Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Iram of the Pillars
Iram of the Pillars (إرَم ذات العماد) is a lost city located on the Arabian Peninsula.
The Qur'an (e.g., Sura 89 ) describes Iram as a city built by the tribe of Ad that was destroyed by Allah because of the sins of its inhabitants. The ruins of the city lie buried somewhere in the sands of the Rub' al Khali. Iram (alternately spelled Irem) became known to Western literature with the translation of the The Book of One Thousand and One Nights.
Recent discoveries have brought Iram out of the realm of myth into history. The first came when tablets found in the archives of Ebla were found to mention Iram by name. A more recent discovery occurred when archaeologists examined photographs taken of the Persian Gulf Coast from the space shuttle Challenger in 1984. These photos revealed a number of buried cities along the ancient frankincense trade route dating from 2800 BC and 100 BC. One, located on the eastern edge of Oman in the Dhofar Province , proved to be a city known as Ubar, which is usually identified with Iram.
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