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Until a week ago I had never heard of Lalibela, a town in Ethiopia that contains approximately a dozen monolithic churches carved in the 12th and 13th centuries. I've read about places like Petra and Cappadocia, but haven't seen something quite like Lalibela where the the rock-hewn structures are carved down into the ground. From what I understand, the layout of the complex mimics a miniature Jerusalem. Though the Churches were built on a mountain ridge, due to an underground spring originating at the base of another mountain, engineers were able to channel the water source into wells by the churches.


jennifer said...

I didn't know about these structures until I taught a World History class and had to lecture about them a couple summers ago. They are so fascinating.

Angela Barnes said...

Wow, Julia, this leaves me breathless!

Various Projects said...

WHAT!!!? no way.

Jennifer said...

This is incredible. What artistry, determination, and religious faith must have been necessary to create these structures!