Fulayj A Sasanian and Early Islamic Fort in the Sohar Hinterland
Fulayj fort is located on the fertile Batinah plain of Oman, 12km inland from Saham and 32km southeast of the key urban centre and major medieval port of Sohar. The chance discovery of the site by Nasser Al-Jahwari in 2012, provided an important breakthrough in our potential understanding of the late pre-Islamic and initial Islamic period occupation in Oman. Finds collected during the first survey of the site were inspected by Derek Kennet and recognised as likely to be of late Sasanian or very early Islamic date. Following further recording in 2014, a broad, multidisciplinary archaeological investigation was launched in 2015. Two seasons were completed by a joint British-Omani team in 2015 and 2016. Following a break in operations, a third season of fieldwork was completed in 2022. These investigations have confirmed the initial dating of the fort and substantially enhanced our understanding of all aspects of its planning, construction, history of occupation, internal organisation, nature of use, etc. It is possible that Fulayj formed part of a wider defensive military cordon protecting the commercial and agricultural potential of the fertile coastal strip and urban centre of the Sohar region. These wider aspects will be returned to again for further consideration below.
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