caliphate (Amir Al-Borsoki) with 25,000 men.
Defending Army Sultanate of Merv (Ibbak al Toqtamish) with 20,000 men.
Result Major victory for the Ummayad Caliphate

Ummayads 10,000 men

Turks 12,000 men

This battle, fought between Merv and the Ummayad Caliphate, marked the decisive point in the short campaign between the two Muslim states, which ultimately culminated in Baghdad attaining the grudging consent of Merv, when it formally declared independence from Hamadan in 1194.


Following the commencement of hostilities between the Seljuk sultanates of Hamadan and Merv, Sultan Sanjar sent a force under his trusted lieutenant Ibbak al Toqtamish southwards to threaten the Ummayads, who were counted among the vassals of Qilich Arslan IV of Hamadan. Moving to the south down the Persian Gulf, Toqtamish encamped his army outside the city of Fars, in readiness for an aggressive move into Ummayad territory.

Surprise Manouevre

Uncharacteristically, the Ummayads were not slow to act up to the occasion. The Caliph in Baghdad gave the order for the marshalling of the army of the Faithful, which was taken up enthusiastically. What was intended to be a provisional vanguard was placed under the command of the elderly Amir Al-Borsoki, the Caliph's principal confidant and general, who marched his fresh but inexperienced force north to counter the Turkish threat.

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