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Conquest of Tripoli 1289 painting from the 13th / 14th centuries Century

Qalawun ( Arabic قلاوون Qalāwūn ; * 1222 ; † November 11, 1290 ), full name al-Mansur Saif ad-Din Qalawun al-Alfi  /المنصور سيف الدين قلاوون الألفي الصالحي / al-Manṣūr Saif ad-Dīn Qalāwūn al-Alfī aṣ-Ṣāliḥī , also Qala'un , was Sultan of the Mamluks in Egypt from 1279 to 1290 and founder of the Bahri dynasty .

Saif ad-Din Qalawun Alfi already served under Sultan Ayyub as-Salih (1240-1249) and distinguished himself during the campaigns under Baibars (1260-1277). In 1279, however, Qalawun overthrew his son Berke Qan (1277–1279) and, after a brief interregnum of Solamish, took control of Egypt.

First he had to put down an uprising in Syria under the governor Sunkur. In addition, the clashes with the Ilkhan of Persia continued . However, they were badly beaten in 1281 near Homs in Syria.

An uncompromising policy of expulsion was now pursued with regard to the crusaders in Palestine and Syria in order to withdraw potential allies from the Il-Khans in Syria. Tripoli (1289) and several important fortresses were conquered under Qalawun .

The empire began to expand towards the south too, when the Christian kingdom in Nubia was subdued and this tribute had to be paid to the Mamluks . Caucasian Mamluks ( Circassians , Adygen ) were increasingly employed to lead the campaigns under Qalawun . These were soon to represent an influential group within the upper class who, as Burjiya Mamluks, were able to gain power in Egypt (1382–1517).

In addition to his campaigns, Qalawun also tried to stimulate trade with Europe by concluding trade agreements with France , Castile , Sicily and Genoa . The economic prosperity of the empire also made extensive construction possible. Several foundations were set up to build hospitals. He also had a large tomb mausoleum built, to which a hospital and a madrasa were attached.

Qalawun died on November 11, 1290. He was succeeded by his son Chalil under the throne name al-Malik al-Ashraf Chalil (1290-1293).


  • Linda S. Northrup: From slave to sultan. The career of Al-Manṣūr Qalāwūn and the consolidation of Mamluk rule in Egypt and Syria. (678–689 AH / 1279–1290 AD) Franz Steiner Verlag, Stuttgart 1998, ISBN 3-515-06861-9 .
predecessor Office successor
–– Sultan of the Bahri dynasty
Solamic Sultan of Egypt