Friday, August 31, 2007

Daily Photo - Qasr Ibrim

Qasr Ibrim (Per-Mit/Premis) is the only site above water level that actually remains in its original location. It was fomerly located on a tall headland, which now forms a small island (it takes quite a leap of the imagination to visualize the island as a headland). The site is currently being excavated by the Egypt Exploration Society. Located opposite the important ancient regional centre Aniba, it dates from the New Kingdom, if not earlier, and has a mud brick temple built by the Twenty Fifth Dynasty Nubian king Taharqa, which was later occupied by Christian worshipers in the Coptic period. Tourist boats are allowed to approach Qasr Ibrim, but it is not permitted to set foot on the island due to the fragility of the surviving ruins. When I first visited in March the water levels were very close to the main ruins, which implies that other material was already submerged. With the unprecedented recent Nile floods backing up behind the Aswan High Dam, it is no surprise that the archaeology is now under threat. Here are some pictures of the site taken in March 2007 to accompany today's Al Ahram Weekly article on the subject.

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