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Tues 21. [21 March 1905] It streamed all day till 3 and I worked on
books and maps. Thank Heaven we have got into the big Kiepert.
Then went out into the ruins which stand on the opposite side of the
valley. No one gives any idea of the charm of them. Great houses
with gardens enclosed with pallisades, columned facades carved
and moulded lintels and arches to windows and doors, all sober and
solid and yet with such an air of lavish prosperity. Rock cut tombs
and pyramid tombs, rock cut birkehs and birs. The stone a lovely
warm colour, the earth red, the gardens full of olive and vine and
overgrown with clematis, hyacinth, starch hyacinth and anemome.
Almond trees flowering among the stones. In one place the narrow
street quite perfect - very little arched vaulting; apparently all the floors
were wood and the roofs(?) The monogram on every door and
window. Extraordinary that these people shd have left no name in
history. I think they must have been Semites with a Greek cultivation.
Yellow Aaron's rod.