Friday, November 04, 2011

Rashid - A city rich in history

onislam (Emily Cocke)

For most people interested in the history of Egypt, the name Rashid (or as the French named it: Rosetta) is linked to the Rosetta Stone. This stone, which was found in a wall in the fort of the city in 1799, provided the linguist Champollion with the final clues to finally decipher hieroglyphs. The black stone contained three versions of the same text, a decree celebrating the coronation of the pharaoh Ptolemy V in 196 BCE. The text was written in Greek, Demotic and hieroglyphs – the Greek was easily translated and could be used to understand the language of the other two texts. The stone was originally found by French soldiers but was seized by British troops and is now in the British Museum in London, where it is one of the museum's most famous objects (Andrews 2001, 156-157).

Rashid today is a bustling city on the Mediterranean coast, situated where a branch of the Nile enters the sea. It is relatively close to Alexandria and contains a unique heritage of historical houses and mosques, mostly from the Ottoman Period.

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