of these articles is occupied with the people of the Arabs. For the horse race of the same name see Arab (horse).

The term of the Arabs designates an extensive eastern subpopulation. The allocation of a person to this group can take place on different basis:

  • politically:Life in a country, which belongs to the Arab homeland - concerns approx. 300 million humans.
  • linguistically: Speak an Arabic language (see below) - concerns approx. 350 million humans.
  • genealogisch: The ancestors come from a certain people that Arab peninsula.
  • ethnical it concerns with the Arabs Nomadenstämme in the northern and central Arab steppe area.

Often several or all characteristics play a role. Like that Hamilton Gibb Arabs is such humans, “for those the mission after Sirthe prophet Muhammad and the memory of the Arab realm the central historical fact beyond that are and those the Arabic language and its cultural inheritance as their common root regard and to it hold.

After the definition indifferent culture areas and times strongly from each other, is possible a clear assignment deviates only in the appropriate context, sees also Nichtaraber.

Table of contents

sources of text

the oldest excessive quantities of the term originate from the Assyrern (inscription from the year 853 v. Chr.), from the genesis (10. Chapter) and of Aischylos (Prometheus).

In the assyrischen texts dipthe terms “Arabi “,” Arabu “or” Urbi “frequently as name for a region or for a people up, that in the northern region of the Arab peninsula lay and/or. lived. To differentiate it is from the peoplethe Sabäer, which lived in the Kingdom of Saba on the national territory of today's Yemen. Herodot and many other Greek and latin writer called Arabia the whole Arab peninsula and than Arab everything their inhabitants (including those the eastEgyptian desertbetween Nile and Red Sea).

With the remainders of the trunks (Sabäer), living in the south of the Arab peninsula, the term is used for the first time by persons, who live on the Arab peninsula. As Arabs there Beduinen becomeand robber designates. Thus the word of the separation serves the established population of the nomadisierenden population.

In Arabic language, but still in nabatäisch - aramäischer writing written, the word dipped 'more raber in the early fourth century after Christ in oneText of the grave inscription of Namara up and tells the history of a “king all Arab “(Imru aluminium-Qais), who stressed the upper rule over all Nomaden in north and central Arabia.

linguistic definition

for the origin of the word arab several beginnings exist. Some lead it back on the semitische root the “west”, which was applied west of the inhabitants Mesopotamiens to the peoples the Euphrates valley; also “Abhar “for “travel, further-pull” as possible are accepted.

The Bible suppliesin the book Jeremia chapter 25, verse 24 a further origin possibility. There it means: “… all kings of Arabia and all kings of the people mixture, who live in the desert”. The Hebrew word root ajin resch pray has also the meaning “to mix”. With the word “acre starting from” becomesthe people mixture designates, which lives in the desert.

Like the Arabs also the Hebräer, from central Arabia away-pulling Nomaden , is Semiten. Both designations, “Arab” and “Hebräer”, could descend from the word ' abara, that in both languages for the nomadische“Umherwandern” stands. The Arab “'abri” meant this very day “Hebrew”,” 'arabi " (“Arab”) could be a Metathese typical for Arabs.

“A'raabi أعرابي” and “arabi عربي”; A'raabis are the Nomaden, while era to the inhabitants of the cities were.

Arab-Islamic expansion

inCourse of the Islamic expansion the Arabs spread in 7. and 8. Century of their original area on the Arab peninsula to North Africa, Spain, Palestine, Syria and Persia out.

meaning change of the word

the meaning of the term Arabwas subject to a certain change:

  • In before-Islamic time the partitioning of the Arabs in Nomaden (A'raab) or Beduinen, in city dweller (A'rab) applied and into become extinct trunks. Beyond that one differentiated between the northern Adnan - trunks of the southern Qahtan - trunks. The largest concentrationin addition, the Arab was to be found on the Arab peninsula, it gave Arab trunks in the Nile valley, in the Roman realm and in Persia.
  • In the time of the prophet in the partitioning nothing changed Mohammed. The language became howevermore uniformly, because the Koran was geoffenbart in the urban language by Mekka and environment, which led to the fact that many dialects disappeared.
  • At present all Arab speaking humans, those were considered to the propagation of the Islamic world realm to an Arab trunk as Arabsor to its descendants belonged. The distinction between the Arabs and the Nichtarabern within the state were simple, since the mixture of the peoples stood still at the beginning. A strict dividing line between humans was however not intended.
  • In the bloom timethe Islamic world realm mixed themselves the Arabs with the other peoples ever more strongly. The Islam and the Arabic language became the central thing in common of the population of the Islamic world realm. The settlement of the Turkvölker affected development of the term Arab little.
  • At the endthe first Abbasidenstaates (13. Century) becomes generally accepted in the Okzident for the designation of the inhabitants of the Islamic world the designation Sarazenen. To the first Abbasidenuntergang it came in the year 1258 into Bagdad by the Mongols. The second fall took place in the year 1517in Cairo by the Osmanen.
  • In the Osmani realm nothing changed in the basic partitioning of the Arabs. Here the certificate of origin was no longer possible in many cases. Beside the Arabs determined by their origin one calls therefore nowadays everyone Arab,that the language speaks and to Arabersein admits themselves.

wrong use of the designation Arab

outside of the Orients very common is the designation “Arab” also for the peoples of Iran, Afghanistan and Tadjikistans. This designation is howeverwrongly, since the Perser differs both by language, habits and habits (Iranian culture area), religions, politics, Ethnie and habitat strictly from the Arabs. In case of paschtunischer Afghans their own Ansippungsversuch led to the wrong classification. Something similar applies to arabisierte Berber. A religiously justified allocation to the Arabs is problematic also with Muslim Turks or Indonesiern.

By the neighbourhood of the Arabs and Perser it came in the entire history of Iran again and again to wars between these peoples, last into the first Gulf War. Around 641 the Perser was subject to the Islamic expansion, due to those it the Arab writing and the Islamic faith assumed. The Iraq as south area of Iran was lost to the Arabs. In today's Iran the portion makes for thatArab at the population approx. 3% out.

However Iranian (and Turkish) Sayyids ( further 4% of the population of Iran) stresses the feedback of its family trees on Mohammed also after 13 centuries. In the again-Persian language Farsi as also in the Turkish one exists -comparably with the portion of words of latin or French origin in English - a substantial portion of Arab leaning words, particularly within scientific and theological ranges.


the large majority of the Arabs are Muslims of the different IslamicDenominations. However the Sunniten forms the majority. The Shiites form in Lebanon and in the Iraq the majority of the Muslim inhabitants this for both countries. In the Maroko and Syria are however large alewitische municipalities.

As Christian Arabs call themselves a partthe member of old-eastern churches, like e.g. the koptischen church or the Syrian-orthodox church, in Syria, Jordanian one and Palestine are in addition, eastern-orthodox and catholic Chrsiten. In more recent time there are also small groups of Protestanten, usuallyby US-American mission. It is however disputed, to what extent Christians, who live in the countries of the Arab area and call themselves Arabs, are actually such or are Arab descent. Because these were mostly Christians before the Arabs Egypt, thatLebanon and the syro mesopotamischen area (Iraq and Syria) occupied and ansiendelten. By the strong Arabisierung and the strong expansion of Arab culture and politzischer systems and arabistischer ideologies, the Christians in these countries had been partially arabisiert.




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