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Where Three Worlds MetSicily in the Early Medieval Mediterranean$
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Sarah Davis-Secord

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781501704642

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501704642.001.0001

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Sicily between Byzantium and the Islamic World

Sicily between Byzantium and the Islamic World

(p.72) Chapter 2 Sicily between Byzantium and the Islamic World
Where Three Worlds Met

Sarah Davis-Secord

Cornell University Press

This chapter examines patterns of travel and communication that linked Sicily to the Islamic world during the centuries prior to the Muslim conquest in the ninth century. Covering the period of transition to Muslim rule, it shows how Sicily began to “drift” closer to North Africa already in the seventh century. This growing relationship was established through a series of both military and diplomatic connections that brought Muslims into contact not only with Greek Christians in Sicily but also, due to the relationship between the island and Latin Christendom, with Latin Christians. During these years of both violence and diplomacy, from the first seventh-century raids through the ninth-century conquest, Sicily and the Islamic world also began to exchange material goods and economic products. In some ways, then, Byzantine Sicily acted as a meeting ground in the central Mediterranean world for Muslims, Greek Christians, and Latin Christians.

Keywords:   travel, communication, Sicily, Islamic world, North Africa, Muslims, Christians, diplomacy, Byzantine Sicily, Mediterranean world

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