A rough Concept Drawing for the Egyptian Mameluke/Mamluk (actually, it's mix of Arabic, Tatar-Persian) Women Warrior in the Historically Wrong Sketch Series - Medieval Revisited
, which is roughly based on the Middle ages covering 800s AD to 1400s AD. Sultanat Misr Al-Sarraviyah (The name is technically wrong, Arabic letters does not have V) is a made up name which translates roughly as the Egyptian Sultanate of Sarravids, a name that represents the Egyptian in the historically wrong sketch series, closely related to the Mameluke Sultanate of Egypt.
Inspired by the music: Arcana - Wings of Gabriel
INTRODUCTIONEgypt has long been the source of wealth and awe in the Mediterranean and Middle Eastern World. This is attributed to the fact that the rich fertile soil of Nile delta, as well as the Nile river itself, made it a very important source of food and commerce. In the middle ages, the region was prized by the two of the greatest post-classical empire, the Byzantines and the Persians. With the rise of Islam and its subsequent expansion, Egypt became one of the most important center of agriculture, trade, science and military powerhouse, contributing greatly to the Islamic Golden Age. The era also saw the employment of the so called "Slave Soldiers", like Ghulams and Mamlukes that became a dominant military force in the region. Over the centuries, the Mamelukes gradually gained power withing the ruling class, and when the local Arabic dynasties were weaken by succession crisis, the Mamelukes took over the rule and established their own Mameluke sultanates that continued to prosper and maintained their military dominance over the Arab World until their subjugation under the Ottomans in the 16th century.
ABOUT THE ISLAMIC WORLD DURING THE MIDDLE AGES
Our general understanding of the Islamic World during the middle ages is divided between those who viewed it in a begrudging manner, those who viewed it romantically, and those who tried to see it from a much more neutral perspective. Nevertheless, It is without doubt that the Great Islamic Expansion from the early 7th century till the mid 8th century, has created a remarkable empire that stretched from the heartland of Iberia in Spain, North Africa, Persia and even as far as Indus in such a short period of time. Indeed, the early days of the Islamic Expansion was often carried out by small armies that destroyed one of the world's greatest empire, the Persian Sassanids and humbled another, the Eastern Roman Empire, popularly known as the Byzantines. Such achievement in such short period of time does rank as one of the most magnificent chapter in the History of Mankind.
With the great expansion, also came along the religion that was brought by the Muslim Armies. It is important to note that the conversion of people to Islam in the heartland of the Islamic World during the middle ages was largely a peaceful process since it was a separate process from the Muslim military conquest. The examples set by the early Muslim Rulers, it's preachers, merchants and missionaries, as well as the desire for political, cultural and material advantages by the new ruling dynasties of both local and foreign origins, contributed largely to the conversion of the local populace. This is somewhat rarely understood by the non-muslims, especially in the western world where Islam has always been perceived as a religion that was spread by force.
Despite the romanticism often associated with the Islamic world of the middle ages, its history was not without wars and conflict. Even after the death of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and the subsequent appointment of the Rashidun (Rightly Guided) Caliphate and its successors, the Ummayads and the Abbasids, internal tensions, civil wars and rebellions had plagued the Caliphate where rival dynasties contested each others for power. On the other hand, the division within the Islamic Faith, primarily between the Sunni and Shiite also contributed to the disunity between the Muslim world. Later on, with the arrival of the newly converted Turks, they began their conquest which bourght half of the Islamic world under their rule, only to be superseded by the Mongols and it's successors, especially the Timurid, where millions of Muslim lives have been killed that would make the massacres done during the Crusades look pale in comparison.
All in all, we must understand that, like the rest of the medieval world, underneath the vibrant, peaceful and piousness of the "Islamic Realm", lies a violent and often turbulent history, filled with the greed and ambitions of its rulers.
Lets just say, this was my valentine's gift last year to someone special that i wanted to share with you guys (actually, not really a gift but something that will lead there i guess
). Since I did this in a hurry in so little time, based on the original sketch of Ahu Durquba in FFW Stock Challenge - Ahu Durquba of Dayr Al-Zawr
, the overall composition may not be that great
As for the lady in the picture, she is Ahu Durquba
, A Turko/Tatar woman dressed in a very very anachronistic middle eastern armor. She wears chainmail shirt on top of her kaftan, with the addition of stylized mirror plate. Her headdress is a stylized Tatar or Turkestani headresss, with decorations and ornaments to add a bit of femininity to her. Behind her, are foot soldiers dressed in mixed attires taken from different period of the Egyptian Sultanates, from the time of the Fatimid to the late medieval Mameluke state.
She one of the earliest Woman Warrior I have drawn in the series, dating back to my early days in DA. Perhaps, out of all the women warriors I have drawn so far, she's probably the one that remain special to this days because her design are more of a product of imagination, rather than historical references
REFERENCES and OTHER RELATED MEDIA
May come in conflict with these other women warriors:
, The Mongols
, The Byzantines
, and the Persians
A Part of the Historically Wrong Sketch Series: Medieval Revisited - You can find more on the various faction on the map here:HISTORICAL COMMENTARIES
(History of Medieval Egypt is under Construction)