1902 Encyclopedia > Arabia > Arabia - Population

(Part 39)

(39) Population of Arabia

The entire population of Arabia proper has been variously estimated; some authors make it reach 12,000,000, others reduce it to 7,000,000. Taking the approximate statistics above given, we find for the whole of central Arabia, including Jowf, Shomer, and Nejd, about 1,500,000 settled inhabitants, with 500,000 Bedouins or nomads; thus 2,000,000 may perhaps fairly represent the complete number. The east coast-Hasa, Bahreyn, Oman, and their adjoining districts-furnishes 2,500,000 more. Yemen is said to contain over 1,000,000: Hadramaut and Mahrah cannot be very populous: the Hejaz certainly is not, 3,000,000 is the maximum estimate of both taken together, nomads or villagers. To these must be added the tribes of the Sinaitic peninsula, and of the northern frontier. These may possibly bring the sum of the Arab population to 8,500,000, or even 9,000,000, with a quota of about one-fifth Bedouin to four-fifths of settled Arabs; to such small numerical proportions has the nation shrunk that once ruled by land and sea from the Indus to the Atlantic, and that even now, by its religion and institutions, gives the law to one-eight of the human race.

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Arabia - Table of Contents

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