Bahrain, officially the Kingdom of Bahrain, is a sovereign state in the Persian Gulf. The island nation comprises a small archipelago made up of 51 natural islands and an additional 33 artificial islands, centered around Bahrain Island which makes up around 83 percent of the country’s landmass. At 780 square kilometres in size, it is the third-smallest nation in Asia after the Maldives and Singapore.
About Bahrain in brief
Bahrain, officially the Kingdom of Bahrain, is a sovereign state in the Persian Gulf. The island nation comprises a small archipelago made up of 51 natural islands and an additional 33 artificial islands, centered around Bahrain Island which makes up around 83 percent of the country’s landmass. At 780 square kilometres in size, it is the third-smallest nation in Asia after the Maldives and Singapore. According to the 2010 census, Bahrain’s population is over 1. 2 million, of which around half are non-nationals. Bahrain is the site of the ancient Dilmun civilization. It has been famed since antiquity for its pearl fisheries, which were considered the best in the world into the 19th century. In the late 1800s, following successive treaties with the British, Bahrain became a protectorate of the United Kingdom. In 1971, it declared independence. Formerly an emirate, Bahrain was declared an Islamic constitutional monarchy in 2002. In 2011, the country experienced protests inspired by the regional Arab Spring. Bahrain’s ruling al-Khalifa royal family has been criticized for violating the human rights of groups including dissidents, political opposition figures, and its majority Shia Muslim population. It remains disputed which \”two seas\” the name Bahrayn originally refers to. The term appears five times in the Quran, but does not refer to the modern island—originally known to the Arabs as Awal—but, rather, to all of Eastern Arabia.
The name has been lexicalised as a feminine proper noun and does not follow the grammatical rules for duals; thus its form is always BahrayN and never Bahrān, the expected nominative form. Endings are added to the word with no changes, as in the name of the national anthemBahraynunā or the demonym Bahraysunā. The exact date at which the term began to refer solely to the Awal archipelagos is unknown. The entire coastal strip of Eastern Saudi Arabia was known as ‘Bahrain’ for a millennium and was ruled by Assyrians and Babylonians. It was also commonly spelled Bahrein into the 1950s and 1960s. The country is home to an important Bronze Age trade centre linking Mesopotamia and the Indus Valley. It is a member of the U.N., Non-Aligned Movement, Arab League, Organisation of Islamic Cooperation and the Gulf Cooperation Council. It also has a high Human Development Index and is recognised by the World Bank as a high-income economy. In addition to wells, there are areas of the sea north of Bahrain where fresh water bubbles up in the middle of the salt water as noted by visitors since antiquity. The region stretched from Basra in Iraq to the Basra Strait of Hormuz in Oman. Until the Middle Ages, Bahrain referred to the region of Eastern Iraq, Kuwait, Al-Hasa, and Bahrain from late late-Hormuz to the late late 1500s.