Journey Through Arabia Petraea, to Mount Sinai, and the Excavated City of Petra

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General Books LLC, 2010 - 204 pages
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This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1838 edition. Excerpt: ... appears to be a part of the ruins of an ancient temple, some of the columns and the outward wall of which are still distinguishable. The long wall of rock extending on the right, of which hardly any notion can be formed from the necessarily limited view of it in the engraving, excited our wonder more and more by the prodigious number of tombs that ornamented its divisions. It is impossible to describe the impression which this picture, in its natural state, pro duces on the mind, surrounded as it is on all sides by the stillness of death. The Arabs, who show through their monotonous life little feeling for the vicissitudes of empires, have given this ruin a ridiculous, indeed an indecent name, which has no connection whatever with its original destination, and yet seems not ill applied to it in its state of decay: to prove the M 162 TOMB LEFT UNFINISHED. utter fragility of our works, besides the injury capable of being wrought by time, only one thing more is wanting--the ridicule of mankind. TOMB LEFT UNFINISHED AT PETRA. We searched amongst this multitude of tombs, now open to every visiter, for one which might afford us a convenient place of residence. We had thus before us a complete picture of life: a journey--its halting place, the grave. While passing along these rocks, we perceived, at a short distance from the ruined temple, an excavation, the unfinished state of which attracted our attention. It afforded a clue to the plan which was pursued in the construction of the other monuments. The TOMB LEFT UNFINISHED. 163 rock was at first cut down in a perpendicular direction, leaving buttresses on each side, which preserved their original form. The front, which was thus made smooth, was next marked out, according to the style of the...

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