1389 - 1433
44 Hussein ibn Suleiman
^ ruled 24 years
1412 - 21
9 Muhammad ibn Suleiman
'alMalik alAdil' (Ladil
, brother of previous) ruled 9 years
1421 - 42
21 Suleiman ibn Muhammad
(son of previous) ruled 22 years. Died without heirs. Said to have rebuilt mosque of Kilwa
1442 - 54
12 Ismail ibn Hussein
(uncle of previous) ruled 14 years. Challenged by pretender Sa'id ibn Hassan, who secured support of Hassan ibn Abu Bakr, ruler of Zanzibar. Zanzibaris assembled a coalition to seize Kilwa by force. But Ismail's ministers, vizier Suleiman and Emir Muhammad managed to bribe key organizer of expedition, who withdrew Zanzibari troops and left pretender Sa'id stranded on beach of Kilwa with only a small body of attendants. Although pardoned by Ismail, Sa'id went into hiding.
1454 vizier Suleiman
(vizier of previous) At death of sultan Ismail, in first known usurpation by ministers, vizier Suleiman and Emir Muhammad alMazlum launched a coup and seized power together, with Suleiman declaring himself Sultan. However, popular opinion was strongly against vizier, so he decided to pass throne over to more popular Emir Muhammad.
1454 - 5
1 Muhammad ibn alHussein ibn Muhammad ibn Suleiman alMazlum
('Emir Muhammad', noble coconspirator with previous) According to Zanzibar chronicle, after death of vizier Suleiman, Muhammad appointed old pretender Sa'id ibn Hassan to post as his own vizier. Muhammad died shortly after. Reigned for less than a year.(deposed, according to Barros).
1455 - 6
1 Ahmad ibn Suleiman
(son of late vizier?), deposed within a year by partisans of old royal family. (Barros omits Ahmad, says partisans deposed Muhammad directly).
1456 - 66
10 alHassan ibn Ismail
(son of 32nd sultan Ismail), installed by coup. Ruled ten years.
1466 - 76
10 Sa'id ibn alHassan/Hussein
(son of previous, according to Barros; same old pretender (cf.32nd) according to Zanzibar chronicle) ruled 10 years, Upon his death, Kilwa Sultanate fell into disarray. There was another ministerial coup d'état.
1476 - 7
1 Suleiman ibn Muhammad ibn alHusayn
('Vizier Suleiman') vizier seized throne after death of Sa'id, declared himself sultan and elevated his own brother, Muhammad Kiwabi, to dignity of emir. But vizierturnedsultan Suleiman's rule lasted little over a year.
1477 - 8
1 Abdullah ibn alHassan
(brother of 37th sultan Sa'id) elevated by people of Kilwa against usurping vizier Suleiman. Ruled one and half years.
1478 - 9
1 Ali ibn Hassan
<. Ruled 1.5 years. Upon his death, Emir Muhammad Kiwabi (brother of late vizier Suleiman) seized power, and installed his nephew alHassan as sultan.
1479 - 85
6 alHassan ibn Suleiman
(son of vizier Suleiman), first time, installed by his uncle, Emir Muhammad. But alHassan proved an unpopular sultan and was deposed by his own uncle after 6 years.
1485 - 6
1 Sabhat ibn Muhammad ibn Suleiman
, a scion of royal lineage, son of 31st sultan, alAdil) installed by Emir Muhammad, after popular opposition to his first choice alHassan. Ruled one year, then died. According to Zanzibar chronicle, Emir Muhammad tried to install his nephew alHassan again.
1486 - 90
4 alHassan ibn Suleiman
(second time) installed by uncle Emir Muhammad once again, but popular opposition proved too strong. Emir Muhammad decided to depose alHassan once again and look for a suitable sultan from royal dynasty.
1490 - 5
5 Ibrahim ibn Muhammad
(brother of Sabhat, another son of alAdil) installed by Emir Muhammad to replace his nephew alHassan. But deposed alHassan ibn Suleiman launched a coup attempt to depose Ibrahim, that resulted in quite some bloodshed. In end, alHassan's ambitions were foiled by his uncle Emir Muhammad, who, seeking to restore order, declared unambiguously that Ibrahim, a descendant of kings, had precedence over alHassan, who was only of a family of viziers. alHassan driven into exile on mainland. Ibrahim ruled for two years, until Emir Muhammad decided to depose him himself.
1495 Muhammad ibn Kiwab
('Emir Muhammad Kiwabi', powerful emir) declared himself sultan, only very briefly, probably just to show he can or to satisfy his curiosity or perhaps just to forestall a renewed bid by his exiled nephew alHassan while he sorted through other candidates. In any case, Muhammad abdicated soon after, and installed another royal family member, alFudail.
1495 alFudail ibn Suleiman
, nephew of Ibrahim, thus of royal blood) installed by Emir Muhammad, after his own abdication. This is 1495 AD (901 AH). Immediately after ascension, exiled exruler Hassan ibn Suleiman returned with a mixed army of Bantus and Kilwan exiles to reclaim throne. sheikh of Zanzibar offered to mediate, and, through his good offices, alFudail even contemplated ceding throne to Hassan and ending quarrel. But Emir Muhammad refused to allow it. Instead, he promised alHassan an amnesty, but only if he returned to private life in Kilwa. While awaiting Hassan's reply to this offer, great Emir Muhammad Kiwabi died rather suddenly. In confusion, pretender Hassan infiltrated troops into Kilwa city, under command of his own son Sa'id. Caught by city authorities, Sa'id invented a story about just 'preparing house' for his father's peaceful return to Kilwa as a private citizen. To allay suspicions, Sa'id finally proposed to lead a Kilwan embassy, escorted by a squad of city troops, to his father's encampment to confirm his story. Thinking crisis had been defused, at least until embassy returned from its investigation, Kilwa let its guard down. But embassy did not return. Rather, Sa'id led it to at trap, and it was massacred. army of alHassan attacked that very same night. surprised city rallied frantically to its defenses, and a great and bloody battle ensued outside gates of city. Kilwans defeated alHassan and put an end to perennial pretender. victorious Sultan alFudail appointed a certain Ibrahim ibn Suleiman as emir, to replace late Emir Muhammad. But this state of affairs only lasted a few years.
End of Mahdali dynasty, beginning of a series of usurpers and Portuguese puppets