Midterm Study Guide

Midterm Study Guide - Midterm Study Guide PRE-ISLAMIC...

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Midterm Study Guide PRE-ISLAMIC MIDDLE EAST Byzantine and Sassanian Empires - Byzantine o West Mediterranean, Greece, Anatolia, Egypt, Greater Syria, Italy Capital: Constantinople o Succeeded the Roman Empire o Religion: Greek Orthodox By Emperor Justinian Laid foundations for monotheism in Arabia o Started splitting up and weakening because of religious factions that formed Breaking of the orthodox – Nestorians Fought the Sassanian empire a lot Used Arabian peninsula as buffer – had Bedouin tribes serve as buffer states o Conquered Byzantine land early in Islamic History Syria by 661 - Sassanian Empire o Persia (Iran) , Pakistan, Afghanistan, parts of India from 3-7 th century Capital: Ctesiphon o Religion: mostly Zoroastrianism and Manichaeism o Weakened through fighting Byzantines Had buffer states too o Conquered Khurasan by 644 Zoroastrianism - Zarathustra/Zoroaster: prophet who lived ~ 1500 BCE - Originated in Iran - Influenced Christianity, Judaism, and Islam o Monotheistic religion - Dualistic Character: two spiritual forces – supreme good (the Ahura Mazda, great god, represented by fire) and supreme evil (Ahriman) o Cosmic struggle between good and evil (though good will prevail) – performing good deeds helps the realm of the good and performing evil deeds helps the realm of evil - Paradise and Hell after death - The Ahura Mazda will triumph, and when this happens, the good souls in Paradise will be reunited with their bodies 1
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- Holy scripture called the Avesta – revealed to Zoroaster by the Ahura Mazda and passed down orally - Fire common in Zoroastrian temples o Led to misconception that they worshipped fire early Muslims believed they were pagans and persecuted them. Avesta - holy scripture revealed to Zoraster by the Ahura Mazda o Ahura Mazda = Great god who represents supreme good and is represented by fire - passed down orally Ctesiphon - capital of the Sassanian empire - in modern day Iraq o south of Baghdad - in 6 th century was the largest city in the world - attacked a few times by the Byzantines - conquered in 637 by Muslims Constantinople - modern day Istanbul, Turkey - capital of the Byzantine Empire and later the Ottoman Empire - named after Roman emperor Constantine after moved capital from Rome Warfare between the two Empires - fought a lot - eventually used Arabian tribes as buffer states o Local Arab kingdoms supported by the Empires to aid in their (the Empires’) wars o 6 th and 7 th centuries – Empires withdraw support of the kingdoms - Warfare between the two, significantly weakened each other - Especially in the early 7 th century - So busy fighting each other, failed to see/recognize the rise of Islam and what it meant - All of the energy expended over the seven centuries amounted to nothing for either side as the Muslim Arabs conquered the war-exhausted Sassanian Empire and the Near Eastern and North African territories of the N Roman Empire soon after the end of the Byzantine-Sassanian conflict. Fertile Crescent
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Midterm Study Guide - Midterm Study Guide PRE-ISLAMIC...

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