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BellaOnline's Middle Eastern Culture Editor

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 T O P   T E N  

Here are the top ten articles for the Middle Eastern Culture Site! These rankings are live and get reset at the beginning of each month, so check back often to see what your fellow visitors are most interested in!

1. The Hamsa - Protection from the Evil Eye
The hamsa; also known as the hamesh, Hand of Fatima, Hand of Miriam, and Hand of God; is a Middle Eastern symbol of protection, particularly from the evil eye. Learn about the history and symbolism of this talisman.

2. Languages of the Middle East
The Middle East is an area of amazing and often overlooked linguistic diversity.

3. Alia Muhammad Baker - Chief Librarian of Al Basrah (Iraq) Central Library, Cultural Heroine
Librarian Alia Muhammad Baker saved the majority of the collection of the Basra Central Library, and much of the history of Basra, from the looting and destruction of war. Her actions inspired two fabulous children's books and earned her a place in the rich history of Iraqi libraries.

4. The Fertile Crescent
Learn about the fertile crescent an important area in early civilization and the Middle East today

5. Druze Religion
The Druze are a religious group residing mainly in Syria, Lebanon, Israel, and Jordan. It began as an offshoot of Islam but is unique in its incorporation of Gnosticism, Christianity, Neoplatonism and other philosophies, and is most similar to the Ismaili Shi'a sect of Islam.

6. Nabati Poetry - The Poetry of the Desert
Nabati, or Bedouin, poetry is the native poetry of the Arabian Peninsula and Gulf.

7. King Midas: Not Just a Greek Myth
Imagine our surprise to learn that King Midas, the mythological King whose touch turned everything to gold, actually lived in an ancient town not far from Ankara, the capital of Turkey.

8. Greetings and Politeness in Dari
The two official languages of Afghanistan are Pashto and Dari. Dari stems from Persian Farsi, which is spoken in Iran and other Middle Eastern countries. Need a kick start on your Dari language skills? Check out these basic words and phrases.

9. Basic Words and Phrases in Arabic
Need a kick start on your Arabic language skills? Check out these basic words and phrases.

10. Janissaries - the Ottoman Empire's Infallible Army
A short history of the infallible army of Ottoman Empire, the Janissaries.



Be sure to visit the Middle Eastern Culture Archives for all the articles!



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