Meaning of JORDAN, FLAG OF in English

horizontally striped black-white-green national flag with a red hoist triangle bearing a white star. The flag has a width-to-length ratio of 1 to 2. Prior to World War I, young Arabs in Istanbul created a flag to symbolize their aspirations within the Turkish-dominated Ottoman Empire. They recalled a 13th-century poem by Safi ad-Din al-Hilli that included the words: We are a people whose character refuses, for honour, to cause harm to those who do not harm us: white are our deeds, black are our battles, green are our fields, red are our swords. Stripes of these colours were made into a party flag. In 1917 Husayn ibn 'Ali raised the Arab Revolt Flag over his territories in the Hejaz: the original design had horizontal stripes of black-green-white with a red triangle at the hoist, but later the white and green stripes were reversed. The Arab Revolt Flag was hoisted in Jerusalem in December 1917. Later, Abdullah, one of Husayn's sons, was recognized by the British as a ruler in what was then known as Transjordan. His flag modified the original Arab Revolt Flag by the addition of a white seven-pointed star on the triangle. It was recognized under the Transjordan constitution of April 16, 1928, and no change was made in the flag when Jordan gained its independence on March 22, 1946. However, when Jordan and Iraq announced a federation known as the Arab Union, their joint flagin use only between March and July 1958was the original Arab Revolt Flag without the star. Different interpretations have been given to the seven points of the star, but originally they were associated with the former districts of Syria (Aleppo, Damascus, Beirut, Lebanon, Palestine, Transjordan, and Deir ez-Zor). Whitney Smith History Jordan occupies an area rich in archaeological remains and religious traditions. The Jordanian desert was home to hunters from the Lower Paleolithic Period; their flint tools have been found widely distributed throughout the region. In the southeastern part of the country, at Mount At-Tubayq, rock carvings are found from several prehistoric periods, the earliest of which have been attributed to the Paleolithic-Mesolithic era. The site at Tulaylat al-Ghassul in the Jordan Valley of a well-built village with painted plaster walls may represent transitional developments from the Neolithic to the Chalcolithic period. The Early Bronze Age (c. 30002100 BCE) is marked by deposits at the base of Dhiban. Although many sites have been found in the northern portion of the country, few have been excavated, and little evidence of settlement in this period is found south of Ash-Shawbak. The region's early Bronze Age culture was terminated by a nomadic invasion that destroyed the principal towns and villages, marking the end of an apparently peaceful period of development. Security was not reestablished until the Egyptians arrived after 1580 BCE. It was once believed that the area was unoccupied from 1900 to 1300 BCE, but a systematic archaeological survey has shown that the country had a settled population throughout the period. This was confirmed by the discovery of a small temple at Amman with Egyptian, Mycenaean, and Cypriot imported objects. Biblical associations Biblical accounts of the area, dating from the Middle Bronze Age onward, mention kingdoms such as Gilead in the north, Moab in central Jordan, and Midian in the south. At the time of the Exodus, the Israelites tried to pass through Edom in southern Jordan but were refused permission. They were at first repelled by the Amorites, whom they later defeated. The Israelite tribes of Gad and Reuben and half of the Manasseh group nonetheless settled in the conquered territory of the Ammonites, Amorites, and Bashan and rebuilt many of the towns they had partially destroyed. A record of this period is the Mesha or Moabite stone found at Dhiban in 1868, now in the Louvre Museum in Paris. It is inscribed in an eastern form of Canaanite, closely akin to Hebrew. The next few centuries (13001000 BCE) were marked by constant raiding from both sides of the Jordan River. David attacked and devastated Moab and Edom. Although held for a time, Ammon with its capital, Rabbath Ammon (modern Amman), regained independence on the death of David (c. 960 BCE). Solomon had a port on the Gulf of Aqaba at Ezion-geber (later Elat in Israel), where copper ore was smelted from mines in the Wadi al-'Arabah and trade carried on with the southern Arabian states. However, hostilities remained constant between Judah and Edom; a Hebrew king, Amaziah, even captured Sela (Petra), the capital. The next invaders were the Assyrians, who under Adadnirari III (811 or 810783 BCE) overran the eastern part of the country as far as Edom. Revolts against Assyrian rule occurred in the 760s and 750s, but the country was retaken in 734733 by Tiglath-pileser III (reigned 745727 BCE), who then devastated Israel, sent its people into exile, and divided the country into provinces under Assyrian governors. This policy of direct rule continued until the fall of the Assyrian empire in 612 BCE. The Assyrian texts are the first source to refer to the Nabataeans, who at this time occupied the land south and east of Edom (ancient Midian). After the fall of Assyria, the Moabites and Ammonites continued to raid Judah until the latter was conquered by the Neo-Babylonians under Nebuchadrezzar II. Little is known of the history of Jordan under the Neo-Babylonians and Persians, but during this period the Nabataeans infiltrated Edom and forced the Edomites into southern Palestine. It was not until the Hellenistic rule of the Seleucids and the Ptolemies that the country prospered, trade increased, and new towns were built. Rabbath Ammon was renamed Philadelphia, and Jarash became Antioch-on-the-Chrysorrhoas, or Gerasa. Hostilities between the Seleucids and Ptolemies enabled the Nabataeans to extend their kingdom northward and to increase their prosperity based on the caravan trade with Arabia and Syria. The northern part of Jordan was for a time in Jewish hands, and there were constant struggles between the Jewish Maccabees and the Seleucids. Most of the Dead Sea Scrolls date from this period. During 6463 BCE the kingdom of Nabataea was conquered by the Romans under Pompey, who restored the Hellenistic cities destroyed by the Jews and set up the Decapolis, a league of 10 ancient Greek cities. The country remained independent but paid imperial taxes. Roman policy seems to have been to maintain Nabataea as a buffer state against the desert tribes. In 2524 BCE it served as a starting point for Aelius Gallus' ill-starred expedition in search of Arabia Felix. Nabataea was finally absorbed into the Roman Empire by Trajan in 106 CE as the province of Palaestina Tertia. Under Roman rule Jordan prospered, and many new towns and villages were established. The whole country, except the Decapolis, was made part of the new province called Arabia Petraea, with its capital first at Petra and later at Busra ash-Sham in Syria. After 313 CE Christianity became a recognized religion, and a large number of churches were built.

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