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Aksum

EthiopiaWestern Highlands & Great Rift ValleyAksum

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Aksum 

Located in northern Ethiopia's highlands, represents the wealth and prominence of the ancient Aksumite kingdom's civilisation, which existed from the 1st to the 8th centuries AD. The kingdom was the most powerful state between the Eastern Roman Empire and Persia, located at the crossroads of three continents: Africa, Arabia, and the Greco-Roman World. Its fleets dominated the Red Sea trade through the port of Adulis and the inland routes of north eastern Africa, as well as the ivory trade with Sudan.

In the Tigray Plateau, the ruins of the ancient Aksumite Civilization occupied a large area. The monolithic obelisks, royal tombs, and palace remains from the 6th and 7th centuries AD are the most magnificent monuments.

Several stelae from the 3rd and 4th century AD have been discovered in the town of Aksum. The tallest standing obelisk stands over 23 meters tall and is intricately carved to resemble an Aksumite nine-story building. It is located at the main stelae area's entrance. The largest obelisk, measuring 33 meters in length, is buried where it fell, possibly during erection. It's possible that it's the largest monolithic stele ever attempted by ancient humans to erect.

For ancient world historians, a series of inscriptions on stone tablets has proven to be extremely valuable. King Ezana inscribed a trilingual inscription in Greek, Sabaean, and Ge'ez (Classical Ethiopian) in the fourth century AD.

The arrival of Christianity in the 4th century AD resulted in the construction of churches, such as Saint Mary of Zion, which is thought to house the Ark of the Covenant and was reconstructed in the Gondarian period in the 17th century AD.

Aksum was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1980.

(Source UNESCO)

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  • EthiopiaWestern Highlands & Great Rift ValleyAksum

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