Civilopedia Entry Edit
The trade flowing through Muscat has been its lifeblood for at least two millennia. Nestled against the foothillls of the Al Hajar mountains, Ptolemy called it the Hidden Port ('Cryptus Portus') as early as the 1st Century. Unfortunately the city was not hidden well enough—its prime location at the mouth of the Persian Gulf has long since made it a tempting target for conquest.
Over the centuries Muscat's port has flown many banners: Sassanid, Arabian (under which it converted to Islam in the 7th Century), Abbasid, Seljuk, and Persian, to name a few. In the early 16th Century, a Portuguese admiral sought to open trade relations—with cannons, burning most of Muscat to the ground. It was rebuilt and remained under Portuguese rule until 1650, when the Omani forced them out and reclaimed the port city.
Muscat has long come to conflict with the interior tribes of Oman, most commonly over self-governance. Amidst one such period of turmoil in the 18th Century rose the Al Bu Sa'id dynasty, which has remained unbroken through modern times. Today, an extensively modernized Muscat serves as Oman's capital and remains an important trading port.
- Muscat's city-state symbol is a stylized version of the National emblem of Oman.