20 June 2015

Pre-Islamic Arabia

Pre-Islamic Arabia
A general overview of Pre Islamic Arabia till up to 525 AD. It is by no means to undermine any one with philosophy or views. this write up and the compilation of the facts and figures and the anthropological evidence will give an insight as to what was the demography, culture and mixture of the society that exited in that area which to many of my readers have not had the time to research and or see the evidence of the existence of these spectrum of civilisations since the time history have been recorded. 

The world was sufficiently advanced by then - the Roman Empire ( roman chapter ) came ruled and gone and perished ; the Eastern Roman Empire still functioned from Constantinople and there exited a very modern Perisan civilisation next door flourished simultaneously during these period.
Pre-Islamic Arabia refers to the Arabic civilization which existed in the Arabian Plate before the rise of Islam in the 630s. The study of Pre-Islamic Arabia is important to Islamic studies as it provides the context for the development of Islam.
The scientific studies of Pre-Islamic.Arabs starts with the Arabists of the
early 19th century when they managed.to decipher epigraphic Old South.Arabian (10th century BCE), Ancient.North Arabian (6th century BCE) and other writings of pre-Islamic Arabia, so it is no longer limited to the written traditions which are not local due to the lack of surviving Arab historians accounts of that era, so it is compensated by existing material consists primarily of written sources from other traditions (such as Egyptians, Greeks, Romans, etc.) so it was not known in great detail; From the 3rd century CE, Arabian history becomes more tangible with the rise of the Himyarite Kingdom, and with the appearance of the Qahtanites in the Levant and the gradual assimilation of the Nabataeans by the Qahtanites in the early centuries CE, a pattern of expansion exceeded in the explosive Muslim conquests of the 7th century. So sources of history includes archaeological evidence, foreign accounts and oral traditions later recorded by Islamic scholars especially pre-Islamic poems and al-hadith plus a number of ancient Arab documents that survived to the medieval times and portions of them were cited or recorded. Archaeological exploration in the Arabian Peninsula has been sparse but fruitful, many ancient sites were identified by modern excavations.
Pre-Historic to Iron Age

Ubaid period (5300 BCE)-could have originated in eastern Arabia-.
Umm an-Nar Culture (2600-2000 BCE)
Sabr culture (2000 BCE)
Magan and 'ad
Further information: ʿĀd and Majan (Civilization)
• Magan is attested as the name of a trading partner of the Sumerians. It is often assumed to be located in Oman.
• The A'adids established themselves in South Arabia (modern-day Yemen), settling to the east of the Qahtan tribe.
They established the Kingdom of ʿĀd around the 10th century BCE to the 3rd century CE.
Nabataean trade routes in Pre-Islamic Arabia

Pre-Islamic Arabia
The ʿĀd nation were known to the Greeks and Egyptians. Claudius Ptolemy's Geographos (2nd century CE) refers to the place by a Hellenized version of the inhabitants of the capital Ubar.
The Thamud (Arabic: ثمود) were a people of ancient Arabia, either a tribe or a group of tribes, that created a large kingdom and flourished from 3000 BCE to 200 BCE. Recent archaeological work has revealed numerous Thamudic rock writings and pictures not only in Yemen but also throughout central Arabia.
They are mentioned in sources such as the Qur'an, old Arabian poetry, Assyrian annals (Tamudi), in a Greek temple inscription from the northwest Hejaz of 169 CE, in a 5th-century Byzantine source and in Old North Arabian graffiti around Tayma.
They are mentioned in the victory annals of the Neo-Assyrian King,
Sargon II (8th century BCE), who defeated these people in a campaign in northern Arabia. The Greeks also refer to these people as "Tamudaei", i.e. "Thamud", in the writings of Aristo, Ptolemy, and Pliny. Before the rise of Islam, approximately between 400-600 CE, the Thamud totally disappeared.
South Arabian Kingdoms
Kingdom of Ma'in (7th century BCE – 1st century BCE)
During Minaean rule the capital was at Karna (now known as Sa'dah). Their other important city was Yathill (now known as Baraqish). The Minaean Kingdom was centered in northwestern Yemen, with most of its cities laying along the Wadi Madhab. Minaean inscriptions have been found far afield of the Kingdom of Ma'in, as far away as al-`Ula in northwestern Saudi Arabia and even on the island of Delos and in Egypt. It was the first of the Yemeni kingdoms to end, and the Minaean language died around 100 CE .[1]
Kingdom of Saba (9th century BCE – 275 CE)
During Sabaean rule, trade and agriculture flourished generating much wealth and prosperity. The Sabaean kingdom is located in what is now the Asir region in southwestern Yemen, and its capital, Ma'rib, is located near what is now Yemen's modern capital, Sana'a.[2] According to South Arabian tradition, the eldest son of Noah, Shem, founded the city of Ma'rib.
During Sabaean rule, Yemen was called "Arabia Felix" by the Romans
who were impressed by its wealth and prosperity. The Roman emperor
Augustus sent a military expedition to conquer the "Arabia Felix", under the orders of Aelius Gallus. After an unsuccessful siege of
Picture of Thamudi tombs at Mada'in Saleh carved from mountain
Sabaean inscription addressed to the moon-god Almaqah, mentioning five South Arabian gods, two reigning sovereigns and two governors, 7th century BCE.

Pre-Islamic Arabia
A Griffin from the royal palace at Shabwa, the capital city of Hadhramaut.
Ma'rib, the Roman general retreated to Egypt, while his fleet destroyed the port of Aden in order to guarantee the Roman merchant route to India.
The success of the kingdom was based on the cultivation and trade of spices and aromatics including frankincense and myrrh. These were exported to the Mediterranean, India, and Abyssinia where they were greatly prized by many cultures, using camels on routes through Arabia, and to India by sea.
During the 8th and 7th century BCE, there was a close contact of cultures between the Kingdom of Dʿmt in northern Ethiopia and Eritrea and Saba. Though the civilization was indigenous and the royal inscriptions were written in a sort of proto-Ethiosemitic, there were also some Sabaean immigrants in the kingdom as evidenced by a few of the Dʿmt inscriptions.[3] [4]
Agriculture in Yemen thrived during this time due to an advanced
irrigation system which consisted of large water tunnels in mountains, and dams. The most impressive of these earthworks, known as the Marib Dam was built ca. 700 BCE, provided irrigation for about 25000 acres (101 km2) of land[5] and stood for over a millennium, finally collapsing in 570 CE after centuries of neglect.
Kingdom of Hadhramaut (8th century BCE – 3rd century CE)
The first known inscriptions of Hadramaut are known from the 8th century BCE. It was first referenced by an outside civilization in an Old Sabaic inscription of Karab'il Watar from the early 7th century BCE, in which the King of Hadramaut, Yada`'il, is mentioned as being one of his allies. When the Minaeans took control of the caravan routes in the 4th century BCE, however, Hadramaut became one of its confederates, probably because of commercial interests. It later became independent and was invaded by the growing Yemeni kingdom of Himyar toward the end of the 1st century BCE, but it was able to repel the attack. Hadramaut annexed Qataban in the second half of the 2nd century CE, reaching its greatest size. The kingdom of Hadramaut was eventually conquered by the Himyarite king Shammar Yahri'sh around 300 CE, unifying all of the South Arabian kingdoms.[6]
Kingdom of Awsan (8th century BCE – 6th century BCE)
The ancient Kingdom of Awsan in South Arabia (modern Yemen), with a capital at Hagar Yahirr in the wadi Markha, to the south of the wadi Bayhan, is now marked by a tell or artificial mound, which is locally named Hagar Asfal.
Kingdom of Qataban (4th century BCE – 3rd century CE)
Qataban was one of the ancient Yemeni kingdoms which thrived in the Beihan valley. Like the other Southern Arabian kingdoms it gained great wealth from the trade of frankincense and myrrh incense which were burned at altars. The capital of Qataban was named Timna and was located on the trade route which passed through the other kingdoms of Hadramaut, Saba and Ma'in. The chief deity of the Qatabanians was Amm, or "Uncle" and the people called themselves the "children of Amm".

Pre-Islamic Arabia
Kingdom of Himyar (2nd century BCE – 525 CE)
The Himyarites rebelled against Qataban and eventually united Southwestern Arabia, controlling the Red Sea as well as the coasts of the Gulf of Aden. From their capital city, Zafar (Thifar), the Himyarite Kings launched successful military campaigns, and had stretched its domain at times as far east to the Persian Gulf and as far north to the Arabian Desert.
During the 3rd century CE, the South Arabian kingdoms were in continuous conflict with one another. Gadarat (GDRT) of Axum began to interfere in South Arabian affairs, signing an alliance with Saba, and a Himyarite text notes that Hadramaut and Qataban were also all allied against the kingdom. As a result of this, the Aksumite Empire was able to capture the Himyarite capital of Thifar in the first quarter of the 3rd century. However, the alliances did not last, and Sha`ir Awtar of Saba unexpectedly turned on Hadramaut, allying again with Aksum and taking its capital in 225. Himyar then allied with Saba and invaded the newly taken Aksumite territories, retaking Thifar, which had been under the control of Gadarat's son Beygat, and pushing Aksum back into the Tihama.[7] [8]
Aksumite occupation of Yemen (525 – 570 CE)

The Aksumite intervention is connected with Dhu Nuwas, a Himyarite king who changed the state religion to Judaism and began to persecute the Christians in Yemen. Outraged, Kaleb, the Christian King of Aksum with the encouragement of the Byzantine Emperor Justin I invaded and annexed Yemen. The Aksumites controlled Himyar and attempted to invade Mecca in the year 570 CE, Eastern Yemen remained allied to the Sassanids via tribal alliances with the Lakhmids, which later brought the Sassanid army into Yemen ending the Aksumite period.
conclusion ;
the world has come a long way away - the modern science and chronological relief map of human expeditions and conquests since the dawn of history has been unearthed slowly and gradually and there that killed a lot of myth and unexplained prolong period of missing links for the present generation to know and study.
History can also refer to the academic discipline which uses a narrative to examine and analyse a sequence of past events, and objectively determine the patterns of cause and effect that determine them
"All history is contemporary history". History is facilitated by the formation of a 'true discourse of past' through the production of narrative and analysis of past events relating to the human race. The modern discipline of history is dedicated to the institutional production of this discourse.

The line of demarcation between prehistoric and historical times is crossed when people cease to live only in the present, and become consciously interested both in their past and in their future. History begins with the handing down of tradition; and tradition means the carrying of the habits and lessons of the past into the future. Records of the past begin to be kept for the benefit of future generations.
(credit : collected and with my personal input )

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