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The Geography of the Arabian Peninsula

Chapter 7

7.1 Introduction
Does anyone know who the founder of Islam was? The founder of Islam, Muhammad, was born on the Arabian Peninsula in 570. The Peninsula is located between the Red Sea and the Persian Gulf.

7.2 What Was the Importance of the Arabian Peninsula and Surrounding Lands?
Great civilizations grew up around Arabia, like the Egyptians, Sumerians, Romans, Greeks, and Persians. How would these civilizations affect Arabia? A lot of trade passed through Arabia. Arabs served as middlemen in trade and used camels to carry goods through the desert (called caravans). What made Arabia even more important? The importance of Arabia grew with the rise of Islam. Knowledge, ideas, technology, and goods all flowed through Arab lands.


7.3 What Was the Desert Like?

What Was the Environment? of the Arabian Peninsula was desert. Very harsh; could fluctuate between 120 f to below freezing, minimal rain, and droughts could last for years. What else can happen in the desert? Powerful sandstorms

What Were the Adaptations?

Bedouins were nomads (moved from place to place) that followed their herds sheep, goats, and camels through the desert. Herds gave them everything they needed. What did they get from their herds? Food, milk, wool, leather, or they could trade the animals. What would you wear in the desert? They wore loose fitting cotton gowns and headdresses for protection against the desert.

7.4 What Were the Oases Like?

What was the Environment Like? Oases are areas where water is trapped underground and seeps to the surface, giving life to plants.

What Were the Adaptations?

Once nomads realized they could grow crops because of the oases, they became sedentary (lived in one place). They dug deep wells to water crops. Why was the date palm the most important plant? What do you think developed around the oases? Many towns developed and they became trade centers. Why would they become trade centers?

7.5 What Were the Coastal Plains?

What Was the Environment? The coastal plain surrounds 3 sides of the peninsula and can go 40 miles inland. Rain falls regularly and there are a few natural harbors.

What Were the Adaptations?

Most people farmed on the coastal plains, which was made possible by irrigation systems such as dams, wells, canals, and reservoirs. Guess who else lived on the coastal plains? Traders were also on the coastal plains which turned port cities into powerful kingdoms.

7.6 What Were the Mountainous Regions?

What Was the Environment? The Arabian Peninsula had mountain ranges to the west and south. They had a climate that was cooler and wetter than the rest of the peninsula.

What Were the Adaptations?

What were they? Lots of rain, steep cliffs? Many farmers created terraces, or steps (flat areas) on the steep mountainsides. How would this help? It increases the area of farmland, and traps the water from running down the sides of the mountains. Relied on many different crops and trees.