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Egypt

Here you will find some pics and information about my country, EGYPT, I hope you will like it. In the same time I will provide you with many useful links to several websites where you can find more detailed informations in all domains.

ABOUT EGYPT

Egypt is probably the world\'s oldest civilization having emerged from the Nile Valley around 3,100 years ago, historically. 

Egypt is probably one of the oldest vacation spots. Early Greeks, Romans and others went there just for fun, and to see the wonders of some of mankind\'s earliest triumphs.

But Egypt is much more than Pyramids and monuments. It is also Red Sea scuba diving, hot night spots, luxury hotels and five star restaurants. It is romantic cruises down the Nile on festive river boats, a night at the grand opera and it is a cultural experience like none you have ever experienced. Egypt is a land bustling with life, sound, visual beauty and excitement.

Egypt was a cradle of civilisation that allowed the same basic language and culture to flourish for nearly 3,000 years. For most of this long history, pharoah was (Lord of the Two Lands) - the Nile valley and the broad Delta. Each major pyramid was a tomb for a king of Egypt. The pyramid complex was an economic engine too - employing people and redistributing wealth.

With the building of the pyramids, new farms, ranches and whole new towns were founded in the provinces. The livestock and produce from these estates was then passed on to the workforce and to the priests and special classes of people who served the pyramid complex. Thus the pyramids where a major catalyst the development of Egypt as one of the world first true state.
More than anything else, we want you to think of Egypt as fun. For thousands of years, it has been the playground of emperors and kings, and we hope you will take the time to find out why.

OVERVIEW

Language
Arabic (official), English and French widely understood by educated classes

Major Religions

Muslim (mostly Sunni) 94% (official estimate), Coptic Christian and other 6% (official estimate)

Ethnic groups

Eastern Hamitic stock (Egyptians, Bedouins, and Berbers) 99%, Greek, Nubian, Armenian, other European 1%

Growth rate 1.86%

Birth rate 27.31 births/1,000

Death rate 8.41 deaths/1,000

Fertility rate 3.41 children/woman

Male life expectancy 60

Female life expectancy 64

Infant mortality rate 69.23 deaths/1,000 live births

Economy
Labor force 17.4 million (1996)

Unemployment rate 9.4% (1997)

Inflation Rate 4.9% (1997)

Gross domestic product (total value of goods and services produced annually) .1 billion (1997 est.)

Budget .8 billion

Debt .5 billion (1996)

Exports .1 billion, primarily crude oil and petroleum products, cotton yarn, raw cotton, textiles, metal products, chemicals 

Imports .5 billion, primarily machinery and equipment, foods, fertilizers, wood products, durable consumer goods, capital goods

Defense spending  8.2% of GDP (1997 est.)

Highways 64,000 km (1996) 

PICS FROM EGYPT

You will find below some pics from various parts of Egypt, with simple discription of each photo. For more detailed information about Egypt, please click on one of the links provided in the bottom of this page.

GreatPyramidThe Great Pyramid of Cheops - Giza
How the Great Pyramid was built is a question that may never be answered. Herodotus said that it would have taken 30 years and 100,000 slaves to have built it. Another theory is that it was built by peasants who were unable to work the land while the Nile flooded between July and November. They may have been paid with food for their labor. The flooded waters would have also aided in the moving of the casing stones. These stones were brought from Aswan and Tura and the water would have brought the stones right to the pyramid. This pyramid is thought to have been built between 2589 - 2566 BC. It would have taken over 2,300,000 blocks of stone with an average weight of 2.5 tons each. The total weight would have been 6,000,000 tons and a height of 482 feet (140m). It is the largest and the oldest of the Pyramids of Giza.

Not much is known about Cheops (Khufu). The tomb had been robbed long before archeologists came upon it. Any information about him was taken with the objects inside the tomb. He is thought to have been the ruler of a highly structured society and he must have been very wealthy. He was buried alone in this massive tomb. His wives may have been buried nearby in smaller mastabas.

 

GreatSphinxThe Great Sphinx

In a depression to the south of Chephren\'s pyramid sits a creature with a human head and a lion body. The name (sphinx) which means (strangler) was first given by the Greeks to a fabulous creature which had the head of a woman and the body of a lion and the wings of a bird. The sphinx appears to have started in Egypt in the form of a sun god. The Egyptian sphinx is usually a head of a king wearing his headdress and the body of a lion . There are, however, sphinxes with ram heads that are associated with the god Amun.

The Great Sphinx is to the northeast of Chephren\'s Valley Temple. Where it sits was once a quarry. Chephren\'s workers shaped the stone into the lion and gave it the face of their king over 4,500 years ago. The sphinx faces the rising sun with a temple to the front which resembles the sun temples which were built later by the kings of the 5th Dynasty. The figure was buried for most of its life in the sand. King Thutmose IV (1425 - 1417 BC) placed a stela between the front paws of the figure. It describes when Thutmose, while still a prince, had gone hunting and fell asleep in the shade of the sphinx. During a dream, the sphinx spoke to Thutmose and told him to clear away the sand because it was choking the sphinx. The sphinx told him that if he did this, he would be rewarded with a kingship. Thutmose carried out this request and the sphinx held up his end of the deal.

The sphinx is built of soft sandstone and would have disappeared long ago had it not been buried for so long. The body is 200 feet (60m) in length and 65 feet (20m) tall. The face of the sphinx is 13 feet (4m) wide and its eyes are 6 feet (2m) high. Part of the uraeus (sacred cobra), the nose and the ritual beard are now missing. . The beard from the sphinx is displayed in the British Museum. The statue is crumbling today because of the wind, humidity and the smog from Cairo. Attempts to restore it have often caused more harm than good. No one can be certain who the figure is to personify. It is possible that it is Chephren. If that is so, it would then be the oldest known royal portrait in such large scale. Some say that it was built after the pyramid of Chephren was complete. It may have been set as a sort of scarecrow to guard his tomb. Still others say it is the face of his guardian deity, rather than Chephren himself. The image of the sphinx is a depiction of royal power. Only a pharaoh or an animal could be shown this way, with the animal representing a protective deity.

AbuSembelTempleAbu Simbel Tempel

Not only are the two temples at Abu Simbel among the most magnificent monuments in the world but their removal and reconstruction was an historic event in itself. When the temples (280 km from Aswan) were threatened by submersion in Lake Nasser, due to the construction of the High Dam, the Egyptian Government secured the support of UNESCO and launched a world wide appeal. During the salvage operation which began in 1964 and continued until 1968, the two temples were dismantled and raised over 60 meters up the sandstone cliff where they had been built more than 3,000 years before. Here they were reassembled, in the exact same relationship to each other and the sun, and covered with an artificial mountain. Most of the joins in the stone have now been filled by antiquity experts, but inside the temples it is still possible to see where the blocks were cut. You can also go inside the man made dome and see an exhibition of photographs showing the different stages of the massive removal project.

Abu Simbel was first reported by J. L. Burckhardt in 1813, when he came over the mountain and only saw the facade of the great temple as he was preparing to leave that area via the Nile. The two temples, that of Ramesses II primarily dedicated to Re-Harakhte, and that of his wife, Nefertari dedicated to Hathor, became a must see for Victorians visiting Egypt, even though it required a trip up the Nile, and often they were covered deeply in sand, as they were when Burckhardt found them.
 
CairoNight

Cairo at night

Cairo, the Jewel of the Orient, the City of the Thousand Minarets, and the Melting Pot of Ancient and Modern Egyptian Civilizations

Cairo - the Triumphant City - is the glorious capital of Egypt, the cradle of civilization and the beacon of religion. It is the largest city in the Middle East and Africa and lies at the centre of all routes leading to, and from the three continents: Asia, Africa and Europe.

Greater Cairo extends on the banks of the River Nile to the south of its delta. Here the Nile divides into its two distributaries: Rosetta and Damietta. It is the city where past and present meet. On its east side stands the evidence of 2000 years of Islamic, Chrestian Coptic, and Jewish culture still flourishing to this day. On its west side lies the Ancient Egyptian city of Memphis (Giza), the renowned capital of the Old Kingdom and the site of the Pyramids, the only wonder surviving of the Seven Wonders of the World. Indeed, a journey through Cairo is a journey through time... A journey through the history of an immortal civilization.

 

 

Cairo Mosques

CairoMosquesCairo is known as the City of 1,000 Minarets because of its many mosques. Many of these mosques are open to visitors, and in fact, Cairo has an ongoing program for the restoration of ancient mosques, a few of which ranks as some of the oldest to be found in the world. Certainly some are the grandest to be found anywhere.

Many visitors to Egypt, who arrive with even a meager interest in this architecture and a slightly open mind, and particularly those with a creativity streak, will be awestruck by their beauty and design. Yet, and unfortunately, many western visitors may completely bypass these wonders of a very different civilization. For many others who do wonder into an ancient mosque or two, their lack of knowledge regarding this art form will often result in a short, cursory examination lacking substance.

Mosques, and Islamic architecture in general, unlike western architecture, varies more between different geographical regions then it does between historical ages. Scholars tell us that this is at least due in part to the rapid initial spread of Islam, as opposed to that of Christianity, which was suppressed during its first several hundred years. Christianity had the opportunity to develop more common architectural styles in its formative years, while Islam spread through a vast territory quickly where the use of local building material and ideas by local craftsman and architects created very distinguished regional variants.

Yet, because Egypt has seen many influences from any number of different ruling empires, includingAbbasid, Fatimid, Ayyubid Mamluk, Ottman and others, and because Cairo  specifically is a city of the world, Egypt offers a fair overview of mosque styles. Furthermore, its mosques date from the earliest periods of Islam up to and of course, including modern varieties. 
 

CopticMuseum

 

 

Christian churches of Egypt

Egypt was a land where Jesus and his family were known to have traveled, and where early Apostles came to spread his word, particularly at first in Alexandria.

Most of the ancient Christian churches of Egypt, contrary to what many travelers may believe, are not located in Old, or Coptic Cairo. What makes Old Cairo special is the fact that a number of ancient churches are located in the area, making visits by tourists convenient, since most of them arrive for tours in that city.

 


 

SultanHassanMosque

 

 

Sultan Hassan Mosque and school

The Sultan Hassan Mosque and School is considered stylistically the most compact and unified of all Cairo monuments. The building was constructed for Sultan Hassan bin Mohammad bin Qalaoun in 1256 AD as a mosque and religious school for all sects. The cornices, the entrance, and the monumental staircase are particularly noteworthy. Many consider the Sultan Hassan Mosque to be the most outstanding Islamic monument in Egypt.

Structurally from the outside, the Mosque is very impressive, holding its own with its impressive cornice and the protruding verticals of its facade, even though it stands in the shadows of the massiveCitadel. As one enters the Mosque from El Qalaa st., there is an impression of height, especially from the towering doors decorated in a Mameluke fashion. Even during the Mameluke error in Cairo, building space was at a premium. Thus the outer walls are somewhat askew, in order to fit the available lot, but these designers had a wonderful way of creating the impression of uniform cubistic effect inside regardless. 

 

 


 

KingsValleyThe Valley of the Kings - Luxur

Luxor is the world greatest open-air museum, filled with the awe-inspiring monuments of ancient civilization.

It was part of ancient Thebes, and was the seat of power for 1350 years - from 2100BC to 750BC. During this time the Egyptians constructed several architectural works of art, and the city is thus extremely rich in relics that tell a story about Ancient Egypt glorious history - palaces, monuments, temples and tombs.

The Valley of the Kings is the burial ground of virtually all the pharaohs of the New Kingdom (1549-1064). The Valley is hidden behind the Theban hills, close to Deir el-Bahri, and is known by the Arabic name, Biban el-Moluk, meaning (Doors of the Kings). Essentially the Valley of the Kings is two valleys - one on the west and the other on the east, with the latter being the most visited. The tombs within the Valley are numbered by the succession of their discovery, and prefixed with the letters KV (Kings Valley). Currently there are sixty-two tombs, with KV62 being that of Tutankhamun, the almost intact tomb discovered by Howard Carter in 1922. Besides being a royal sepulchre, the Valley is home to numerous burials of New Kingdom high officials, priests and other members of the royal court. The use of the Valley marks a change from the previous burial practice of the pyramid complex. An integral reason for this change must have been the need for greater security.

AswanAswan

Aswan, a beautiful winter resort, enjoying a dry temperate climate, is situated on the eastern bank of the Nile, 899km south of Cairo, linking Egypt with Sudan, and is the gate to the African continent. Small enough to walk around and graced with the most beautiful setting on the Nile, the pace of life is slow and relaxing. The Nile is at its most beautiful at this point, flowing through the amber desert, granite rocks, and round emerald islands covered in palm groves and tropical plants.

Aswan has thus been a favourite winter resort since the beginning of the nineteenth century and still is the perfect place to get away from it all. In Pharaonic times, the town was known as Suno (the Market) later changed to Aswan by the Arabs.

Days can be spent strolling up and down the broad Corniche watching the sailboats etch the sky with their tall masts or sitting in floating restaurants listening to Nubian music and eating freshly-caught fish. Alternatively, explore the souk, full of the scent and colour of spices, perfumes, scarves and baskets.

 

 

EgyptFarms

 

For more information about Egypt please check the following Links

http://www.egypt.com/

http://www.egypt.net/

http://www.go2eggy.com/

http://www.touregypt.net/