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The word Mesopotamia

Reader comment on item: Hugging Iraq's Leaders

Submitted by dhimmi no more (United States), Aug 23, 2014 at 08:24

Dr. Pipes

Very good article.

The Greek word Μεσοποταμία or Mesopotamia must be from the translation of the Syriac ܒܝܬ ܢܗܪܝܢ or Beth Nahrin or the house/land between the rivers and the Arabs translated it into Arabic as بلاد بين النهرين or the country between the rivers also بلاد مابين النهرين or the country for what is between the two rivers and they also call it بلاد الرافدين or Bilad al-Rafidain or the country of the two river banks

As for the word Iraq the etymology is not really clear (could it have anything to do with Syriac ܐܘܪ or Ur) but the early Islamic literary sources use the terms عراق العرب or Iraq of the Arabs for Southern Mesopotamia where the Christian Arab tribes lived and عراق العجم for Western Iran

What has been and still is most amazing about Mesopotamia is the diversity of the cultures languages and religions that live or have lived in the land between the two rivers (compare this with Egypt or Iran)

Could these very diverse groups live together? They did it for at least 5000 years and it was not easy so I would not give up on The Land Between the Rivers as of yet


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