Mascara campaign (1699–1701)

The Mascara campaign of 1699–1701 was launched by Moulay Zidan, son of the Moroccan Sultan Moulay Ismail, to capture the Beylik of Mascara, situated in the west of the Deylik of Algiers. This episode reopened the hostilities between the Sherifian Empire and the Regency of Algiers.

Mascara campaign
Part of the Maghrebi war (1699–1702)
Result Algerian victory
Sultanate of Morocco
Commanders and leaders
Ismail Ibn Sharif
Moulay Zidan
Hadj Mustapha Dey
Mustapha Bouchelaghem



Sometime between 1699 and 1700, Sultan Moulay Ismail ibn Sharif instructed his son Moulay Zidan, to whom he entrusted the command of the province of Taza, to launch an offensive against the Turks of Algiers, in coordination with an offensive by the Bey of Tunis Murad III on the Beylik of Constantine, which triggered a two front war against the Deylik of Algiers.

The Moroccan army, mainly composed of the Black Guard, commanded by Moulay Zidan, managed to chase the Turks from Tlemcen. The Moroccan army besieged the city defended by armed Kouloughlis and even pushed as far as Mascara, the capital of the Western Beylik, whose Bey Othman was absent due to an expedition. The Moroccans ravaged the whole region, ransacked the city, even looting the Bey's palace. However, perhaps to save his loot, Moulay Zidan returned to Morocco after agreeing to a peace negotiation with the Turks, which angered Moulay Ismail because it allowed the Dey of Algiers to concentrate on its eastern front against the army of the Bey of Tunis, which he crushed between Setif and Constantine.[citation needed]

After dismissing his son, Moulay Ismail resumed the campaign and led in person another offensive against the Algerians in 1701.[1][2] After crossing the Algerian border, he was defeated at the Battle of Chelif.


  1. ^ Histoire générale de l'Algérie. P.554. Henri Garrot Impr. P. Crescenzo,
  2. ^ Cour, Auguste (2004-09-10). L'établissement des dynasties des Chérifs au Maroc et leur rivalité avec les Turcs de la Régence d'Alger, 1509-1830 (in French). Editions Bouchène. pp. 150–155. ISBN 978-2-35676-097-5.