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The Making of the Medieval Middle East$
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Jack Tannous

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780691179094

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: May 2019

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691179094.001.0001

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Dark Matter and the History of the Middle East

Dark Matter and the History of the Middle East

(p.491) Conclusion: Dark Matter and the History of the Middle East
The Making of the Medieval Middle East

Jack Tannous

Princeton University Press

This concluding chapter argues that late Roman Syria was a place where linguistic frontiers did not translate into cultural boundaries. The Arab conquests of the seventh century did not change this; instead, the prestige their new scripture enjoyed added a third literary language, Arabic, to the mix of a region with an already rich history of intercultural exchange. Moreover, religious dynamics continued as they had for centuries—viewed against the background of post-Chalcedonian Christian–Christian interaction, the scope and nature of Christian–Muslim interaction looks very familiar. Ultimately, in trying to place the existence of the Middle East's population of simple Christians not just into this story, but at its center, this book has attempted to capture some of the excitement and interest of this process in a way that does justice to all of the people living there, not just a small subset of them.

Keywords:   Roman Syria, Arab conquests, Arabic, religious dynamics, Christian–Muslim interaction, Middle East, simple Christians, intercultural exchange

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