DAWRAQ (or Dawraq al-Fors), name of a district (kūra; Moqaddasī, pp. 406-07), also known as Sorraq, and of a town that was sometimes its chef-lieu in medieval Islamic times. The town lay 78 km southeast of Ahvāz; its modern successor is Šādagān, situated 30° 40’ N, 48° 40’ E.
According to early geographers, Dawraq was a fine and prosperous town, through which pilgrims from Fārs and Kermān passed en route to Mecca (see Le Strange, Lands, p. 247; Schwarz, Iran, pp. 370-74; Ḥodūd al-ʿālam, tr. Minorsky, p. 130). Abū Dolaf’s mention (sec. 67, comm. pp. 111-12) in the 10th century of Sasanian ruins, which he attributed to Qobāḏ b. Dārā (i.e., Kawād I, 488-531), points to a pre-Islamic history for the place. It lay on the banks of a river of the same name, which flowed into the head of the Persian Gulf and was connected by a canal with the lower Kārūn river. The marshy area between Dawraq and the Persian Gulf was, and still is, known as Dawraqestān, and on the coast there was an anchorage for ships arriving from India.
In 999/1590-91 the district of Dawraq fell temporarily into the hands of the Mošaʿšaʿa wālī (governor) of Ḥowayza, Sayyed Mobārak b. Moṭṭaleb; in 1029/1620 Emāmqolī Khan, beglerbeg of Fārs, regained it for Shah ʿAbbās I (Eskandar Beg, pp. 951-52). In the 18th century the Kaʿb Arabs took over from the Afšār tribe, and Shaikh Salmān built a new settlement called Fallāḥīya south of Dawraq, which subsequently fell into ruins; in the late 19th century the descendants of Salmān were still in possession of Fallāḥīya (Curzon, Persian Question II, pp. 322-25; Lockhart).
In 1302 Š./1933 the name of Fallāḥīya was changed to Šādagān, which is now the administrative center of a baḵš (district) of the same name in the šahrestān (subprovince) of Ḵorramšahr in the province of Ḵūzestān; in 1339 Š./1960 the baḵš had a population of ca. 55,000 people (Razmārā, Farhang VI, p. 228).
Abū Dolaf Mesʿar b. Mohalhel Yanbūʿī, al-Resāla al-ṯānīya, ed. and tr. V. Minorsky as Abū-Dulaf’s Travels in Iran (circa 950 A.D), Cairo, 1955.
L. Lockhart, “Dawraḳ,” EI2 II, p. 181.
J. Perry, Karim Khan Zand, Chicago, 1979, pp. 32-33, 161-63.
(C. Edmund Bosworth)
Originally Published: December 15, 1994
Last Updated: November 18, 2011
This article is available in print.
Vol. VII, Fasc. 2, p. 159