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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The Medieval Climate Anomaly as a factor in the history of Sijilmasa, southeastern Morocco
Author:Schneider, Adam W.
Periodical:The Journal of North African Studies (ISSN 1743-9345)
Geographic term:Morocco
water management
trade routes
External link:https://doi.org/10.1080/13629387.2016.1239079
Abstract:This paper explores how the Medieval Climate Anomaly (MCA) may have impacted the city of Sijilmasa, an important trading centre situated in the Tafilalt oasis of southeastern Morocco during the eleventh century CE, as well as some adaptation strategies that may have been employed by the people of the region in response to these changing environmental conditions. Palaeoclimate proxy evidence indicates that the MCA ushered in a period of warmer and drier conditions throughout Morocco, and there are some indications in the archaeological and historical records that this may have caused some substantial disruptions in the Tafilalt oasis during the first half of the eleventh century CE. However, despite the continuation of this arid phase, the region experienced a period of rapid growth and economic development after the Almoravids conquered Sijilmasa in 1055 CE. This florescence during a period of frequent drought events may have been enabled in part by Almoravid efforts to alter the natural course of the region's principal river, the Oued Ziz, so that it would flow directly through the middle of the Tafilalt oasis and thus make the region more drought-resistant. Bibliogr., notes, sum. [Journal abstract]