The Citadel of the seventh century, St. Simeon Monastery, was first assigned to the fourth-century local saint Abba Hedra, who relinquished the world on his wedding day. It was reconstructed in the tenth-century and dedicated to St. Simeon. Monks moved into Nubia, in the hope of changing the Nubians to Christianity, until Salah ad-Din defeated the monastery in 1173. It is also consider as Aswan Top Attractions.
The St. Simeon Monastery bound in desert sands built in two levels has a lower level of stone and an upper level of mud brick surrounded by 10-meter-high walls.
The basilica has marks of frescoes, and there is a chamber where St. Simeon prayed with his beard tied to the roof in case he fell asleep. The pads with their mastaba beds once equipped settlement for about 300 resident monks and some 100 pilgrims.
The Plan Of The Monastery:
The monastery subjected to active building exercise during the first half of the eleventh century has numerous tall structures.
The Lower Terrace:
It consists of the real rock caves of the saints, a church with its baptistery, and ancient-style lodging for pilgrims. Its lobby heading into the monastery has a barrel-arched roof.
The entrance door plans out from the east wall of the enclosure under a defensive tower.
The Principal Church of the Monastery:
- There were a variety of visible wall paintings that were still discernible at the top of the nineteenth century, but alas, most of those square measures are badly broken or perhaps destroyed.
- Christ holds a book on one knee along with his mitt, whereas his Manus is raised in blessing on the far side the sting of the mandoria. Somebody’s figure with a square nimbus that seems in a praying position on the extreme right. Below this scene, the wall area unit adorned with arcades and pendentives create an old, ancient look.
The Upper Terrace:
- The upper terrace consisted of the massive keep that provides a permanent residence for the monastic community, somewhat uncommon in this most keeps served solely as temporary housing throughout sieges.
- The upper terrace approached by stairs on the north wall of the church within the lower a part of the religious residence forms another gateway.
Despite the fact that the St. Simeon Monastery is essentially only collection of ruins, there are still some interesting things to see, hence the reason why the site is often featured in lists of Aswan Sightseeing Tours.
The necropolis of the religious residence has yielded nearly 200 tombstones. Their text shows three distinct editions and different prayer formulas valuable to researchers.