Baḥr al-Zand̲j̲
(469 words)

By the Baḥr al-Zand̲j̲ the Arabs mean the W. part of the Indian Ocean, Baḥr al-Hind [q.v.] which washes the E. coast of Africa from the Gulf of Aden i.e., the Ḵh̲alīd̲j̲ al-Barbarī to Sufāla and Madagascar, which was as far as the scanty knowledge of the Arabs extended. The name is derived from the adjoining coast, which is called the Bilād al-Zand̲j̲ or Zanguebar, ‘land of the Zand̲j̲’. The name Zand̲j̲ is applied by the Arabs to the black Bantu negroes, who are sharply distinguished from the Berbers and Abyssinians. The n…

Cite this page
Becker, C.H. and Dunlop, D.M., “Baḥr al-Zand̲j̲”, in: Encyclopaedia of Islam, Second Edition, Edited by: P. Bearman, Th. Bianquis, C.E. Bosworth, E. van Donzel, W.P. Heinrichs. Consulted online on 16 October 2018 <>
First published online: 2012
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004161214, 1960-2007

▲   Back to top   ▲