MAPS: 0500AD – 0750AD Middle East

Middle East 500AD – 750AD


The past two and a half centuries1) have seen the map of the Middle East change radically. In the 7th century Arab2) tribes, united under the banner of a new religion, Islam, swept outwards in a surge of conquests: Iraq3) and Iran,4) Syria and Palestine,5) Egypt6) and North Africa,7) Spain8) – all have fallen to them. Arab armies have penetrated as far as central Asia, western India9) and, briefly, into France.10)

The Persian empire vanished under the onslaught, and the Byzantine empire11) lost its most valuable provinces. In their place, the Arabs established a vast empire, called the “Caliphate” (“caliph” means “successor”, in this case to the Prophet Muhammed). Up until now it has been ruled from Damascus, in Syria; with a change of dynasty, its capital will very soon become Baghdad, in Iraq.


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