Why does Islamic history matter? Islamic History: A Very Short Introduction answers this question by introducing the story of Islamic history, the controversies surrounding its study, and the significance that it holds for Muslims and non-Muslims alike. The rise and spread of Islam and the evolution into an international religion with over a billion adherents is charted. The peoples — Arabs, Persians, and Turks — who shaped Islamic history and three representative and diverse institutions — the mosque, jihad, and the caliphate — are presented. The roles that Islamic history has played in both religious and political contexts are also analysed, stressing the unique status that history enjoys amongst Muslims.