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Ian Straughn

Islamic Archaeology

Archaeology and Religion

Islamic Landscapes

Joukowsky Institute for Archaeology



Joukowsky Institute for Archaeology & the Ancient World
Brown University
Box 1837 / 60 George Street
Providence, RI 02912
Telephone: (401) 863-3188
Fax: (401) 863-9423
[email protected]

Posted at Apr 30/2007 01:14AM:
Elly: al-Rabadah is a Ummayad settlement along the Darb Zubayda. It served caravans of pilgrims along their way to Mecca, and was part of an effort by the Ummayads to settle the nomadic pastoralists of the area. This effort was undertaken to control the nomads by tying them to the landscape. The site has the typical "palace" building, which served as a administrative governmental center and a place of residence for important caravan leaders. It also has a residential area with commercial buildings, mosques, reservoirs, and a cemetery -- this is a full settlement, not just a caravan outpost. This site, as an example of the settlement system created by the Ummayads along the pilgrimage route, shows the evolving relationship between the nomads and the government, and also the relationship between the Arabs and the widening Muslim community.