Colby College. History Dept.
This article will reopen the question about the identity and provenance of the abnā' al-dawla. Who were they? When did they form as a collective and why? The standard view is that the abnā' al-dawla were the backbone of the Abbasid dynasty, coming into existence with that regime after the revolution circa 132/750 and consisting of the original fighters from Khurasan and their descendants, who formed an elite social and political structure of supporters. This privileged status accorded them the moniker abnā' al-dawla (sons/supporters of the dynasty).
Turner, John P., "The abnā' al-dawla: The Definition and Legitimation of Identity in Response to the Fourth Fitna" (2004). Faculty Scholarship. 69.