il-Mu'allakah of Iraq al-Amir


Amman, Wadi al Seir

External Id: SPT98


il-Mu'allakah il-Mu'allakah means “the suspended one”. A three-story building, A huge columbarium hewn in a cliff, with a rock-hewn facade can be seen for miles up and down the valley. A narrow doorway with a high threshold is the sole feature of the ground floor. Above this appear the windows, the middle one open and unadorned; the side windows are closed with grilles of stone, and have moulded window caps. The face of the uppermost most story is cut back from the lower face, like a long, sunken panel with mouldings all around.There are four windows in this story, those on the sides being open, while the other two are closed with slightly broken grille work. Entering by the low, narrow doorway we find a great rock-hewn chamber, somewhat higher than the facade, with stories, corresponding to those without, and marked off by broad, projecting corbel courses. In the wall, to the left as one enters, are two passages in each story, opening into a chamber exactly similar to the one first entered, the wall separating them being 1.05 m. thick, and of the living rock. The feature of greatest interest within the chambers is found in a series of small triangular niches with which every section of the walls is honeycombed. The whole number of niches aggregating about 2200. “Dr. Post, on the other hand, accepts it at once as a dove-cote, and I can find no reason for not agreeing with him.” the author says. (Publications of the Princeton University Archaeological Expeditions to Syria, Div.2.)