Hi my dear friends, I must first apologize for my failures in the last post as I have mentioned it in the night in the bed!! Anyway, I have a seriously this time as I have to work and to ordinate my household; my wife is a woman of the world. Just let’s begin.
As I mentioned in the first part, it’s not easy to be born and grown-up by sensible parents; a writer as a father with a lot of wishes and dreams and a bookworm as a mother who her biggest wish was to be left alone in a room fulfil with books and glass water and a loaf of bread would be enough for her!
Here man can say; God saves the soul! and yes; my childhood was based on a lot of trauma. especially, after father died it became much harder but first the very beginning;
It is of course not so much to explain; I have written there about in my some memories; a time of love, a time of happiness, a time, of also, strike, strife, discord and again love and forgiveness.
You might read my post http://A CHARACTERISTIC LOVE STORY There I have told the crazy beginning of the foundation this family and the result can be mostly a chaotic high-spiritually tensions in the area, of life, of our life.
Let’s now begin after the father’s death, because I can remember better. I don’t know why; maybe because I had to work a much on this; My father had died in the night after we have come back from a wedding ceremony at very late night and we both “Al and I” got nothing about what happened. In the morning, mother told us he has travelled (He did travel often, but surely not after a party in which he was almost drunk!) for me this wrong announcement was acceptable, but for Al, it wasn’t enough. He was a thinker even with 9 at age ( I was 7 when father left this Earth.) but of course, we both have taken it as a fact and according to the mother’s order and went to the uncle’s house with pool a great garden and so on and on. It was an offer which can no child refuse.
The main tension began after this time, because, Al was almost sure there ‘s something wrong with this and me, the bloody child, I might have mention something but surely wanted rather ignore it! Therefore, it began a funny, might better to say a tragical play between us three: Mother, Al and Me, and it was and still remains a trauma which I will try to tell you next. Thank You All who read this and forgive me for my failure. take care and be safe. 🙏💖🙏
To pay homage to a broken destiny, to hope of shattered greatness, you have to go to the quarries of Aswan, about 2 km south of the city, near the Fatimid cemetery…
In this place lies the one that could have been the highest obelisk in Egypt,… Wearing its sparkling pyramidion, it would then proudly bear the name and the cartouches of the pharaoh who ordered its execution…
But, “in Antiquity, at the time of the extraction, the team in charge of the operation discovered cracks on the block and tried several times to reduce its size. These attempts were unsuccessful and the monument was abandoned “(Nessim Henry Henein – BIFAO 109).
Florence Maruéjol reminds us of all the symbolism of the obelisks: “Like most elements of religious architecture, they are loaded with symbols. They materialize the Benben, the sacred stone venerated in antiquity in the temple of Heliopolis. They also embody the primordial hill on which the sun landed at the beginning of the world. They are also assimilated to petrified sunbeams “.
Giving up all hope of embodying this, he remained forever “fused” connected by one side to this stone bench of Syene, name of the ancient city of Aswan.
Clot Bey informs us about the mineralogical and geological composition which gave it its name: “Around Aswan, there are these varieties of granite, so famous in antiquity, known as syenite. We find in this mineralogical bench syenites pink, porphyritic, pink and yellow, grey, white and black, grey and pink, veined and black; porphyritic gneiss, white and quartz granites. Most of the huge monoliths left to us by the Egyptians, the obelisks, the colossi, are red syenite; we also see many statues and emblematic monuments of a smaller volume in black or grey syenite “.
Jean-Jacques Ampère, in his “Travel and Research in Egypt and Nubia” published in 1848 describes his visit thus:
We wandered curiously in the quarries of Syene. These quarries are a plain of granite cut in the open air for the needs of Egyptian architecture and especially sculpture. Egypt offers, in fact, very few monuments built in granite, but all the obelisks, many statues and sphinxes are of granite and of this pink granite peculiar to Syene, from where it took the name of syenite. It is from here that these famous monoliths came out, which, after decorating Thebes or Heliopolis, now embellish the squares of Rome and Paris. We understand how these masses could be detached. Holes that can still be seen arranged along with a horizontal slit show how large pieces of granite were separated from the rock. In these holes, the corners were used to break the rock.
We even see in Syene’s quarry an obelisk which has not been entirely detached; it is there lying on the ground, to which still holds by one side. By contemplating this living testimony of a work which has stopped for so many centuries, it seems that we are witnessing this work and that we see it being interrupted. One can believe that the workers, after taking their nap, will come back and finish their work; the unfinished work still seems to last. “
For many years this notion of the use of “corners” persisted, even Marcelle Baud in his Blue Guide will echo it: “They (the old quarries) show the process used by the Egyptians for the extraction of These notches, which delimited the surface to be extracted, received wooden wedges which were then wet. The swelling wood caused the block to burst in the delimited places and this obtained roughly smooth surfaces ready for polishing”…
But the truth about the exact technique used will emerge from 1920 – 1921, thanks to Pierre Lacau, then head of the Antiquities Service, which entrusted the study of the unfinished obelisk to Réginald Engelbach.
In his Report on the works carried out during the winter of 1920-21, he made the following observation:
“In Aswan, all the tourists knew the unfinished obelisk which still lies in place in the granite quarry. The sand had invaded it and it had to be cleared again. I took the opportunity to try to clear it in a complete way, in order to examine closely the technical procedures of the Egyptian quarrymen. M. Engelbach, the chief inspector for Upper Egypt, was charged with the work and he was pleasantly surprised to see the enormous needle stretch out in a disproportionate way; the part currently cleared of the debris which covered it is already 36 meters long, and the work is not finished. It is therefore already the largest of the known obelisks (we have one of thirty and one meters only). One cannot help but think of the well-known text by Deir el Bahari which tells us about obelisks of fifty-two meters; this surprising figure is much less likely now to be only an exaggeration. “
Rex Engelbach, an English Egyptologist of Alsatian origin, remembers: “Although its existence has been known for centuries, the unfinished obelisk had never been cleared until the end of this winter of 1922 when my department allocated the sum of LE 75 to do it. In this work, I was assisted by Mahmûd Eff. Mohamed and Mustafa Eff. Hassan of the department of antiquities who supervised the workers”.
He initially trained as an engineer and finds there a very interesting subject of study: he seeks to understand why this immense long-form mass carved in granite, this monument of more than 1100 tonnes was abandoned there in the New Empire.
He senses that what in antiquity might have appeared as a catastrophe, a waste of time for workers and sponsors, contains a wealth of information, a source of knowledge and understanding of the work and extraction of these materials. monoliths from the Pharaonic eras.
He devotes several seasons to exploring the site, he excavates, clears, clears the pit that surrounds the obelisk, drawing information, remarks and conclusions which he will reproduce in three works.
In “The Aswân Obelisk”, “he provides a complete and detailed description of the obelisk. Far from being limited to a description of the boulder, the trenches surrounding it, the wells and certain details which struck it on the site, he develops hypotheses and tries to elucidate the way in which the various operations relating to obelisks were to be conducted, from the marking on the surface of the granite hill of the quarry to their erection in front of the pylons of the temples. “
In “The Problem of the Obelisks”, “he explains the stages in the production of the obelisk in four points: – equalization of the upper layer of the block obtained by thermal shock; – use of Dolerite balls to equalize the surfaces; – drawing of the contours of the obelisk traced on the upper surface after levelling; – realization of the trench which surrounds it “.
He came to this staggering observation in particular: “We used neither scissors nor wedges to detach the obelisk from the quarry; the dolerite balls were the only tools used. In other words, the obelisk was not cut but excavated … Not only the sides but also the underside of the obelisk were detached by percussion. “
And finally, in “The Wonder of the Obelisk”, he summarizes all the knowledge acquired during his excavations.
If this obelisk did not illuminate a temple with its presence, it served many other functions. Thanks to Engelbach, he shed light on the “making” of his fellows. He also brought to our attention the excellent level of technicality enjoyed by tailors, and he always recalls the almost philosopher’s relationship that the ancient Egyptians had with stone…
Welcome one and all, to the steampunk riverboat, The Delta Pearl! It’s wonderful to see you, my chuckaboos. Thanks to Dan Antion at No Facilities, for letting me use some of his photos in this series.
In this chapter of my serialized re-write of the novel, I’ve added two “random reader things.” Valentina Criasola gave us cul de crin. She also has a post about the item at her blog. Sometimes I enjoy a comment so much that I use it as a thing. That happened with Mary J Melange and What?
Are you ready to get back on the riverboat?
“Amethyst, you don’t mean Eliza Needleman’s big yellow diamond has been stolen, do you? The Pharaoh Diamond?” I asked incredulous.
The mechanical spider bobbed her entire body up and down by straightening and…
During WWII, Winston Churchill was asked to cut arts funding in favour of the war effort, he simply replied, ‘Then what are we fighting for?’ It’s a shame that that turned out to be false news. He never said it. Even so, it’s a great line for the current crisis in the world of art and fits like a glove for all the art genres suffering because of the worldwide lockdown right now. At times like this it seems art and artists are playing second fiddle to the invisible zombie infection we’re living through.
Musicians are a good example. With the music industry dead in the water because of the corona virus lockdown and my rainy day alternative businesses being dependent on being in places where crowds once gathered but are now closed down, I’m thinking what’s the point? Then again, I keep telling myself that dark days…
Hello, everyone! Yes, I’m still alive, and so are my kids.
The past few days have been quite the learning experience for the three Bs and myself regarding patience, kindness, listening…maybe some science in there too, but honestly, at this stage it’s all about learning to live with one another every waking hour of the day. Hopefully some of the school stuff is sinking in, but as I say whenever I sub in a classroom: So long as no one hurts themselves or each other, it’s a good day. 🙂
On top of learning to learn together, I still need to find time to teach my online university students. I’m going to try something Thursday and Friday to see if it’ll help bring a little balance to my teaching load…and hopefully free up time to write, too.
In the meantime, I wanted to share a few freebies with you. Aionios…
I’ve written little new of late. Be it posting blogs full of words penned long ago or dabbling in newborn fictional tales of this, that and the other, a uselessness prevails. A tarnished body and brain in unison tend to have that effect. Be it from quill to keyboard my storytelling is in limbo. So instead, I research, and as all writers of historical fiction will understand research is all. Most fact-finding, inevitably, is of a bland yet on occasion useful, bygone timeline of events, yet sometimes, just sometimes one stumbles upon a golden nugget in the form of an eye witness account from days of yore.
Herewith the translated words of one Franz Mawick, a humble man working with the Swiss ‘Red Cross’ mission as a driver speaking of an event that unfolded before his eyes in Nazi occupied Warsaw back in 1942. His account relates to the seizing…