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historical maps of persian gulf

Iran Shows Persian Gulf Historical Maps


 

Iran unveiled a collection of historical maps on Sunday in a bid to prove the legitimacy of calling its neighboring sea the Persian Gulf instead of the "Arabian Gulf" as it also is listed in the new world atlas by National Geographic.
Last month, Iran banned the sale of National Geographic Society publications to protest the "Arabian Gulf" inclusion. The issue also has caused widespread protests by intellectuals, historians, students across Iran, formerly Persia.
Identification of the Gulf region and various parts within it has long been a sensitive topic for Iran, which believes that there has been a pan-Arabist campaign since the 1950s — led by late Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser and followed by deposed Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein— to call the sea the "Arabian Gulf."
Iran considers use of that term an affront to its sovereignty.
Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi, who inaugurated the exhibition of ancient and historical maps Sunday, said the name of the Persian Gulf cannot be changed.
"Presenting historical evidences here is merely for the sake of reiteration," Kharrazi said.
The exhibition included a 1990 atlas released by National Geographic that identifies the sea as the Persian Gulf and the islands of Abu Musa and Greater and Lesser Tunbs as owned by Iran.
In its eighth edition atlas released in October, National Geographic used the term "Arabian Gulf" alongside "Persian Gulf" and referred to the islands as "occupied" by Iran and "claimed" by the United Arab Emirates.
In a Dec. 8 statement on its Web site, National Geographic said it was aware of the sensitivities of the issue and had held "constructive and informative" discussions with individuals and organizations representing Iranian and Persian interests.
"These meetings have also given us an opportunity to affirm our long-standing position that the Persian Gulf is the historic and most commonly used name for the body of water southwest of Iran," the statement said.
It said the company was reviewing ways to further clarify notations on map products and services.
Earlier, it had defended the atlas, saying it recognized the Persian Gulf as the primary name but used the "Arabian Gulf" alongside it to make is easier for users searching for that designation.
The Tehran exhibition displayed about 100 historical maps, including a 1952 Arabic map printed in Saudi Arabia that identifies the sea as "Persian Gulf."
"As all of us are aware, the United Nations in two documents issued respectively in 1971 and 1984 has declared the Persian Gulf as the official name of the sea," Kharrazi said. Also attending the exhibition were foreign diplomats based in Tehran. 
The exhibition included a 1990 atlas released by National Geographic that identifies the sea as the Persian Gulf and the islands of Abu Musa and Greater and Lesser Tunbs as owned by Iran.

In its eighth edition atlas released in October, National Geographic used the term "Arabian Gulf" alongside "Persian Gulf" and referred to the islands as "occupied" by Iran and "claimed" by the United Arab Emirates.

In a Dec. 8 statement on its Web site, National Geographic said it was aware of the sensitivities of the issue and had held "constructive and informative" discussions with individuals and organizations representing Iranian and Persian interests.

"These meetings have also given us an opportunity to affirm our long-standing position that the Persian Gulf is the historic and most commonly used name for the body of water southwest of Iran," the statement said.

It said the company was reviewing ways to further clarify notations on map products and services.

Earlier, it had defended the atlas, saying it recognized the Persian Gulf as the primary name but used the "Arabian Gulf" alongside it to make is easier for users searching for that designation.

The Tehran exhibition displayed about 100 historical maps, including a 1952 Arabic map printed in Saudi Arabia that identifies the sea as "Persian Gulf."

"As all of us are aware, the United Nations in two documents issued respectively in 1971 and 1984 has declared the Persian Gulf as the official name of the sea," Kharrazi said. Also attending the exhibition were foreign diplomats based in Tehran.

Iranian researchers and historians have launched a campaign to defend the Persian Gulf name, and youths are also collecting signatures through the Internet to support the campaign.

"Intellectuals, researchers and everybody who respects preserving historical names can't remain silent to such a clear distortion of facts. Iranian researchers are working through articles and scientific evidence to defend the name of the Persian Gulf," political analyst Davoud Hermidas Bavand said.

 

http://www.payvand.com/news/05/jan/1022.html

Persian Gulf: A Name for All Seasons
 
Mohammad Gharaguzlu, Shargh Newspaper, 12/14/2004

Translated by Roya Monajem for Tavoos Online


Persian Gulf and Arab Gulf, two distinct names in Ptolemy's Map
The famous Greek mathematician and astronomer of 2nd Century BC,
Claudius Ptolemy was a great geographer as well. His world map is in
the shape of a vast hemisphere showing at least 8000 places. In this
map, the Persian Gulf recorded as Sinus persicus is clearly shown.
Parallel to it, toward south, we find the name Sinus Arabicus or Arab
Gulf. From this important map, which together with its marking method -
attracted the attention of Islamic scholars a more important point can
be derived: Persian and Arab Gulfs were two distinct seas whose names
and limits were known even before Christ.

Persian Gulf in a few Islamic Geographical Maps

Estakhari's Masaalek va Mamaalek (Credos and Countries):This book
contains maps accompanied with useful commentaries and descriptions. In
Estakhri's world maps, the earth is shown as a vast sphere surrounded
by water. The Caspian Sea is shown surrounded by land, while the
Persian Gulf is connected to a peripheral ocean. The interesting point
here is like all ancient geographers, Estakhri thought Kaaba was the
navel of the earth.



The Map of Persian (Fars) Sea in Ibn Hughal's Sourat-ol-Arz (The face
of the earth): Here is no place to consider whether the information
provided by Ibn Hughal in Sourat-ol-Arz, is just the second or third
hand information and duplication of the works of Estakhri and other
scholars or not. What is important is that this Arab traveler has
clearly talked about Persian Gulf and has dedicated a chapter of the
above book to the Persian Sea in which contrary to the present
fabrications explains the reason for calling this Gulf as Persian Gulf.
Ibn Hughal writes: As I have repeatedly said, the Persian Sea is a gulf
of the peripheral sea near China and the city of Waaq continued to
Sand, Kerman and Fars and is known as Persian (Fars) among people of
all countries. The reason is that Persia is more prosperous than all
these countries and its kings enjoyed greater power in the past. At
present they rule over the far and near ! shores of this sea. Ships of
all other cities that travel in the Persian Sea and leave the
boundaries of their cities, but return to them safe and sound belong to
Persia.



In the map of the Arabic text of Sourat-ol-Arz, as in those of all
ancient Islamic texts, north is shown below and south above. In Ibn
Hughal's map, Persian Sea is distinctly shown along Fars and Kerman and
is connected to the peripheral sea. In this map, Khuzestan and the
three islands, Khark, Laft and Oral situated in the Persian Sea are
also clearly marked. Sourat-ol-Arz was written in 978 AD and contains
many interesting points in the part dealing with the Persian Sea. For
example, in locating the position of the Gholzam Sea, the author
writes: A part of the Persian Sea embracing Gholzam up to the shores of
Yemen is called the Gholzam Sea. Its length is 30 manzel and its width
in its widest part is 3 nights and it then gradually becomes narrower
to the extent that the other side of sea is seen from certain places.
It finally reaches Gholzam. In his description about the Persian Sea,
Ibn Hughal mentions Ade! n Sea, Oman's Alzanj Sea and Black Sea and
consider them all as parts of the Persian Sea.



"There is a pearl mine near Aden and whatever is extracted from this
mine is taken to Aden. If you pass Oman and leave the Islamic domains,
you reach Serendip (present Ceylon), waters of that area too is also
called Persian Sea. It is quite a wide area with the city of Zanj
situated on its shore. On the shores of this sea, there are many lands
and terrifying passage ways very difficult to cross, with the most
grueling one situated in Jenaabeh (Ganaveh) and Basra. It is called Hur
Jenaabeh and is extremely fearful and no ship can cross this place safe
when the sea is rough. There is a place in it called Khashaab, which is
6 miles from Abadan toward the Tigris River. Sometimes the sea is so
shallow that big ships fear to pass it."



In another place, while describing the geographical position of Persia,
Ibn Hughal writes: "Among its seas, the biggest is the Persian Sea, as
the Basra Sea is called the Persian Sea up to its furthest shore in
India."



The map of the Persian Sea in Moajem-al-baldaan:  Shahab-al-din Abi
Abdollah Yaqut ibn Abdollah al-Hamumi al-Rumi al-Baghdadi is the author
of one of the most famous and comprehensive encyclopedias of geography.
In the first part of Al-Baldaan, Yaquti provides a simple map of the
earth and its important seas. In this map too, a peripheral sea
surrounds the earth and Persian and Gholzam Seas are shown as two
parallel branches of the huge Indian Sea, while Khaarazm and Jorjan
Seas are shown like lakes. In this simple map, the Nile River is also
clearly marked.



The map of the Persian Gulf in Aasaar-ol-balaad va Akhbaar-ol-ballad -
by Zakaria ibn Mohmmad ibn Mahmud Al-Qazvini, one of the prominent
historians and geographers of 13th century and the author of two
important books, Ajaaeb-ol-makhlughat va Gharaeb-ol-Mojudaat (Strange
Creature) and Aasaar-ol-balaad va Akhbaar-ol-ballad. In Qazvini's map
presented in Aasaar-ol-balaad, the seven regions of the world are shown
and although it contains new points, but in his conception of the
world, this great geographer too was under the influence of his
predecessors. A glance at the maps of the world from ancient times to
Zakaria Qazvini does not show any major deep change. In Qazvini's map,
north is still shown below and south on top, west is on the right side
and east on the left. Persian lands including Makran, Kerman and Shiraz
are placed among the lands of the third region and the Persian Gulf is
clear! ly marked under the same name. On the right side of the Persian
Gulf (toward west) the Barbari Gulf is seen on north of Ethiopia. The
same is seen in the book Al-Aalam (the world). Zakaria Qazvini had
crossed the Persian Gulf and visited many of its islands, including
Kish and described his trips in the above work.



Except these five old maps, there are many maps in reliable
geographical texts that clearly speak of the sea on the south of Persia
as the Persian Gulf or Sea.



Arabic Maps



1- The Map of the encyclopedia of Al-mosueh al-arabieh al-masireh - The
Map of Encyclopedia of Almousouah Al-Arabieh Al-masireh is a
comprehensive work of about 2000 pages published by the Franklin
Publishing House in Cairo. It is prepared by 120 specialists teaching
in various Egyptian Universities under the supervision of Mohammad
Shafiq Gharbal. The title of the map is "The Arab State at the peak of
its vastness." The interesting point here is that the name of Persian
Gulf is written in Persian and it is repeated twice in the text on
Persia (Iran). It should be reminded here that the title Arab State is
in fact a reference to Islamic conquest that led to occupation of vast
areas from east of Persian to Africa and parts of Europe and Spain.
Therefore, it was more appropriate to use the term Islamic State.



2- Two very important Iraqi documents: these documents were published
during Iran-Iraq war in an Iraqi magazine called Afagh. Both maps show
the region now called Middle East from 7th to 11th century. The most
interesting point here is that the Iraqi author of the article in which
the above maps were presented to document his discussion, uses the old
name of Persian Sea. It is interesting because Iraqi people have always
been the most serious advocates of calling this sea as Arabian Sea.



3- An official Iraqi document: This important official document is a
map called "The Map of Old Places in Iraq," published in 1929 in
English together with some guidelines for visitors. The title of the
above document and the map were copied from the original. In this map
the name Persian Gulf is repeated three times. Remembering the official
aspect of this map, showing the region from some millennia before
Christ, little doubt remains about the authenticity of the name in
question. Another important aspect of this document is the border line
between Persia and Iraq which is clearly marked on the west side of the
Arvand Rud River, thus showing the Persian sovereignty over the whole
length of  this river.