Middle Eastern Arts and Culture

Material Goods
    Examples of painted glass drink ware from period and my recreation of a piece.

    A recreation of the woman's space in a Middle Eastern home during the        middle ages. 

    A modern canvas tent to fit a Medieval perspective.

    Check out this unusual piece of furniture depicted several times in the 1224 Baghdad Arabic translation of the Materia medica by Dioscorides-- and see and extant piece that could it twin.


    Cutting the canals in preparation for the annual flooding of the Nile.

    How different was life, compared to the modern Mid(dle) West?

    A look at a name as used in the SCA.

Men's and women's urban clothing. Including:
  • a look at the layers worn
  • Detailed look at over garments
  • detailed look at undergarments
  • Patterns

What is Fatimid?

The Fatimids were a Middle Eastern Caliphate in Egypt from 909-1171 C.E. The period which carries their name is considered by many to be the height of medieval Islamic art.

This period is noted for a high level of religious tolerance for "People of the Book", specifically Muslims, Christians, and Jews-- including all of the branches within those faiths.

“Islamic culture” is a term on par with “Western culture”—it doesn’t simply define people of the Muslim faith, it encompasses the influences spread throughout the region, whether they are Muslim, Christian, or Jewish. People will often use the term "Middle Eastern" instead, and though Islamic culture is concentrated within the Middle East, it also extends to the greater Mediterranean regions, much of Africa, Asia, and even the Iberian Peninsula. "Islamic culture" allows the greatest scope, and is popular in current scholarship.

What about other periods?

Good question! The Middle East and Mediterranean cultures are many and varied. Truthfully, to say something is "Middle Eastern" is just like saying something is "European"-- there's that much difference in the width and breadth, and time frames.  Since it's outside of the realm of what many people study in the SCA, I try to make it more accessible with terms that are familiar and searchable.

        What's the difference?
            This link leads to an image of people wearing garb from
            four different time periods.

Saying something is both "Middle Eastern" and "Medieval" narrows that down some. Art historians and textile scholars agree that there was a basic style across much of the Middle East (excluding Persia and East of there), very much like there is basic style in Europe at this time. Generally, everyone wore a few layers of tunics, a pair of pants, a head covering (or three), and use rectangular fabrics for cloaks.

The subtle differences show up in the regional cuts of garments, decoration, ornamentation, jewelry, and other displays of wealth.
Subpages (1): Clothing and Accessories