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New to the Site
October - 1998
A New Look
I did some remodelling this month. I mostly re-wallpapered. The
remodelling is a work in progress. Hope you enjoy the new look. Let me
know what you think of the new look, or anything else about the page!
I joined a few webrings in October.
Why is the city of Kairouan important?
Thirteen centuries ago Okba Ibn Nafaa founded Kairouan. It became
the first Islamic city in the Maghreb. Kairouan became the center of
religious life and the site of one of Islam's most ancient
and holiest mosques. It is still an important spiritual centre
On the drive from Tunis to Carthage, 1994
The English Patient
A museum by the marble quaries of Chimtou, Jendouba province-Tunisia has been opened.
It has information on geology, early Berber and Roman history of the area
of the famous quarries of marmor Numidicum near ancient Simitthu
(colonia Iulia Augusta Numidica Simitthensium).
The displays are all trilingual: Arabic, French, German. However, no
English speaking English version. Although there is a page with plans
and informations in English on the web.
September - 1998
Where does the word gorilla originate?
We get our modern word "gorilla" from a Carthaginian named Hanno who,
according to the elder Pliny, sailed along the west coast of Africa.
Here's an excerpt from Hanno's journal:
"Following rivers of fire for three days we came to a gulf called the Southern Horn. In this
gulf was an island...This was full of savages; by far the greater number were women with hairy
bodies, called by our interpreters `gorillas.' We gave chase to the men but could not catch any for
they climbed steep rocks and pelted us with stones. However, we captured three women who bit and
scratched their captors. We killed and flayed them and brought their skins back to Carthage. This
was as far as we could sail owing to lack of provisions."
Blossom's comments: "I motored thru Tunisia in 1974 when there were few hotels. I crossed
the Djerid salt chotts across the desert. There is a wonderful
Roman/Greco site, Dougga. I was disappointed in Carthage. I returned
to Tunisia about 20 years later - too many tourists and tour buses
going out to the Troglodyte villages. In '74 it cost me $2 to sleep
in a cave on a bag of straw. I had some great adventures in
Tunisia when it was off the beaten tourist track. It is a fascinating
country steeped in history and culture."
View of the Byrsa Hill from the Punic Ports in Carthage
August - 1998
The land of the Lotos-Eaters (IX 90-103) in the Odyssey is thought
to be Djerba. Some also feel that Odysseus' journey, after leaving
the Lotos-Eaters, took him North along the Tunisian coast to the
lagoons and the fertile lowlands of Tunisia.
"Nine days I drifted on the teeming sea before dangerous high winds.
Upon the tenth we came to the coastline of the Lotos Eaters, who live
upon that flower. We landed there to take on water. All ships'
companies mustered alongside for the mid-day meal. Then I sent out
two picked me and a runner to learn what race of men that land
sustained. They fell in, soon enough, with Lotos Eaters, who
showed no will to do us harm, only offering the sweet Lotos to our
friends - but those who ate this honeyed plan, the Lotos, never cared
to report, not to return: they longed to stay forever, browsing on
that native bloom, forgetful of their homeland. I drove them, all
three wailing, to the ships, tied them down under their rowing
benches, and called the rest: 'All hands aboard; come, clear the
beach and no one taste the Lotos, or you lose your hope of home.'
Filing in to their places by the rowlocks my oarsmen dipped their
long oars in the sure, and we moved out gain on our sea faring."
Street in Hammamet
The Punic Wars - A Little History Lesson
July - 1998
Where is the longest ancient aqueduct?
It is the Roman Aqueduct of Carthage. It ran 141 km
(87.6 miles) from springs of Zagouan to Djebel Djougar. It was built
by the Romans during the reign of Publius Aelius Hadrianus (AD 117-38).
I have heard that its original capacity has been calculated at 31.8 million litres
(7,000,000 gal)per day!
Sarah Dowdall's comments: "In April 1998 I travelled with my family of
seven to Tunisia. It was without doubt the best holiday that I have
been on. We stayed in a hotel at an all-inclusive resort beside Port
El Kantoui. I wouldn't recommend people to go to Tunisia if they are
looking for a boozy holiday. There is no shortage of drink, but there
aren't many pubs/clubs. The people are very nice and it's very
important to respect their country and their beliefs. The men can
sometimes be a bit frightening as they leer towards woman but once
you keep your mouth shut you shouldn't have any problems. All in all,
Tunisia is a very beautiful place and I can't wait to go back. If
anyone has any questions they can e-mail me at
firstname.lastname@example.org Bye!" -
An underground house in Bulla Regia
FOCUS on TUNISIA -
Has a wide variety of information.
June - 1998
When did the Punic Wars really end?
Well, in 1985 the mayors of Rome and Carthage (now a suburb of Tunis) got together
and signed a treaty declaring the Punic Wars over.
Bogden's Opinion: "It was really a good trip for me and my family. We entered
Tunisia in Monastir and visited Sousse, Mahdia, El Jem, Leptia-
Leptimus and Monastir. We met a lot of happy, interesting persons.
For other trawellers i can say that Tunisia is a good destination for
holidays with small children. Our son was happy. We were in a good
hotels from 10 DT for a triple room with shower (EZZOHOUR- SOUSSE
MEDINA). Also we found interesting archaeological places in EL JEM.
In future we`d like to organize excavations there.
Last informations for travellers:
Sousse: Medina 2 with shower for 22 DT, Hotel de Paris 2
for 15 DT, Ezzohour 3 with shower for 10 DT !!!!
Mahdia: Corniche 2 for 15 DT
Daily budget for 2 person with small child (without hotel):
5-20 DT (1DT= 1,13$).
We think Tunisia is great, our son was happy there, he`s not happy
now." -Bogden (from Poland)
"There is an archaeological team from Poland which will be starting a new excavation in Tunisia by the
end of 1998. They are looking for sponsors and volunteers to work on this Polish-Tunisian excavation.
The archaeological project will be taking place in El Djem. The project will be aimed at locating and
excavating a lost amphitheatre and Roman Villas. If you would like more information about this project,
please email Bogden at email@example.com."
Room in a Wedding Museum
Tunisia - another personal account
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