Fatimid Shi'ite dynasty who claimed the caliphate on the basis of their descent from Fatima. The dynasty was founded by Said ibn Husayn. The Fatimids quickly overthrew the Sunni rulers in most of nw Africa. By ibn Husayn's death (934), the Fatimid Empire expanded into s Europe, and in 969 they captured Egypt and established the Mosque and University of Al-Azhar, one of the most influential educational establishments in contemporary Islam. By the end of the 11th century, Egypt was all that remained of the Fatimid Empire.
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