With the rise of Islam in the seventh century A. Over time the Arab identity lost its purely ethnic roots as millions in the Middle East and North Africa adopted the Arabic language and integrated Arab culture with that of their own. It embraces numerous national and regional groups as well as many non-Muslim religious minorities. Arab Christians, particularly in the countries of Egypt and the Fertile Crescent Syria, Iraq, Palestine, and Jordan constitute roughly ten percent of the population. In Lebanon, Christians of various sects approach just under half of the population, while in Egypt, Christians comprise between ten and 15 percent of the population. Previous estimates by scholars and Arab American community organizations placed the number of Arab Americans at between one and three million. The discrepancy is partly due to the standardization of Arabs in the United States, leading many to conceal their ethnic affiliation. The traditional suspicion of Middle Easterners toward government authorities seeking information of a personal nature compounds this problem. These two factors, along with standard problems in collecting census data, probably explain the discrepancy between the estimates of scholars and the actual census count.
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The earliest are written in variants of epigraphic south Arabian musnad script, including the 8th century BCE Hasaean inscriptions of eastern Saudi Arabia, the 6th century BCE Lihyanite texts of southeastern Saudi Arabia and the Thamudic texts found throughout the Arabian Peninsula and Sinai not in reality connected with Thamud. Their early inscriptions were in Aramaic , but gradually switched to Arabic, and since they had writing, it was they who made the first inscriptions in Arabic.
The Nabataean alphabet was adopted by Arabs to the south, and evolved into modern Arabic script around the 4th century. This is attested by Safaitic inscriptions beginning in the 1st century BCE and the many Arabic personal names in Nabataean inscriptions. From about the 2nd century BCE, a few inscriptions from Qaryat al-Faw reveal a dialect no longer considered proto-Arabic, but pre-classical Arabic.
Philip the Arab A. Only sketchy details of his life and reign have survived in the historical record. One of those details — his ethnicity — was latched onto by later historians, who called the emperor by the name Philip the Arab. The village was obscure at the time of Philip’s birth, though once he became emperor, Philip renamed the community Philippopolis and embarked on a major building campaign. Little is known of Philip’s father, save the name Julius Marinus.
This name, however, indicates that the family held Roman citizenship and must have been locally prominent. Nothing is known of Philip’s mother. At some point, probably in the s, Philip married Marcia Otacilia Severa. A son was born by and named Marcus Julius Severus Philippus. Philip’s early career is also obscure, though it was undoubtedly helped by that of his brother, Julius Priscus.
Priscus was appointed praetorian prefect by Gordian III and had previously served as prefect of the Roman province of Mesopotamia. If a fragmentary inscription from Rome can be connected to Priscus, Philip’s brother rose quickly during Gordian III’s reign through a variety of equestrian offices, including procurator of Macedonia, vice prefect of Egypt, and judge at Alexandria.
The success of the campaign must have reflected well on Priscus, and when his colleague Timesitheus who was also Gordian III’s father-in-law died the following year, Priscus’ brother Philip joined him as praetorian prefect. On the retreat back up the Euphrates after the Roman defeat at Misikhe, Gordian was killed sometime during the winter months of
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It is one of the oldest churches in the world. There were many Arab tribes which adhered to Christianity beginning with the 1st century, including the Nabateans and the Ghassanids. The Nabataeans initially adopted pagan beliefs, but they became Christians by the time of the Byzantine period around the 4th century. Their lands were divided between the new Qahtanite Arab tribal kingdoms of the Byzantine vassals, the Ghassanids and the Himyarite Kingdom , the Kindah in North Arabia.
The southern Arabian city of Najran was a center of Arabian Christianity, made famous by the persecution by one of the kings of Yemen, Dhu Nawas, who was himself an enthusiastic convert to Judaism.
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In the Muslim world, Christmas is not celebrated publicly, except in the minority Christian communities in the Middle East. And in North Africa not at all. To a Western Christian living there, the absence of the usual sights, sounds, and practices of Christmas, which are such a part of our culture.
Historically, these churches grew out of the four Eastern Patriarchates Jerusalem , Antioch , Alexandria , and Constantinople of the original five major episcopal sees the Pentarchy of the Roman Empire which included Rome. The final split took place in From that time, the Eastern Churches have continued to reject the claims of the Patriarchate of Rome the Catholic Church to universal supremacy and have rejected the concept of papal infallibility.
Doctrinally, the main point at issue between the Eastern and Western Churches is that of the procession of the Holy Spirit and there are also divergences in ritual and discipline. The Eastern Orthodox Christians include many free-holders, and the community is less dominated by large landowners than other Christian denominations. In present-day Lebanon, the Eastern Orthodox Christians have become increasingly urbanized, and form a major part of the commercial and professional class of Beirut and other cities.
They are highly educated and well-versed in finance. The rite has become known in the past for its pan-Arab orientation, possibly because it exists in various parts of the Arab world. The church has often served as a bridge between Lebanese Christians and the Arab countries. The elected man was considered to ‘pro-Roman’ and another faction, the larger, elected a rival who was supported by the Orthodox patriarch in Constantinople the see of Antioch had ignored the split between the two which occurred in and was canonically in union with both in Although they fully accept Catholic doctrines as defined by the Holy See , they have generally remained close to the Greek Orthodox Church, retaining more of the ancient rituals and customs than have the Maronites.
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