The ancient temple of BaalShamin in Saiya... creativity in architectural and engineering decoration

 BaalShamin Temple, is located in the archaeological site of the eastern countryside of Sweida. It is distinguished by the beauty of its geometric and architectural decorations that are carved as plant shapes, especially vine. In addition to the figures carved within the Acanthus leaves that decorate the Corinthian crowns of the columns.

The archaeological Temple of BaalShamin, which dates back to the period between 1 and 32 BC, is the largest temple in southern Syria and the most important part of the "gods compound", which is located on the western end of the western  mountainous region.

Head of the Department of Archeology in Sweida, Dr. Nasha'at Kiwan stated that the Temple of BaalShamin, or what is called "the God of the Heavens", is considered the most important monument in the archaeological site of Saiya, as its ruins indicate its high position.

The temple  consists of the main gate on the eastern side, which dates back to the era of the Roman leader, Severianus, in the second half of the second century AD, of which only the foundations of its right tower are left, in addition to a large courtyard. Its northeastern corner is occupied by a defensive tower, and its northwestern corner depicts the ruins of an administrative building dating back to the second century AD, as well as the chapel located in the middle of the temple courtyard.

Kiwan pointed out that there are  ruins for another temple located on the southern end of the BaalShamin Temple, which was likely built during the reign of the Nabateans king Rabbel II between 70 and 106 AD according to a Roman plan and decorations. There are also ruins of a square-shaped building that looks like a tower and is located between two courtyards, one of them is wider than the second. As for the central courtyard, which is the front sanctuary of the temple of  BaalShamin god, parts of its wall are still clearly identifiable.

Kiwan shows that, during the previous years of excavation, the entire BaalShamin Temple was discovered.

  A number of important archaeological finds, including bronze coins, pottery, a saddle, parts of Nabateans and Greek writings, and some of the inscriptions and architectural decorations that used to decorate the Temple of BaalShamin, were also found. In addition to writing that indicates the history of the  temple's building in the Nabateans and Greek languages, dating back to the first century BC, some of them carry the name of Ous Ibn Malika, who wrote the inscription of the temple's construction.

It is noteworthy that the site of Saiya is one of the important archaeological areas in the governorate of Sweida and southern Syria where the Arab tribes and residents of the region visited it frequently as the ancient artists immortalized it in wonderful paintings decorating the entrances of their temples and their homes' balconies.

Amal Farhatv

Decablus, A water tunnel in Horan plain… An archaeological historical marvel

The historic tunnel Da'el - Umm Qais, the longest water tunnel in the world…

 Da'el - Umm Qais tunnel is considered an underground water miracle that the Romans built to connect the cities of the Decablus to each other in order to supply them with water.

The cities of the Decablus, is a Roman alliance established by the Roman Emperor Pompey in 64 BC, which included ten of the most important cities of the Levant to stand against the influence of the Nabateans in the south. These cities are located in the middle and south of the Levant, within the borders of Syria, Jordan, and Palestine, and most of these cities were in Jordan.

The tunnel(Decablus),which is considered an underground water empire,  extends 170 km between Jordan and Syria, and it is 9 times longer than the second longest tunnel in the world which is located in Italy.


The tunnel is described as a "heritage marvel" indicating the ancient civilizations that inhabited Horan, as the tunnel connects a group of villages in a unique water system fed by a group of heavy springs in Horan.

Renowned Czech director: Syria is a very beautiful country with an amazing history

PRAGUE, (ST)- Syria's great ancient civilization was the theme of a recent photo report published by renowned Czech director and actor Ondrej Havelka.

He described Syria as a very beautiful country with an amazing history.

In a photo report he posted on "Trekking" website that specializes in tourism, the Czech artists showcased 23 big colored photos that he had taken of historical places in Syria.

Syria is a culturally rich country, particularly in terms of archeological sites and unique antiquities, said Havelka, hailing the hospitality of the Syrian people.

Panoramic image of the antiquities' reality in Damascus countryside and several governorates during the war

DAMASCUS, (ST)- Archaeological sites in Damascus countryside and the devastation that affected our archaeological sites, as a result of terrorism, are the two axes that Dr. Mahmoud Hammoud, Director General of Antiquities and Museums, spoke about in his lecture at the culture centre of Abu Rummana .

Hammoud said during his lecture entitled "Archaeological Excavations in Damascus Countryside," that many of our sites suffered from illegal excavations by terrorists in order to smuggle artifacts abroad in addition  to the vandalism that affected other sites by these ignorant people, pointing to the continuation of the archaeological activities of our national cadres who protect the archaeological sites and museum relics in various regions, especially the troubled ones.

The Birth of Hercules in a mosaic mural that was found in Homs

The scenario of Hercules birth was revealed in a mural dating back to the end of the second century and the beginning of the third century AD. It was discovered in 1987 in the city of "Homs" in the "al-Arbaeen neighborhood", and was transferred to the Museum of Al-Maarrah.

The ground mural is 18 feet long, 8 feet high and it weighs 2000 pounds. It is one of the prominent and most beautiful mosaic artifacts left by a Syrian artist ever. It expresses the artistic schools that the artist was influenced with during the Roman era, including impressionism and realism, in a unique symbolic way.

Hercules mosaic painting, is considered one of the most prominent mosaic works that embody the ideal classical tendency in the ancient Syrian art, through interest in realistic depictions of shapes represented by the best aesthetic values in the human form, which are drawn from the Greek heritage.