Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Old Coptic Cairo

We went two days ago to Old Coptic Cairo. Oddly enough, I was disappointed. I had heard how wonderful it was but perhaps we should not have done it so close to our walk in the Old Islamic area behind the Khan.

Click on the photo below to see a set of photos from our walk.
From Old Coptic Cairo

It suffered in comparison. We had gone to the Islamic area on a public holiday in Ramadan. We chose a Friday (Islamic holy day) for Coptic Cairo thinking we were being clever. If we were, then so were about two thousand other people - most of them noisy, shouting and running children.

The churches were beautiful but hard to see in the crowds, and in the most interesting ones photography was not permitted. Some groups of icons were from the thirteenth century.

Why would children try to play running games in church? Even without a service going on it felt appalling rude – and such a contrast to the quiet dignity of the behaviour we saw in the mosques.

I realised as I hit ‘send’ on the photographs of angels in the graveyards that these are actually Catholic graves in old Coptic Cairo, not Coptic graves. Nevertheless, they are lovely angels. I have always loved old stone angels in churchyards, and this was a really impressive collection. Click on the photo below to see the set.
Victorian angels from the graveyards of Old Coptic Cairo

Remember that my lovely blog fairy often sets these images up so if you click on one it opens all the others – so what looks like one image might actually be six or more. To see all the photos I have loaded onto the internet click on the Flickr link at the side – there are more on Flickr than I put on the blog.


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