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On Some Problems of South Arabian Epigraphy and Archaeology1

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  24 December 2009


Before the discovery of the ancient inscriptions of southern Arabia by Arnaud, Halévy, Glaser, and several other explorers, knowledge of the pre-Islamic peoples of Yemen and Ḥaḍramawt was incomplete and imprecise, and was derived from the Old Testament, the annals of Assyrian kings, and from the classical and Arab historians and geographers.

Copyright © School of Oriental and African Studies 1952

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page 2 note 1 R.E.S., no. 4935. Dr. Serjeant informs me that the correct form of the modern name is 'Am'ādiya, not 'Im'ādiya, and that it is to be explained as a compound of 'am, known as a determinative in South Arabic dialects of to-day, and 'ādiya “ancient”.

page 2 note 2 See Le Muséon, lii (1939), pp. iv, no. 220.Google Scholar

page 2 note 3 Ḳatabanische Texte…, ii (Vienna, 1922), pp. 79 ff.Google Scholar

page 2 note 4 Ryckmans, G., in Le Muséon, lii (1939), pp. 6970.Google Scholar

page 2 note 5 Ryckmans, , “Inscriptions sud-arabes,” no. 367, in Le Muséon, lxii (1949), pp. 62–5.Google Scholar

page 3 note 1 See the bibliography and commentary in R.E.S., no. 4918 bis.

page 3 note 2 Cf. R.E.S., 4685.Google Scholar

page 4 note 1 R.E.S., no. 2689.

page 4 note 2 Ethnographic und Geographie des alten Orients, Munich, 1924, S.164, Anm. 3, and also S. 167, Anm. 3.Google Scholar

page 4 note 3 Le Muséon, lxii (1949), pp. 87103, nos. 405–430.Google Scholar

page 4 note 4 Ry., no. 406.

page 4 note 5 Ry., no. 426.

page 5 note 1 Introductory note to Ry., no. 407.

page 5 note 2 Le Muséon, lxii, p. 98, no. 428 ab.Google Scholar

page 5 note 3 Ibid., p. 102, Ry., no. 430.

page 6 note 1 The two copies of Shaikh Fuad Hamza read ḥbšt “Abyasinians”, instead of ḥḍrmwt. Mr. Philby himself had the opportunity of copying the two inscriptions of Masil, Wadi on 26th 05, 1950Google Scholar. In the inscription of 'Ab-karib the reading is undoubtedly ḥḍrmwt. In the inscription of Ma'ad-karib the copy of Philby has ḥb. t; the b is at the end of line 1, the two final letters of line 2 have disappeared, and the mutilation may extend to the lower part of the final letter of line 1. In that case the mutilated would appear as ab. The two first letters of lines 2 and 3 are also mutilated. Thus, it would be possible to read ḥbšt, but I should be inclined to conjecture, with Philby, ḥḍ‖[rmw]t, or perhaps ḥḍ‖[rmw]t. The conjectures due to reading ḥbšt the copies of Fuad Hamza now seem to me the consequence of incorrect data. The inscription of Ma'ad-karib is dated in the year 631 of the Sabsean era, that is A.d. 516. I have recently published the two inscriptions in Le Muséon, liv (1951), p. 97106, nos. 445, 446.Google Scholar

page 7 note 1 Bibliography in Ryckmans, G., Les religions arabes preislamiques, Louvain, 1951, p. 60.Google Scholar

page 7 note 2 The Tombs and Moon Temple of Hureidha (Hadhramaut), London, 1944.Google Scholar

page 8 note 1 Fakhry, Aḥmed, “Les Antiquités du Yemen. Uu voyage à Ṣirwāḥ, Mārib et El-Gōf,”Google Scholar and Ryckmans, G., “Inscriptions du Yemen relevées par M. Aḥmed Fakhry,” in Le Muséon, lxi (1948), pp. 215243.Google Scholar

page 8 note 2 C.I.H., 366.Google Scholar

page 8 note 3 Glaser 1000 A and B; R.E.S., 3945 and 3946Google Scholar

page 9 note 1 C.I.H., 540, 541.Google Scholar

page 10 note 1 See now Tawfik, M., Les monuments de Ma'īn (Yemen) [Arabic Text] (Publications de l'Institut Français d'Archéologie dn Caire. Etudes sud-arabiques: Tome I), Cairo, 1951.Google Scholar

page 10 2 Le Muséon, lxxii (1949), pp. 14 ff., nos. 386–393.Google Scholar

page 10 3 Cf. Albright, W. F., BASOR., no. 119, 10, 1950, pp. 515.Google Scholar