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Catacombs Of Kom El Shoqafa

Egypt's history is complicated and detailed with so much monarchs and royal dynasties. At the end of ancient Egyptian kingdom, ruled the Ptolemaic dynasties whom were originally Roman emperors ruled as pharaohs of Egypt, and some of them got married from Egyptian royals.

The Ptolemaic or known as the Greco Roman period took Alexandria as the capital and left in Roman sites and monuments stand out until this day.

 Pommpey's pillar, the Greco Roman museum and the catacombs of kom El shoqafa which is considered as the top of Alexandria attractions. Travel to Egypt agency mostly includes Alexandria city in the Egypt tours and day tours. If you checked out Alexandria day tours, you will definitely find visits to El shoqafa catacombs.   


 

Catacombs of kom El shoqafa

The catacombs of kom El shofaqa also known as the hill of treasure, regarded as a huge necropolis and royal cemetery that dates back to the second century AD. The necropolis has a unique mixture of Roman, Hellenistic and pharaonic art elements reflected in the paintings on the wall, and the style of the statues, funeral objects and tombs. The archaeological site was one of the seven wonders in the middle ages.

 

The catacombs interior design

The underground catacombs are a bit scary; the scene of the carved stone tombs next to each other gives the illusion of sincere horror, but at the same time historical atmosphere. The Ptolemaic is Hellenistic kingdom that was based in Egypt, who followed the steps of ancient Egyptians of constructing underground hidden tombs for pharaohs and their wives. The Ptolemaic were so affected by the Egyptians, they believed in their concepts about death, after life journey and gods, and this is very shown in the catacombs that shows the pharaonic identity beside the Roman character.

The catacombs are serial of Alexandrian tombs reach deep under the ground, consists of three levels of 35 meters burial chambers cut into bedrocks. There is a rounded entrance leads to the catacombs levels; the third level is flooded by ground water leaks, and cannot be accessed. People usually enter the catacombs by rounded shaft with staircases lead to the principle tomb and the center piece which is an antechamber with columns. This center piece leads to inner sanctum. The antechamber is covered by cravings for Egyptian god Anubis (the god of dead) dressed like Romans, and some statue for Romans emperors who ruled Egypt during this period.

The antechamber maybe the major sight of the catacombs and the most important for having all the decorations and statues. Also, There are two passages lead to the Hall of Caracalla which has its own staircases. one of  the catacombs main feature, are the two tombs of emperor Tigrane and wardian which are located few meters from the entrance.

 

 The origin of the name

Catacombs of kom El shoqafa also known as (the mount of shards) in a reference for the clay objects left and the stone mud construction. in fact, this archaeological site have too many names. Some called it catacombs because it is similar to Rome Christian catacombs. But Arab came after and named it (the treasure hill). 

About the author

Shoroq Samir
Shoroq Samir

history author based in Egypt. Graduated from the faculty of languages and translation. Studied Shakespearean literature, English poetry and post modernism Art. Essay specialist and Egyptologist content writer\ creator.