Oman: The Land of Frankincense

  • through December 12, 2022
  • The State Hermitage Museum, Saint Petersburg
This exhibit presents finds from archeological excavations carried out in the Sultanate of Oman over the past 50 years, with treasures dating from the third to first millennium BCE. The exhibition includes metal artifacts, stone mijmars (incense burners), an Indus seal bearing inscription and a stone countenance from a temple of Sin, the god of the moon. The objects tell how the Gulf region played a significant role as a center for the spread and propagation of cultural processes. The interests of Mesopotamian and Indus civilizations intersected, and encounters with them led to the fusion of a local culture. Four themes run through the exhibit: The first is devoted to Magan, the oldest-known civilization on the territory of Oman. The second shows the legendary land of Frankincense, to which four UNESCO World Heritage Sites belong. The third and fourth connect with the Iron Age and demonstrate the snake cults that existed in the Arabia Peninsula before the transition to monotheism.
The National Museum of Oman
Vessel, soft stone, 1200 to 800 BCE.
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