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Euan H.
08-11-2005, 04:51 AM
Any help with this would be much appreciated.

How would Europeans in the 15thC. have referred to arabs and the arabic countries? Saracens? Or something else?

Thanks in advance for any help people can offer.

Cheers,

Euan

Richard White
08-11-2005, 05:26 AM
Arabs - Arabs, Moors, Saracens, Infidels, Egyptians, Syrians, Moslems, Turks (Ottomans and Seljuks)

Middle East - The Ottoman Empire, the Levant, the Holy Lands, Araby, The Caliphates, Tripoli, Tunis, Egypt, Asia Minor

PattiTheWicked
08-11-2005, 05:32 AM
Any help with this would be much appreciated.

How would Europeans in the 15thC. have referred to arabs and the arabic countries? Saracens? Or something else?



The best person to help you will probably be Medievalist, I'm sure she'll pop in eventually.

One thing to remember is that during the 15th century the Muslim world was pretty vast. There were people of "Arabic" background controlling Europe from portions of Spain (which was still called Iberia at that point, IIRC) all the way to Asia. The term "Saracen" was originally the name of one specific Arab tribe in the Sinai. They were given the name by the Romans; it's a rough translation of a Sanskrit word for "easterners". Saracen eventually came to be used to apply to nearly all Arabs. Once the Crusades rolled around, it was the term given to just about anyone who was Muslim, particularly in Italy.

To throw even more of a monkey wrench into things, there was also a group known as the Moors. The term was originally used to refer to a Spanish Muslim (often of mixed ethnic background: Arab, Spanish and Berber), who settled in the northern parts of Africa between the 12th - 17th centuries. Later, "Moor" became used to denote someone who was simply from Morocco.

That's as much as I can remember from my European History class I took 15 years ago, but maybe it'll help you get started :)

Medievalist
08-11-2005, 05:42 AM
Can you be a little more specific about the Europeans? What language?

Euan H.
08-11-2005, 06:06 AM
Thanks for the help so far. :)

Medievalist:

The main character is from Saxony. The person he's speaking to is Bavarian. They're looking at a coin from the Ottoman Empire, which has inscriptions in Arabic script on both sides.

orlien
08-11-2005, 02:22 PM
From my part of the world - 50 % Saxon that time - they were called Moren or Muzelmannen, the latter being an archaic word for Muslim (pl.).

Valkyrie1
08-12-2005, 09:30 PM
Europeans often called Arabs and Muslims Mohamedans--well into the 20th century. They surmised (incorrectly) that Muslims worshipped their prophet, Mohammed, much like Christians worshipped Jesus.

Muslims considered it offensive, as they are relentlessly monothesistic and do not believe that Mohamed was any kind of deity. I believe, however, that most Christians used this misnomer out of ignorance of the faith, rather than as a deliberate wish to offend.

Euan H.
08-15-2005, 07:13 AM
Thanks for all the help. It's actually a word for the language I was looking for--but I don't think I need one now. I'll just say something like 'The script used by the Muzelmannen'.

Cheers muchly,

Euan.