Skip to content
Agricultural Innovation in the Early Islamic World

Agricultural Innovation in the Early Islamic World
The Diffusion of Crops and Farming Techniques, 700–1100


Part of Cambridge Studies in Islamic Civilization

  • Date Published: October 2008
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521068833

£ 31.99

Add to cart Add to wishlist

Looking for an inspection copy?

This title is not currently available on inspection

Product filter button
About the Authors
  • This study describes and explains the revolutionary changes which transformed the agricultural life of the Islamicized world in the four centuries following the early Arab conquests. Professor Watson discusses eighteen crops - from sorghum and rye to the watermelon - which spread through the Near East and North Africa during this period. Their origins, diffusion and uses are reviewed. The book investigates the mechanics of diffusion, the routes by which plants spread, and the processes by which they were acclimatized in their new environment. The social and economic history of agriculture in the medieval Islamic world is assessed in a review of wide importance. Professor Watson sets out to refute the view that the early Islamic period was one of agricultural decline in the Near East. He shows that, in contrast to the late Roman and Sasanian periods, it was a time of agricultural and demographic expansion. Agricultural innovation in the early Islamic world will be of interest to economic, social and agricultural historians and to those concerned with Islam and its effect on Africa and Asia.

    Customer reviews

    Not yet reviewed

    Be the first to review

    Review was not posted due to profanity


    , create a review

    (If you're not , sign out)

    Please enter the right captcha value
    Please enter a star rating.
    Your review must be a minimum of 12 words.

    How do you rate this item?


    Product details

    • Date Published: October 2008
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521068833
    • length: 284 pages
    • dimensions: 211 x 152 x 16 mm
    • weight: 0.42kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction
    Part I. The chronology of diffusion:
    2. Sorghum
    3. Asiatic rice
    4. Hard wheat
    5. Sugar cane
    6. Old World cotton
    7. Sour orange, lemon, lime, shaddock
    8. Banana, plantain
    9. Coconut palm
    10. Watermelon
    11. Spinach
    12. Artichoke
    13. Colocasia
    14. Eggplant
    15. Mango tree
    Part II. The pathways of diffusion
    16. The routes
    Part III. The mechanics of diffusion:
    17. The agents
    18. A medium for diffusion
    19. The pull of demand
    20. Facilitating supply: irrigation
    21. Facilitating supply: land tenure
    22. Facilitating supply: gardens
    Part IV. The new plants in the economy:
    23. An agricultural revolution?
    24. Agriculture in its context
    Part V. Later centuries:
    25. Agriculture in retreat.

  • Author

    Andrew M. Watson

Sorry, this resource is locked

Please register or sign in to request access. If you are having problems accessing these resources please email

Register Sign in
Please note that this file is password protected. You will be asked to input your password on the next screen.

» Proceed

You are now leaving the Cambridge University Press website. Your eBook purchase and download will be completed by our partner Please see the permission section of the catalogue page for details of the print & copy limits on our eBooks.

Continue ×

Continue ×

Continue ×
warning icon

Turn stock notifications on?

You must be signed in to your Cambridge account to turn product stock notifications on or off.

Sign in Create a Cambridge account arrow icon

Find content that relates to you

Join us online

This site uses cookies to improve your experience. Read more Close

Are you sure you want to delete your account?

This cannot be undone.


Thank you for your feedback which will help us improve our service.

If you requested a response, we will make sure to get back to you shortly.

Please fill in the required fields in your feedback submission.