Seven Wonders of the Ancient World: Pharos – The Alexandria Lighthouse

Lead: Designed to protect commerce sailing in and out of the port of Alexandria, one of the seven wonders of the ancient world, Pharos, the Alexandria lighthouse has proven to be the model for most lighthouses built since.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Almost as if anticipating a modern list of curiosities such as Ripley’s Believe it or Not, The Seven Wonders of the Ancient World was a constantly varying and occasionally updated list of architectural accomplishments maintained by historians such as the Greek scholar Herodotus and Antipater (An-TI-pa-tor) of Sidon. Revisions to the list were made almost into the modern era as structures disappeared or new ones were built. On nearly all the lists was the famous Lighthouse of Alexandria built on the island of Pharos just off the port in about 290 B.C.E.

Read more →

Muhammad Ali – Founder of Modern Egypt – Part II

Lead:  The occupation of Egypt by the French ending in 1801 disrupted the country's traditional political and economic structures. Sent as a part of the Ottoman Empire's force to throw the French out, Muhammad Ali, through political maneuvering, rose to be the governor. He is considered by many to be the Founder of Modern Egypt.

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: By ruthlessly eliminating the Mamluks, the traditional rulers of Egypt, and neutralizing all other challenges to his authority, Muhammad slowly began to make major changes in society. To firm up his position he first created, with the help of European advisors, the first modern army and navy in the Near East. He created a professional civil service and centralized the tax system, but his major reforms were in agricultural production.

Read more →

Muhammad Ali – Founder of Modern Egypt – Pt. I

Lead:  When Napoleon Bonaparte in his search for military glory and territorial expansion, invaded Egypt in 1798 he threw the social and political structure of the nation into chaos. Many mark this time as the beginning of modern Egypt.

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content:  When the French fleet appeared off Alexandria at the end of the eighteenth century, in many ways Egypt was little changed since medieval times. Under the nominal rule of the Ottoman Empire, actual power in Egypt had been held by the Mamluk clan since the 1200s. Ninety-percent of the population were peasants or fellahin who worked huge Mamluk estates and paid tribute in what was little more than a system of feudalism. Since the fellahin owed their allegiance to their feudal Mamluk landlords, Egypt lacked a strong central government. When Napoleon defeated the Mamluk armies at the Battle of the Pyramids, the internal social structure of Egypt began to disintegrate.

Read more →