Muscat – National Museum of Oman has released a six-part book series titled The Sultanate of Oman in Time and Place. Aimed at young readers, the series spotlights significant figures from Omani history, from the 2nd to the 20th century.
Each story, accompanied by imaginative illustrations by Syrian writer, illustrator and artist Lujaina al Aseel, was thoroughly vetted by a team from the National Museum and other researchers and writers.
The museum’s aim in launching this series is to familiarise the youth with these historical icons who made indelible imprints in Oman’s history. By doing so, it hopes to inspire future generations, instil noble Omani values, and deepen their connection with their homeland, heritage and culture.
The series includes stories about diverse personalities, like Al Khalil bin Ahmad al Farahidi, dubbed the ‘Smartest Arab’ who compiled the first Arabic dictionary, and Ahmed bin Majid al Saadi, known as ‘Lion of the Seas’.
One volume features the life and work of Talib bin Mishmal al Manhi, famed for his calligraphy and engraving.
The series includes Skilled Doctor on Rashid bin Omaira al Ayni al Rustaqi, which traces the significant milestones in his life, from his formative years to emergence as a proficient doctor, pharmacist, scientist and poet. Acknowledging his scientific contributions, Unesco named him the most influential Omani personality in the fields of medicine and pharmacy in 2013.
One book – Mama Fatima – chronicles the journey of a contemporary figure, Dr Fatima bint Salem al Maamari, a pioneer in Omani education and the first woman from Oman and the Gulf to receive a doctoral degree in 1955. Saeed Oman and Zanzibar tells the story of Said bin Sultan al Busaidi, ruler of Oman and Zanzibar for over half a century. His significant contributions include the introduction of clove cultivation in Zanzibar and the establishment of an impressive commercial and military fleet with nearly a hundred vessels of varying sizes, capacities and armaments.
National Museum exhibits artefacts associated with these notable figures.
As part of its community outreach programme, the museum’s learning centre is collaborating with local organisations to make the series accessible in various governorates of Oman.