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Patricia Crone reassesses one of the most widely accepted dogmas in contemporary accounts of the beginnings of Islam: the supposition that Mecca was a trading center. In addition, she seeks to elucidate sources on which we should reconstruct our picture of the birth of the new religion in Arabia.
Publisher: Gorgias Press LLC
Availability: In stock
SKU (ISBN): 978-1-4632-4172-8
  • *
Publication Status: Forthcoming

Publication Date: Mar 3,2020
Interior Color: Black
Trim Size: 6 x 9
Page Count: 309
Language: English
ISBN: 978-1-4632-4172-8
$74.00
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Patricia Crone reassesses one of the most widely accepted dogmas in contemporary accounts of the beginnings of Islam, the supposition that Mecca was a trading center thriving on the export of aromatic spices to the Mediterranean. Pointing out that the conventional opinion is based on classical accounts of the trade between south Arabia and the Mediterranean some 600 years earlier than the age of Muhammad, Dr. Crone argues that the land route described in these records was short-lived and that the Muslim sources make no mention of such goods.

In addition to changing our view of the role of trade, the author reexamines the evidence for the religious status of pre-Islamic Mecca and seeks to elucidate the nature of the sources on which we should reconstruct our picture of the birth of the new religion in Arabia.

Patricia Crone is professor of Islamic history at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton. Her books include Medieval Islamic Political Thought (Edinburgh 2004) and Pre-Industrial Societies: Anatomy of the Premodern World (second edition, Oxford 2003).

Patricia Crone reassesses one of the most widely accepted dogmas in contemporary accounts of the beginnings of Islam, the supposition that Mecca was a trading center thriving on the export of aromatic spices to the Mediterranean. Pointing out that the conventional opinion is based on classical accounts of the trade between south Arabia and the Mediterranean some 600 years earlier than the age of Muhammad, Dr. Crone argues that the land route described in these records was short-lived and that the Muslim sources make no mention of such goods.

In addition to changing our view of the role of trade, the author reexamines the evidence for the religious status of pre-Islamic Mecca and seeks to elucidate the nature of the sources on which we should reconstruct our picture of the birth of the new religion in Arabia.

Patricia Crone is professor of Islamic history at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton. Her books include Medieval Islamic Political Thought (Edinburgh 2004) and Pre-Industrial Societies: Anatomy of the Premodern World (second edition, Oxford 2003).

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Patricia Crone

  • Preface (page 7)
  • 1 Introduction (page 11)
  • 2 The Classical Spice Trade (page 20)
  • 3 The "Meccan Spice Trade" (page 59)
  • 4 What Did the Meccans Export? (page 95)
  • 5 Where Were the Meccans Active? (page 117)
  • 6 What Meccan Trade Was Not (page 141)
  • 7 What Meccan Trade May Have Been (page 157)
  • 8 The Sanctuary and Meccan Trade (page 176)
  • 9 The Sources (page 211)
  • 10 The Rise of Islam (page 239)
  • Appendices (page 259)
  • 1 The Provenance of Classical Cinnamon (page 261)
  • 2 Calamus (page 272)
  • 3 The Etymology and Original Meaning of Aloe (page 275)
  • Bibliography (page 279)
  • Index (page 301)