Cairo

Archive for the ‘Cairo’ Category

And now for something completely different!  Terry Jones of Monty Python fame teams up with Egyptologist Dr. Joann Fletcher to give us a look at everyday life in ancient Egypt by comparing it to everyday life in modern Egypt.

Food and fun, work and play, you will be surprised by how much remains the same.  Summary, analysis, and some really cool video clips wait inside!

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tus-tabOriginally commissioned by President Anwar Sadat to memorialize the soldiers who died in the October 1973 War, the President himself would die within sight of the memorial, which would become his final resting place. 

This modern-day pyramid symbolizes the eternal spirit of the Egyptian people and their long, complex history.

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dam-tabThe number one natural resource in Egypt is history.  Unlike its oil-rich neighbors, the Egyptian economy relies on the foreign money of tourists who fly into Cairo from all points of the compass to see colossal monuments, puzzle over cyclopean architecture, and experience walking where the ancients once lived out their days.  This has resulted in an organic fusion of the very ancient with the ultra modern. 

No place on earth exemplifies this merger like Cairo.  This photo essay takes a look at some instances where the ancient meets the modern.

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post tab 0012Built more than 1,100 years ago, the Mosque of ibn Tulun still looks largely the way it did when first constructed, although the entire city that was built around it was destroyed just 26 years later.  

The mosque tells the story of a court servant, the son of a Turkish slave, who came to rule all of Egypt and part of Syria.  He would rise to declare independence for his kingdom–as well as himself–from those who once owned him.  This article will explore the history of Ahmad ibn Tulun and the mosque that bears his name.

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post tab 0011Coptic Cairo occupies the oldest part of the oldest part of a very old city, and is of historical import to no less than four empires, three world religions, the two most important men in the Bible, and one of the oldest languages still spoken.  It is the heart of Old Cairo and the birthplace of the city itself. 

The architecture of Coptic Cairo tells the story of the passing of the ancient world and the drama of how the East and the West established a delicate coexistence, sometimes violent, sometimes peaceful, all within the space of a few city blocks.

This article looks at the history of the Coptic Quarter with special attention given to the Churches of Saints Sergius and Mary, and the Synagogue of Ben Ezra. 

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post tab 0010For seven centuries the Citadel was the seat of Islamic supremacy in Egypt.  Like the pharaohs of old, the sultans built magnificent symbols of power and piety, pushed the boundaries of architecture and engineering, and wrote their history in stone and gold.  If the pyramids are the most obvious symbols of ancient royalty, the Citadel of Salah al-Din is clearly the emblem of the Muslim dynasties.

This article will take you around the Citadel, behind its walls, and into the heart of its most sacred space. 

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