This blog is about the story of my family here in America. We arrived in the 1630s as Puritans, and became the common folk of the New World.

Why Saudi Arabia is called The Middle East

Countries like Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Iran, etc. are commonly referred to as *The Middle East*. While this may not be as confusing as why Minnesota is called The Midwest, it does warrant a little bit of explaining.

It's all about point of view, and history. The language that you are reading right now (unless you have translated this page) is the language of my family, which is English. And the world view that we carry around to this day goes back to the point of view of Europeans. Five hundred years ago they just the saw the world where they lived as *here* and everywhere else as *East*. If they went very far west, they were in the Atlantic Ocean, and of course, knew nothing of a whole other continent over there. Most of the land that they knew was East of them.

People have been traveling East and West from Europe to China for thousands of years. Of course, the people in China didn't call themselves *The East* any more than you would call where you are standing right now *over there*. And so, when you are using the term *Middle East*, you are presuming the European point of view.

Over the years, The East came to known as really far East, like China, or Japan. The East that was a little closer to Europe came to be known as the *Middle East*. If you look at a map, you see that the *Middle East* isn't really East at all, but it is kind of middle.

It's all about point of view.

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