Aswan

Last updated
Aswan

أسوان  (Arabic)
Ⲥⲟⲩⲁⲛ  (Coptic)
Nile River in Beauty Aswan.jpg
Al Khattarah Aswan Bridge.jpg
Aswan souq.jpg
Aswan,fatimid cem.jpg
m`bd fyl@ ..swn.jpg
Aswan Nubian Museum entrance.jpg
Counter Clockwise from top:
Aga Khan Mausoleum, Khattarah Bridge, Aswan Fatimid Cemetery, Elephantine Island, Nubian Museum, Aswan Old Town Souk
Egypt relief location map.jpg
Red pog.svg
Aswan
Location within Egypt
Coordinates: 24°05′20″N32°53′59″E / 24.08889°N 32.89972°E / 24.08889; 32.89972 Coordinates: 24°05′20″N32°53′59″E / 24.08889°N 32.89972°E / 24.08889; 32.89972
Country Flag of Egypt.svg  Egypt
Governorate Aswan
Elevation
194 m (636 ft)
Population
 (2012)
  Total290,327
Time zone UTC+2 (EST)
Area code(s) (+20) 97

Aswan ( /æsˈwɑːn, ɑːs-/ , also US: /ˈæswɑːn, ˈɑːs-, ˈæz-/ ; [1] [2] [3] [4] Arabic : أسوان, romanized: ʾAswān [ʔɑsˈwɑːn] ; Coptic : Ⲥⲟⲩⲁⲛ, romanized: Souan) is a city in the south of Egypt, and is the capital of the Aswan Governorate.

American English Set of dialects of the English language spoken in the United States

American English, sometimes called United States English or U.S. English, is the set of varieties of the English language native to the United States. American English is considered one of the most influential dialects of English globally, including on other varieties of English.

The romanization of Arabic writes written and spoken Arabic in the Latin script in one of various systematic ways. Romanized Arabic is used for a number of different purposes, among them transcription of names and titles, cataloging Arabic language works, language education when used in lieu of or alongside the Arabic script, and representation of the language in scientific publications by linguists. These formal systems, which often make use of diacritics and non-standard Latin characters and are used in academic settings or for the benefit of non-speakers, contrast with informal means of written communication used by speakers such as the Latin-based Arabic chat alphabet.

Coptic language Latest stage of the Egyptian language

Coptic or Coptic Egyptian, is the latest stage of the Egyptian language, a northern Afro-Asiatic language spoken in Egypt until at least the 17th century as an official language. Egyptian began to be written in the Coptic alphabet, an adaptation of the Greek alphabet with the addition of six or seven signs from Demotic to represent Egyptian sounds the Greek language did not have, in the 2nd century BC.

Contents

Aswan is a busy market and tourist centre located just north of the Aswan Dam on the east bank of the Nile at the first cataract. The modern city has expanded and includes the formerly separate community on the island of Elephantine.

Aswan Dam dam in Aswan, Egypt

The Aswan Dam, or more specifically since the 1960s, the Aswan High Dam, is an embankment dam built across the Nile in Aswan, Egypt, between 1960 and 1970. Its significance largely eclipsed the previous Aswan Low Dam initially completed in 1902 downstream. Based on the success of the Low Dam, then at its maximum utilization, construction of the High Dam became a key objective of the government following the Egyptian Revolution of 1952; with its ability to better control flooding, provide increased water storage for irrigation and generate hydroelectricity the dam was seen as pivotal to Egypt's planned industrialization. Like the earlier implementation, the High Dam has had a significant effect on the economy and culture of Egypt.

Nile River in Africa and the longest river in the world

The Nile is a major north-flowing river in northeastern Africa, and is the longest river in Africa and the disputed longest river in the world, as the Brazilian government claims that the Amazon River is longer than the Nile. The Nile, which is about 6,650 km (4,130 mi) long, is an "international" river as its drainage basin covers eleven countries, namely, Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kenya, Ethiopia, Eritrea, South Sudan, Republic of the Sudan and Egypt. In particular, the Nile is the primary water source of Egypt and Sudan.

Cataracts of the Nile rapid

The Cataracts of the Nile are shallow lengths of the Nile River, between Aswan and Khartoum, where the surface of the water is broken by many small boulders and stones jutting out of the river bed, as well as many rocky islets. In some places, these stretches are punctuated by whitewater, while at others the water flow is smoother, but still shallow.

The city is part of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network in the category of craft and folk art. [5]

The UNESCO Creative Cities Network (UCCN) is a project of UNESCO launched in 2004 to promote cooperation among cities which recognized creativity as a major factor in their urban development. As of 2017, there are 180 cities from 72 countries in the network.

Other spellings and variations

Aswan was formerly spelled Assuan or Assouan. Spellings in other languages include Egyptian Arabic : أسوان, romanized: ʾAswān; Ancient Egyptian: Swenett; Coptic : Ⲥⲟⲩⲁⲛ, romanized: Souan; Ancient Greek : Συήνη, romanized: Suēnē.

Egyptian language Language spoken in ancient Egypt, branch of the Afro-Asiatic languages

The Egyptian language was spoken in ancient Egypt and was a branch of the Afro-Asiatic languages. Its attestation stretches over an extraordinarily long time, from the Old Egyptian stage. Its earliest known complete written sentence has been dated to about 2690 BC, which makes it one of the oldest recorded languages known, along with Sumerian.

History

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Aswan
Aswan
Aswan
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in hieroglyphs

Aswan is the ancient city of Swenett, later known as Syene, which in antiquity was the frontier town of Ancient Egypt facing the south. Swenett is supposed to have derived its name from an Egyptian goddess with the same name. [6] This goddess later was identified as Eileithyia by the Greeks and Lucina by the Romans during their occupation of Ancient Egypt because of the similar association of their goddesses with childbirth, and of which the import is "the opener". The ancient name of the city also is said to be derived from the Egyptian symbol for "trade", [7] or "market". [8]

Ancient Egypt ancient civilization of Northeastern Africa

Ancient Egypt was a civilization of ancient North Africa, concentrated along the lower reaches of the Nile River in the place that is now the country Egypt. Ancient Egyptian civilization followed prehistoric Egypt and coalesced around 3100 BC with the political unification of Upper and Lower Egypt under Menes. The history of ancient Egypt occurred as a series of stable kingdoms, separated by periods of relative instability known as Intermediate Periods: the Old Kingdom of the Early Bronze Age, the Middle Kingdom of the Middle Bronze Age and the New Kingdom of the Late Bronze Age.

Goddess feminine or female deity

A goddess is a female deity. Goddesses have been linked with virtues such as beauty, love, motherhood and fertility. They have also been associated with ideas such as war, creation, and death.

Eileithyia Ancient Greek goddess of childbirth

Eileithyia or Ilithyia was the Greek goddess of childbirth and midwifery. In the cave of Amnisos (Crete) she was related with the annual birth of the divine child, and her cult is connected with Enesidaon, who was the chthonic aspect of the god Poseidon. It is possible that her cult is related with the cult of Eleusis. In his Seventh Nemean Ode, Pindar refers to her as the maid to or seated beside the Moirai (Fates) and responsible for creating offspring.

Because the Ancient Egyptians oriented themselves toward the origin of the life-giving waters of the Nile in the south, and as Swenett was the southernmost town in the country, Egypt always was conceived to "open" or begin at Swenett. [6] The city stood upon a peninsula on the right (east) bank of the Nile, immediately below (and north of) the first cataract of the flowing waters, which extend to it from Philae. Navigation to the delta was possible from this location without encountering a barrier.

Philae Island in Nile, Egypt

Philae is an island in the reservoir of the Aswan Low Dam, downstream of the Aswan Dam and Lake Nasser, Egypt. Philae was originally located near the expansive First Cataract of the Nile in Upper Egypt and was the site of an Egyptian temple complex. These rapids and the surrounding area have been variously flooded since the initial construction of the Aswan Low Dam in 1902. The temple complex was dismantled and moved to nearby Agilkia Island as part of the UNESCO Nubia Campaign project, protecting this and other complexes before the 1970 completion of the Aswan High Dam. The hieroglyphic reliefs of the temple complex are being studied and published by the Philae Temple Text Project of the Austrian Academy of Sciences, Vienna.

The stone quarries of ancient Egypt located here were celebrated for their stone, and especially for the granitic rock called Syenite. They furnished the colossal statues, obelisks, and monolithal shrines that are found throughout Egypt, including the pyramids; and the traces of the quarrymen who worked in these 3,000 years ago are still visible in the native rock. They lie on either bank of the Nile, and a road, 6.5 km (4.0 mi) in length, was cut beside them from Syene to Philae.

Swenett was equally important as a military station as a place of traffic. Under every dynasty it was a garrison town; and here tolls and customs were levied on all boats passing southwards and northwards. Around 330, the legion stationed here received a bishop from Alexandria; this later became the Coptic Diocese of Syene. [9] The city is mentioned by numerous ancient writers, including Herodotus, [10] Strabo, [11] Stephanus of Byzantium, [12] Ptolemy, [13] Pliny the Elder, [14] Vitruvius, [15] and it appears on the Antonine Itinerary. [16] It may also be mentioned in the Book of Ezekiel and the Book of Isaiah. [17]

View from the west bank of the Nile, islands, and Aswan View from the west bank to the Nile, islands, and Aswan.jpg
View from the west bank of the Nile, islands, and Aswan

The latitude of the city that would become Aswan – located at 24° 5′ 23″ – was an object of great interest to the ancient geographers. They believed that it was seated immediately under the tropic, and that on the day of the summer solstice, a vertical staff cast no shadow. They noted that the sun's disc was reflected in a well at noon. This statement is only approximately correct; at the summer solstice, the shadow was only 1400 of the staff, and so could scarcely be discerned, and the northern limb of the Sun's disc would be nearly vertical. However, Eratosthenes used this information together with measurements of the shadow length on the solstice at Alexandria to perform the first known calculation of the circumference of the Earth.

The Nile is nearly 650 m (0.40 mi) wide above Aswan. From this frontier town to the northern extremity of Egypt, the river flows for more than 1,200 km (750 mi) without bar or cataract. The voyage from Aswan to Alexandria usually took 21 to 28 days in favourable weather.

Archaeological findings

Archaeologists have discovered 35 mummified remains of Egyptians in a tomb in Aswan in 2019. Italian archaeologist Patrizia Piacentini, professor of Egyptology at the University of Milan, and Khaled El-Enany, the Egyptian minister of antiquities reported that the tomb where the remains of ancient men, women and children were found, dates back to the Greco-Roman period between 332 BC and 395 AD. While the findings assumed belonging to a mother and a child were well preserved, others were suffered major destruction. Beside the mummies, artefacts including painted funerary masks, vases of bitumen used in mummification, pottery and wooden figurines were revealed. Thanks to the hieroglyphics on the tomb, it was detected that the tomb belongs to a tradesman named Tjit. [18] [19] [20]

“It’s a very important discovery because we added something to the history of Aswan that was missing. We knew about tombs and necropoli dating back to the second and third millennium, but we didn’t know where the people who lived in the last part of the Pharaoh era were. Aswan, on the southern border of Egypt, was also a very important trading city” Piacentini said. [18] [19] [20]

Climate

Aswan has a hot desert climate (Köppen climate classification BWh) like the rest of Egypt. Aswan and Luxor have the hottest summer days of any city in Egypt. Aswan is one of the hottest, sunniest and driest cities in the world. Average high temperatures are consistently above 40 °C (104.0 °F) during summer (June, July, August and also September) while average low temperatures remain above 25 °C (77.0 °F). Summers are long, prolonged and extremely hot. Average high temperatures remain above 23 °C (73.4 °F) during the coldest month of the year while average low temperatures remain above 8 °C (46.4 °F). Winters are short, brief and extremely warm. Wintertime is very pleasant and enjoyable while summertime is unbearably hot with blazing sunshine although desert heat is dry.

The climate of Aswan is extremely dry year-round, with less than 1 mm (0 in) of average annual precipitation. The desert city is one of the driest ones in the world, and rainfall doesn't occur every year, as of early 2001, the last rain there was seven years earlier. Aswan is one of the least humid cities on the planet, with an average relative humidity of only 26%, with a maximum mean of 42% during winter and a minimum mean of 16% during summer.

The weather of Aswan is extremely clear, bright and sunny year-round, in all seasons, with a low seasonal variation, with almost 4,000 hours of annual sunshine, very close to the maximum theoretical sunshine duration. Aswan is one of the sunniest places on Earth.

The highest record temperature was 51 °C (124 °F) on July 4, 1918, and the lowest record temperature was −2.4 °C (27.7 °F) on January 6, 1989. [21]

Climate data for Aswan, Egypt
MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDecYear
Record high °C (°F)35.3
(95.5)
38.5
(101.3)
44.0
(111.2)
46.1
(115.0)
47.8
(118.0)
50.6
(123.1)
51.0
(123.8)
48.0
(118.4)
47.8
(118.0)
45.4
(113.7)
42.2
(108.0)
38.6
(101.5)
51.0
(123.8)
Average high °C (°F)22.9
(73.2)
25.2
(77.4)
29.5
(85.1)
34.9
(94.8)
38.9
(102.0)
41.4
(106.5)
41.1
(106.0)
40.9
(105.6)
39.3
(102.7)
35.9
(96.6)
29.1
(84.4)
24.3
(75.7)
33.6
(92.5)
Daily mean °C (°F)15.3
(59.5)
17.5
(63.5)
21.8
(71.2)
27.0
(80.6)
31.4
(88.5)
33.5
(92.3)
33.6
(92.5)
33.2
(91.8)
32.8
(91.0)
27.7
(81.9)
21.5
(70.7)
16.9
(62.4)
25.9
(78.6)
Average low °C (°F)8.7
(47.7)
10.2
(50.4)
13.8
(56.8)
18.9
(66.0)
23.0
(73.4)
25.2
(77.4)
26.0
(78.8)
25.8
(78.4)
24.0
(75.2)
20.6
(69.1)
15.0
(59.0)
10.5
(50.9)
18.5
(65.3)
Record low °C (°F)−2.4
(27.7)
3.8
(38.8)
5.0
(41.0)
7.8
(46.0)
13.4
(56.1)
18.9
(66.0)
20.0
(68.0)
20.0
(68.0)
16.1
(61.0)
12.2
(54.0)
6.1
(43.0)
0.6
(33.1)
−2.4
(27.7)
Average rainfall mm (inches)0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0.1
(0.00)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0.7
(0.03)
0
(0)
0.6
(0.02)
0
(0)
0
(0)
1.4
(0.06)
Average rainy days (≥ 0.01 mm)0.00.00.00.00.10.00.00.50.00.250.00.00.85
Average relative humidity (%)40322419171618212227364226.2
Mean monthly sunshine hours 298.2281.1321.6316.1346.8363.2374.6359.6298.3314.6299.6289.13,862.8
Source #1: World Meteorological Organization , [22]
Source #2: NOAA for mean temperatures, humidity, and sun, [23] Meteo Climat (extremes 1918–present) [21]

Education

In 1999, South Valley University was inaugurated and it has three branches; Aswan, Qena and Hurghada. The university grew steadily and now it is firmly established as a major institution of higher education in Upper Egypt. Aswan branch of Assiut University began in 1973 with the Faculty of Education and in 1975 the Faculty of Science was opened. Aswan branch has five faculties namely; Science, Education, Engineering, Arts, Social Works and Institute of Energy. The Faculty of Science in Aswan has six departments. Each department has one educational programme: Chemistry, Geology, Physics and Zoology. Except Botany Department, which has three educational programmes: Botany, Environmental Sciences and Microbiology; and Mathematics Department, which has two educational programmes: Mathematics and Computer Science. The Faculty of Science awards the following degrees: Bachelor of Science in nine educational programmes, Higher Diploma, Master of Science and Philosophy Doctor of Science. Aswan also has Aswan Higher Institute of Social Work that was established in 1975 making it the oldest private higher institute of Social Work in Upper Egypt

Transport

Aswan is served by the Aswan International Airport. Train and bus service is also available. Taxi and rickshaw are used for transport here.

International relations

Twin towns/Sister cities

Aswan is twinned with:

See also

Related Research Articles

Luxor City in Egypt

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Elephantine Island in the Nile

Elephantine is an island on the Nile, forming part of the city of Aswan in Upper Egypt. There are archaeological sites on the island.

Al-Maris may refer to:

Thebaid administrative region in ancient egypt

The Thebaid or Thebais was a region of ancient Egypt, which comprised the thirteen southernmost nomes of Upper Egypt, from Abydos to Aswan.

Cats in ancient Egypt worshipped animals

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Qubbet el-Hawa Archaeological site in Egypt

Qubbet el-Hawa is a site on the western bank of the Nile, opposite Aswan. The name is derived from the dome of the tomb of an Islamic sheikh, but archaeologically, it is usually understood as referring to the site of the tombs of the officials lined up on artificial terraces below the summit of the Nile bank upon which the Islamic tomb stands.

Sehel Island Island in the Nile

Sehel Island is located in the Nile, about 2 miles (3.2 km) southwest of Aswan in southern Egypt. It is a large island, and is roughly halfway between the city and the upstream Aswan Low Dam.

Benha City in Qalyubia, Egypt

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Bigeh Island and archaeological site

Bigeh is an island and archaeological site situated along the Nile River in historic Nubia, and within the Aswan Governorate of southern Egypt. The island has been situated in the reservoir of the Old Aswan Dam, since the dam's initial completion in 1902.

Asyut City in Egypt

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Shellal Human settlement in Egypt

Shellal is a small ancient village on the banks of the Nile, south of Aswan in Upper Egypt. It was the traditional northern frontier of the Nubian region with both the Egyptian Empire and the Roman Empire. During the period of ancient Egypt, it was a very important quarry area for granite production. Nowadays it is possible to see some unfinished granite works on the site ; some of the objects on display include incomplete statues of Osiris and Ramesses II and unfinished Roman baths.

Animal mummy mummified animal

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Nubia region along the Nile river, which is located in northern Sudan and southern Egypt

Nubia is a region along the Nile river encompassing the area between Aswan in southern Egypt and Khartoum in central Sudan. It was the seat of one of the earliest civilizations of ancient Africa, with a history that can be traced from at least 2500 BC onward with the Kerma culture. The latter was conquered by the New Kingdom of Egypt under pharaoh Thutmose I around 1500 BC. Nubia was home to several empires, most prominently the kingdom of Kush, which conquered Egypt during the 8th century BC during the reign of Piye and ruled the country as its Twenty-fifth Dynasty.

Abu Simbel Village in Egypt

Abu Simbel is a village in the Egyptian part of Nubia, about 240 kilometers southwest of Aswan and near the border with Sudan. As of 2012, it has about 2600 inhabitants. It is best known as the site of the Abu Simbel temples, which were built by King Ramses II.

Ta-Seti Administrative division of Upper Egypt

Ta-Seti was the first nome of Upper Egypt, one of 42 nomoi in Ancient Egypt. Ta-Seti also marked the border area towards Nubia.

The Triakontaschoinos, Latinized as Triacontaschoenus, was a geographical and administrative term used in the Greco-Roman world for the part of Lower Nubia between the First and Second Cataracts of the Nile. In the Ptolemaic and Roman periods, all or the northern part of this area, stretching from the First Cataract south to Maharraqa and known as the Dodekaschoinos or Dodecaschoenus, was often annexed to Egypt or controlled from it. The terms Triakontaschoinos and Dodekaschoinos were first found in the Ptolemaic period and denominate buffer zones between Egypt and later Rome on the one hand and Meroe on the other hand.

References

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  2. "Aswan". Collins English Dictionary . HarperCollins. Archived from the original on April 3, 2019. Retrieved April 3, 2019.
  3. "Aswan" Archived 2019-04-03 at the Wayback Machine (US) and "Aswan". Oxford Dictionaries . Oxford University Press . Retrieved April 3, 2019.
  4. "Aswân". Merriam-Webster Dictionary . Retrieved April 3, 2019.
  5. Smith, Melanie K. (2016). Issues in cultural tourism studies. Routledge. ISBN   9781138785694. OCLC   932058870.
  6. 1 2 Baines, John; Malek, Jaromir (March 1983). Atlas of Ancient Egypt (Cultural Atlas) . New York, NY: Facts On File Inc. p. 240. ISBN   9780871963345.
  7. Suʻād Māhir (1966). Muhafazat Al Gumhuriya Al Arabiya Al Mutaheda wa Asaraha al baqiah fi al asr al islamim. Majlis al-Aʻlá lil-Shuʼūn al-Islāmīyah.
  8. James Henry Breasted (1912). A History of Egypt, from the Earliest Times to the Persian Conquest. Charles Scribner's Sons. p. 7. Archived from the original on 2011-11-21. Retrieved 2015-04-27.
  9. Dijkstra, J. Harm F. Religious Encounters on the Southern Egyptian Frontier in Late Antiquity (AD 298-642) Archived 2009-07-04 at the Wayback Machine .
  10. (ii. 30)
  11. (ii. p. 133, xvii. p. 797, seq.)
  12. (s. v.)
  13. (vii. 5. § 15, viii. 15. § 15)
  14. (ii. 73. s. 75, v. 10. s. 11, vi. 29. s. 34)
  15. ( De architectura , book viii. ch ii. § 6)
  16. (p. 164)
  17. Ezekiel 29:10, 30:6; Isaiah 49:12
  18. 1 2 Giuffrida, Angela (2019-04-24). "Mummified remains of 35 ancient Egyptians found in Aswan". The Guardian. ISSN   0261-3077. Archived from the original on 2019-07-25. Retrieved 2019-07-25.
  19. 1 2 CNN, Emily Dixon (2019-04-25). "At least 34 mummies found in hidden Egyptian tomb". CNN Travel. Archived from the original on 2019-07-25. Retrieved 2019-07-25.
  20. 1 2 "Egyptian necropolis with 35 mummies found - Culture". ANSAMed. 2019-04-23. Archived from the original on 2019-07-25. Retrieved 2019-07-25.
  21. 1 2 "Station Aswan" (in French). Meteo Climat. Archived from the original on July 13, 2019. Retrieved April 26, 2017.
  22. "Weather Information for Asswan". Archived from the original on July 10, 2012. Retrieved August 31, 2012.
  23. "Asswan Climate Normals 1961–1990". National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration . Retrieved January 30, 2015.