|Country||United Arab Emirates|
Dhaid, or Al Dhaid, is the capital of the Central Region of the Emirate of Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates. An oasis town, it has extensive irrigated date palm plantations with water channelled from the nearby Hajar mountains at least in part through ancient tunnels dug for that purpose, known as aflaj in Arabic (falaj in the singular).
Dhaid has long occupied a strategic location in the mouth of the important Wadi Siji.
At the turn of the 20th Century, Dhaid consisted of some 140 houses, owned by sections of the Tanaij, Bani Qitab and Khawatir tribes, including larger houses with mud brick towers. It also had a four-towered Al-Qasimi fort, featuring two round and two square towers.
The town was maintained for the Ruler of Sharjah by a wali, who would collect tithes in the form of dates, as well as water rates (paying 228 Marie Theresa Thalers in 1906). These revenues became core to an Al Qasimi family dispute over Dhaid in the 1920s.
Dhaid became the seat of the deposed Ruler of Sharjah Sheikh Khalid bin Ahmad Al Qasimi when, in June 1927, an agreement was reached between Sultan bin Saqr Al Qasimi and Khalid bin Ahmad to provide for the upkeep of the deposed ruler's family. This ceded the fort at Dhaid and the revenues of the inland oasis town to Khalid bin Ahmad. Dhaid, in 1906, generated some 228 Marie Theresa Dollars annually in water rates, as well as revenue from the sale of dates.
Although he had Sultan bin Saqr's agreement, Khalid remained in Umm Al Qawain and sent some of his men to Dhaid to occupy his newly acquired property as the Bedouin who had manned the fort for Sultan were still active in the area. With the support of the Sheikhs of the Bedouin Bani Ka'ab and Na'im tribes, who favoured any scheme which would weaken Sharjah, it was agreed that the ruler of Ras Al Khaimah, Sultan bin Salim Al Qasimi, would possess Dhaid 'on behalf of Khaled bin Ahmad'. This arrangement was not fully supported by Sultan bin Salim himself, who feared antagonising Saq bin Khalid and also believed Khalid bin Ahmad would represent an ongoing financial burden with little hope of any return other than conflict.
Khalid bin Ahmad finally took full possession of Dhaid in his own right in July 1928.
Dhaid is located on the desert plain East of the coastal City of Sharjah and is bisected by the East/West Road from Sharjah to Masafi in the foothills of the Hajar Mountains. To its North lies the inland oasis town of Umm al-Quwain emirate, Falaj al-Moalla, while the road South leads to the town of Madam on the Dubai/Hatta Road. The Sharjah/Mileiha/Kalba road passes to the south of the town.
Dhaid is an oasis town, fed both by seasonal wadis and by underground aquifers and water sources. It has extensive date palms and other plantations.
Places of interest
Jebel Mileiha, some 20 km to the South of Dhaid, is the site of 'Fossil Rock', a popular off-road destination and now home to the Mleiha Archaeological Centre, which displays important archaeological finds from the area dating back 125,000 years, through the Umm Al Nar era to the later Hellenistic period, including 2nd Century BCE coins.
- Heard-Bey, Frauke (1990). From Trucial States to United Arab Emirates. UK: Longman. p. 179. ISBN 0582277280.
- Heard-Bey, Frauke (2004). From Trucial States to United Arab Emirates. Motivate. pp. 91–6. ISBN 9781860631672.
- Lorimer, John (1908). The Gazetteer of the Persian Gulf, Oman and Central Arabia. Government of India.
- "Tetradrachm of Ab'iel found near Mileiha" (PDF). Retrieved November 2014. Check date values in: