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An Introduction to Islamic Archaeology$
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Marcus Milwright

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780748623105

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748623105.001.0001

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Early Islam and late antiquity

Early Islam and late antiquity

(p.24) 2 Early Islam and late antiquity
An Introduction to Islamic Archaeology

Marcus Milwright

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter deals with the degree to which the earliest phase of Islamic history (seventh and early eighth centuries) exhibits continuity with the patterns of urban and rural life in the preceding centuries (i.e. late antiquity). The first section deals with the earliest archaeological evidence for the new Muslim community in the seventh century, and concentrates upon monumental inscriptions and texts found on portable objects such as coins and papyri. The second section presents a brief survey of the archaeology of late antiquity in the Middle East, North Africa, and Central Asia. The final section is concerned with the elite residences (qusur) constructed in Greater Syria during the late seventh and the first half of the eighth century. The distribution and morphology of these structures is considered in relation to the architectural patronage of other Arab groups between the fifth and the early seventh centuries.

Keywords:   Muhammad, Shahada, Sasanian, Byzantine, Ghassanid, Continuity, Arab Conquests, Qusur

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