Last updated on: 5/16/2008 11:27:00 AM PST

What Are the Earliest Accounts of the Arabs?

General Reference (not clearly pro or con)
Steve Tamari, in a teaching module titled "Who are the Arabs?" on the Center for Contemporary Arab Studies website (accessed Feb. 13, 2004), wrote:

"Historians generally agree that the ancient Semitic peoples -— Assyrians, Aramaeans, Canaanites (including the Phoenicians and Hebrews) and, later, the Arabs themselves -— migrated into the area of the Fertile Crescent after successive crises of overpopulation in the Peninsula beginning in the third millennium before the Common Era (B.C.E.) and ending with the Muslim conquests of the 7th century C.E."

Feb. 13, 2004 - Steve Tamari, PhD 

Rashid Khalidi, PhD, Edward Said Professor of Arab Studies at Columbia University, in a 2003 essay titled "Jerusalem, a Concise History," wrote:

"According to a number of historians and scholars, many of the Arabs of Jerusalem today, indeed the majority of Palestinian Arabs, are descendants of the ancient Jebusites and Canaanites."

2003 - Rashid I. Khalidi, DPhil 

Bernard Lewis, PhD, Professor Emeritus of Near Eastern Studies at Princeton University, in his 1993 book The Arabs in History, wrote:

"The word Arab...makes its first appearance in an Assyrian inscription of 853 B.C. in which King Shalmaneser III records the defeat by the Assyrian forces of a conspiracy of rebellious princelings; one of them was 'Gindibu the Aribi', who contributed 1,000 camels to the forces of the confederacy."

1993 - Bernard Lewis, PhD