Jordan (Arabic: الْأُرْدُنّ Al-ʾUrdunn [al.ʔur.dunː]), officially the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan (Arabic: المملكة الأردنية الهاشمية Al-Mamlakah Al-Urdunnīyah Al-Hāshimīyah), is an Arab country in Western Asia, on the East Bank of the Jordan River. Jordan is bordered by Saudi Arabia to the south and the east, Iraq to the north-east, Syria to the north and Israel and Palestine (West Bank) to the west. The Dead Sea is located along its western borders and the country has a small coastline to the Red Sea in its extreme south-west, but is otherwise landlocked. Jordan is strategically located at the crossroads of Asia, Africa and Europe. The capital, Amman, is Jordan's most populous city as well as the country's economic, political and cultural centre.
What is now Jordan has been inhabited by humans since the Paleolithic period. Three stable kingdoms emerged there at the end of the Bronze Age: Ammon, Moab and Edom. Later rulers include the Nabataean Kingdom, the Roman Empire, and the Ottoman Empire. After the Great Arab Revolt against the Ottomans in 1916 during World War I, the Ottoman Empire was partitioned by Britain and France. The Emirate of Transjordan was established in 1921 by the Hashemite, then Emir, Abdullah I, and the emirate became a British protectorate. In 1946, Jordan became an independent state officially known as the Hashemite Kingdom of Transjordan, but was renamed in 1949 to the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan after the country captured the West Bank during the 1948 Arab–Israeli War and annexed it until it was lost to Israel in 1967. Jordan renounced its claim to the territory in 1988, and became one of two Arab states to sign a peace treaty with Israel in 1994. Jordan is a founding member of the Arab League and the Organisation of Islamic Co-operation. The sovereign state is a constitutional monarchy, but the king holds wide executive and legislative powers. Read more...
A large plate of Jordanian mezze
Jordanian cuisine is a traditional style of food preparation originating from, or commonly used in Jordan that has developed from centuries of social and political change.
There are a wide variety of techniques used in Jordanian cuisine ranging from baking, sautéeing and grilling to stuffing of vegetables (carrots, leafy greens, eggplants, etc.), meat (which in Jordan refers to a mixture of lamb, beef, and sometimes goat), and poultry. Also common in Jordanian cuisine is roasting or preparing foods with special sauces.
As one of the largest producers of olives in the world, olive oil is the main cooking oil in Jordan. Herbs, garlic, onion, tomato sauce and lemon are typical flavours found in Jordan. The blend of spices called za'atar contains a common local herb called Sumac that grows wild in Jordan and is closely identified with Jordanian and other Mideastern cuisines. Yogurt is commonly served alongside food and is a common ingredient itself, in particular, jameed, a form of dried yogurt is unique to Jordanian cuisine and a main ingredient in Mansaf the national dish of Jordan, and a symbol in Jordanian culture for generosity.
Another famous meat dish in Southern Jordan especially in the Bedouin Desert area of Petra and Wadi Rum is the Zarb which is prepared in a submerged oven also called a "taboon". It is considered a delicacy of that area.
Internationally known foods which are common and popular everyday snacks in Jordan include hummus, which is a puree of chick peas blended with tahini, lemon, and garlic and falafel, a deep-fried ball or patty made from ground chickpeas. A typical mezze includes foods such as kibbeh, labaneh, baba ghanoush, tabbouleh, olives and pickles. Bread, rice, freekeh and bulgur all have a role in Jordanian cuisine.
Popular desserts include as baklava, knafeh, halva and qatayef a dish made specially for Ramadan, in addition to seasonal fruits such as watermelons, figs and cactus pear which are served in summer.
Turkish coffee and tea flavored with mint or sage are almost ubiquitous in Jordan. Arabic coffee is also usually served on more formal occasions. Arak, an aniseed flavoured spirit is also drunk with food. Read more...
Abdullah II bin Al-Hussein (Arabic: عبدالله الثاني بن الحسين, ʿAbdullāh ath-thānī bin Al-Ḥusayn, born 30 January 1962) has been King of Jordan since 1999. He belongs to the Hashemite family, who have ruled Jordan since 1921 and claim agnatic descent from Muhammad's daughter Fatimah.
Abdullah was born in Amman as the first child of King Hussein and his second wife, British-born Princess Muna. As the King's eldest son, Abdullah was heir apparent until Hussein transferred the title to Abdullah's uncle, Prince Hassan, in 1965. Abdullah began his schooling in Amman, continuing his education abroad. He began his military career in 1980 as a training officer in the Jordanian Armed Forces, later assuming command of the country's Special Forces in 1994, and he became a major general in 1998. In 1993 Abdullah married Rania Al-Yassin (of Palestinian descent), and they have four children: Crown Prince Hussein, Princess Iman, Princess Salma and Prince Hashem. A few weeks before his death in 1999, Hussein named Abdullah his heir, and Abdullah succeeded his father.
Abdullah, a constitutional monarch, liberalized the economy when he assumed the throne, and his reforms led to an economic boom which continued until 2008. During the following years Jordan's economy experienced hardship as it dealt with the effects of the Great Recession and spillover from the Arab Spring, including a cut in its petroleum supply and the collapse of trade with neighboring countries. In 2011, large-scale protests demanding reform erupted in the Arab world. Many of the protests led to civil wars in other countries, but Abdullah responded quickly to domestic unrest by replacing the government and introducing reforms to the constitution and laws governing public freedoms and elections. Proportional representation was reintroduced to the Jordanian parliament in the 2016 general election, a move which he said would eventually lead to establishing parliamentary governments. The reforms took place amid unprecedented challenges stemming from regional instability, including an influx of 1.4 million Syrian refugees into the natural resources-lacking country and the emergence of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).
Abdullah is popular locally and internationally for maintaining Jordanian stability, and is known for promoting interfaith dialogue and a moderate understanding of Islam. The third-longest-serving Arab leader, he was regarded by the Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Center as the most influential Muslim in the world in 2016. Abdullah is custodian of the Muslim and Christian sacred sites in Jerusalem, a position held by his dynasty since 1924. Read more...
Irbid (Arabic: إرْبِد), known in ancient times as Arabella or Arbela (Άρβηλα in Ancient Greek), is the capital and largest city of the Irbid Governorate. It also has the second largest metropolitan population in Jordan after Amman, with a population of around 1,770,158. Irbid is located about 70 kilometres (43 mi) north of Amman on the northern ridge of the Gilead, equidistant from Pella, Beit Ras (Capitolias), and Um Qais, and approximately 20 kilometres (12 mi) south of the Syrian border.
Irbid is the second largest metropolitan in Jordan by population after Amman. But as a city Irbid is the third largest one after Amman and Az Zarqa.
The province of Irbid Governorate has the second largest population, and the highest population density in the kingdom.
The city is a major ground transportation hub between Amman, Syria to the north, and Mafraq to the east.
The Irbid region is also home to several colleges and universities. The two most prominent universities are Jordan University of Science and Technology and Yarmouk University. Read more...
For editor resources and to collaborate with other editors on improving Wikipedia's Jordan-related articles, see WikiProject Jordan.
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