Stone Constructions, Graves at Wadi Khudrah



Stone Constructions, Graves at Wadi Khudrah

Wadi Khudrah, at the head of Wadi Sharm, is a large oasis tucked inside the long curve of the wadi. It is an ideal destination for school trips and the Al Ain chapter has taken several classes of students to the oasis over the years.

The oasis is interesting for the range of stone constructions and the large cemetery.

At one time, the oasis was known for its "crop circles". These constructions, located on the gravel plain overlooking the oasis, were unclear for some time. On one field trip, however, some residents of the oasis explained several of the buildings. Each circle, one man said, were to be used as a majlis. He also pointed out a school and an Eid prayer ground.

The group was already aware of the extensive Islamic cemetery and the mosque located nearby.

The photos in this collection show some of the detail of these buildings and sites.

khudrah_01.jpg
Deliberately placed stones are indications of some kind of structure
khudrah_02.jpg
Well-constructed walls are the easiest to spot
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This wall a typical 'two-wall, gravel-filled' wall we see in mountain structures
khudrah_04.jpg
The purpose of this wall is uncertain
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Detail of one of the Khudrah walls
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Most walls are not more than two or three courses
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This wall is part of the old school building
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This wall appears to fade into the gravel plain
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The school building included a small room, perhaps provided for the instructor
khudrah_10.jpg
All stones used appeared to be from the top of the gravel plain based on the covering of desert varnish
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Some sections of wall had very little fill material
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Pottery in the area of the buildings is very minimal
khudrah_13.jpg
The walls outline the school
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Base of a small pot
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Gently curving wall of one of the many majlis constructions
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Another section of majlis wall
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Laurence inspecting another of the majlis buildings
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Photo showing how all rocks appear to have been removed from inside the wall
khudrah_19.jpg
Some constructions remain a mystery
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Another construction that could be an ancient grave
khudrah_21.jpg
Placed stones but the function unknown 
khudrah_22.jpg
Wall of a majlis
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Section of wall for one of the larger buildings, perhaps a house
khudrah_24.jpg
General view of plain with several small constructions, purpose unknown
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View from opposite angle 
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This site was described as house by one oasis resident
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The wall construction is minimal for this house putting the claim in some doubt
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Most likely a small pen for a newborn lamb; the ewe would stay with the lamb for a few days
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Another view of the building reported to be a house
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A mound of stained stones near a small scattering of graves
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A majlis
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Detail of the wall of the majlis
khudrah_33.jpg
Manmade but function unknown given poor condition
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What appears to be a grave with a pile of stones on top; very unusual
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Another gravesite perhaps
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Another view of what may be an ancient grave
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More typical early Islamic grave with two stone markers
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Remains of a 'bait khaimah' near several graves
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Detail of one wall of the 'bait khaimah'
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Another section of wall of the house
khudrah_41.jpg
Beneath a pair of acacia trees are several graves, including infant graves
khudrah_42.jpg
Three graves
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Adult grave
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Evidently the grave of a juvenile
khudrah_45.jpg
Another juvenile grave near the house
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The large cemetery
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Child's grave in the large cemetery
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The cemetery at Khudrah is one of the largest Islamic cemeteries in the area
khudrah_49.jpg
Some graves at the site appear to be very recent
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Another section of the cemetery
khudrah_51.jpg
The open-air mosque
khudrah_52.jpg
Another view of the open-air mosque
khudrah_53.jpg
A child's grave, perhaps, but with unusual construction
khudrah_54.jpg
Two-walled construction below the cemetery
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This could be a simple retaining wall
khudrah_56.jpg
Terrace wall construction
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What appears to be a square majlis
khudrah_58.jpg
Detail of a section of wall of the square majlis
khudrah_59.jpg
Near the square majlis, the low walls are very thick
khudrah_60.jpg
Tall sloping wall surrounding small terraces
khudrah_61.jpg
As indicated, the wall is over a meter in height
khudrah_62.jpg
The stone construction includes gravel fill
khudrah_63.jpg
Two walls on two elevations
khudrah_64.jpg
Odd location for walls; no terraces or structures in the area
khudrah_66.jpg
The weir directing water into the oasis, one of three water sources
khudrah_67.jpg
View downstream from the weir





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