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And you thought Mount Rushmore was cool. Almost 2,000 years before Mount Rushmore, the Jordanian town of Petra, meaning "rock," had the front of a Greco-Roman temple carved into the face of a 130-foot cliff.
- Fusion: The Nabataeans were nomads who controlled the region before the Romans came along. The Romans spread their culture as they expanded their empire. Al Khazneh has features of Roman architecture, such as columns with Corinthian capitals. For comparison, here's the front of the Pantheon, which is in the middle of Rome, pretty far from Jordan.
- Purpose: Al Khazneh was among the tombs in which the Nabataeans buried wealthy people. However, people had thought pirates had stored treasures at the top of it, so "Al-Khazneh" means "The Treasury." (People even tried shooting down that part of it to find treasure, hence some bullet holes up there.) Other evidence suggests that it was a temple.
- Action: Al Khazneh made an appearance in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade as the temple with the Holy Grail. The nearby and similar-looking El-Deir was in Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen as the Tomb of the Primes.
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All images, videos, and articles are linked to their respective sources. Elements of this post were also drawn from the following:
- Book: Janson's History of Art
- Book: Sacred Places: Sites of Spirituality & Faith by Rebecca Hind
- Book: 1,000 Places to See Before You Die (2003 ed.)
- Online: UNESCO World Heritage List
- Online: King Hussein of Jordan's website > Touristic Sites