The Egypt Portal

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Arab Republic of Egypt
جمهورية مصر العربية
  • Arabic:Jumhūrīyat Miṣr al-ʻArabīyah
    Egyptian:Gomhoreyyet Maṣr el-ʿArabeyya
Location of Egypt
ISO 3166 codeEG

Egypt (Arabic: مِصر, romanizedMiṣr, Egyptian Arabic pronunciation: [mæsˤr]), officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, is a transcontinental country spanning the northeast corner of Africa and southwest corner of Asia via a land bridge formed by the Sinai Peninsula. It is bordered by the Mediterranean Sea to the north, the Gaza Strip of Palestine and Israel to the northeast, the Red Sea to the east, Sudan to the south, and Libya to the west. The Gulf of Aqaba in the northeast separates Egypt from Jordan and Saudi Arabia. Cairo is the capital and largest city of Egypt, while Alexandria, the second-largest city, is an important industrial and tourist hub at the Mediterranean coast. At approximately 100 million inhabitants, Egypt is the 14th-most populated country in the world.

Egypt has one of the longest histories of any country, tracing its heritage along the Nile Delta back to the 6th–4th millennia BCE. Considered a cradle of civilisation, Ancient Egypt saw some of the earliest developments of writing, agriculture, urbanisation, organised religion and central government. Iconic monuments such as the Giza Necropolis and its Great Sphinx, as well the ruins of Memphis, Thebes, Karnak, and the Valley of the Kings, reflect this legacy and remain a significant focus of scientific and popular interest. Egypt's long and rich cultural heritage is an integral part of its national identity, which reflects its unique transcontinental location being simultaneously Mediterranean, Middle Eastern and North African. Egypt was an early and important centre of Christianity, but was largely Islamised in the seventh century and remains a predominantly Sunni Muslim country, albeit with a significant Christian minority, along with other lesser practiced faiths.

Islam is the official religion of Egypt and Arabic is its official language. With over 100 million inhabitants, Egypt is the most populous country in North Africa, the Middle East, and the Arab world, the third-most populous in Africa (after Nigeria and Ethiopia), and the fourteenth-most populous in the world. The great majority of its people live near the banks of the Nile River, an area of about 40,000 square kilometres (15,000 sq mi), where the only arable land is found. The large regions of the Sahara desert, which constitute most of Egypt's territory, are sparsely inhabited. About 43% of Egypt's residents live across the country's urban areas, with most spread across the densely populated centres of greater Cairo, Alexandria and other major cities in the Nile Delta. (Full article...)

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The river in Uganda

The Nile is a major north-flowing river in northeastern Africa. It flows into the Mediterranean Sea. The Nile is the longest river in Africa and has historically been considered the longest river in the world, though this has been contested by research suggesting that the Amazon River is slightly longer. Of the world's major rivers, the Nile is one of the smallest, as measured by annual flow in cubic metres of water. About 6,650 km (4,130 mi) long, its drainage basin covers eleven countries: the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Tanzania, Burundi, Rwanda, Uganda, Kenya, Ethiopia, Eritrea, South Sudan, Republic of the Sudan, and Egypt. In particular, the Nile is the primary water source of Egypt, Sudan and South Sudan. Additionally, the Nile is an important economic river, supporting agriculture and fishing.

The Nile has two major tributaries – the White Nile and the Blue Nile. The White Nile is traditionally considered to be the headwaters stream. However, the Blue Nile is the source of most of the water of the Nile downstream, containing 80% of the water and silt. The White Nile is longer and rises in the Great Lakes region. It begins at Lake Victoria and flows through Uganda and South Sudan. The Blue Nile begins at Lake Tana in Ethiopia and flows into Sudan from the southeast. The two rivers meet at the Sudanese capital of Khartoum. (Full article...)
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Sheikh Hassan Ahmed Abdel Rahman Muhammed al-Banna (Arabic: حسن أحمد عبد الرحمن محمد البنا; 14 October 1906 – 12 February 1949), known as Hassan al-Banna (Arabic: حسن البنا), was an Egyptian schoolteacher and imam, best known for founding the Muslim Brotherhood, one of the largest and most influential Islamic revivalist organizations.

Al-Banna's writings marked a turning-point in Islamic intellectual history by presenting a modern ideology based on Islam. Al-Banna considered Islam to be a comprehensive system of life, with the Qur'an and Sunnah as the only acceptable constitution. He called for Islamization of the state, the economy, and society. He declared that establishing a just society required development of institutions and progressive taxation, and elaborated an Islamic fiscal theory where zakat would be reserved for social expenditure in order to reduce inequality. Al-Banna's ideology involved criticism of Western materialism, British imperialism, and the traditionalism of the Egyptian ulema. He appealed to Egyptian and pan-Arab patriotism but rejected Arab nationalism and regarded all Muslims as members of a single nation-community. (Full article...)

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A rural breakfast accompanied by eish baladi and eish shamsi
Eish shamsi (Egyptian Arabic: عيش شمسي), is a thick sourdough bread eaten in Egypt made with wheat flour. In Upper Egypt it replaces eish baladi as the local staple, although the latter is common as well. The name, which translates to "sun bread", is thought to derive from the practice of letting the dough rise in the sun. The bread is traditionally baked at home in domed clay ovens with openings at the top, although this tradition is fading with pre-made bread becoming increasingly common. (Full article...)

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  • ... that 995 graffiti from the Greco-Roman period (pictured) can be seen in the tomb of Ramesses VI, left by pilgrims. They include "I visited and I did not like anything except the sarcophagus!", "I admired!" and "I cannot read the hieroglyphs!"
  • ... that in 215 AD, Roman emperor Caracalla ordered all of Alexandria’s population to be massacred because they produced a satire mocking him?

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