Story phrases: Arabian peninsula drought as factor in rise of Islam; early democratic systems in the Americas; early fruit tree cultivation in Jordan Valley; early evidence for Black Death in Central Asia


Environmental challenges on the Arabian peninsula likely contributed to the rise of Islam

New research supports evidence that communities in the Americas independently developed democratic systems

Israeli archaeologists find evidence of 7,000-year-old fruit trees in the Jordan Valley

Analysis of 14th-century remains in Kyrgyzstan suggest Black Death plague may have originated in Central Asia