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Allen J. Fromherz

was one of the most renowned and powerful eunuchs in Islamic history At the height of his powers he ruled over not only Egypt and the Hijaz in present day Saudi Arabia but also Syria Public prayers were offered up for him in the mosques of Mecca Cairo and Damascus Called al Labi by the poet al Muttanabi Abu al Misk Kafur Musky Camphor was probably from the province of Lab in Nubia south of Egypt According to the biographical dictionary of Ibn Khallikan he had a deep black color He was purchased for eighteen pieces of gold by Muhammad ibn Tughj al Ikhshid the Turkish founder of the Ikhshidid dynasty and ruler of the province of Egypt under the Abbasids Kafur quickly proved his military prowess rising quickly through the ranks of the Ikhshidid military apparatus He was a leader in the Ikhshidid military campaigns in Syria in 945 ...