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An American exhibition presenting Yemeni artifacts

#Artifacts from #Yemen that tell the story of #South_Arabian civilizations in the #United_States
قطع أثرية يمنية
A statue from the civilizations of ancient Yemen

The Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of Asian Art in the United States is currently hosting an exhibition named Ancient Yemen: Incense, Art, and Trade. For three years, Yemeni artifacts have been displayed at this exhibition.

Yemenis are proud of the founding and flourishing of numerous civilizations in the Arabian Peninsula's south, including Saba, Hadramout, Qataban, and Ma'in.

Southern Arabian kingdoms flourished before Christ because of the rare incense trade generated by the frankincense tree, as well as the trade in spices and other valuable commodities moved between East and West. This helped to establish the civilizations of the Arabian Peninsula's south as global societies.

The worldwide traits of southern Arabian civilizations are visible in artifacts that demonstrate influence on other civilizations through the art of engraving and sculpture. Some of these relics, such as the statue of two youngsters riding a lion, are now on display at the Smithsonian Institution. It is a statue connected with Dionysus, the ancient Greek god of wine.

The main drivers of the southern Arabian trade were the trade in frankincense and knowing the directions and seasons of the winds. Frankincense was utilized as incense in ancient civilizations and was widely employed in religious rites and temples in Egypt, Europe, and Persia. The frankincense tree is a rare tree that is thought to have originated in Oman, Somalia, and Ethiopia. In southern Yemen, it was also found in Hadramout, Al-Mahra, and Socotra.

The exhibition "Ancient Yemen... Incense, Art, and Trade" aims to introduce visitors to the ancient flourishing civilizations in the Arabian Peninsula's south, such as the Kingdoms of Qataban, Ma'in, and Hadramout, where many people are unaware of their role and importance.

In this context, Antonieta Catanzaretti, curator of the Asian Art Museum at the Smithsonian Institution, says, "When people see Yemeni exhibits, they often think they are Western antiquities, and Rome and the Greeks frequently come to mind; therefore, "what we are trying to do is introduce visitors to the diverse material culture of ancient Yemen itself."

Learn more about the exhibition with this video tour of the US Embassy in Yemen:


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