(redirected from M'ain)
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



an ancient southern Arabian tribe and kingdom that occupied the northern part of the present-day Yemen Arab Republic.

The earliest written records of the Minaean kingdom date from the sixth and fifth centuries B.C. The Minaean capital was originally Yathil (present-day Beraqish); the capital was later transferred to Qarnau (present-day Main). The Minaean kingdom had an early class society; the priesthood and tribal aristocracy played an important role in government.

The Minaeans flourished as middlemen in the incense trade. They controlled trade routes through Arabia; from the fourth through the second century B.C., a large Minaean colony existed at Dedan (present-day Al Ula). In the first century B.C., the Minaean kingdom came under the rule of the kings of Qataban; it was soon incorporated into the kingdom of Saba (Sheba) and later became part of Saba and the Raydan territory.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.