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the religion of Muslims collectively which governs their civilization and way of life

arabian peninsula

a peninsula between the Red Sea and the Persian Gulf


570-632. Born in Mecca, died in Medina. Founder of Islam. Regarded by Muslims as a prophet of God. Teachings make up the Qu'ran, the Muslim holy book.


the sacred writings of Islam revealed by God to the prophet Muhammad during his life at Mecca and Medina

five pillars of islam

Declaration of faith, prayer, alms, fasting, and pilgrimage

sunni/shiite muslims

Two major branches of Islam; Sunnis, the largest branch, are known as the orthodox branch supporting only descendants of Muhammad whereas Shiites support descendants of Ali as religious leaders


a flat grassland in tropical or subtropical regions

gold-salt trade

Gold and salt made up trade and wealth in the African kingdoms because the Europeans wanted gold, and the Africans needed salt.

ghana, mali, songhai

three ancient west african kingdoms

mansa musi

mali's most famous ruler.


City on the Niger River in the modern country of Mali. It was founded by the Tuareg as a seasonal camp sometime after 1000. As part of the Mali empire, Timbuktu became a major major terminus of the trans-Saharan trade and a center of Islamic learning.

ibn battuta

Moroccan Muslim scholar, the most widely traveled individual of his time. He wrote a detailed account of his visits to Islamic lands from China to Spain and the western Sudan.

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