بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Recenty, when translating Islamic Conquests of Persia and Levant (Al-Shaam) I came across some cities and provinces which are not readily recognizable on modern maps. I will try to make a list:

Persia, Iraq and Lands East of Arabin Peninsula:

  1. Al-Namaraq:  A place near Kufa. The scene of the first battle between Persians and Muslims during ‘Umar’s reign.
  2. Kaskar: Two things a) A city between Basra and Kufa, and b) A province extending from Samarra to the place where the Tigris pours into the Arabian Sea. Basra is included in that province. It means “Land of Barley” in the language of people of Herat. Inhabitants are called Kaskaris.
  3. Suwad: These are the rural agricultural areas of Iraq. The travelling Arabs use to see them from the distant as black (green appears black from a distant), and hence named it Al-Suwad (i.e. the Black).
  4. Barosma: A rural suburb of Baghdad
  5. Ullais: A place on the Euphrates,  25 miles southeast of Najaf in Iraq.[ Wikipedia]
  6. Al-Buwaib: Two places a) The gateway of Hijaz to Egypt, and b) A river tributary of Euphrates near Kufa. It was the scene of one of the most important battles between Persians and Muslims after Qadisiyyah.
  7. Al-Seeb: Three places:  a) A rural suburb if Kufa (Ahmad b Muhammad Al-Seebi al-Shafa’ii belonged to this place), b) A river near Basra c) A place or island in Lower Kharezm.
  8. Al-Baab: Also called Baab Al-Abwaab (The gate of all gates). It is Derbent on the Caspian Sea [now in Dagestan, Russia]. A very strategic city. It is the only access between north and south Caspian on its west coast. It was conquered during ‘Umar Bin Al-Khattab’s (may Allah be pleased with him) reign.
  9. Bahr Tabaria [aka Bahr Qazwin]: This is the Capian Sea. The landlocked sea has had various names.
  10. Jayhun: The Oxus River a.k.a. Amu Darya.
  11. Sayhun: The Jaxartes River a.k.a. Syr Darya.
  12. Ma Wara Al-Nahr: (literally ‘what lies beyond the river’). This is Transoxania.
  13. Tastar: It is the present day Iranian city of Shustar, a 100 km north of Ahvaz.

To be continued…

The Levant (Al-Shaam):

  1. Al-Shaam: A large region comprising of today’s Palestine, Israel, Lebanon, Syria and Jordon. It is also called the Levant.
  2. Al-Balqa: It is the ancient name for Jordan
  3. Fihl: It is the battle directly after Yarmouk. It happens to be the Biblical city of Pella, midway between the Dead and Galilee Seas, in today’s Jordon. See [1], [2], [3] and [4].
  4. Tadmur: Its the ancient Syrian city of Palmyra.
  5. Maysanun Springs: The modern town of Maysalun, the site of the famous Frano-Syrian battle of 1920.
  6. Horan: A region straddling Southern Syria and Northern Jordan.
  7. Bisan: Historical city on R. Jordan, north of Jerusalem and Pella, now in Israel. [Wikipedia]
  8. Qanassarin: An ancient city 10 miles south west of Hims. Now a ruin. [1]
  9. Sur: The city of Tyre in Lebanon
  10. Al-Lathaqiya: Syrian city of Latakia
  11. ‘Aqqa: Israeli city of Acre
  12. ‘Arqa: A town 15 km from Jenin.
  13. Saida: Arabic name for Sidon in Lebanon.

To be continued…

Sources:

[1] Mu’jam Al-Buldan (Encyclopedia of Geographical Locations) by Yaqut Al-Hamawi

[2] Wikipedia

T. Seehe ancient city of Pella. It is midway between the Sea of Galilee and the Dead Sea on the Jordan River. It is now situated in modern day Jordan. http://whc.unesco.org/en/tentativelists/1554/
Advertisements