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Heritage Management Plan

View the Harat al-Yemen HMP on ISSUU

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StatusCompleted (2013)
TypeDocumentation and Heritage Management
ZoneArabian Peninsula
LocationDakhiliya, Oman
Coordinates22°55'42.63" N, 57°45'53.12" E
Funded byMinistry of Heritage and Culture, Sultanate of Oman
Research team
Prof Soumyen Bandyopadhyay
Principal Investigator
Dr Giamila Quattrone

Research Fellow
Dr Martin S. Goffriller

Research Fellow
Dr M Habib Reza

Research Fellow
Haitham Al-Abri

PhD student
John Harrison

Expert in Vernacular Architecture
Job Momoh
PhD Student


Documentation and Heritage Management Plan of Harat al-Yemen (IZKI)

The oasis of Izki is reputedly one of the oldest permanently inhabited sites in Northern Oman. Large amounts of Hafit and Umm an-Nar remains in the area in the form of beehive tombs and circular enclosures attest a continuous human presence in the area since at least 3000BC. There have also been discovered substantial Early and Later Iron Age remains, creating a clear link between the pre- and Islamic periods. Izki is also one of the main exponents of the famous Hinawi-Ghafiri split which stems from the extremely ancient Arabian tribal rift of the Adnani-Qahtan, Qays-Yaman moieties.

Harat al-Yemen (IZKI)
Harat al-Yemen (Izki), view towards the Friday Mosque and southeast tower. Photo: ArCHIAM, 2012

The settlement of Harat al-Yemen, in the Izki oasis, is certainly one of the more unusual of Oman's oasis settlements. Located at the southern end of the Sumayil Pass that connect the Batinah Coast and Muscat to the countries interior, this heavily fortified tows stands testament to Oman's at times conflictive past. The highly rectilinear street pattern is a likely product of a 18th century re-construction of the al-Yemen, but the antiquity of the Izki oasis as a whole appears to be attested by a mention in a stele to the Mesopotamian ruler Assurbanipal, dated around 640BC. This continuity of habitation, as well as a host of Hafit and early Iron Age graves in the surrounding landscape, have made Izki an important focus of archaeology in the wider region.

Harat al-Yemen (Izki): ground floor plan (top left), analysis of street pattern (top right) and state of preservation (middle right), master plan (bottom right) and 3D model (bottom left). Images: ArCHIAM, 2012.

This HMP was commissioned by the HMC to assess the state of preservation of the settlement of al-Yemen and investigate the potential for re-use and restoration of the site. This documentation and heritage management plan pays close attention not only to the morphological development of Harat al-Yemen and its socio-political history, but also aims to integrate the wider cultural context of the oasis by aiming at the preservation of important archaeological remains nearby.

Harat al-Yemen (Izki). Photo: ArCHIAM, 2011
Harat al-Yemen (Izki), Dharmaki quarter. Photo: ArCHIAM, 2012

Proposal for the redevelopment of the square in front of the Darmaki quarter, IzkiProposal for the redevelopment of the square in front of the Darmaki quarter, Izki. Image: ArCHIAM, 2014, visual by Ioulia Barmpouti and Konstantina Georgiadou