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Ma'lula
Ma'lula

Ma'lula: Hanging out in Mountains

(Dp-news – Sana)

DAMASCUS- The isolated position of Ma'lula in the mountains played a notable role in preserving the Aramaic Language and its Syriac dialect, the language of the Christ.
This immunity, however, was not that invulnerable since other languages found access to Ma'lula, being a first class tourist town known for a deep defile which is believed to have split apart making a way for St. Takla (Thecla) when she fled her powerful pagan father in 68 A.D.

Ma'lula archeologically important site is expected to attract more visitors due to the efforts exerted by the bodies concerned towards rehabilitating the city and restoring its neighborhoods, squares and worship places.


The Monastery of Mar Sarkis and Bacchus, built in the 4th century A.D. on the ruins of a pagan temple, is among the most famous churches and convents in Ma'lula.
Dating back to the 5th century A.D., St. Takla Monastery is located to the southern part of the gorge, a huge monastery inside which an ancient church is engraved in rock next to St. Takla sanctuary.

The significance of Ma'lula, 55 km from the capital Damascus, is not confined to its religious and archeological history, as the architectural beauty of the houses adds to the city's rich assets.
About 75 percent of the houses are engraved in the rocky mountain, 1500 meter above sea level, side by side with a number of wide caves dating back to the Stone Age, giving the impression that the whole town is climbing on top of itself.
"Nature and events got together to make Ma'lula a magnificent painting blending the past with the present, reality with legend and sanctity with beauty," an inhabitant of Ma'lula said.

According to Christian Historian, when St Takla found herself faced by the mountain and chased by her father's soldiers from behind who wanted to kill her due to her conversion to Christianity, suddenly the mountain splits in front of her allowing her escape.
The mountain pass and the monastery, which was established at the place of prayer, are still exiting today as a destination for tourists and visitors from around the world.
The depth of Ma'lula's religious history is uniquely felt by its visitors who find it enough to come close to any of the town inhabitants to realize that the history is still alive speaking the same language which was spoken in the Near East since the first century B.C.

Ma'lula inhabitants` dream, to keep their ancestors` language from extinction, came true at a center for teaching the Aramaic language and the Syriac dialect which was opened as the first one in the World.

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