Metal Detecting in Jordan


If you are a regular visitor to the Joan Allen Facebook page then you should be aware of Julian-Evan Hart and all of his latest finds.

This month on the Joan Allen blog we featured an introduction of Jules’ trip to Jordan in the Middle East and his metal detecting exploits in the country.

On his travels, Jules found everything from late Roman mosaics, relics from the Ottoman empire, Venetian coins, to shell casings and World War I relics. He even did the typical tourist photo on a camel!

Here’s some of Julian’s top finds from his time in Jordan:


A wonderful late Roman mosaic in the lost city of Petra.



The relics of war – here we see numerous small finds, from shell casings, buttons oil lamp wick sections etc.



Various head stamps from Turkish Mauser rounds.


Ottoman soldier losses from World War one, here we see, personal seals, a small gilded chape a Turkish star and crushed finger ring with a floral design bezel.



Didn’t expect to find this – a Venetian coin high up on a remote Jordanian mountain side.



Incredible in 1917 a group of Ottoman soldiers placed some stones around one of the tents in their encampment over nine decades later the stones remain the same…untouched…..hundreds of Ottoman soldiers buttons were found in this area.

The most satisfying thing about detecting is sharing your latest finds with like-minded people. Julian says:

“As detectorists sharing with others our experiences and finds should be considered to be a big part of our hobby and enjoyment. Sharing gives other people pleasure in seeing what you have found and also allows academic research to progress.

Whilst I was in Jordan we shared our finds rather publicly on a table just outside the hotel doors….tourists and locals came over in considerable numbers, some of them are shown in the photo (see above).

In some cases local people provided translations and dates for the seal matrices that we had found. On the table we can sea a huge selection of finds, mainly buttons and bullet casings, which was the result of searching one tiny section of a battle site for just three days so you can see the quantity of items located and the potential as in many cases for what remains buried on such sites.”

Have you been detecting anywhere recently? Share your finds and follow all of Jules’ latest exploits as well on the Joan Allen Facebook page.

6 Responses to Metal Detecting in Jordan

  1. Mike Bailey says:

    Really interesting article, i have always fancied detecting abroad, but the restrictions have always put me off, Germany and Holland have always been on my wish list, so maybe i will research deeper into the legislation in those countries and make the effort next year, when i will be holidaying in Holland , any information would be gratefully recieved.

  2. Chris Sprake says:

    Hi, There. I have just been reading your post from last year, about your detecting adventures in Jordan. I also live in Jordan,Amman. and also wonder of going around the north west of Jordan near the Um Quays area. I cant find anywhere written if there is laws on detecting here in Jordan did you see any? any info would be great. happy hunting. Best Regards Chris Sprake.

    • Chris,

      We contacted Julian Evan-Hart and he has this reply for you;

      “Hi Chris nice to hear from you.

      OK when I travelled to Jordan we had permits granted by the Ministry of Antiquities and then authorised by the Royal Family. These were very hard to get and no end of officials were not happy at all until we showed them this paperwork which we detectorists had to keep on us at all times in case questioned… and we were……….. although there is a minimal amount of illicit metal detecting in Jordan it is as far as I know strictly illegal otherwise. However the university we worked with was based near Ma`an and had a well developed antiquities / archaeological dept… sorry I cannot recall the precise university, but imagine there is only one… it may well be worth contacting them with a suggestion of assisting them on some projects… sorry I cant be of any more help….Jules.

      PS do let me know if you have any success.”

      Hope this helps!

  3. Vic says:

    Hi Joan, I know this was posted a long time ago, but fascinating. My wife is from Jordan and I’ve always wanted to take a detector, but read it was illegal. I saw how you got a permit. Did you have to give the government or University your finds? Just curious. Vic

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