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Oman (Arabic: سلطنة عُمان, Salṭanat ʻUmān) is a nation located in the east of the Arabian peninsula.
In 751 Ibadi Muslims, a moderate branch of the Kharijites, established an imamate in Oman. Despite interruptions, the Ibadi imamate survived but didn't completely control Oman as Oman was conquered by several foreign powers, having been controlled by the Qarmatians between 931–932 and then again between 933–934. Between 967 and 1053, Oman was part of the domain of the Iranian Buyyids, and between 1053 and 1154, Oman was part of the Great Seljuk empire. In 1154, the Seljuks lost control of Oman and the indigenous Nabhani dynasty took control of Oman.
The Nabhani dynasty ruled Oman until 1468 when the entire royal family as killed by assassins under the command of the Omani Imamate who were a member of the anti-Omani sultanate forces in the Great Gulf War of 1465-68. With the fall of the Nabhani dynasty, the title of Sultan of Oman passed on to the ruling Begundur or Bayandur Oghuz clan of Aq Qoyunlu who successfully beat Oman in the war, making Oman a vassal of Aq Qoyunlu. The Omani Imamate now ruled Oman almost exclusively, with Aq Qoyunlu controlling Oman's foreign policy and forcing Oman to support Aq Qoyunlu in their wars. Also at this time, Oman's southern provinces also declared independence to form the Emirate of Shaybah as the Bedouin tribes people revolted against Oman's harsh treatment of them during the Great Gulf War.
A short four years later, Oman was no longer a vassal of Aq Qoyunlu; Oman's Imam Council voted to have Oman become part of the growing Hashemite Caliphate in 1472 after seeing all of the surrounding states joining, including the ruling state of Aq Qoyunlu. Being pressured into joining by Sultan Uzun Hassan bin Ali of Aq Qoyunlu, the Caliphate Province of Oman was created as Oman joined the Hashemite Caliphate.
Oman was an absolute monarchy with regional power going to local Sheikh leaders. It is led by a Sultan (also sometimes called a King), the last Sultan of the ruling Nabhan dynasty was Sultan Omar ibn al Khattab who reigned from 1450 until being overthrown in 1468 following the Great Gulf War of 1465-68.
After Sultan Omar ibn al Khattab was overthrown and the entire royal family was killed in 1468, the Omani Imamate became the ruling body of Oman and the title of "Sultan of Oman" went to the Sultan of Aq Qoyunlu, Sultan Uzun Hassan bin Ali. However, even with the title of Sultan of Oman, the Sultan of Aq Qoyunlu and Oman held little power over Oman properly as all the real power in Oman lay with the Imamate government/council. The Imamate is subordinate to the Sultan but the Sultan largely gives the Imamate council free reign to control Oman as long as Oman supports Aq Qoyunlu.
Oman then became a province in the Hashemite Caliphate, after Aq Qoyunlu joined with the Mamluk Sultanate. As a province of the Hashemite Caliphate, the Caliph was the head of State, after he gained the title of Sultan of Oman from Sultan Uzun Hassan bin Ali of Aq Qoyunlu. The Omani Imamate become the regional ruling body of the Caliphate province of Oman, ruling the land based on the Caliphate's constitution and the local laws created by the Imam council of Oman.
The Nabhan Dynasty (1154 - 1468)
The Nabhan Dynasty have ruled Oman since 1154 when the indigenous Nabhani dynasty took control of Oman from the Great Seljuk empire. The Nabhani kings ruled Oman until 1470, with an interruption of 37 years between 1406 and 1443. The dynasty was then killed off by the Imamate who wished to rule Oman as they saw the Sultanate running Oman into the ground.
Here is a list of the Sultans of Oman's Nabhan dynasty who have ruled Oman since 1443:
- Sultan Abul Hassan of Oman (1435 - 1450)
- Sultan Omar ibn al Khattab (1450 - 1468)
The Aq Qoyunlu vassalage period (1468 - 1472)
After Aq Qoyunlu defeated Oman in the Great Gulf War of 1465-68 thanks to the help of the anti-Omani Sultanate forces of Taimur bin Said's Bedouin rebels and the Omani Imamate; the Nabhan dynasty was killed off and the ruling Begundur or Bayandur Oghuz clan of Aq Qoyunlu, who was at the time, Sultan Uzun Hassan bin Ali; gained the title "Sultan of Oman". The Sultan of Oman/Aq Qoyunlu held little power in this period of vassalage, but the real power over Oman lay with the Omani Imamate council who controlled Oman ensuring that Oman remained true to the will of Allah and Ibadi Islam in particular. This was only a short period as Aq Qoyunlu joined with the Mamluk Sultanate as part of the new Hashemite Caliphate.
- Sultan Uzun Hassan bin Ali (1468-1472)
Oman as a province in the Hashemite Caliphate (1472-1575)
Oman's Imam Council voted to have Oman become part of the Caliphate in 1472 after seeing all of the surrounding states joining, including the ruling state of Aq Qoyunlu. Being pressured into joining by Sultan Uzun Hassan bin Ali of Aq Qoyunlu, the Caliphate Province of Oman was created as Oman joined the Hashemite Caliphate. The title of Sultan of Oman went to Caliph Marwan III, making him the head of state for Oman. However, the Sultan of Qoyunlu remained quite influential over Oman; but just as before when Oman was a vassal of Aq Qoyunlu, most of the regional control of Oman remained with the Omani Imamate.
- Caliph Marwan III (1472 - 1509)
- Caliph Muhammad ibn Marwan (1509 - 1537)
- Caliph Muhammad ibn Muhammad (1537 - 1575)
Oman as a series of small warring states / civil disarray (1575-79)
In this sort four year period, Oman had just split from the Caliphate/Mahdiate, but it lacked central leadership due to the chaos of the Mahdi's demise. The local Sheiks, warlords, merchants, military forces, tribes and religious groups all battled for control as the chaos of the collapsing Mahdiate and revolutionary ideas spread, as did an anti-Islam/atheist movement in light of the religious fraud of the Mahdi and Isa. These liberal ideas, however, annoyed the Emir of Shaybah who invaded to stop these blasphemous actions and re-impose an Islamic state.
Oman as part of Shaybah (1579-1585)
Shaybah invaded Oman under the orders of Emir Osama bin Said, who wished to remove the evil of Mahdi Islam and re-establish Sunni Islam across Arabia. However the Emir's unrelenting spreading of Sunni Islam to a populace which didn't want it, quickly created lots of discontent. The religious persecution, coupled with lots of powerful people like the Sheiks and merchants losing power following the annexation by Shaybah. These groups then begin plotting to have Emir Osama bin Said of Shaybah assassinated. The Emir's son Muhammad bin Said agreed to the group's plot due to his dislike of his father's bigotry. Emir Osama is assassinated and Muhammad is declared the new Emir of Shaybah. Emir Muhammad has the assassin exiled as part of the conspiracy's efforts to show that they had nothing to do with the assassin. With his follow conspirators, Emir Muhammad bin Said begins re-organising Shaybah and giving the local Sheik rulers in Oman autonomy as a series of small Sheikdoms part of the larger new Arabian Federation.
Oman as part of the Arabian Federation (1585-???)
Following the 1585 assassination of Emir Osama of Shaybah, the conspirators agree alongside with follow conspirator and the new Emir Muhammad bin Said to reform Shaybah to give Omani Sheiks a high degree of autonomy as they were given control of their own Sheikdom states, capable of self rule and participation in the larger federal government of Arabia. The new federation split Oman up into several states, each ruled by a Sheik lord who imposed local rule over his Sheikdom state and participated in the federal government as part of the Sheik council.
The powerful Nabhan Dynasty, who used to rule Oman when it was last independent, managed to unite some of the Nabhan clans to merge several Omani Sheikdoms into an Emirate state - thus securing Oman's important role within the Arabian federation.
Oman's main religion is Ibadhi, a form of Islam distinct from the Sunni and Shi'a denominations. The rest of Oman is either Sunni Muslim or Shi'ite Muslim. A few Christians, Jews, Hindus and other religions are practised in Oman, but Islam is the vast majority for approximately 99% of the population.
The main language in Oman is Arabic and its different dialects.