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Les religions pratiquées par les membres de la tribu de Kinda (Arabie) à la veille de l'Islam

Christian Julien Robin 1
1 OM-MS - Équipe Mondes sémitiques
OM - ORIENT ET MÉDITERRANÉE : Textes, Archéologie, Histoire
Abstract : Archaeological research carried out in the Arabian Peninsula in the last forty years confirms that in Late Antiquity Judaism had numerous followers in Yemen and the Ḥijāz. Among these Arabian Jews, a few were for sure converts and many others were probably as well. A primary issue concerns the nature of this Judaism, which appears to be different from those of rabbis (Robin, forthcoming). A second question, the topic of this contribution, is related to chronology and modes of conversion. Kinda, one of the Arab tribes in the south of the Peninsula - to be distinguished from Ḥimyaritetribes of Yemen -included numerous followers of Judaism, as Professor Michael Lecker has shown in two contributions published in 1994 and 1995, these exclusively based on Arab traditions. This tribe's history, however, is also of much interest in that it is also known by a series of Ḥimyariteinscriptions and by a few allusions to its princes in Byzantine literature. It was therefore desirable to have a close look once more at the topic so as to draw up a comprehensive inventory of all that we know of the Kindites' religious practices, after having precisely established this tribe's chronology and outlined its territory and settlement. It appears that Judaism probably was the dominant religion of aristocratic lineages of the tribe of Kinda. Nevertheless this observation does not concern Kindites who placed themselves at the service of Persia or Byzantium; the religious orientation of the latter, evidently determined by political relationships, can be described as "opportunistic". As for simple members of the tribe, if indeed they were influenced by the example of their princes, they do not appear to have converted collectively. In Pre-Islamic Arabia, religion remains a personal issue.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, May 7, 2014 - 2:35:18 PM
Last modification on : Tuesday, January 19, 2021 - 11:09:05 AM

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Christian Julien Robin. Les religions pratiquées par les membres de la tribu de Kinda (Arabie) à la veille de l'Islam. Judaism ancien - Ancient Judaism, 2013, 1, pp.203-261. ⟨10.1484/J.JAAJ.1.103528⟩. ⟨halshs-00988132⟩

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