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AXUM

Axum (The home of the Ark): According to Aleqa Kidane Wolde Kifle, the word Axum is a derivation of the word Kush, a Hebrew word, which, in turn, means Ethiopia.  Three parks planted with giant steal, a labyrinth of royal tombs, vestiges of the Queen of Sheba’s palace, an “Ethiopian Rosetta Stone”, the Ark of the Covenant containing the Ten Commandments… an incredible treasure,  is hidden in Axum, where the heart of ancient Ethiopia still beats. birthplace of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church, reputed last resting place of the Ark of the Covenant, and site of innumerable obelisks, catacombs, palaces and other structures dating to the peak of the Axumite Empire (500 BC to 500 AD). It lies at an elevation of about 2100 meters just west of Adwa in Tigrai region. Once the seat of the kingdom of Axum, it is now a tourist town and religious centre best known for its antiquities tall granite obelisks, 126 in all, stand (or lie broken) in the central square. Once measuring 33 meters, now fallen, is said to be the tallest obelisk ever erected. The obelisks range from nearly plain slabs to intricately inscribed pillars. Door and window‐like Shapes are carved into some of the pillars, giving them the appearance of slender buildings. The most recent of the obelisks announces the Adoption of Christianity in the 4th century by king Ezana. At least 27 carved stone thrones have been unearthed in the overgrown ruins of the ancient palace.

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Photo's by Mekonen Zewdie ©2011 "Ethiopia At a Glance" www.ethiopiaataglance.com

axum

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