Petra's Great Temple: Face Off - Archaeology Magazine Archive

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Face Off "Petra's Great Temple"
Summer 2000

These stone-carved figures have lost face. Who were they?



Initially believed to have been defaced, these images are now understood to have been made in two steps. When plaster fragments were found in the niche where a face was lacking, archaeologists realized different craftsmen made the bodies and faces: the bodies in stone, the faces in plaster. Perhaps faces were even swapped as different rulers took power. Alas, the faces have not survived the ravages of time.

Intro | Nabataeans | Photo Essay | Great Temple | Temple Plan | Who's Who | Virtual Petra | Surround Sound | Mystery Objects | Face Off | Star Spangled Banner | Bulletin Board | Map

© 2000 by the Archaeological Institute of America