During the medieval or early modern period, Islamic society appeared to be one of the flourishing and influential in the Middle East and the northern part of Africa. Islamic dominance and interaction with Christian scholars had certain clashes on the cultural invention during the era of civilization within those countries. Islam, however, emerged to root cultures such as architecture, medical attendance and music. These cultures emerged during the early modern age.
Hospitals were of great importance during that period. They had the moral imperative in offering treatment to the people regardless of whether one was a female or a male, a military or a civilian, a child or an adult, a Muslim or non-Muslims and also regardless of the financial status. Hospital made the towns grow to urban status and catalyzed great achievements in Islamic countries. These hospitals were referred to as Bimaristan from Persian word bimar that meant ill person and stan that meant the place. The earliest hospital was constructed in ninth century in Baghdad (Meri & Bacharach, 2006).
Trade and commerce emerged as another culture that Arabs (or the Islamic people) maintained. This became successful due to their knowledge in scientific measuring, shipbuilding, superiority in navigation and other scientific inventions. This could be evident due to Islamic scientific words that have found their root into modern languages used by western people.
Architecture, as well as music, represents another dimension of culture that solidified during the medieval period. For instance, “Arabesque” describes a design that can be characterized by Islamic art, and it can be found in the western world. During that period of the inventions, Islamic culture built mosques as places of worship and also served as places for learning to build under the magnificent states of architecture, as well as design. For instance, The Haram Mosque in Mecca, numerous mosques in Cairo as well as Mosque of Al-Aqsa situated in Jerusalem are some of the distinctive works of architecture constructed by the Islamic people at that time.
Mamluk was a powerful ruler from 1250 to 1517 where he contributed strongly in maintaining the Venice economy, as well as diplomatic relation with other countries like Syria. The rulers of Mamluk brought up funerary structures, magnificent mosque complexes as well as urban places. Trade improved under the rule of Mamluk where they also established Damascus, South East Asia as well as Asia as their main trading partners. The rule of Mamluk shaped Venice fashion for Arabic book binding style, development of metalwork as well as taste for ceramics within the 15th and 16th centuries.
Ottoman took over from Mamluk from 1281 to 1924 where they contributed the supply of cotton, wheat, leather, raw silk as well as calcified ashes. Ottoman also contributed to the export of metalwork and art designs. This improved trade with other countries (Lapidus, 2002).
Safavid dynasty took over from 1501 to 1722 which favored the trade routes through the Persian cities. It encouraged commercial exchange and diplomatic relationships from the existence of Mongol in the 13th century.
Development in Middle East has been influenced by political and ethnic diversity. For instance, in Iraq, there is dividing between Kurds and Arabs. Their ideologies have an influence between Sunnis and Shi’as. There also exists some tension between Arabs and the Iran that has tarnished the growth of culture. Technological growth has also influenced cultural diversity with western countries establishing new methods of treatment and hospital technology. Introduction of new bred of architects has also influenced their culture as well since new ideas were introduced.
Lapidus, I. M. (2002). A History of Islamic Societies. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Meri, J. W., & Bacharach, J. L. (2006). Medieval Islamic Civilization: A-K, index. London: Taylor & Francis.