Oman differs from other Arab countries of the Arabian Peninsula and the Gulf region in having a long history as a unified state. It is also famous as a seafaring nation and for the Ibadi tradition of Islam practised by most of the population. This volume contains the proceedings of a conference held in Tubingen in May 2011 with the aim of highlighting other, previously little known or studied aspects of Omans history. The conference focused on the complex interrelationships between Oman and other countries bordering the Indian Ocean, and on views from outside of Omans culture and religion. Researchers from a wide range of disciplines examined these questions and the approaches and conclusions presented here are similarly wide ranging, from the pre-Islamic archaeology of Oman and the multiple languages of East Africa to the economic and cultural ties between Latin America and Oman. The technology and history of shipbuilding are also examined, using previously little-known source material. But however varied their themes, all the essays clearly emphasise Omans significance as an economic and cultural bridge between the eastern and western Indian Ocean.