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Taʿiz

TAʿIZ

Province and largest city in the south of North Yemen.

Taʿiz Province is, along with Ibb Province, the heart of the Shafiʿi south of North Yemen. It embraces the Hujariyya region, and the city of Taʿiz is its soul. The southern uplands of Taʿiz Province, at a few thousand feet, have a more temperate climate and more rainfall than do the northern highlands, and the agriculture of the province has in the past supported a larger, denser population than that of provinces farther north. In the past, the city of Taʿiz was an important center of power in North Yemen, especially under the Rasulids from the mid-thirteenth to the mid-fifteenth centuries; more recently, Imam Ahmad insisted on residing there between 1948 and 1962. Linked since the late nineteenth century to British Aden by an increasing stream of workers, merchants, and students, and then linked through Aden to the outside world, Taʿiz became a part of world commerce and was in touch with the modern world and its ideas far more than was Sanʿa; by the 1940s, it had become the hotbed of modernist, republican, and even revolutionary ideas in the Yemen ruled by the imams. Thus, through the 1970s, Taʿiz was compared favorably to Sanʿa, and especially by many southerners.

By the 1980s, however, Sanʿa had outstripped it in size and political importance and Hodeida had outstripped it in commercial importance; its basic infrastructureincluding electricity, water, and roadswas allowed to degrade. Still, Taʿiz remained in the 1990s and thereafter a major center of business and light industry; its links to Aden, and the new economic role of the latter, may enhance the position of Taʿiz in unified Yemen, or unification may lead to a bypassing of Taʿiz. In any case, the Taʿiz of old is no more. Within defining walls and highlighted by great whitewashed mosque minarets and domes, its back pressed against the cloud-topped mountain named Jabal Sabr, which towers over it, the old Taʿiz was a jewel of a small Arab Islamic city. The Taʿiz of today has burst its walls, and unattractive modern construction has replaced, crowded out, and hidden most of the old. The population of Taʿiz and the villages it has absorbed is about 700,000.

see also sanʿa; yemen; yemen arab republic.


Bibliography

Burrowes, Robert. Historical Dictionary of Yemen. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 1995.

Carapico, Sheila. Civil Society in Yemen: The Political Economy of Activism in Modern Arabia. New York and Cambridge, U.K.: Cambridge University Press, 1998.

Dresch, Paul. A History of Modern Yemen. New York and Cambridge, U.K.: Cambridge University Press, 2000.

robert d. burrowes

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"Taʿiz." Encyclopedia of the Modern Middle East and North Africa. . Encyclopedia.com. 16 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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"Taʿiz." Encyclopedia of the Modern Middle East and North Africa. . Retrieved August 16, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/taiz

Taiz

Taiz or Taizz (tä-ēz´), city (1994 pop. 317,753), S Yemen, in the interior highlands. It is an agricultural marketing center, particularly for coffee, and the focus of trade routes. Taiz was the administrative capital of Northern Yemen 1948 to 1962. It is the seat of an important Muslim theological school and the former royal palace.

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"Taiz." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. 16 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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"Taiz." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved August 16, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/taiz