Al-Arid, an Early Bronze Age settlement site in the interior of the Oman peninsula

Results of the second season’s excavations (2020)

Authors

  • Corinne Castel Castel CNRS
  • Jacques É. Brochier Aix Marseille University, AMU, UMR 7269
  • Olivier Barge CNRS, Maison de l’Orient, Laboratory Archéorient, UMR 5133
  • Blandine Besnard Aix-Marseille Univ, CNRS, Minist Culture, Laboratory LAMPEA, UMR 7269
  • Elsa Ciesielski CNRS, Montpellier
  • Lionel Darras Maison de l’Orient, Laboratory Archéorient, UMR 5133
  • Yasmine Kanhoush CNRS associate, Maison de l’Orient, Laboratory Archéorient, UMR 5133
  • Georges Mouamar Maison de l’Orient, Laboratory Archéorient, UMR 5133, Maison de l’Orient et de la Méditerranée, Lyon
  • Frédéric Rivière UMR 7044, Université de Strasbourg
  • Séverine Sanz CNRS, Laboratory Archéologie des Sociétés Méditerranéennes, UMR 5140, Université Paul-Valery Montpellier
  • Margareta Tengberg National Museum of Natural History, CNRS UMR 7209, Paris
  • Pauline VÉZY University Lyon2

Keywords:

Interior Oman, Umm an-Nar period, Tower, Irrigation canal, Early Bronze settlement

Abstract

Following a first season of joint investigations carried out at the two settlement sites of Bāt and al-Arid (15 km north-west of Bāt) in the Sultanate of Oman, during winter 2019 (Castel et al. 2020), the MBA Mission (Mission archéologique de Bāt/al-Arid) carried out a second season of excavations at the settlement site of al-Arid in 2020.

This contribution aims to present the latest results from this extensive survey, the excavations, and the different studies of this new mission carried out by a multidisciplinary team of specialists. Three structures were excavated: one of seven towers, with a regular internal plan; a tomb that yielded a Jemdet-Nasr plain vessel and an Umm an-Nar Black-on-Red Fine Ware pot; and a building assigned to the late Umm an-Nar period. In addition, the investigations carried out on two abandoned irrigation canals, one of which may be related to the Bronze Age settlement, were continued. The first results obtained from the analysis of the pottery are presented and the Bayesian chronological analysis makes it possible to place all the radiocarbon dated events in the regional chronology. All these combined results shed new light on the al-Arid site and enable us to refine its chronology, thus enriching the debate on third-millennium settlement patterns in the southern piedmont region of interior Oman.

References

Castel C., Barge O., Besnard B., Beuzen-Waller T., Brochier J.É., Darras L. … Sanz S. 2020. First discoveries of the Bāt/al-Arid mission (Sultanate of Oman). Proceedings of the Seminar for Arabian Studies 50: 71–84.

Crema E.R. & Bevan A. 2020. Inference from large sets of radiocarbon dates: Software and Methods. Radiocarbon. https://doi.org/10.1017/RDC.2020.95.

al-Jahwari N.S. 2009. The Agricultural basis of Umm an-Nar society in the northern Oman peninsula (2500–2000 BC). Arabian Archaeology and Epigraphy 20/2: 122–133.

al-Jahwari N.S. & Kennet D. 2010. Umm an-Nar settlement in the Wādī Andam (Sultanate of Oman). Proceedings of the Seminar for Arabian Studies 40: 161–172.

al‐Jahwari N.S., Douglas K.A & Hesein M.A. 2020. Al‐Ghoryeen: An Early Bronze Age settlement in central Oman peninsula. Arabian Archaeology and Epigraphy 31/2: 281–300.

al-Jahwari N.S., Douglas K.A., al-Belushi M. & Williams K.D. 2018. Umm an-Nar settlement at Dahwa (DH1), Oman: Preliminary results of the archaeological investigation, 2014–2016. Pages: 29–49 in S. Döpper (ed.), Beyond tombs and towers. Domestic architecture of the Umm an-Nar period in eastern Arabia. (Arabia Orientalis, 4. Studien zur Archäologie Ostarabiens). Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz.

Lanos Ph. & Dufresne Ph. 2019. ChronoModel version 2.0: Software for chronological modelling of archaeological data using Bayesian statistics. Available from https://chronomodel.com/

Munoz O. 2015. La ‘fabrique des ancêtres’. Complexification sociale et sépultures collectives dans la Péninsule d’Oman à l’âge du Bronze ancien. Pages 255–265 in G. Delaplace & Valentin F. (eds), Le funéraire. Mémoires, protocoles, monuments. (Colloque de la MAE-René Ginouvès, 11). Paris: de Boccard.

Schmidt C. 2018. Pastoral nomadism in third millennium BC eastern Arabia: A view from Al-Zebah in central Oman. Paléorient 44/1: 105–118.

Schmidt C. & Döpper S. 2016. Umm an-Nar pottery assemblages from Bāt and al-Zībā and their functional contexts. Proceedings of the Seminar for Arabian Studies 46: 247–262.

Schmidt C. & Döpper S. 2019. The Hafit period at Al-Khashbah, Sultanate of Oman: Results of four years of excavations and material studies. Proceedings of the Seminar for Arabian Studies 49: 265–274.

Swerida J. 2017. Housing the Umm an-Nar: The settlements and houses of Bat. PhD thesis, Department of Near Eastern Studies (Archaeology), Johns Hopkins University. [Unpublished.]

Swerida J. 2018. Bat and the Umm an-Nar settlement tradition. Pages 51–69 in S. Döpper (ed.), Beyond tombs and towers. Domestic architecture of the Umm an-Nar period in eastern Arabia. (Arabia Orientalis, 4. Studien zur Archäologie Ostarabiens). Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz.

Swerida J. & C.P. Thornton 2019. Al‐Khafaji reinterpreted: New insights on Umm an‐Nar monuments and settlement from Bat, Oman. Arabian Archaeology and Epigraphy 30/2: 1–16.

Thornton C.P. & Ghazal R.M. 2016. Typological and chronological consideration of the ceramics at Bat. Pages: 179–216 in C.P. Thornton, C.M. Cable & G.L. Possehl (eds), The Bronze Age towers at Bat, Sultanate of Oman. (University Museum Monographs 143). Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press.

Published

28/07/2022

How to Cite

Castel, C. C., Brochier, J., Barge, O., Besnard, B., Ciesielski, E., Darras, L., Kanhoush, Y., Mouamar, G., Rivière, F., Sanz, S., Tengberg, M., & Pauline VÉZY. (2022). Al-Arid, an Early Bronze Age settlement site in the interior of the Oman peninsula: Results of the second season’s excavations (2020). Proceedings of the Seminar for Arabian Studies, 51, 71–86. Retrieved from http://archaeopresspublishing.com/ojs/index.php/PSAS/article/view/581