Rebuilding Aleppo

Eli Whitney Museum

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Trading Cultures

Rebuilding Aleppo


2017 Summer Program

Aleppo is one of the world’s oldest continuously inhabited cities. It was Syria’s largest city. For centuries, caravans of the Silk Road led their camels toward Aleppo for its hospitality, fair merchants, and safety. Trade made Aleppo wealthy and worldly. It was a city of many languages and faiths. Hittites, Greeks, Romans, Persians, Mongols and the Ottomans ruled parts of its history. Aleppo recovered and its culture grew richer. In the last 5 years, however, its neighbors crushed this treasure that took 5000 years to build.

500 years ago, Aleppo was at the center of the world. Reconstruct that GoldenAge. Build a merchant’s house with a tiled courtyard, a fountain, citrus trees, and an elegant wood paneled reception chamber (qa’a) to honor guests. With the entire class, assemble Aleppo’s walls and its distinctive Citadel. Groups will build a church, a temple,a mosque and baths. Finally, construct and share a massive marketplace (souk). Create silks, or silver, or spices, soap, gems or pistachios to trade. Construct the people from many parts of the world whose art and trade built a great city of peace and commerce.

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