Earth is a commonly used construction material and it is specially widespread in the Arabic Peninsula, due also to the lock of proper stone caves. This kind of architecture represents a living memory of the construction tecnique, the know how of the people of the area, reflecting anthropological aspects such as cultural, historic and socio – economic features. For all those aspects the built enviroment of the wilayat of Izki in Oman, and in particular the fort of Al Yaman, Al Yaman town and Al Nazar houses, are interesting case studies of islamic settlement. Both kind of constructions show different structural and construction devices commonly used in those areas, toghether with non-structural elements including painted ceilings, arches’ shapes, carved doors and other kind of decorations. Anyway the common technogical rule consist of the use of local materials from the near wadi (stones for basement – burned lime for mortar), the oasis (palm fronds and grass tatch for roofs and decks), the adjacent ground (earth for units and plaster). As for other cases in the northern regions of the country, these settlements are commonly erected nearby palm groves which surround the falaj, the omani irrigation system. The fortress, although collapsed in most parts, shows the typical planimetric organization of an Arabic Fort with the castle, the public well, the mosque inside the external walls and the system of defense towers. In the adjacence of the fortress is located the complex of Al Yaman houses, mainly built in earth construction. The good state of conservation of the settlement (recently abandoned) clearly shows as a modern small “Pompei” the usual arrangement of the town and of the single parts of it, such us the gate, the mosque, the wells, the houses. In this paper technical, structural and architectonical aspects will be discussed with the aim to underline the construction tecnique, the planimetric organization, the used materials, the state of conservation and the main factors of degradation. This kind of study of the build enviroment, in its multidisciplinary aspects, can be the first step for a future restoration in order to preserve building heritage as a testimoniance of Omani traditions and culture.

Case studies of Earth Constructions in the Sultanate of Oman: the settlements of Al Nazar and Al Yaman in Izki, 5th Seminar on Earth Architecture

SASSU, MAURO
2007

Abstract

Earth is a commonly used construction material and it is specially widespread in the Arabic Peninsula, due also to the lock of proper stone caves. This kind of architecture represents a living memory of the construction tecnique, the know how of the people of the area, reflecting anthropological aspects such as cultural, historic and socio – economic features. For all those aspects the built enviroment of the wilayat of Izki in Oman, and in particular the fort of Al Yaman, Al Yaman town and Al Nazar houses, are interesting case studies of islamic settlement. Both kind of constructions show different structural and construction devices commonly used in those areas, toghether with non-structural elements including painted ceilings, arches’ shapes, carved doors and other kind of decorations. Anyway the common technogical rule consist of the use of local materials from the near wadi (stones for basement – burned lime for mortar), the oasis (palm fronds and grass tatch for roofs and decks), the adjacent ground (earth for units and plaster). As for other cases in the northern regions of the country, these settlements are commonly erected nearby palm groves which surround the falaj, the omani irrigation system. The fortress, although collapsed in most parts, shows the typical planimetric organization of an Arabic Fort with the castle, the public well, the mosque inside the external walls and the system of defense towers. In the adjacence of the fortress is located the complex of Al Yaman houses, mainly built in earth construction. The good state of conservation of the settlement (recently abandoned) clearly shows as a modern small “Pompei” the usual arrangement of the town and of the single parts of it, such us the gate, the mosque, the wells, the houses. In this paper technical, structural and architectonical aspects will be discussed with the aim to underline the construction tecnique, the planimetric organization, the used materials, the state of conservation and the main factors of degradation. This kind of study of the build enviroment, in its multidisciplinary aspects, can be the first step for a future restoration in order to preserve building heritage as a testimoniance of Omani traditions and culture.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11584/189856
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