Muhammad V of Granada

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Abu Abdallah Muhammad V (Arabic: أبو عبد الله محمد الخامس‎) (4 January 1339[1] – 16 January 1391), known by the regnal name al-Ghani bi'llah (Arabic: الغني بالله‎, romanizedal-Ghanī bi-ʾllāh, lit.'He who is contented with God'),[2] was the eighth Nasrid ruler of the Emirate of Granada in Al-Andalus on the Iberian Peninsula.

Muhammad V
Al-Ghani bi'llah
Muhammad V Nasrid gold coin.jpg
Dinar minted in Muhammad V's name during his second reign
Sultan of Granada
(1st reign)
PredecessorYusuf I of Granada
SuccessorIsmail II of Granada
Sultan of Granada
(2nd reign)
PredecessorMuhammad VI of Granada
SuccessorYusuf II of Granada
Born4 January 1338
Died16 January 1391
FatherYusuf I

Muhammad V was the eldest son and heir of Yusuf I by his slave Butayna, born on Sunday, 4 January 1339. He also had a younger full-blood sister, A'isha, two half brothers and five half-sisters. He ruled between 1354–1359 and 1362–1391, and is best known for completing the royal palace of the Alhambra with the Palace of the Lions and the Mexuar, or Cuarto Dorado.


He inherited the throne from Yusuf I but was overthrown in August 1359 by his half-brother Ismail II and sought protection with the Marinid sultan of Fez, where Muhammad was inspired with fresh examples of architecture. Isma'il was overthrown and murdered with his brother Qays less than a year later in 1360, by his brother-in-law, Abu Said, who ruled as Muhammad VI but was overthrown in turn by Muhammad V, who returned to the throne for another 29 years.

During the three-year period of the reign of Muhammad VI, Muhammad V was plotting his return to power. A chance came in 1362 when King Peter I of Castile (Pedro el Cruel) lured Muhammad VI to his kingdom. There, in Seville, he was murdered and his head sent to Muhammad V as a gift upon his return to the throne. As a gesture of good relations between him and the Marinid, the eldest son of Muhammad V, Yusuf II, married to a daughter of the Marinid Sultan. His hospital in Granada was completed in 1366. He employed the poet and diplomat Ibn Khaldun in negotiations with Pedro the Cruel.


Muhammad V died on 16 January 1391. He had at least four sons; Yusuf II, Nasr, Muhammad and Sa'd. He was succeeded by his son, Yusuf II.



  • The Alhambra From the Ninth Century to Yusuf I (1354). vol. 1. Saqi Books, 1997.
  • Pedro the Cruel of Castile 1350-1359 (The Medieval Mediterranean : Peoples, Economies and Cultures, 400-1453, Vol 6) by Clara Esto; Brill Academic Publishers, 1995
  • The Three Great Sultans of al-Dawla al-Ismā'īliyya al-Naṣriyya Who Built the Fourteenth-Century Alhambra: Ismā'īl I, Yūsuf I, Muḥammad V (713-793/1314-1391) Antonio Fernández-Puertas, Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society, Third Series, Vol. 7, No. 1 (Apr. 1997), pp. 1–25
  • Latham, J.D. & Fernández-Puertas, A. (1993). "Naṣrids". In Bosworth, C. E.; van Donzel, E.; Heinrichs, W. P. & Pellat, Ch. (eds.). The Encyclopaedia of Islam, New Edition, Volume VII: Mif–Naz. Leiden: E. J. Brill. pp. 1020–1029. ISBN 978-90-04-09419-2.
Muhammad V of Granada
Cadet branch of the Banu Khazraj
Born: 1338 Died: 16 January 1391
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Yusuf I
Sultan of Granada
Succeeded by
Ismail II
Preceded by
Muhammad VI
Sultan of Granada
Succeeded by
Yusuf II