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Indus Valley Wheeled Ram Toy

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The hand-modeled, terracotta, wheeled figurine of a bird with a ram's head was excavated from an archaeological site in the Indus Valley called Mohenjo-daro, a city that flourished between 2600 and 1900 BCE. Museum curators added the wooden axle attaching the wheels to the body as the original had not been preserved. Excavations from sites in the Indus Valley included many figurines made from... Read More »

Stone tablet from Gilgamesh's Epic.  The specific tablet is number 11 discussing the Flood Narrative.

Internet Ancient History Sourcebook

Review
This site was designed to provide classroom teachers with an extensive, well-organized collection of ancient Mediterranean literary texts and, to a lesser extent, art and archaeological sources.

Interview with Sa’ida Jarallah

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Read the excerpt on this page of an oral history interview taken by Professor Ellen Fleischmann. In it, Sa’ida Jarallah, one of the first Palestinian Muslim women to study abroad, discusses her life, especially the social and cultural aspects of growing up as a young woman in the 1930s.

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Islamic Empire: Miracle Story, Rabi’a al-‘Adawiyya

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Rabi’a al-‘Adawiyya from Basra was one of the most important founders of the mystical element of Islam, known as Sufism. The stories about her life and teachings illustrate a woman free from many of the traditional constraints placed on women’s lives. In miracle stories such as this one, we see an essential element of Sufi thought: do not expect anything from God, but rather, recognize the... Read More »

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Islamic Empire: Poem, Abbasid-era

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The Abbasid period is known as a time during which women’s public roles became more restricted in the Muslim population (umma). With the conquest of Sasanian and Byzantine lands, Arabs incorporated ideals of cloistering females and eliminating them from political life, with many ramifications in women’s daily lives. Moreover, strong patriarchal urges already ran through Arabian society, as the... Read More »

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Islamic Empire: Poem, Rabi’a al-‘Adawiyya

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In these poetic lines by Rabi’a al-‘Adawiyya, one of the most important founders of the mystical element of Islam, known as Sufism, we see an essential element of Sufi thought, the creation of which is often attributed to her: the ideal of divine love. Using the language of romance, Rabi’a’s verses elevate the divinity of God, all the while evoking the most intense elements of human love.... Read More »

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Islamic Empire: Religious Text, Confederation Sura

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This Sura (or chapter) of the Qur’an, known as al-Ahzab, or the “Confederation,” is known for its many verses extolling modesty in women, as well as detailing aspects of ideal marriage. Because of its references directly to the wives of the Prophet Muhammad, there has been controversy over whether or not the restrictions it places on women’s movement in the public sphere are to be universally... Read More »

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Islamic Empire: Religious Text, Marriage Customs

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The Hadith, or ways of the Prophet Muhammad, were collected upon his death from those who were close to him in life. Known as the Companions, these people played a key role in filling in the sayings and practices of Muhammad and his behaviors, recording them for future generations. Many of the key Companions to relay Hadith were Muhammad’s wives, particularly ‘A’isha bint Abu Bakr. In this... Read More »

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Islamic Empire: Religious Text, Mosque Customs and Public Behavior

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The Hadith, or ways of the Prophet Muhammad, were collected upon his death from those who were close to him in life. Known as the Companions, these people played a key role in filling in the sayings and practices of Muhammad and his behaviors, recording them for future generations. Many of the Hadith collected from the female companions detailed the Prophet’s ways concerning proper public... Read More »

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Islamic Empire: Religious Text, Women Sura

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This Sura (or chapter) of the Qur’an, known as al-Nisa’, or “Women,” details a variety of legal rights and restrictions for Muslims in the realm of marriage, inheritance, and other male-female relationships. Containing verses on polygamy, property maintenance, and child custody, it is one of the foundation chapters for the development of sharia, or Islamic law, vis-à-vis women’s legal rights,... Read More »

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