The biggest show on TV right now The Game of Thrones has us at the edge of our seats as we are down to two episodes of the last season . In this show, Daenerys Targaryen’s character and story are similar to another very powerful woman- a Muslim woman. Her name is Sayyida al-Hurra who was a Queen.
No Islamic book or scholar mentions her amazing story, sadly. Sayyida’s story starts with Spain’s last Muslims state Granada. When The Queen Isabella I of Castile and her husband Ferdinand II of Aragon snatched the state from the Muslims and after taking over the entire Muslim population they force them to convert to Christianity.
To achieve their goal thousands of Muslims are butchered and captured while many migrate to avoid such cruelty. Among the migrators, a 7-year-old girl belonging to a great family of Granada is also present. This little girl vows to not sit still until Muslims win back Spain.
After years the little girl emerges as a brave young fearless pirate queen commanding her ships
On her ship, she commands her team and demolishes Christian forces at sea. Her name was enough to instill fear of the Muslims in the heart of Christian armies. After coming to Africa from Spain she took over a destroyed city of Tetouan that became a safe haven for the uprooted Muslims.
Sayyida al-Hurra couldn’t forget and get over the atrocities Muslims suffered and waged a sea war against Portugal and Spain. In this quest, several members of the families that were uprooted in Spain and exiled from Granada took part and assisted the Pirate Queen.
After establishing her rule in the city of Tetouan, she wreaked havoc in the sea for 30 years against Portugal and Spanish ships. Her only aim was to re-establish Muslim rule in all of Spain. To achieve that she joined forces with a famous sea commander and Ottoman admiral, Hayreddin Barbarossa. Both him and Syeda al-Hurra ruled and dismantled the entire Portugal sea force.
She received a marriage proposal from Ahmed al-Wattasi, a Sultan of the Moroccan Wattasid dynasty and accepted it but refused to leave Tétouan. Al-Hurra showed the people of her city that she is still their Queen and asked Ahmed to come to her instead, after marriage.
She lived a life of adventure and romance. Both of them united under similar objectives; their disapproval of the Spanish rule. Her struggles to establish Islamic rule continued for 30 long years and every effort to achieve that dream continued on.
Several sea forces tried to bribe her with all sorts of riches to keep her at bay but were unsuccessful. Her son-in-law Muhammad al-Hassan al-Mandri conspired against her and overthrew her rule. After this event, you do not find much about her in the records. Most parts of her life were spent on her ship in sea and she was notoriously known as the Pirate Queen.
She in her time was considered equal to Hayreddin Barbarossa and Ahmed al-Wattasi. Due to the fact that everything took place on the seas, scholars of Islam failed to pen down such a great history of a brave female Muslim ruler.