Documentary Film based on Gibson's book: Qur'anic Geography
 

 

The Sacred City from Glasshouse Media on Vimeo.

MEDA'IN SALEH

Map of Tombs 

Diwan Area 

 Tombs: Exteriors and Interiors

 Niches, Altars and God Blocks

 Tombs by number and description

 Tomb Decorations, Falcons, Faces, etc

 Meda'in Saleh home

This Nabataean city is located in Saudi Arabia, approximately 320 kilometers south of Petra. This Nabataean city has 131 tombs spread out over 13.4 kilometers. The city proper as a siq, walls, towers, water conduits, and cisterns. We are trying to collect pictures, maps and other descriptions of this site. If you can help us please email us especially if you can provide photos to complete our database of the 130 tombs.

In ancient times it was known as Hegra (“Rocky Tract”) but is now known as Mada’in Salih, or “the cities of Salih” in Arabic. (The name refers to the pre-Islamic prophet Salih, whose rejection by the people of Thamud is recounted in the Qur’an.) Hegra was the southernmost Nabataean settlement and one of the Nabataean Burial Cities. It was also a center for the kingdom’s traders, farmers, engineers, stonemasons and artisans. Hegra’s walled urban center covered about 650,000 square meters or 160 acres.

One of the interesting things about Meda'in Saleh is that many of the tombs have inscriptions which describe who built the tomb, who is buried there, and who can use the tomb. Inscriptions like this are common on other Nabataean burial sites, but very few have been found in Petra. Some have wondered if the inscriptions in Petra were painted onto white plaster, which would have crumbled over history. Others have wondered if perhaps there never were any in Petra.

The above inscription was recently uncoved in Meda'in Saleh. It was translated byu Rudulf Haensch, of the German Archeological Institute in Munich and reads:

“For the welfare of Emperor Caesar Marcus Aurelius Antoninus Augustus Armeniacus Parthicus Medicus Germanicus Sarmaticus Maximus, the community of the Hegreni restored the wall, destroyed by the passage of time, at its own expense, under the governorship of Iulis Firmanus, legate of the emperor with the rank of praetor; the work being arranged by Pomponius Victor, centurion of Legion III Cyrenaica, and his colleague, Numisius Clemens, and construction being supervised by Amrus, son of Haian, the headman of their community.”

This inscription throws new light on Mada'in Salih, as it appears that the inscription was written in 75 AD, and demonstrates that there was a Roman military presence there at that time.

We are still collecting information about Meda'in Saleh. If you have information, maps, or pictures that we could use please contact us.

Please check out the chart of the 130 tombs: Tombs by number and description.

 

Photo by Galen R Frysinger
www.galenfrysinger.com
Used with permission

 

Photo by Galen R Frysinger
www.galenfrysinger.com
Used with permission

Photo by Galen R Frysinger
www.galenfrysinger.com
Used with permission

 

Photo by Galen R Frysinger
www.galenfrysinger.com
Used with permission

Photo by Galen R Frysinger
www.galenfrysinger.com
Used with permission

 

Photo by Galen R Frysinger
www.galenfrysinger.com
Used with permission

Photo by Galen R Frysinger
www.galenfrysinger.com
Used with permission

Photo by Galen R Frysinger
www.galenfrysinger.com
Used with permission

Special thanks to John and Kathy Haberman for all the photos below this point. Their contributions have greatly aided us in recording Meda'in Saleh for those who cannot enter Saudi Arabia at this time.

 

Below: A capital with what looks like a drawing of "grain."

 

 Above: A close-up of the grain drawing.

 

Left: A general view

 

 General view of area F.
 Decorations on a Nabataean capital.

 

 

Left: An interesting capital

 The view from the High Place looking north west.
 Above: A dining hall. Notice the siq on the left where people enter Meda'in Saleh.  Above: To the left of the dining hall, a niche is carved into the wall with a god-block.

Map of Tombs 

Diwan Area 

 Tombs: Exteriors and Interiors

 Niches, Altars and God Blocks

 Tombs by number and description

 Tomb Decorations, Falcons, Faces, etc

 Meda'in Saleh home

Here are links to a couple of interesting web sites with pictures:
Adventures in Medain Saleh 
Great pictures, but writer doesn't seem to know much about Nabataean History.
http://www.baynardscastle.com/adventures/medsaleh.html
 
You can see more photos at this site: http://www.zubeyr-kureemun.com/

Medain Saleh Trip, December 1999
A Tourist's view of Medain Saleh
http://buzz_777.tripod.com/travelsmedainsaleh.htm

Petra (A complete section in itself) Bostra
Nabataens in the Negev Wadi Rumm
Mampsis Aila
Mampsis Photos Humeima
Nessana Meda'in Saleh
Ruheiba Meda'in Saleh: Tombs: Exteriors and Interiors
Avdat Meda'in Saleh: Tomb Decorations, Falcons, Faces, etc
Elusa Meda'in Saleh: Niches, Altars and God Blocks
Gaza Ma'an
Shivta Leuce Come
The Wall Where was Leuce Come? by Bob Lebling
Negev Wall A Possible Solution for Leuce-Come By Dan Gibson
Sela South Forts
Archeological sites in Saudi Arabia More South Forts