Sites & cities that bear the name of Iraq al-Amir

Iraq al-Amir

Today in : Jordan
First trace of activity : ca. 8,000 B.C.E
Last trace of activity : today
Recorded names : Tyros, عراق الأمير, Araq el-Amir, Qasr al-Abd, Al-Iraq

Description : 'Iraq al-Amir or Araq el-Amir (Arabic:عراق الأمير - literally, "Caves of the Prince"), is the name shared by a town and nearby caves, within the municipality of Amman in the Jordan Valley. Located about 15 km southwest of the town of Wadi as-Seer, it has a population of about 6000 people, mostly members of the Abbadi tribe. It is located on hills with high and medium altitude, in an area with many springs and famous for its olive trees and other forest trees. About 0.5 km south of the town stands the archaeological site known as Al-Iraq, dominated by a partially restored palace known locally as Qasr Al-Abd, literally "Palace of the Servant", perhaps in connection to the name etched in the nearby caves, believed to be the name of the owner of the ancient estate. There are many caves in the hills which were inhabited during the Copper Age. The area was first settled in the Middle Stone Age (10,000-8000) BCE. The caves dwellings continued to be used throughout the Bronze Age, as well as the first and second parts of the Iron Age. Settlement continued throughout the 5th and 4th centuries BCE, and most flourished into the Hellenistic period, after Alexander the Great conquered the region in 332 BCE. Ptolemy Philadelphus built a city there, transferring population from Tyre in Phoenicia, so that during Hellenistic rule, Iraq al-Amir was known under the Greek name Tyros. The city particularly prospered in the Byzantine period. It was built around the 3rd century BCE, and reused under Byzantine rule before being destroyed by an earthquake. Pieces of Islamic pottery were also discovered at the site, specifically from the Umayyad and Mamluk times.

See on map »