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Joukowsky Institute for Archaeology



Joukowsky Institute for Archaeology & the Ancient World
Brown University
Box 1837 / 60 George Street
Providence, RI 02912
Telephone: (401) 863-3188
Fax: (401) 863-9423
[email protected]

Literally, 'the people of the book', or followers of scripture-based religions that predate the Qur'an. In our context this generally refers to Jews and Christians, though later some other religious groups such as Zoroastrians were included. Muslims recognize the holy books possessed by the Jews and Christians as legitimate revelations. However, they believe that some portions of these scriptures were superceded by the Qur'an, and that the Christians and Jews corrupted others. Those of the 'ahl al-Khitab' who agreed to recognize the superiority of Islam and pay taxes to the Islamic state were granted protected 'dhimmi' status and allowed to practice their beliefs. (See also entry for dhimmi)

-Kathryn H

Posted at Nov 30/2010 02:42PM:
ian: And to pay the poll tax. See the entry for jizya