Skip to main content
ARS Home » Northeast Area » Beltsville, Maryland (BARC) » Beltsville Agricultural Research Center » Hydrology and Remote Sensing Laboratory » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #378704

Research Project: Integrating Remote Sensing, Measurements and Modeling for Multi-Scale Assessment of Water Availability, Use, and Quality in Agroecosystems

Location: Hydrology and Remote Sensing Laboratory

Title: From the Paleolithic to the Islamic Era in Wilayat Yanqul (ArWHO Survey 2011-2018)

item HARROWER, M. - Johns Hopkins University
item SMITI, N. - Johns Hopkins University
item DUMITRU, I. - Johns Hopkins University
item LEHNER, J. - University Of Sydney
item DOLLARHIDE, E. - New York University
item WIIG, F. - University Of New South Wales
item SIVITSKIS, A. - Royal University Of Bhutan
item DAVID-CUNY, H. - The French Center For Archaeology And Social Sciences
item SWERIDA, J. - University Of Pennsylvania
item MAZZARIELLO, J. - Johns Hopkins University
item CRASSARD, R. - The French Center For Archaeology And Social Sciences
item BUFFINGTON, A. - College Of William & Mary
item TAYLOR, S.P. - University Of Cambridge
item Anderson, Martha
item AL-JABIR, S. - Ministry Of Heritage And Cuture-Oman

Submitted to: Journal of Oman Studies
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/18/2021
Publication Date: 1/10/2022
Citation: Harrower, M., Smiti, N., Dumitru, I., Lehner, J.W., Dollarhide, E., Wiig, F., Sivitskis, A.J., David-Cuny, H., Swerida, J.L., Mazzariello, J., Crassard, R., Buffington, A., Taylor, S., Anderson, M.C., Al-Jabir, S. 2022. From the Paleolithic to the Islamic Era in Wilayat Yanqul (ArWHO Survey 2011-2018). Journal of Oman Studies. 22.

Interpretive Summary: Archaeologists have long identified irrigation as one of several primary factors involved in the origins of agriculture and rise of the world's earliest civilizations, but the role of water differs widely across different times in different regions. Oman offers a wide range of opportunities to study the unique role of water in the development of civilization. The Archaeological Water Histories of Oman (ArWHO) Project used archaeological survey data, remote sensing data, and geospatial analysis to examine the role of water availability and irrigation in the longterm histories of ancient societies in Oman. The analysis showed that the historic sites surveyed were more likely to be in areas that have a higher water flow potential than would be expected at random, suggesting water availability influenced ancient settlement patterns in this region.

Technical Abstract: The Archaeological Water Histories of Oman (ArWHO) Project began in 2011 with a focus on the role of water availability in the long-term trajectories of ancient civilizations. From 2011 to 2018, the project surveyed Wilayah Yanqul and adjacent areas. This included wide-area reconnaissance survey as well as systematic sampling of a 100 km2 area northeast of the town of Yanqul. This paper reports basic results of the survey, including archaeological sites documented and baseline analysis of associations with water resources. Important results include Paleolithic finds, discovery of new Neolithic sites, insights about Bronze Age monuments, new understanding of Iron Age trade, and broader understanding of small Islamic era settlements in mountainous hinterlands.