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Africa culture/tradition education

African Wonders 4: The Pharos of Alexandria

The Pharos of Alexandria was a lighthouse completed in about 280 BC and was used to warn ships of the rocks surrounding the port of Alexandria, Egypt. The building measured over 110 metres to the top. During the day polished bronzed mirrors reflected the sunlight, and at night a fire burned that could be seen up to 50 kilometres away. A spiral ramp led from the ground to the top.

The gigantic lighthouse was a real survivor – it stood for over 1,500 years and survived being buffeted by massive waves and countless earthquakes.

It was built by a man called Sostratus who, in order to get the credit for this Wonder of the World, sneakily carved his name into the stone, and plastered over it. On top of the plaster he carved a dedication to the ruler of Egypt. In time, the plaster wore away and his own dedication, ‘Sostratus of Cnidos, son of Dexiphanes, to the saviour god’s, for sailors’, was left permanently displayed.

In 1994, an archaeologist located huge masonry blocks believed to be from the lighthouse, which was toppled by an earthquake in the 1300s.

Categories
Africa History Nature

African Wonders 3: The Great Pyramid

The Great Pyramid at Giza, Egypt is both the oldest of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World and the only one still around today. It was built for King Khufu who died in about 2465BC and is said to have taken thousands of men 20 years to construct. According to Herodotus, an Ancient Greek historian, 100,000 men laboured on the pyramid, though archeologists now think the number is more likely to have been about 20,000 men.

The finished pyramid was 147 metres high, which made it the tallest structure made by man for over 4,000 years. It contains 2,300,000 blocks of stone each weighing over 2.25 tonnes. When it was built, the steps seen now were originally capped with pure white limestone that must have shone brilliantly in the desert sun. Sadly, over the centuries the limestone capping was stripped off and now the pyramid is only 138 metres tall.

It’s a titanic, one you would love to see!

Categories
Africa Nature Pastoral

Egypt: Land of the Mummies

Here is Egypt’s iconic pyramids taken by a friend who went there last month. Welcome to Pharaoh’s land!


There’s a lot to see and do in Egypt and the African continent. Visit Africa today.