Very soon after 750http://www.timemaps.com/history/middle-east-750ad Baghdad replaced Damascus as the capital of the Caliphate shifting the centre of gravity of the Muslim world eastward. Shortly after this the empire began to break up, with Spain,http://www.timemaps.com/history/spain-979ad North Africa,http://www.timemaps.com/history/north-africa-979ad Egypt,http://www.timemaps.com/history/egypt-979ad Syria,http://www.timemaps.com/history/syria-979ad western Indiahttp://www.timemaps.com/history/south-asia-979ad and much of Iranhttp://www.timemaps.com/history/iran-979ad falling away from Baghdad’s control. By this date, indeed, the Caliphs have ceased to exercise much political power, even in Iraq.http://www.timemaps.com/history/iraq-979ad They have increasingly taken on a more symbolic role as the focus of Muslim loyalties.
The Muslim world is home to a flourishing cultural life. Technological and scientific developments have come in from China (paper) and India (decimal system), which Arab scholars add to Greek thought (medicine and philosophy, amongst much else) plus their own contributions (for example, optics and algebra) to create a massive body of knowledge which will in due course be passed onto Europeans. There it will form the basis for further advance.
ORIGINAL SOURCE: timemaps.com