The Hafizids and Tayyibids

Looking the situation ideal for himself, Hafiz claimed the Imamate after two years in 526/1132, resulting the Yamenite Musta'lians split into two factions, i.e., the Hafizids and the Tayyibids. In a bold move, Hafiz declared himself an Imam. Ibn Muyassar (p. 63) writes that, "Hafiz rode in the attire of the caliphs from the Festival Gate (bab al-id) to the Golden Gate (bab al-dhahab), and ordered that the following khutba be pronounced from the pulpit: `O'God! bless the one through whom you have fortified your religion after your enemies tried to destroy it. Our lord and master, the Imam of our age and of our time, Abdul Majid Abul Maymun.'"

The Tayyibid group in the Musta'lians do not recognize the last four rulers including Hafiz. According to S.M. Stern in "The Succession to the Fatimid Imam al-Amir" (cf. "Orient", no.4, 1951, p. 202), "The last four Fatimid caliphs of Egypt were not regarded as Imams even by themselves and the khutba was read in the name of al-Qaim, the promised Imam who will come on the last day." Hafiz's vizir was Hizbar al-Mulk, but the army tenaciously recommended the office for Abu Ali Ahmad, the son of al-Afdal. Caliph Hafiz had to appoint him in place of Hizbar al-Mulk. Immediately after assuming office, the new vizir Abu Ali Ahmad introduced a strange phenomenon in Fatimid history by announcing the religion of Ithna Ashari as an official creed of the state. This was absolutely against the very character of the Fatimid Caliphate. According to Ibn Muyassar in "Tarikh-i Misr" (p. 75), "He also dropped the mention of Imam Ismail bin Jafar Sadik from whom the Ismailis derive their name." Hafiz died in 544/1149, was succeeded by his son Zafir. Instead of devoting himself to the administration, Zafir exceedingly inclined to a life of pleasure. He perished at the age of 22 years in 549/1154, and was succeeded by his five years old son, Faiz. The entire power however remained with vizir Abbas. Whilst in an epileptic fit, Faiz died in 555/1160 at the age of eleven years. He was succeeded by nine years old Adid, the son of Yousuf, one of the murdered brothers of Zafir.

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