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ISBN: HB: 9780300198652

Yale University Press

March 2017

256 pp.

21x14 cm



Advice for Callow Jurists and Gullible Mendicants on Befriending Emirs

This mirror for princes sheds light on the relationship between spiritual and political authority in early modern Egypt This guide to political behavior and expediency offers advice to Sufi shaykhs, or spiritual guides, on how to interact and negotiate with powerful secular officials, judges, and treasurers, or emirs. Translated into English for the first time, it is a unique account of the relationship between spiritual and political authority in late medieval / early modern Islamic society.

About the Author

Abd al-Wahhab b. Ahmad b. 'Ali al-Sha'rani (1493-1565) was a prominent jurist and scholar of early modern Sufism and a prolific writer.


"This book illuminates central problems, debates, and strategies regarding the relationship of religion to the state. The themes of religious authority in relation to political power and the proper practice of spiritual and ethical counsel will be of interest to students of cultural history. The Arabic text has recently been edited, and we are fortunate to now have this excellent English translation" – Richard McGregor, Vanderbilt University