History of Islam in southern Italy
The Islamic conquest and rule of Sicily, Malta, and parts of southern Italy was a process whose origin can be traced back through the general expansion of Islam from the seventh century onwards. Though the Muslim presence was ephemeral on the peninsula and limited mostly to semi-permanent soldier camps—the Emirate of Bari existed for only twenty years or so—their rule over the island was effective from 902, but their complete rule of Sicily lasted only from 965 until 1061, though they were not completely evicted until 1091.
The Muslim conquest of Sicily and the subsequent Christian reconquest by the Normans was the major event in the history of Islam in Italy. The conquests of the Normans established Roman Catholicism firmly in the region, where Eastern Christianity had been prominent during the time of Byzantine rule and continued with the natives during the time of the Muslim overlords. Widespread conversion ensued, which coupled with the re-latinisation of the inhabitants led to the disappearance of Islam in Sicily by the 1280s.
1 First Islamic attacks on Sicily (652–827)
2 Muslims on the mainland
2.1 Emirate of Bari (847–871)
2.2 Latium and Campania
3 Islamic Sicily
3.1 Conquest of Sicily (827–902)
3.2 Aghlabid Sicily (827–909)
3.3 Fatimid Sicily (909–965)
3.4 Independent emirate of Sicily (965–1091)
3.5 Decline (1037–1061) and Norman conquest of Muslim Sicily (1061–1091)
4 Islamic and Arabic influence and legacy
6 Further reading
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