What are the biggest mysteries of the Dark Ages?

Speaking of Arians, well, I wonder how long Arianism actually lasted considering the Lombards hung on to Arianism until the late 7th century.
Going even further, I wonder which persisted longer in the peninsula: remnants of Greco-Roman polytheism held onto by the native population, or vestiges of Germanic paganism popular among the average Lombard even as their elite were publicly professing one branch of Christianity or another.
 
Going even further, I wonder which persisted longer in the peninsula: remnants of Greco-Roman polytheism held onto by the native population, or vestiges of Germanic paganism popular among the average Lombard even as their elite were publicly professing one branch of Christianity or another.
We at least know that there were pagans amongst the elite as late as the time of Theodoric the Great and Anastasius owing to Zosimus, who was both a government official and a pagan.
 
Okay so perhaps this doesn't fit into the timescale but I'm taking Dark Ages as a relative term.

How and why eastern Bengal became so thoroughly Islamised. This is quite a puzzling situation and nobody has really come up with a definitive answer. We don't even know when this area of Bengal became Muslim - was it during the Mughal era? Was it before? Who were the key figures in this transition and why did it happen this way in Bengal and nowhere else in the subcontinent? Eastern Bengal was far away from the centres of Islamic power in the subcontinent, and many Muslim rulers saw it as a distant realm where one could exile political opponents and not have to worry about them.

It wasn't until the British conducted ethnographical surveys in the late 19th century that scale of Islamisation in Bengal was apparent. Nobody - not even the Indians - realised that eastern Bengali was majority Muslim! The British fully expected the region to be majority Hindu (and less populated than it actually was). Numerous theories were proposed to explain this but a lot is complete conjecture. A popular theory within Bengal is that low-caste Hindus converted en masse to Islam to escape caste prejudices and the upper castes followed suit thereafter (a bottom-up approach). This hypothesis has many holes however, as elucidated by Richard Eaton. One of the most interesting points he raises is that eastern Bengal was not really "Hindu" in a meaningful sense of the word, but rather outwith the fold of Vedic civilisation and populated mostly by villagers who followed a folk religion influenced but not penetrated by Dharmic currents. This relates to Bronkhorst's vision of a "Greater Magadhan" cultural sphere, centred around the Bengal delta region, which existed in opposition to the Vedic Brahmin culture of northern India. This Magadhan culture is conjectured to be what gave rise to Buddhism and Jainism, as sramanic traditions that didn't grow out of Brahminism but grew separately from indigenous philosophical and cultural ideas. Eastern Bengal may have been the last vestige of the "Magadhan" civilisation and was actually Islamised before it was ever Hindu-ised.

Again though, we just don't know what really happened.
Super interesting, I've actually always been confused as to the geographic split in religion in Bengal. Don't have extra insight to add, just wanted to thank you for posting this.
 
It wasn't until the British conducted ethnographical surveys in the late 19th century that scale of Islamisation in Bengal was apparent. Nobody - not even the Indians - realised that eastern Bengali was majority Muslim! The British fully expected the region to be majority Hindu (and less populated than it actually was). Numerous theories were proposed to explain this but a lot is complete conjecture
Source for the scale of Islamisation was not known thing?

Anyways , I have heard that the Eastern Bangladesh ( JustEast Bangladesh not East Bengal) was a frontier region before the Delhi , Bengal and Mughal sultanates .
 
We know there was a civil war and the Arians technically asked the Muslims for help, after that is hazy
There were no significant Arian faction left by 711 in Iberia, and probably not real Arians at all.

The alleged civil war (it is not really clear how widespread this war was or if it was just another conflict between different Visigothic groups of noblemen) was disputed between the 'legitimate' KIng Roderic and the claimant Achilla II, but none of them was Arian. It is not even clear who (if any) called the Muslims, but Roderic surely not and Achilla had his stronghold in the North, so it is unlikely. Some speculated about a deserting faction of Roderic's army, but the most likely scenario is that nobody really called the Muslims.

The Spanish traditional and nationalistic History used to claim that 'the sons of Wittiza' called the Muslims, but this is not proven and it is quite unlikely, but Spanish nationalism tried to enhance the aura of the 'last Christian King' Roderic at expense of his rival Wittiza for several reasons.
 
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