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Egypt / Mamluks /
Arabic: 'al-mansūr sayf 'ad-dīn qalā'ūn 'al-alfī

The mausoleum of Qala'un.
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The mausoleum of Qala'un. Photo: Peter L. Albrecht.

Dinar of Qala'un.
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Dinar of Qala'un.

(1220?-1290) Mamluk sultan 1279-1290.
Qala'un's main achievements were to drive the Crusaders out of almost all their footholds in the Middle East. He had launched the final campaign against Acre, when he died. The campaign was completed the following year.
He was also successful in fighting back the Mongols, who represented a more dangerous force in these days.
Qala'un was also active in continuing the building of the administration of Egypt and public welfare, and he conducted a policy of encouraging trade inside the state and with neighbour countries.

Around 1220: Born. Year, place of birth and origin is not known.
1250's: Qala'un is cooperating closely with the Mamluk commander Baybars, who would later become sultan.
1260: Baybars becomes sultan, and Qala'un gets important positions in the military.
1277: Baybars dies, and Qala'un has his men kill two of Baybars' sons.
1279: Through alliances, Qala'un gets himself appointed sultan of Egypt.
1280: Fights down another usurper to the sultan throne.
1281: Qala'un brings the threat from Mongol warlords to an end, when he defeats them at Homs in Syria.
1283: Signs a peace treaty, meant to last for 10 years, 10 months and 10 days, with the tiny kingdom still calling itself Jerusalem, even if it by now only controls a few cities on the Palestinian coast, with Acre as the capital.
— The Christian city of Tyre signs its own peace agreement with Qala'un.
1285 May 25: Qala'un conquers the fortress of Marqab in Syria, controlled the Knights Hospitallers. The knights are allowed relocate to Tripoli.
1289 April 27: Following a month long besiege, Qala'un and his army conquers Tripoli. The city is destroyed and most of the male Christian inhabitants are murdered, the rest enslaved.
1290: Is forced to break the peace agreement with the Kingdom of Jerusalem, as the Muslim inhabitants of Acre are killed by newly arrived European Crusaders.
November: Dies from illness, and is succeeded by his son Khalil.

By Tore Kjeilen