This majestic city is one of the new Seven Wonders of the World. An ancient city that was expected to build thousands of years ago carved into soft stone cliffs, the ancient sandstone city of Petra was expected to be built in the 3rd century BC by the Nabataeans. The city was carved directly into vibrant red, white, pink, and sandstone cliff faces, the prehistoric Jordanian city of Petra was lost to the Western world for hundreds of years.
During the time of 4th and 2nd centuries BCE, the Nabataeans became a distinct civilization and political entity, and their kingdom ran around a trading network that brought them enough wealth and influence throughout the ancient world. They were so advanced that even one historian described them as one of the most gifted peoples of the ancient world.
The city is located in amid rugged desert canyons and mountains, presently it is the southwestern corner of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, and Petra was once a major trading center and the capital of the Nabataean kingdom is approximately between 400 B.C. to A.D. 106. The city sat empty and ruined for centuries. Only in the early 1800s did a European traveler infiltrate the mysterious locale.
And Petra city was a beautiful rock-carved capital, which is situated next to the mountain of Jebel al-Madhbah which means the mountain of the altar, where Nabataeans used to perform rituals. Petra is situated in a basin that is mainly surrounded by mountains. It is said that the Nabataeans, the ancient people had chosen this location due to its vicinity to the trading routes, which is an old network of routes across land and sea that linked the Mediterranean world with northeastern Africa, Arabia, India, and beyond, where scent, spices, gold, animal skins, slaves and other goods and spices would be traded from one part of the world to another.
And by this Petra became the main focus of the Nabataeans, who were used to living in unhabituated deserts, and were skillful or experts at harvesting rainwater, agriculture, and stone carving. To enter the city, there is a gateway called the Siq, which is three-quarters of a mile in length, and was shaped by a fault that was split by tectonic plates, thousands of years ago.
The sea Voyagers to the stunning city must pass through these magnificent and imposing rocks that block out the sky. Then, they will also see a glimpse of the Treasury, which is also known as Al Khazneh, a breathtaking view of 39 meters high mausoleum hewn out of rock. The name comes from the legends that said was an Egyptian pharaoh who had hidden his treasure in a cruet at the top of the temple. The structure is Petra’s jewel, decorated with Corinthian capitals, and figures, held up by Greek-style pillars and consists of three chambers.
From the Treasury, the area contains more than 40 tombs, which are known as the Street of Facades. There is also a 7000-seat theater found, as well as some steps that are leading up to the High Place of Sacrifice, a hilltop altar that sits above the tombs and temples. But it’s not the only sacred spot in the skies, the plateau located above the Royal Tombs gives a stunning view of the splendor of Petra and can be accessed through steps that lie behind the three-story Palace Tomb.
The major deities who were worshiped at Petra were Dushara and Al-’Uzzá. Dushara, who was the major supreme deity of the Nabataeans, while Al-’Uzzá was the goddess, the mistress of heaven, and the star Goddess among all.
The research shows that no one has found any archaeological evidence dating back to the fourth century B.C. The earliest findings far date back only to the 2nd and 1st centuries B.C. But there are more clues that remain under the surface. Until now scientists only could uncover 15 % of the city. The 85% is still underground, mysterious, and untouched
There is a lot to learn about history, architecture, or culture, or to explore one of the new wonders of the world, you will be amazed to know what mankind could accomplish so many years ago.