Philip Hensher

Prophetic times

Philip Hensher traces the emergence of Islam as a political and cultural force in the crowded world of late antiquity

The subject here is colossal, covering a substantial stretch of the later Roman empire, the last years of the Persian empire, the conversion of the Arabs, the spread of Christianity and what happened to Judaism. The time span runs, effectively, from the death of Jesus to the moment in the eighth century when the Abbasids acquired through violence the vast empire of the Umayyads, stretching from the Loire to the Hindu Kush, and founded Baghdad.

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