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Mecca

Subject: Religion

Birthplace of Muhammad, Islam’s holiest city; prosperous because of its strategic position on caravan trade routes and pilgrimage to the Kaaba, an ancient shrine, the custodians of which ...

Mecca

Mecca   Reference library

The Concise Oxford Dictionary of World Religions

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2003
Subject:
Religion
Length:
116 words

... ( Makka ). . The birthplace of the Prophet Muḥammad . Muḥammad's initial preaching made little impression, and indeed evoked increasing opposition, esp. from the ruling clan, the Quraish. He therefore made the hijra to Madīna , only recapturing Mecca near the end of his life. He immediately established the ḥajj practices, thus ensuring the centrality of Mecca to Muslim life, even when the centres of political power under different dynasties of caliphs ( khalīfa ) moved far away. The mosque at Mecca is al- Masjid al-Ḥarām; and the two towns,...

Mecca

Mecca   Reference library

The Oxford Dictionary of the Middle Ages

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2010
Subject:
History, Early history (500 CE to 1500)
Length:
109 words
Illustration(s):
1

... Birthplace of *Muhammad , *Islam ’s holiest city; prosperous because of its strategic position on caravan trade routes and *pilgrimage to the Kaaba, an ancient shrine, the custodians of which were Muhammad’s tribe, the Quraysh. The *Quran enjoins Muslims to face Mecca during ritual prayers and to travel there for the annual Hajj pilgrimage. The Kaaba, surrounded by the Masjid al-Haram mosque, Mecca. © World Religions Photo Library/Alamy Shawkat M. Toorawa P. Crone , Meccan Trade and the Rise of Islam (1987). E. Esin , Mecca the Blessed, Medina...

Mecca

Mecca   Quick reference

World Encyclopedia

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2004
Subject:
Encyclopedias
Length:
147 words

... ( Makkah ) City in w Saudi Arabia and the holiest city of Islam . The birthplace of the prophet Muhammad , only Muslims are allowed in the city. Mecca was originally home to an Arab population of merchants. When Muhammad began his ministry here, the Meccans rejected him. The flight or Hejira of Muhammad from Mecca to Medina in 622 marked the beginning of the Muslim era. In 630 , Muhammad's followers captured Mecca and made it the centre of the first Islamic empire. Egypt controlled the city in the 13th century. The Ottoman Turks held it from...

Mecca

Mecca   Quick reference

A Dictionary of Human Geography

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2013
Subject:
Social sciences, Human Geography
Length:
65 words

... A city in Saudi Arabia said to be the birthplace of the prophet Muhammad and the place where the Qur’an was written. For this reason Mecca is a holy city for Muslims and the site of annual pilgrimages. Because of its long religious significance, Mecca is today a highly cosmopolitan city, dominated by people who hail from all parts of the wider Muslim...

Mecca

Mecca ([Rel.])   Quick reference

A Dictionary of Reference and Allusion (3 ed.)

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2010
Subject:
Language reference
Length:
102 words

... [Rel.] A city in western Saudi Arabia (Arabic, Makkah), an oasis town in the Red Sea region of Hejaz, east of Jiddah. It was the birthplace in ad 570 of the prophet *Muhammad . Mecca is held to be the holiest city of the Islamic world and is the destination for Muslims undertaking the haj (pilgrimage). > A place that attracts many visitors or the enthusiasts of a particular activity ‘But here we are at the Mecca of English cricket,’ said Lord Ickenham, suspending his remarks as the cab drew up at the entrance of Lord's. P. G. Wodehouse Cocktail...

Mecca

Mecca   Reference library

Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase & Fable (19 ed.)

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2013

... The birthplace of mohammed in Saudi Arabia, one of the two holy cities of Islam (the other is medina ). In its Great Mosque is the kaaba , an ancient stone building containing the black stone , kissed by visiting pilgrims. The Kaaba is covered with a cloth called the kiswa , which is ceremonially replaced each year. Every Muslim is expected to make a pilgrimage to Mecca ( see hajj ) at least once in his or her lifetime. The term has hence acquired the extended meaning of a place one ardently longs to visit, or a place outstandingly frequented by the...

Mecca

Mecca   Reference library

The Islamic World: Past and Present

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2022
Subject:
Religion
Length:
563 words

...Mecca Located in the Sirat Mountains of western Saudi Arabia, the city of Mecca is the holiest place in the Islamic world. The Prophet Muhammad was born in Mecca, and it is the site of the Kaaba and the destination of the annual Muslim pilgrimage. Every Muslim who is able, both physically and financially, must make a pilgrimage to Mecca once in his or her lifetime. Furthermore, tradition dictates that Muslims must face Mecca during their daily prayers. In the late 500s, Mecca was a major center of trade and commerce as well as the site of the Kaaba, a religious...

Mecca

Mecca   Reference library

The Oxford Encyclopedia of the Islamic World

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2009
Subject:
Religion, Social sciences, Regional and Area Studies
Length:
1,467 words
Illustration(s):
2

...Peters, F. E. Hajj: The Muslim Pilgrimage to Mecca and the Holy Places . Princeton, N.J., 1994. Collection and analysis of the narrative sources on the Muslim pilgrimage to Mecca from earliest times to 1925. Peters, F. E. Mecca: A Literary History of the Muslim Holy Land . Princeton, N.J., 1994. Collection and analysis of the narrative sources dealing Mecca and the Hejaz from the earliest times to World War I. Rutter, Eldon . The Holy Cities of Arabia . 2 vols. London and New York, 1928. Eyewitness account of Mecca and the pilgrimage during the first years of...

Mecca

Mecca   Reference library

Gerald Hawting

The Oxford Dictionary of Late Antiquity

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2018

...is that Mecca was not so isolated from the outside world as Muslim tradition suggests, and that social and religious changes were at work there by the late 6th century . Exploiting certain other details and reports in Muslim traditional sources, historians such as H. Lammens and W. Montgomery Watt argued that Mecca lay on important international trade routes, and Montgomery Watt in particular developed from this an economic and social explanation for the emergence there of Islam. Others, like J. Wansbrough, have regarded Islam’s origins in Mecca as an idea...

Mecca

Mecca   Reference library

Encyclopedia of the Middle Ages

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2005
Subject:
History, Early history (500 CE to 1500)
Length:
658 words

...took place – as today, on the 9th of the month – outside the perimeter of Mecca proper, in the high plain of ʼArafat, ended with a sacrifice of camels – not sheep – in the valley of Minā. But, apparently, Mecca was not “visited” by the Bedouin pilgrims. Muslim tradition reinterpreted the whole of these rituals by stressing, well beyond the Koranic text, the role of the site of Mecca and that of the tribe that had become prophetic. “ Makka ”, EI(E) , 6, 1991, 144-187. F. E. Peters , Mecca , Princeton, 1994. Jacqueline...

Mecca

Mecca   Quick reference

The Oxford Dictionary of Islam

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2003
Subject:
Religion
Length:
143 words

...Mecca Holiest city of Islam, birthplace of Muhammad , site of the Kaaba and the annual pilgrimage, and the city Muslims face during prayer. Located in what is now Saudi Arabia. In pre-Islamic Arabia, Mecca was a major city on the trade routes, a pilgrimage site, and a site of worship of numerous pre-Islamic gods and goddesses. After the rise of Islam, it lost commercial prosperity due to changes in trade routes. Its chief resources became endowment income, gifts by the faithful to the shrine and its overseers, and the annual pilgrimage. Became a major trading...

Mecca

Mecca   Reference library

The Oxford Encyclopedia of Archaeology in the Near East

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2011
Subject:
Archaeology, History
Length:
1,097 words

...the Mecca Valley are mountains and wadis. The famous Mecca mountains, which have been frequently mentioned in autobiographies and geographical sources are Jabal Abi Qobais on the east, Jabal Qunaiga῾ on the west and Jabal Ḥira'. A few of the main antiquities of Mecca and its environs are mentioned below. Both Bakka and Mecca are mentioned in the Qur'an. The holy mosque (al masjid al-Ḥaram) with the Ka῾bah at its center is the holiest place of Islam for Muslims. It is the first house of worship that Allah appointed (3.96; 48.24). During ancient times Mecca was...

Mecca

Mecca (Saudi Arabia, USA)   Quick reference

Concise Oxford Dictionary of World Place Names (6 ed.)

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2020

...the process whereby Mecca became the holiest city of Islam. If possible, every adult Muslim must make the hajj ‘pilgrimage’ to Mecca once in his or her lifetime. The city was under the authority of the Egyptian Mamlūks from 1269 and of the Ottoman Turks from 1517 before becoming part of Saudi Arabia in 1925 . In ancient times it was known as Bakkah and to Ptolemy as Macoraba. Mecca is also the name of an administrative region. The name is also used in the sense of a ‘place that is pre-eminent for a particular activity’, such as Hollywood for the film...

Mecca

Mecca   Reference library

The Grove Encyclopedia of Islamic Art and Architecture

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2009
Subject:
Art & Architecture, Religion
Length:
1,602 words
Illustration(s):
1

...it was reconstructed c. 608 by the Quraysh tribe, the guardians of Mecca, as a rectangular structure of alternating courses of masonry and wood 18 cubits high. The single door was raised above ground level to protect the shrine from hostile intruders and flood waters. Muhammad, the Prophet of Islam, was born in Mecca c. 570, but he was forced to emigrate with his fellow Muslims in 622 to Yathrib ( see Medina ). With the victory of the Muslims over Quraysh resistance in 629–30 , Mecca's holy shrine became the center of Islamic pilgrimage. The Koran states...

Mecca

Mecca   Quick reference

A Dictionary of World History (3 ed.)

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2015
Subject:
History
Length:
153 words

... A city in western Saudi Arabia, an oasis town located in the Red Sea region of Hejaz, east of Jiddah. The birthplace of the Prophet Muhammad , it is the holiest city of Islam. Lying in a narrow valley in an arid region, it nevertheless prospered from trade and from the cult associated with its central shrine, the Kaaba. Muhammad’s life was crowned by the incorporation of pilgrimage to the Kaaba into Islam. The city soon lost its commercial significance, its prosperity resting henceforth on the pilgrimage. It was sacked in 930 by the Qarmatians, a radical Ismaili...

Mecca

Mecca   Reference library

Dictionary of American Family Names (2 ed.)

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2022
Subject:
Names studies
Length:
37 words

... US frequency (2010): 1762 Italian: from a pet form of a feminine form of the personal name Domenico (see Dominick ). Some characteristic forenames: Italian Angelo, Salvatore, Donato, Vito, Mauro, Rocco, Dante, Dino, Domenic, Gabriele,...

In the Mecca

In the Mecca   Reference library

The Concise Oxford Companion to African American Literature

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2002
Subject:
Literature
Length:
507 words

...Mecca, but in time the neighborhood changed and the Mecca fell into disrepair. Before it was finally torn down, all that remained was an-unbelievably squalid tenement where thousands actually lived, and it became a symbol for a failure in urban living patterns. Furthermore, the building was a symbol for much that was wrong in the city. Linguistically, In the Mecca juxtaposes standard English with the vernacular and the language of the streets. This collection of primarily free verse poems is dominated by the long title poem, “In the Mecca” , which...

Mecca and Medina

Mecca and Medina   Reference library

Samer Traboulsi

The Oxford Encyclopedia of the Modern World

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2008
Subject:
History, Contemporary History (post 1945)
Length:
902 words

... and Medina . The two most sacred cities in Islam are located in the western province of the Hejaz in Saudi Arabia. Muhammad ( c. 570–632 ) is said to have received his first qur᾽anic revelations around the year 610 in the merchant city of Mecca, a pre-Islamic sanctuary and home of the venerated cubic structure, the Ka῾ba. The increasing number of followers led the alerted Meccan notables to launch a persecution campaign against the nascent faith, causing Muhammad to migrate in 622 to the oasis town of Yathrib, thenceforth called Medina (the City), where he...

Sharif Hussein of Mecca

Sharif Hussein of Mecca (1853–1931)   Quick reference

A Dictionary of Politics in the Middle East

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2018
Subject:
Social sciences, Politics
Length:
184 words

...Sharif Hussein of Mecca ( c . 1853–1931 ) Sharif of Mecca between 1908 and 1916 and King of the Hijaz from 1916 to 1924 . Hussein bin Ali al-Hashemi was appointed Sharif of Mecca by the Ottoman Sultan Abdul Hamid II after the Young Turk Revolution in 1908 . The growing Turcocentrism of the Committee of Union and Progress caused friction with the Arab provinces of the Ottoman Empire. In 1915 , Hussein bin Ali exchanged letters with a British official, Sir Henry McMahon, over the future status of Ottoman territory, and in June 1916 he proclaimed...

MECCA

MECCA   Quick reference

A Dictionary of Abbreviations

Reference type:
Subject Reference
Current Version:
2011
Subject:
Encyclopedias, Language reference
Length:
8 words

... modularity equipped and configured calibrator and...

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