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The leader of the Arabs of Najran during the period of persecution, al-Ḥārith, was canonized by the Catholic Church as Arethas.Some modern scholars suggest that Philip the Arab was the first Christian emperor of Rome.The new Arab invaders, who soon pressed forward into their seats found the remnants of the Nabataeans transformed into peasants.Their lands were divided between the new Qahtanite Arab tribal kingdoms of the Byzantine vassals, the Ghassanids and the Himyarite Kingdom, the Kindah in North Arabia.The tribes of Tayy, Banu Abdul Qays, and Taghlib are also known to have included many Christians in the pre-Islamic period.The southern Arabian city of Najran was a center of Arabian Christianity, made famous by the persecution by one of the kings of Yemen, Dhu Nawas, who was himself an enthusiastic convert to Judaism.By the fourth century, a significant number of Christians occupied the Sinai Peninsula, Mesopotamia and the Arabian Peninsula.
Arab Christians are not the only Christian group in the Middle East, with significant non-Arab indigenous Christian communities of Assyro-Chaldeans, Arameans, Armenians and others.
Beirut, Cairo, Damascus and Aleppo were the main centers of the renaissance and this led to the establishment of schools, universities, Arab theater and printing presses.
It also led to the renewal of literary, linguistic and poetic distinctiveness.
Nabateans were possibly among the first Arab tribes to arrive to the Southern Levant in the very late first millennium BC.
The Nabataeans initially adopted pagan beliefs, but they became Christians by the time of the Byzantine period around the 4th century.
The first Arab tribes to adopt Christianity were likely Nabataeans and Ghassanids.