View Full Version : Historical sights of Bahrain? Anyone?
March 6th, 2005, 04:26 AM
I am very interested to know about some historical sights of Bahrain. I red
that Alexander the great arrived at Bahrain Island in 4 B.C. Not that only but
the Island has an influence by Assyrians, Babylon, Greek and Persians. I
think it is such an interesting place.
I am also interested to know more about “The Tree of Life”
March 7th, 2005, 12:46 PM
Hi, to start things off, here is the tree of life (courtesy of window2bahrain and wsbd):
Bahrain Port (been renovated):
I'll post more later plus some history.
March 7th, 2005, 04:44 PM
In fact Bahrein was the Trading Point between Babylon, India and China at Nebuchdnazzar's time.
March 7th, 2005, 06:50 PM
Just to add, it's called the "Garden of Eden".
I'll post soon, gotta work now.
March 8th, 2005, 07:37 AM
Bahraini Spirit Thank you so much those are such interesting photos. Please
give more infos and details like dates and who built it and why?
Tell me more about Ba Bar temple. I had a hard time looking for infos.
Tell me more about the tree. I mean which kind of tree is it? The only thing
I know it is 400 years old tree and called “Tree of Life” Sometimes I think
Bahrain should have it in their flag. Like the Lebanese Arz tree is in their
~Don’t rush your self on answering at all~
March 30th, 2005, 04:26 PM
I'll post some more info for you tonight, sorry been sooo busy for the last month and was only able to reply and not do research.
March 31st, 2005, 07:32 AM
It is ok Bahraini Spirit take your time ;).
April 23rd, 2005, 05:48 PM
Ok, here are a few useful links:
Historical Sites in Bahrain: http://www.bnmuseum.com/site.htm
Info about Dilmun (scroll down to find it): http://www.crystalinks.com/dilmun.html
Map of Dilmun and Magan (pic courtesy of soas):
Dilmun (sometimes transliterated Telmun) is associated with ancient sites on the islands of Bahrain in the Persian Gulf. Because of its location along the sea trade routes linking Mesopotamia with the Indus Valley Civilization, Dilmun developed in the Early Bronze Age, from ca 3000 BCE, into one of the greatest entrepots of trade of the ancient world.
There is both literary and archaeological evidence for the trade between Mesopotamia and the Indus Valley (probably correctly identified with the land called Meluhha in Akkadian). Impressions of clay seals from the Indus Valley city of Harappa were evidently used to seal bundles of merchandise, as clay seal impressions with cord or sack marks on the reverse side testify. A number of these Indus Valley seals have turned up at Ur and other Mesopotamian sites. "Persian Gulf" types of circular stamp seals rather than rolled cylinder seals, known from Dilmun, that appear at Lothal in Gujarat, India, and Faylahkah, as well as in Mesopotamia, are convincing corroboration of the long-distance sea trade. What the commerce consisted of is less sure: timber and precious woods, ivory, lapis lazuli, gold, and luxury goods such as carnelian and glazed stone beads, pearls from the Gulf, and shell and bone inlays, were among the goods sent to Mesopotamia in exchange for silver, tin, woolen textiles, perhaps oil and grain and other foods. Copper ingots, certainly, bitumen, which occurred naturally in Mesopotamia, may have been exchanged for cotton textiles and chickens, major products of the Indus region that are not native to Mesopotamia — all these have been instanced.
Mesopotamian trade documents, lists of goods, and official inscriptions mentioning Meluhha supplement Harappan seals and archaeological finds. Literary references to Meluhhan trade date from the Akkadian, the Third Dynasty of Ur, and Isin-Larsa Periods (ca 2350 - 1800 BCE), but the trade probably started in the Early Dynastic Period (c. 2600 BC). Some Meluhhan vessels may have sailed directly to Mesopotamian ports, but by the Isin-Larsa Period, Dilmun monopolized the trade. By the subsequent Old Babylonian Period, trade between the two cultures evidently had ceased entirely.
The Bahrain National Museum assesses that its 'Golden Age' lasted ca 2200 - 1600 BCE. Its decline dates from the time the Indus Valley civilization suddenly and mysteriously collapsed, in the middle of the second millennium BCE. This would of course have stripped Dilmun of its importance as a trading center between Mesopotamia and India. The decay of the great sea trade with the east may have affected the power shift northwards observed in Mesopotamia itself.
Evidence about Neolithic human cultures in Dilmun comes from flint tools and weapons. From later periods, cuneiform tablets, cylinder seals, pottery and even correspondence between rulers throw light on Dilmun. Written records mentioning the archipelago exist in Sumerian, Akkadian, Persian, Greek, and Latin sources.
Dilmun, sometimes described as 'the place where the sun rises' and 'the Land of the Living' is the scene of a Sumerian creation myth and the place where the deified Sumerian hero of the flood, Ziusudra (Utnapishtim), was taken by the gods to live for ever. After its actual decline Dilmun developed such a stylized mythology as a garden of exotic perfections that it appears to have influenced the story of the Garden of Eden. In a reverse process, literal-minded interpreters have sometimes tried to establish an Edenic garden at Dilmun.
There is mention of Dilmun as a vassal of Assyria in the 8th century BCE and by about 600 BCE it had been fully incorporated into the Neo-Babylonian Empire. Dilmun then falls into deep eclipse marked by the decline of the copper trade, so long controlled by Dilmun, and the switch to a less important role in the new trade of frankincense and spices. The discovery of an impressive palace at the Ras al Qalah site in Bahrain is promising to increase knowledge of this late period.
Otherwise there is virtually no information until the passage of Nearchus, the admiral in charge of Alexander the Great's fleet on the return from the Indus Valley. Nearchus kept to the Iranian coast of the Gulf, however, and cannot have stopped at Dilmun. Nearchus established a colony on the island of Falaika off the coast of Kuwait in the late 4th century BCE and explored the Gulf perhaps least as far south as Dilmun/Bahrain. From the time of Nearchus until the coming of Islam in the 7th century AD Dilmun/Bahrain was known by its Greek name of Tylos. Shapur II annexed it, together with eastern Arabia, into the Persian Sasanian Empire in the 4th century CE.
Archaeologists Recover More of the Land of Dilmun
Saar, Bahrain -June 3, 1998
In ancient times, the land of Dilmun was described as a virtual Garden of Eden, a land where the wolf and the lamb lived in harmony and youth was eternal.
Archaeologists today are uncovering more of that once-fabled land, revealing a prosperous trading society that had such abundant supplies of water that palm trees grew heavy with dates almost without effort.
"Fresh water just bubbled up out of the ground," said Jane Moon, one of the directors of the archaeological expedition at Saar. Saar was one of the towns in ancient Dilmun, which at different times encompassed what is now the Persian Gulf island of Bahrain and parts of eastern Saudi Arabia.
In about 1900 B.C., Saar was one of severalbustling towns in Bahrain apparently ruled from a city whose ruins are beneath a medieval fort six miles to the northeast. Merchants in the area grew rich as ships laden with copper from Oman stopped in Dilmun while traveling up the Persian Gulf to Babylon in Mesopotamia, which is in modern-day Iraq. The copper was later mixed with tin or lead to form bronze weapons and tools.
"This very small island ... suddenly got hold of a somewhat monopolizing role," said Dan Potts of Australia's University of Sydney. Dilmun was famous for its dates, which were popular in a region where the fruit remains common. Pearls, believed to have been called "fish eyes" in Mesopotamia, were also traded. In modern times, Bahrain had a famous pearling industry.
Traders' seals found in Saar show motifs such as the double swirl popular in Anatolia, likely evidence that trade routes stretched as far as present-day Turkey. Some 50 seals, most round and each about twice the size of a thumbnail, have been discovered. Dilmun achieved everlasting fame inMesopotamian religious texts, where it was lauded in mythological terms.
One text says:
"In Dilmun, the crow screams not,
the dar bird cries not dar-dar,
the lion kills not."
Archaeologists say the same text shows the Mesopotamians viewed Dilmun as a land of eternal youth. "Its old woman says not 'I am an old woman.' Its old man says not 'I am an old man,"' the text relates. Some experts say Dilmun's role as a port where ships took on food and water may have led to its glorified image among the Sumerians and later the Babylonians. Potts notes Dilmun myths predated major Bahrain settlements snd may have referred to earlier Dilmun communities in today's Saudi Arabia.
The ruins of Saar -- the only complete town found from the Dilmun period -- show some 80 stone houses, almost all with two rooms and a courtyard. It is not clear how many people lived in each room.
Next to the town is a graveyard with about 1,000 tombs. Bahrain is famous for having up to 150,000 burial mounds, but it's unclear why so many exist. At Saar's highest point sat a small temple for worship of local gods that probably also was used as an administrative center.
The town was abandoned in about the 17th century B.C. for reasons that remain a mystery. Moon theorizes a receding coastline prompted people to abandon the site. Potts says an interruption in the copper trade or changes in the water supply may have caused the town's demise. No written records from the settlement have been found.
More to come later :).
April 23rd, 2005, 06:00 PM
About the 'tree of life,' its an Acacia tree i believe...
It's called that because its past the typical Acacia tree's life span by a few hundred years now...Its believed to be about 400 yrs old i think...Its also got no known water source...So whatever water source it might have is a 'mystery'! lol..
Thats pretty much all there is to it...Its a bit of an oddity, a large tree in the middle of nowhere...
April 24th, 2005, 10:34 PM
I will say it again if I were the king of Bahrain I will add “Tree of Life” on the
Bahraini Spirit: This is so very very very amazing information you
provided! Keep going, I am reading and also sharing those information with
some friends. Keep it please but don’t pressure your self. Thank you.
Bahraini Patriot: Could you write Acacia in Arabic? Dose it mean the base?
Its also got no known water source...So whatever water source it might have is a 'mystery'! lol.
Wow subhan Allah!
April 24th, 2005, 11:28 PM
that would make it close to lebanon ;)
May 5th, 2005, 08:05 PM
this is quite interesting... i see some ancient ruins there
May 5th, 2005, 08:12 PM
Ya there are, nothin like Egypt or anythin of that scale, but hey they're 5000 years old (3rd oldest after mesopotamia and ancient egypt).
May 6th, 2005, 01:36 PM
May 6th, 2005, 07:40 PM
5000 years, from 3000 BC, some things are even older than that.
Dilmun was located on the crossroads of the trading routes between the Indus Valley and Mesopotamia. We know from Mesopotamian inscriptions and successive archaeological excavations that Dilmun was a major link between these early civilizations.
According to Mesopotamian records, particularly the Gilgamesh epic,
Dilmun was regarded as a Holy Land. It played a significant role in the history of the ancient world. The articles on exhibit in this hall were found in the graves, settlements and temples of Bahrain.
The most ancient objects are flint tools and weapons belonging to Stone Age who hunted here more than 7000 years ago. The Hall's major finds relate to Dilmun's main historical periods:
Formative Dilmun (3200 - 2200 BC):
It is in this period that the earliest mention of name "Dilmun" occurs in Mesopotamian inscriptions. New civilizations had emerged.
Early Dilmun (2200 - 1600 BC):
This was the Golden Age of Dilmun during which it reached the zenith of its prosperity and influence. Dilmun controlled the trading routes and built fortified cities, magnificent temples and thousands of burial mounds.
Middle Dilmun (1600 - 1000 BC):
Mesopotamia was under Kassite rule at this time. The correspondence between rulers, cuneiform tablets, cylinder seals and pottery on display is all evidence of interaction between Dilmun and Mesopotamia.
Late Dilmun (1000 - 330 BC):
This period was marked by the decline of the copper trade, so long controlled by Dilmun, and the switch to a less important role in the new flourishing trade of incense and spices. The discovery of the impressive Uperi Palace at Ras al Qalah greatly increased our knowledge of this period.
The collection of Dilmun seals feature prominently in this Hall. The round stamp seals, as opposed to the square seals of neighbouring civilizations, are the primary evidence that Dilmun had its own trade relations with the outside world. The exhibits trace the sequence of development of the stamp seals over time as represented by the variety of materials and social and religious subjects portrayed.
May 7th, 2005, 10:49 AM
But civilizations , most of them are measured not when they emerged,
e.g there was a civilization in Iran 7000 years back, howwever it was not flourising, and this is why they measure it from the dates it started getting, or begining to take shape , enter golden age !
May 7th, 2005, 01:47 PM
Bahrain has some stuff that's 7000 years and older than that. Trust me, Bahrain is very old, even older than Dilmun, it's just you need to find a city or a castle (somethin like that) to declare a civilization, you can't just say someone lived there or somethin happened, doesn't work that way.
May 7th, 2005, 04:41 PM
That is exaclty what i'm trying to explain,
When you say civilization existed, you must measure from those days its was known, has influence, history, stamp print on region it belongs to, and this is how Bahrain was declared to 4000 years of history, starting from Golden ages. Its not me who's saying these stuff, archiologests do,
May 7th, 2005, 05:01 PM
The last time I read a report, it mentioned 3000 BC, dunno really why everyone says somethin else, hehe for them it's only a 1000 years ;).
May 7th, 2005, 05:15 PM
Them? be serious
May 7th, 2005, 05:19 PM
I meant whomever posted the articles and reports, go look for them on the net. I was bein serious in a funny way if you didn't get my msg hehe.