Aksum

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Aksum

or

Axum

(both: äkso͞om`), town (1994 pop. 27,148), Tigray region, N Ethiopia. Aksum was the capital of an empire (c.1st–8th cent. A.D.) that controlled much of what is now N Ethiopia. In the 4th cent. the emperor Ezana was converted to Christianity, and today Aksum is a major center of Ethiopian Christianity. The Ark of the Covenant is said to have been brought there from Jerusalem in Solomon's time and placed in the church of St. Mary of Zion, where Ethiopia's emperors were later crowned. The town is also noted for its gigantic carved pre-Christian obelisks, and there is an extensive underground royal necropolis.
References in periodicals archive ?
Given the absence of Aksumite sculpture and other Himyarite royal images, it is not surprising that parallels for the different attributes of the crowned figure (Figure 3) are rare or imprecise.
An ambassador of Justinian relates an eye-witness account of the Aksumite king Kaleb Ella Asbeha.
They may alternatively be interpreted as a bouquet of branches, a rare Christian symbol that appears (though not identical in form) on late Aksumite coin images (Munro-Hay 1999: types 420-37).
Many late Aksumite coin types depict a cross mounted on a staff, but all differ somewhat from that of the crowned man (Munro-Hay 1999: types 568-628).
Between the Aksumite victory of 525 and the pandemic lies the regency of Sumuyafa 'Ashwa' (c.
Catalogue of the Aksumite coins in the British Museum.
Aksumite influence also extended to diplomatic ties being made with the Quraysh tribe, the mercantile rulers of Mecca.
Almost certainly, the Aksumite rulers were able to co-ordinate the work of an army of masons to make the obelisks, and most probably used elephants and wooden rollers to drag the giant blocks of stone.
External decoration tends to be concentrated on the windows and is usually Aksumite in style, although this is sometimes interspersed with Islamic style ogee curves.
Decoration is a mixture of Islamic geometric patterns fused with more typical Coptic portraits and Aksumite cushion capitals.
Only one church, Bet Emanuel, is fully monolithic; it has crisp horizontal banding and window details in typically Aksumite style.
Churches evolved to suit the Ethiopian Orthodox rituals, and traditionally, except for the rock and the original ancient Aksumite types, were generally circular.