Qahtanite

Qahtanite

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The terms Qahtanite and Qahtani ' onMouseout='HidePop("36250")' href="http://www.absoluteastronomy.com/topics/Arabic_transliteration">transliterated
Arabic transliteration
Different approaches and methods for the romanization of Arabic exist. They vary in the way that they address the inherent problems of rendering written and spoken Arabic in the Latin alphabet; they also use different symbols for Arabic phonemes that do not exist in English or other European...

: Qahtan or Qaḥṭān or Kahtan) refer to Semitic peoples either originating in, or claiming genealogical descent
Genealogy
Genealogy is the study of families and the tracing of their lineages and history. Genealogists use oral traditions, historical records, genetic analysis, and other records to obtain information about a family and to demonstrate kinship and pedigrees of its members...

 from the southern extent of the Arabian Peninsula
Arabian Peninsula
The Arabian Peninsula is a land mass situated north-east of Africa. Also known as Arabia or the Arabian subcontinent, it is the world's largest peninsula and covers 3,237,500 km2...

, especially from Yemen
Yemen
The Republic of Yemen , commonly known as Yemen , is a country located in the Middle East, occupying the southwestern to southern end of the Arabian Peninsula. It is bordered by Saudi Arabia to the north, the Red Sea to the west, and Oman to the east....

.

The rival group to the Qahtan are variously known as Adnan
Adnan
Adnan is the traditional ancestor of the Adnani Arabs of northern, central and western Arabia, as opposed to the Qahtani of Southern and south eastern Arabia who descend from Qahtan.-Origin:...

, Ma'add or Nizar
Nizar
Abū Manṣūr Nizār al-Muṣṭafá liDīnillāh was a Fatimid Caliph and a Nizāri Ismā‘ilī Imām. He was deposed by his brother, Aḥmad al-Musta‘lī but his son, al-Hādī ibn Nizār, escaped to Alamūt and took refuge with believers there, thereby continuing the Imāmate.The followers of Nizār's descendants...

.

The Qahtani people are divided into the two sub-groups of Himyar
Himyar
The Himyarite Kingdom or Himyar , historically referred to as the Homerite Kingdom by the Greeks and the Romans, was a kingdom in ancient Yemen. Established in 110 BC, it took as its capital the modern day city of Sana'a after the ancient city of Zafar...

 and Kahlan
Kahlan
Kahlan was one of the main tribal federations of Saba'a in Yemen.-Conflict with Himyar:By the 1st century BC Saba'a was declining gradually and its southern neighbor Himyar was able to settle many Nomadic tribes that was allied to Saba'a and create a stronger Himyarite nation in the lowlands...

, with the Himyar branch as Himyarites and the Kahlan branch as Kahlanis.

Qahtani origins


Arab tradition maintains that a semi-legendary ancestral figure named Qahtan and his 24 sons are the progenitors of the southern inhabitants of the Arabian peninsula known as Qahtani.

Early Islamic historians identified Qahtan with the Yoqtan (Joktan
Joktan
Joktan or Yoktan was the second of the two sons of Eber mentioned in the Hebrew Bible. His name means "small" or "smallness"....

) son of Eber
Eber
Eber is an ancestor of the Israelites, according to the "Table of Nations" in and . He was a great-grandson of Noah's son Shem and the father of Peleg born when Eber was 34 years old, and of Joktan. He was the son of Shelah a distant ancestor of Abraham...

 of the Hebrew Bible
Hebrew Bible
The Hebrew Bible is a term used by biblical scholars outside of Judaism to refer to the Tanakh , a canonical collection of Jewish texts, and the common textual antecedent of the several canonical editions of the Christian Old Testament...

 (Gen. 10:25-29).

Among the sons of Qahtan are noteworthy figures like A'zaal (believed by Arabs to have been the original name of Sana'a
Sana'a
-Districts:*Al Wahdah District*As Sabain District*Assafi'yah District*At Tahrir District*Ath'thaorah District*Az'zal District*Bani Al Harith District*Ma'ain District*Old City District*Shu'aub District-Old City:...

, although its current name has been attested since the Iron Age
Iron Age
The Iron Age is the archaeological period generally occurring after the Bronze Age, marked by the prevalent use of iron. The early period of the age is characterized by the widespread use of iron or steel. The adoption of such material coincided with other changes in society, including differing...

) and Hadhramaut
Hadhramaut
Hadhramaut, Hadhramout, Hadramawt or Ḥaḍramūt is the formerly independent Qu'aiti state and sultanate encompassing a historical region of the south Arabian Peninsula along the Gulf of Aden in the Arabian Sea, extending eastwards from Yemen to the borders of the Dhofar region of Oman...

. Another son is Ya'rub, and his son Yashjub is the father of 'Abd Shams, who is also called Saba. All Yemeni tribes trace their ancestry back to this "Saba", either through Himyar
Himyar
The Himyarite Kingdom or Himyar , historically referred to as the Homerite Kingdom by the Greeks and the Romans, was a kingdom in ancient Yemen. Established in 110 BC, it took as its capital the modern day city of Sana'a after the ancient city of Zafar...

 or Kahlan
Kahlan
Kahlan was one of the main tribal federations of Saba'a in Yemen.-Conflict with Himyar:By the 1st century BC Saba'a was declining gradually and its southern neighbor Himyar was able to settle many Nomadic tribes that was allied to Saba'a and create a stronger Himyarite nation in the lowlands...

, his two sons.

The Qahtani people are divided into the two sub-groups of Himyar
Himyar
The Himyarite Kingdom or Himyar , historically referred to as the Homerite Kingdom by the Greeks and the Romans, was a kingdom in ancient Yemen. Established in 110 BC, it took as its capital the modern day city of Sana'a after the ancient city of Zafar...

 and Kahlan
Kahlan
Kahlan was one of the main tribal federations of Saba'a in Yemen.-Conflict with Himyar:By the 1st century BC Saba'a was declining gradually and its southern neighbor Himyar was able to settle many Nomadic tribes that was allied to Saba'a and create a stronger Himyarite nation in the lowlands...

, who represent the settled Arabs of the south and their nomadic kinsmen (nomads). The Kahlan division of Qahtan consists of 4 subgroups: the Ta' or Tayy
Tayy
Tayy is a large and ancient Arabian tribe belonging to the southern or Qahtanite branch of Arab tribes. Their original homeland was the area of the two mountains Aja and Salma in north central Arabia , though, like all Qahtanite tribes, it is believed they originally moved there from Yemen...

, the Azd
Azd
The Azd or Al Azd, are an Arabian tribe. They were a branch of the Kahlan tribe, which was one of the two branches of Qahtan the other being Himyar.In the ancient times, they inhabited Ma'rib, the capital city of the Sabaean Kingdom in modern-day Yemen...

 group which invaded Oman, the 'Amila-Judham
Banu Judham
The Banu Judham is a Yemeni tribe that emigrated to Syria and Egypt and dwelled with the Azd and Hamdan Kahlani tribes. Most Arab genealogists are not sure whether they are a Kahlani or a Himyarite tribe.-Settling in Syria and Egypt:...

 group of Palestine, and the Hamdan
Hamdan
Hamdan is a name of Arab origin. Among people named Hamdan include:*Al-Hamdan, famous Druze family*Salim Ahmed Hamdan, Yemeni Guantanamo detainee, driver and bodyguard of Osama bin Laden*Gibran Hamdan, quarterback for the Buffalo Bills...

-Madhhij group who mostly remain in Yemen.

The Kahlan branch includes the following tribes: Aus
Banu Aus
The Banū Aws or simply Aws was one of the main Arab tribes of Medina. The other was Khazraj, and the two, constituted the Ansar after the Hijra.Aws and Khazraj were known as Banū Qayla in pre-Islamic era.-Etymology:...

 and Khazraj, Ghassan, Azd
Azd
The Azd or Al Azd, are an Arabian tribe. They were a branch of the Kahlan tribe, which was one of the two branches of Qahtan the other being Himyar.In the ancient times, they inhabited Ma'rib, the capital city of the Sabaean Kingdom in modern-day Yemen...

, Hamdan
Banu Hamdan
Banu Hamdan is a well known Yemeni clan since the 1st millennium BCE, it was mentioned in Sabaic inscriptions as qayls of Hashid, who later acquired control over a part of Bakil and finally gave their clan name to a tribal confederation including Hashid and Bakil.-Hashid and Bakil:Today still in...

, Khath'am, Bajflah, Madhhij, Murad
Murad
Murad is a masculine Arabic given name, it may refer to:-Given name:* Murad , Indian character actor* Mourad the Great, the nickname of Hampartsoum Boyadjian, an Armenian fedayee and political activist...

, Zubaid
Zubaid
Zubaidis a large Arab tribe, which migrated to Iraq, before and after the Islamic conquest. The tribe was an offshoot of the Yemeni tribe of Midhhij . The Zubaid tribe's first leader was the companion of Prophet Mohammed, named Saad bin Maadi Karb.The main tribe of Zubaid is based in Suwaira, in...

 and Nakh', Ash'ar, Lakhm and Kindah
Kindah
The kingdom of Kindah was a vassal kingdom which ruled from Qaryah dhat Kahl in Nejd, Central Arabia . The kingdom controlled much of the northern Arabian peninsula in the 4th and 5th centuries AD.-Origin:...

.

Early linguistic connection


The first groups of Semites that moved northward already developed the early Semitic names derived from triliteral
Triliteral
The roots of verbs and most nouns in the Semitic languages are characterized as a sequence of consonants or "radicals"...

 and sometimes a quadriliteral verb root that first appeared in early (now extinct) East Semitic languages, especially Akkadian
Akkadian language
Akkadian is an extinct Semitic language that was spoken in ancient Mesopotamia. The earliest attested Semitic language, it used the cuneiform writing system derived ultimately from ancient Sumerian, an unrelated language isolate...

, Assyria
Assyria
Assyria was a Semitic Akkadian kingdom, extant as a nation state from the mid–23rd century BC to 608 BC centred on the Upper Tigris river, in northern Mesopotamia , that came to rule regional empires a number of times through history. It was named for its original capital, the ancient city of Assur...

n, and Old Babylonian. A closer examination reveals connections with the Central Semitic language family including: Aramiac, Phoenician, Hebrew, and Nabatean, which is closely related to the Southern Semitic languages
South Semitic
South Semitic is a commonly accepted branch of the Semitic languages. Semitic itself is a branch of the larger Afro-Asiatic language family found in Africa and Asia....

 Minaean, Sabaean, Qatabanian, Awsanian, Hadhramaut
Hadhramaut
Hadhramaut, Hadhramout, Hadramawt or Ḥaḍramūt is the formerly independent Qu'aiti state and sultanate encompassing a historical region of the south Arabian Peninsula along the Gulf of Aden in the Arabian Sea, extending eastwards from Yemen to the borders of the Dhofar region of Oman...

, and Himyarite.

Ancient Semitic villages


Biblical and historiographical place names that correspond with modern place names in Yemen
Yemen
The Republic of Yemen , commonly known as Yemen , is a country located in the Middle East, occupying the southwestern to southern end of the Arabian Peninsula. It is bordered by Saudi Arabia to the north, the Red Sea to the west, and Oman to the east....

 and Asir include:
  • Adeem
    Adeem
    -Given name:* Adeem Hashmi , Pakistani poet* Abdul-Adeem Karjimi, Moroccan footballer*Adeem, American hip-hop artist-See also:* Abdul Azim, the second part Azim can also be spelled Adeem...

    , Yadoom , Damt  (from the verb D/a/m meaning "to last")
  • Aram
    Iram of the Pillars
    Iram of the Pillars , also called Aram, Iram, Irum, Irem, Erum, Wabar, Ubar, or the City of a Thousand Pillars, is a lost city on the Arabian Peninsula.-Introduction:Ubar, a name of a region or a name of a people, was mentioned in ancient records, and was spoken of in folk...

    , Arm
    Arm
    In human anatomy, the arm is the part of the upper limb between the shoulder and the elbow joints. In other animals, the term arm can also be used for analogous structures, such as one of the paired forelimbs of a four-legged animal or the arms of cephalopods...

    , Yareem, Maryama  (from the verb A/r/m meaning "to stand above")
  • Yafe'e, Mayfa'a, Ayfo'o  (from the verb Y/f/a "to grow")
  • Aden
    Aden
    Aden is a seaport city in Yemen, located by the eastern approach to the Red Sea , some 170 kilometres east of Bab-el-Mandeb. Its population is approximately 800,000. Aden's ancient, natural harbour lies in the crater of an extinct volcano which now forms a peninsula, joined to the mainland by a...

     "settled", Yahosn "lost"
  • Thobhan, Mathbah "slaughtered"
  • Yomin "south", Yamant "blessed"
  • Yahir "to destroy"
  • Yaghshom, Ghashm "to rain"
  • Yaslih "to fix"
  • Marbad, Arbad (from the verb R/b/d meaning "to spread")

Pre-Islamic Qahtani migration out of Arabia


Early Semites who developed civilizations throughout the Ancient Near East
Ancient Near East
The ancient Near East was the home of early civilizations within a region roughly corresponding to the modern Middle East: Mesopotamia , ancient Egypt, ancient Iran The ancient Near East was the home of early civilizations within a region roughly corresponding to the modern Middle East: Mesopotamia...

 gradually relinquished their geopolitical absoluteness to surrounding influences and neighboring empirical powers, usually due to either internal turmoil or outside conflict. This climaxed with the arrival of the Chaldeans, and subsequently the rivaling Medes
Medes
The MedesThe Medes...

 and Persians, during the 7th and 6th centuries BCE respectively. Though the Semites lost geopolitical influence, the Aramaic language emerged as the lingua franca
Lingua franca
A lingua franca is a language systematically used to make communication possible between people not sharing a mother tongue, in particular when it is a third language, distinct from both mother tongues.-Characteristics:"Lingua franca" is a functionally defined term, independent of the linguistic...

 of much of the Near East
Near East
The Near East is a geographical term that covers different countries for geographers, archeologists, and historians, on the one hand, and for political scientists, economists, and journalists, on the other...

. However, Aramaic usage declined after the defeat of the Persians and the arrival of the Hellenic
Greece
Greece , officially the Hellenic Republic , and historically Hellas or the Republic of Greece in English, is a country in southeastern Europe....

 armies around 330 BCE.

The Ghassanids


The Ghassanids
Ghassanids
The Ghassanids were a group of South Arabian Christian tribes that emigrated in the early 3rd century from Yemen to Syria, Jordan, Lebanon and the Holy Land....

 (ca. 250 CE) were the last major non-Islamic Semitic migration northward out of Yemen. They revived the Semitic presence in the then Roman
Roman Empire
The Roman Empire was the post-Republican period of the ancient Roman civilization, characterised by an autocratic form of government and large territorial holdings in Europe and around the Mediterranean....

-controlled Syria
Syria
Syria , officially the Syrian Arab Republic , is a country in Western Asia, bordering Lebanon and the Mediterranean Sea to the West, Turkey to the north, Iraq to the east, Jordan to the south, and Israel to the southwest....

. They initially settled in the Hauran
Hauran
Hauran, , also spelled Hawran or Houran, is a volcanic plateau, a geographic area and a people located in southwestern Syria and extending into the northwestern corner of Jordan. It gets its name from the Aramaic Hawran, meaning "cave land." In geographic and geomorphic terms, its boundaries...

 region, eventually spreading to modern Lebanon
Lebanon
Lebanon , officially the Republic of LebanonRepublic of Lebanon is the most common term used by Lebanese government agencies. The term Lebanese Republic, a literal translation of the official Arabic and French names that is not used in today's world. Arabic is the most common language spoken among...

, Israel
Israel
The State of Israel is a parliamentary republic located in the Middle East, along the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea...

 & the Palestinian Territories
Palestinian territories
The Palestinian territories comprise the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. Since the Palestinian Declaration of Independence in 1988, the region is today recognized by three-quarters of the world's countries as the State of Palestine or simply Palestine, although this status is not recognized by the...

 and Jordan
Jordan
Jordan , officially the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan , Al-Mamlaka al-Urduniyya al-Hashemiyya) is a kingdom on the East Bank of the River Jordan. The country borders Saudi Arabia to the east and south-east, Iraq to the north-east, Syria to the north and the West Bank and Israel to the west, sharing...

, briefly securing governorship of Syria away from the Nabataeans
Nabataeans
Thamudi3.jpgThe Nabataeans, also Nabateans , were ancient peoples of southern Canaan and the northern part of Arabia, whose oasis settlements in the time of Josephus , gave the name of Nabatene to the borderland between Syria and Arabia, from the Euphrates to the Red Sea...

.

After Islam


Between the 7th and the 14th centuries, the Arabs had forged an empire that extended their rule from Spain
Spain
Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...

 and southern France
France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

 in the west, to western China
China
Chinese civilization may refer to:* China for more general discussion of the country.* Chinese culture* Greater China, the transnational community of ethnic Chinese.* History of China* Sinosphere, the area historically affected by Chinese culture...

 in the east. During this period of expansionism
Expansionism
In general, expansionism consists of expansionist policies of governments and states. While some have linked the term to promoting economic growth , more commonly expansionism refers to the doctrine of a state expanding its territorial base usually, though not necessarily, by means of military...

, the Arabs, including Qahtanite tribes, overspread these lands, intermingling with local native populations while yet maintaining their cultural identity
Cultural identity
Cultural identity is the identity of a group or culture, or of an individual as far as one is influenced by one's belonging to a group or culture. Cultural identity is similar to and has overlaps with, but is not synonymous with, identity politics....

. It is not unlikely to find Arabs of Qahtanite descent as far away as Morocco
Morocco
Morocco , officially the Kingdom of Morocco , is a country located in North Africa. It has a population of more than 32 million and an area of 710,850 km², and also primarily administers the disputed region of the Western Sahara...

 or Iran
Iran
Iran , officially the Islamic Republic of Iran , is a country in Southern and Western Asia. The name "Iran" has been in use natively since the Sassanian era and came into use internationally in 1935, before which the country was known to the Western world as Persia...

, and many can trace their heritage with profound accuracy. Among the most famous examples of Qahtanite Arabs is the social scholar Ibn Khaldun
Ibn Khaldun
Ibn Khaldūn or Ibn Khaldoun was an Arab Tunisian historiographer and historian who is often viewed as one of the forerunners of modern historiography, sociology and economics...

 who was born in Tunisia
Tunisia
Tunisia , officially the Tunisian RepublicThe long name of Tunisia in other languages used in the country is: , is the northernmost country in Africa. It is a Maghreb country and is bordered by Algeria to the west, Libya to the southeast, and the Mediterranean Sea to the north and east. Its area...

 to a family that immigrated from Islam
Islam
Islam . The most common are and .   : Arabic pronunciation varies regionally. The first vowel ranges from ~~. The second vowel ranges from ~~~...

ic Spain (Al-Andalus
Al-Andalus
Al-Andalus was the Arabic name given to a nation and territorial region also commonly referred to as Moorish Iberia. The name describes parts of the Iberian Peninsula and Septimania governed by Muslims , at various times in the period between 711 and 1492, although the territorial boundaries...

).