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The Ruins of Khor Rori, a.k.a. "Sumhuram"
|Location||Dhofar Governorate, Oman|
Khor Rorī (Arabic: خور روري) is an ancient south Arabian archaeological site near Salalah, Oman. The fortified city was founded as an outpost for the kingdom of Hadhramaut (Hadramautic 𐩢𐩳𐩧𐩣𐩥𐩩 ḥḍrmwt) at the end of the first century BC, initially it was founded primarily with defensive function then developed later into a city in the first century AD. The foundation of the city by the king of Hardamaut is closely associated with rising importance of sea trade at the end of the first century BC between the Mediterranean and India. In this period, the Hadrami kingdom was economically and politically dependent on its ability to control the coastal region.
Inscriptions at Khor Rori reports that the town of Sumhuram (Hadramautic s1mhrm), was founded on royal initiative and settled by Hadhrami emigrants. The Dhofar region was the main source of frankincense in the ancient period, and it seems likely that the foundation of the settlement by the Hadhramaut was in part motivated by wish to control the production of this valuable commodity. Most scholars identify Khor Rori with the frankincense exporting port of Moscha Limen mentioned in this region in the first century CE merchants guide, the Periplus of the Erythraean Sea.
Khor Rorī / Sumhuram was first discovered by James Theodore Bent during his travels in the region in the late 19th century. The site has been excavated by the American Foundation for the Study of Man (AFSM) in the early 1950s and by the Italian Mission to Oman (IMTO) since 1994. The excavations have uncovered the ground plan of the settlement and has attested maritime contacts with the Ḥaḑramite homeland, India and the Mediterranean. It was inscribed in 2000, along with other sites along the Incense Route in Oman, as part of the World Heritage site "Land of Frankincense".
- Alessandra & Roberto 2001, p. 249.
- Potter, George and Wellington, Richard. Lehi's Trail: From the Valley of Lemuel to Nephi's Harbor.http://maxwellinstitute.byu.edu/publications/jbms/?vol=15&num=2&id=415