Next Article in Journal
‘Scrupulous and Timid Conformism’: Ireland and the Reception of the Liturgical Changes of Vatican II
Previous Article in Journal
Rediscovering a Biblical and Early Patristic View of Atonement through Orthodox–Evangelical Dialogue
Article

‘Conversion’ to Islam in Early Medieval Europe: Historical and Archaeological Perspectives on Arab and Northern Eurasian Interactions

by 1,2,* and 3,4
1
Anthropology Department, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720, USA
2
Institute of History, University of Warsaw, 00-927 Warsaw, Poland
3
Department of History, Durham University, Durham DH1 3EX, UK
4
Centre for Medieval Studies, Stockholm University, SE-106 91 Stockholm, Sweden
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Marina Montesano
Religions 2021, 12(7), 544; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel12070544
Received: 4 June 2021 / Revised: 4 July 2021 / Accepted: 12 July 2021 / Published: 16 July 2021
In recent years, the influence of Muslims and Islam on developments in medieval Europe has captured the attention of scholars and the general public alike. Nevertheless, ‘conversion’ to Islam remains a challenging subject for historical research and demands more transdisciplinary collaborations. This article examines early medieval interactions between Muslim Arabs and Northern and Eastern Europeans as a case study for whether some individuals in Northern Eurasia ‘converted’ to Islam. More importantly, we address some key examples and lines of evidence that demonstrate why the process of ‘conversion’ to Islam is not more visible in the historical and archaeological records of Northern Eurasia. We find that, despite the well-established evidence for economic exchanges between the Islamic World and Northern Eurasia, the historical and material records are much more complex, but not entirely silent, on the issue of religious change. We also conclude that religious connectivity and exchanges, including with Islam, were common in early medieval Northern Eurasia, even if it is difficult in most cases to identify conclusive instances of ‘conversion’ to Islam. View Full-Text
Keywords: religious conversion; Caliphate; Ibn Fadlan; Vikings; Rus’; medieval Eurasia; early medieval; material culture of religion; Islamic archaeology religious conversion; Caliphate; Ibn Fadlan; Vikings; Rus’; medieval Eurasia; early medieval; material culture of religion; Islamic archaeology
Show Figures

Figure 1

MDPI and ACS Style

Knutson, S.A.; Ellis, C. ‘Conversion’ to Islam in Early Medieval Europe: Historical and Archaeological Perspectives on Arab and Northern Eurasian Interactions. Religions 2021, 12, 544. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel12070544

AMA Style

Knutson SA, Ellis C. ‘Conversion’ to Islam in Early Medieval Europe: Historical and Archaeological Perspectives on Arab and Northern Eurasian Interactions. Religions. 2021; 12(7):544. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel12070544

Chicago/Turabian Style

Knutson, Sara A., and Caitlin Ellis. 2021. "‘Conversion’ to Islam in Early Medieval Europe: Historical and Archaeological Perspectives on Arab and Northern Eurasian Interactions" Religions 12, no. 7: 544. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel12070544

Find Other Styles
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

1
Back to TopTop