Jurash: An Ancient City and its Tribe Called “Alawasej” between the Past and the Present
الشهراني، عبد الرحمن علي سعيد بن محي. مدينة جُرَش الأثرية و قبيلة العواسج بين الماضي و الحاضر. الإسكندرية: مؤسسة حورس الدولية للنشر و التوزيع، ٢٠٠٥، ٢٤٥ص.

Al-Shahrani,‘Abd al-Rahman Ali bin Sa‘id bin Muhiy. Madinat Jurash al-Athariyyah wa-Qabilat al-ʻAwasij bayna al-Madi wa-al-Hadir. Alexandria: Muʼassasat Hurus al-Dawliyyah lil-Nashr wa-al-Tawzi‘, 2005, 245pp.


 Jurash : an Ancient City and its Tribe Called “Alawasej” Between the Past and the Present

مدينة جرش الأثرية و قبيلة العواسج بين الماضي و الحاضر

In this book, the author endeavours to depict an accurate picture of the city of Jurash and its tribe called “Alawasej”, including its origins and roots.

In the seven chapters of the book, the author deals with many subjects, including the emigration of the Alawasej tribe from Yemen to Jurash city, their settlement in this region, and their religious practices before the advent of Islam. He covers also the conversion of the tribe to Islam. He discusses the political, military and economic conditions of the Alawasej tribe at that time, especially after the establishment of the Yafaria Hawalia state in Jurash. 

The author also discusses the relationship of the Alawasej tribe with its neighbours belonging to other Islamic sects namely Qarmatians, Ismailis and Zaidiyyahs. Some prominent personalities of the Alawasej tribe, who contributed to the development of Jurash city in the fields of politics and cultural history, are mentioned. There are also references to some people who ruled the area especially during the rule of Saudi Arabia. 

The book is unique in the sense that it combines art and history. It provides also a meticulous archaeological description of the city of Jurash and provides historical events in detail from the migration of the Alawasej tribe from Yemen until its annexation by Saudi Arabia. The author has relied on medieval sources, particularly that of Hamdani in order to establish the value of his arguments. Despite its short length, this book is very useful to researchers of Arab tribal history before and after Islam. The book is objective and its archaeological and historical information generally accurate. 

Sahibe Alam Azami Nadwi

Azami Nadwi, Sahibe Alam. “English abstract of 'of Jurash : an Ancient City and its Tribe Called “Alawasej” Between the Past and the Present'". Translated by Sahibe Alam Azami Nadwi. In Cities as Built and Lived Environments: Scholarship from Muslim Contexts, 1875 to 2011, by Aptin Khanbaghi. 81. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2014.
Muslim Civilisations Abstracts - The Aga Khan University
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