With the display of Islamic artifacts unearthed in local excavations, the narrative presented by the Israel Museum, Jerusalem of the archaeology of the Land of Israel, spanning one and a half million years, comes to an end.
The Islamic Near Easst gallery presents masterpieces of Islamic art from foreign lands. Dating from the 8th through the 19th century, these objects were produced in the major centers of the Islamic Empire, chief among these Iran.
While Islamic art adopted many decorative ideas from both the classical-Byzantine and the Sassanian Persian culture, it is nevertheless distinct, characterized by technical and artistic originality, extensive employment of abstract designs, and the use of Arabic calligraphy as a
major decorative element. Some of the objects on display, such as the mihrab, were created for religious purposes; others were personal items used in the homes of the