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  • Cairo

    Cairo

    Cairo

    The captial of Egypt and the largest city in Africa, the name means "the victorious city". As the region's principal commercial, administrative, and tourist centre.
  • Alexandria

    Alexandria

    Alexandria

    Egypt's second largest city (3.5 million people), its largest seaport and the country's window onto the Mediterranean Sea. No city in Egypt has history as rich as that of Alexandria which witnessed so many historic events and legends!
  • Luxor

    Luxor

    Luxor

    Luxor hosts one third of the whole monuments and antiquities of the world. Therefore, it is considered one of the most important tourism spots in Egypt and maybe in the whole world.
  • Aswan

    Aswan

    Aswan

    Aswan is the 3rd largest city in Egypt and the biggest in Upper Egypt. Aswan was the ancient Egyptians' gateway to Africa. Today Aswan is major stop for may Nile cruise ships depart from Luxor to Aswan everyday.
  • Sharm Elsheikh

    Sharm Elsheikh

    Sharm El Sheikh

    Sharm is the the jewel of Egyptian tourism industry now. The city offer some of the finest places for diving and snorkeling in the world, it offers great value for money if compared with many diving spots in the world.
  • Hurhgada

    Hurhgada

    Hurghada

    Hurghada today is a world centre for sea sports such as diving, snorkelling, sailing, windsurfing, and deep-sea fishing. The unique offshore underwater gardens are justifiably famous amongst divers

Pompey's Pillar

The Memorial Of Diocletian (Pompey's Pillar)

The so-called "Pompey Pillar" is the biggest memorial column in Egypt. It is a huge column of red granite, its total height is about 28 m with a diameter at the base of 2.7 m, and towards the capital at the top it tapers to 2.3 m.

On the upper part at the western side is an inscription in Greek, which reads:

"To the most just Emperor, tutelary of Alexandria Diocletian, the invincible, Postumus, the Prefect of Egypt (has erected this monument)".

pillarpillar2

The Roman ruler of Egypt, during the reign of the Roman Emperor Diocletian, erected this memorial column between 284-305A.D in honour of the Roman Emperor, as a sign of gratitude. A serious revolt in the city took place and Diocletian came himself, ordering the city to be besieged. After 8 months of resistance, the city finally surrendered. As a result of the siege, there was famine in the city; therefore the Emperor ordered that a portion of the corn, which was sent to Rome annually, be given to the people of Alexandria. He exempted them from paying taxes during these hard times. For that they erected, in his honour, this memorial column. In the middle ages the Crusaders believed, mistakenly, that the ashes, or the remains, of the great Roman general Pompey were in a pot at the top of the column. Thus today it is called "Pompey's Pillar".


Around the commemorative Column of Diocletian there are some monuments that can be seen. On the backside, there is the remains of a Serapium, or a temple of the God Serapis, now badly damaged. It was built during the reigns of Ptolemy II and Ptolemy III, but was damaged due to the revolts of the Jewish population in Alexandria, during the reign of the Emperor Trajan (89-118 A.D). It was rebuilt again during the reign of Hadrian (117-137 A.D). It was likely was destroyed, once more, after the appearance of Christianity. It consisted mainly of a high platform accessed by a staircase of 100 steps.

At the side of the platform there was a basin, which was used for purification. There were 2 galleries at the back of the temple, cut completely into the rock.

In the 1st gallery a black statue of basalt, dating back to the reign of Hadrian, was discovered. It represents the God Serapis, in a shape of a bull, and it is now exhibited in the Greco-Roman Museum in Alexandria. The 2nd gallery is known mistakenly as the Daughter Library, but it seems that it was an Anubidiun, or a burial for the mummies of Anubis, which was considered until the a reign of Ptolemy IV, a member of the Pantheon of Alexandria.

Tourists who visit this site also visit the following sites:

The Catacombs
The underground tombs of Alexandria,dating to the 2nd century A.D
Alexandria Museum
Located in a restored palace, and has about 1,800 artifacts that tell the story of Alexandria
The Montazah Palace
The Residance of the royal family in Alexandria until the reign of the last king of Egypt, Farouk I
Roman Amphitheatre
Dating from the 2nd century A.D. The only suviving amphitheatre in alexandria