Full text: New perspectives to save cultural heritage

CIP A 2003 XIX th International Symposium, 30 September - 04 October, 2003, Antalya, Turkey 
bridge crossing the ditch in front of the gate. From this point 
a street runs straight eastward to the center of the city. 
Covered by a small part of the magnetometer survey outside 
the city several structures appeared. Yet they are difficult to 
interprete by the recent state of the survey. But since they are 
oriented to the groundplan of the city they are likely to be 
contemporary to the Abbasidic site. 
Some 50 m east from the gate in the eastern city wall a large 
building complex (Figure 4) is visible, the largest part of it 
extending ca. 70 m from east to west. It is found in the region 
where v. Oppenheim identified “barracks” and “stables”. 
This region borders to the north of the ruins still huge which 
Oppenheim has identified as the “palace of the caliph”. 
To evaluate the results of the survey regarding the initial aim 
of research it is necessary to consider the conditions under 
which the magnetometer survey was taken through. While 
multiple factors have impact on the successful use of a 
survey technique in the case of Kharab Sayyar many 
statements are clearly influenced by the state of preservation 
and the heterogen materials used for construction. To 
articulate both the statements derived from positive structures 
as well as restrictions of statements derived from the 
discussion of the conditions under which the survey was 
taken through makes the interpretation a liable source of data. 
With the state of the magnetometer survey by September 
2002 the knowledge about the topography of Kharab Sayyar 
has grown. The resulting city map allows the archaeologist to 
view his excavation data from another perspective. Further 
research can be planned efficiently. Moreover an enduring 
cultural heritage management now has detailed knowledge 
about the site and thus the set of arguments has grown to 
protect it from destruction by erosion or recent human 
Buthmann N./Posselt M./Zickgraf B., 2001. Magnetometer 
survey of an early Muslim settlement in Kharab Sayyar, 
north-east Syria. In: Abstracts of the Contributions of the 
26th General Assembly of the European Geophysical Society, 
Nice, France, 25-30 March, 2001. Geophysical Research 
Abstracts Vol. 3, 2001, p. 1506. 
Ettinghausen R./Grabar O., 1987. The Art and Architecture 
of Islam: 650-1250. Yale University Press, New Haven and 
Figure 4. Kharrab Sayyar. Detail with large builing complex. 
Inbetween the larger and more obvious objects the usual 
dwelling architecture can be found. But in seldom cases only 
more or less complete groundplans can be found. In most 
cases only single or irregular sets of walls are visible. 
Meyer J.-W., 2000. Die zweite Grabungskampagne in 
Kharab Sayyar 1999. Mitteilungen der Deutschen Orient 
Gesellschaft 132, 297-309. 
Meyer J.-W./Al-Khalaf M./Musa I./Breitwieser C./Doemer 
S./Würz M./Zysek A., 2001. Die dritte Grabungskampagne in 
Kharab Sayyar 2000. Mitteilungen der Deutschen Orient 
Gesellschaft 133, 199-223. 
A magnetometer survey detected several elements of the 
topography of Kharab Sayyar. Adding to the knowledge 
about the city derived from the desription of Baron von 
Oppenheim and the ruins visible at the sight a detailed map is 
the result. The localization of buildings and facilities of the 
Abbasidic city and the identification of their function 
succeeded. Embedded in the system of streets a mosque 
neighbouring a market street (suq) can be determined. The 
market street runs across the northern part of the city from 
the northern citywall to the center so far as it is investigated 
now. Several details of mosque (walls and piles of columes) 
and market (walls of the shops) are visible. Furthermore 
several large buildings and sets of buildings did appear, in 
most cases showing a tendency to concentrate along the 
market street, but their function remaining speculative. The 
main elements and several details of the city's fortification 
system including a gate are clearly visible. And also outside 
the city structures of unknown function appeared 
unexpectedly which seem to be oriented to the city and thus 
likely to be contemporary with it. 
Moortgat-Correns, U., 1992. Charab Sejar. Gebr. Mann 
Verlag, Berlin. 
Posselt M., 2002. Die Magnetometer-Prospektion in Kharab 
Sayyar im September 2000. Mitteilungen der Deutschen 
Orient Gesellschaft 134, forthcoming. 
Zickgraf B., 1999. Geomagnetische und geoelektrische 
Prospektion in der Archäologie. Systematik - Geschichte - 
Anwendung. Verlag Marie Leidorf, Rhaden/Westf. 
I would like to thank Prof. Dr. J.-W. Meyer, Goethe- 
University Frankfurt/Main for the permission to publish the 
results of the magnetometer survey. Thanks to his endeavour 
towards the investigation of Kharab Sayyar he enabled the 
Furthermore I would like to thank the numerous students and 
local working men, who helped at fieldwork.

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