The Historical past of Syria is rooted in an historical previous; archaeologists have demonstrated that civilization on this nation was one of the crucial historical on earth. Close to Ebla, within the north of Syria, it seams that between 2500 -2400 B.C. was based a related Semitic empire capable of commerce with the cities of Sumer, Akkad and Egypt. After the last decade of this reign, in all probability began round 2300 BC, the area was populated by Canaanites, Arameans (Semitic tribes) and Phoenicians (a maritime commerce tradition which has not but found the true origin even when are in all probability associated with Canaanites).
Through the Historic age, Syria was lastly occupied by Persians, Alexander the Nice and Romans; on the finish of this historic interval, the area was a hybrid expression of various cultures: the Semitic, the Persian, the Hellenic and the Roman. After Jesus Christ’s loss of life, Christian faith discovered fertile floor in Syria, not solely in Damascus, but additionally in several city communities, as Aleppo, Hama and Antioch (Antakya); on this city (at the moment not in Syria however in Turkey) was created one of the crucial important theological and hermeneutical (for exegesis of Gospels) faculty of early Christianity.
The Arab-Islamic conquest and the Omayyad caliphate.
With the Yarmuk’s battle in 636, the Arabs-Islamic conquerors defeated the Byzantines of Constantinople and occupied the complete Syria. In 661, Muawiya I, beforehand governor of Syria, grew to become the primary Omayyad caliph, selecting Damascus for his residence. For one century, till 750, Syria was the core of an Arab-Islamic technique of enlargement dominated by the clan of Banu Umayyad and the nation loved a substantial diploma of prosperity. Throughout this century, Syria was a lot bigger than what we discover in modern; we might converse of a Nice Syria that in the course of the Umayyad caliphate was divided in districts: Filistin (Palestine) with Ramleh and after Jerusalem, as capital; Urduun (Jordan) with Tiberias as capital; Damascus, together with Baalbek, Tripoli and Beirut; Hims, together with the city of Hama; Kinnesrin, corresponding with the north of Syria and together with Aleppo and eventually the border space with the Byzantines Empire. Through the Omayyad caliphate, the Arabs-Islamic generals have been capable of occupy on the West the complete north Africa coast (Algeria and Morocco), touchdown on the European Spanish coast (al-Andalus) in 711, and occupying the peninsula till the Pyrenees Mountains; on the East, Syrians armies reached Afghanistan and Turkmenistan occupying Bukhara, Kabul and Samarkand and deciding to not proceed to China and Indian Subcontinent, even when have been capable of defeat armies from each of them. The Omayyad tried to beat Constantinople two occasions, in 678 and 717, however for each of them the town partitions resisted with out difficulties.
The caliphate was dominated till 684 by Sufyanids, descendant of Abu Sufyan, and extra closed with the founding father of the dynasty, Muawiya I. The household clan of Marwanids took the facility in 684 and maintained it till 750. The clan of Banu Omayyad, initially from Mecca, as others Arab clans, have been internally divided in several households typically in battle with one another to acquire extra political energy. The final nice Omayyad caliph was Hisham who dominated the reign from 724 till 743, buying new territories to the Empire, nevertheless, the extreme use of Syrian and Yemeni (totally different south Arabia clans have been strictly allied with Banu Omayyad) armies, for these ongoing navy campaigns, weakened the offensive energy of Damascus, who was simply defeated by Banu Abbas, an Arab clan, extra closed to Prophet Muhammad’s household, when from the Iranian area of Khorasan, began a conquering marketing campaign in 748, reaching Syria, in 750.
Syria at the moment: the Alawite
With the top of Omayyad caliphate, Syria began a protracted interval of decadence, or higher, of not centrality in coverage selections; the Abbasids relegated the area to a standing of lesser significance in contrast with different areas as Egypt, Khorasan, and Khwarezm and so forth. Throughout this lengthy time frame, Syria was partially dominated by native dynasties as Hamdanid and Ikhshidid which combating one another inspired the re- conquest by Byzantines of some north Syrian areas in X-XI centuries. Through the Crusades, Syria was occupied, Damascus and Aleppo have been conquered for one century, even when the area was below management of the principality of Antioch.
The primary peculiarity of Syria at the moment, it’s the dominion of a minority Islamic syncretic sect, the Alawi, which even when resides within the area from XI century, it could be below the French mandate, with the top of the First World Warfare, that this clan would achieve an amazing significance particularly within the navy class. The Alawis origin is disputed, they hint their origins to the followers of the XI Shiite Imam Hassan al-‘Askari (d. 873), and his pupil ibn Nusayr (d. 868), nevertheless, the sect is exactly associated with a follower of Ibn Nusayr, al-Khasibi, who died in Aleppo in 969. In 1032, Al-Khasibi’s grandson, named al-Tabarani, moved to Latakia, a Syrian coastal city, which was then managed by Byzantine Empire. Al-Tabarani grew to become the principle non secular authority of the ‘Alawi religion via his quite a few writings. He and his pupils transformed the agricultural inhabitants of the Syrian Coastal Mountain Vary and the plain of Cilicia to the ‘Alawi religion.
Through the Ottoman empire, Alawi have been persecuted and nonetheless at the moment the Sunnis not thought of them as members of Islamic Umma (neighborhood); quite the opposite, Iran Ayatollahs, after 1979, have acknowledged Alawi as a sect of Shi’a and the political relationship between these two international locations has grow to be ever extra stronger. In Syria at the moment, the Alawi will not be greater than 20% of the inhabitants however dominated the nation from the 1970 when al-Asad household took the facility.
References and additional readings
Gerald R. Hawting, The First Dynasty of Islam: The Umayyad Caliphate, AD 661-750, Routledge, London, 2000.
Alan George, Syria, neither bread nor freedom, Zed books, New York, 2003.
Mordechai Nisan, Minorities within the Center East: a historical past of wrestle and self-expression, McFarland, 2002.
Daniel Pipes, Larger Syria. The historical past of an ambition, Oxford College Press, 1992.