Muscat and Oman

  • S. H. Steinberg
Part of the The Statesman’s Yearbook book series (SYBK)


The independent Sultanate of Muscat and Oman is situated at the easterly corner of Arabia. Its seaboard is nearly 1,000 miles long and extends from the Ras al Khaimah Shaikhdom near Tibat on the east side of the Musandum Peninsula to Ras Dharbat Ali, which marks the boundary between the Sultanate of Muscat and Oman and the territory of the Sultan of Kishen and Socotra, which is within the Aden Protectorate. A small strip of the coast on the east side of the Musandum Peninsula from Dibah to Khor Kalba is administered by 2 shaikhs of Trucial Oman, independent of the Sultan. The sultanate extends inland to the borders of the Rub’ al Khali (‘Empty Quarter’ of the Great Desert). Physically Muscat and Oman consists of three divisions—a coastal plain, a range of hills and a plateau. The coastal plain varies in width from 10 miles near Suwaiq to practically nothing in the vicinity of Matrah and Muscat towns, where the hüls descend abruptly into the sea. The mountain range runs generally from north-west to south-east. It reaches its greatest height in the Jebel Akhdhar region, where heights of over 9,000 ft occur. The hills are for the most part barren but in the high area round Jebel Akdhar they are green and there is considerable cultivation. The plateau has an average height of 1,000 ft. With the exception of oases there is little or no cultivation. North-west of Muscat the coastal plain, known as the Batinah, is fertile and prosperous. The date gardens extend for over 150 miles. The Batinah dates are famous for their flavour; they ripen in the first half of July, well before the Basra dates. The coastline between Muscat and the province of Dhofar is barren. The fertile province of Dhofar lies on the south-eastern coast of Arabia. Sugar-cane is grown and cattle can be raised. Its principal town is Salalah on the coast, while Murbat is the port.

Sultanat Masqat wa Oman


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Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 1963

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. H. Steinberg
    • 1
  1. 1.The Royal Historical SocietyUK

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