Masjid_al-Haram,_Tawaf 2The Muslim conquests of the 7th Century marked the definitive end to the power of Rome. By the time of Muhammad, Rome had been engaged in a war with the Persian empire that had endured for more than a hundred years. Rome and Persia were worn out. They had exhausted their resources. The collapse of those empires gave rise to the Islamic age.

The following audio segment was recorded in January of 2001. It is part of a larger series of classroom lectures on the history of the Jews of Spain –the country where the Muslim, Christian and Jewish worlds collide.

This segment deals with Islam and explores the socio-political situation that existed in the Arabian Peninsula at the time of Muhammad – an environment that was evidently fertile ground for the creation of this powerful new religion.

In this next segment you will hear about the Islamic conquests, events that left the power of the west “thunderstruck”. The state of war began when Mohammed moved from Mecca to Medina.

An audio version of this blog is available on iTunes:

CONTEXT is a blog devoted to providing historical background to the situation in the Middle East. The history has been provided through video and audio recordings of my late father, Dr. David Neiman –an expert on the history of the ancient near east and the relationship between the Church and the Jews. He based his theses on historical records, linguistics and a deep understanding of the Bible and its origins. Dr. Neiman was a member of the theology department at Boston College and taught there for 25 years.