Why were Muslims known as preservers of information?

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pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Muslims could have been known as the preservers of information because of their role in preserving classical Greek and Roman texts in the time between the Fall of Rome and the Italian Renaissance.  Muslim societies are typically credited with having preserved many classical texts which were later “rediscovered” by Western Europeans through contact with Muslims.

After the Fall of Rome, a great deal of learning disappeared from Western Europe.  People generally did not have the resources or the inclination to pursue education and the study of classic texts.  Many Greek and Roman texts did survive in the Eastern Roman Empire.  From there, they made their way into Muslim societies as Islamic forces conquered parts of the Hellenistic world.  The Muslims incorporated Greek and Roman knowledge into their own science and philosophy.  After a long time, conditions were right in Western Europe for people to become interested in the classics again.  Those works had largely disappeared from Western Europe.  Most of the works that were rediscovered had been preserved in the Muslim world.  It is for this reason that we could call Muslims the preservers of information.