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Medieval Church Excavated in Sudan's Northern State

Thursday, June 3, 2021

Sudan Church ApseWARSAW, POLAND—Science in Poland reports that researchers led by Artur Obłuski of the University of Warsaw have found the remains of a large medieval church in the center of Old Dongola, Northern State, Sudan. Dongola was the capital of Makura, one of the Christian Nubian kingdoms, Obłuski explained. He suggests the building could have served as the seat of the archbishop of Dongola, who governed the Nubian churches along a 620-mile stretch of the Nile River. The team members have uncovered the church’s apse, an adjacent wall, and the dome of a large tomb. The apse, Obłuski added, is the largest yet found in Nubia, and it was decorated with plaster and paintings of monumental figures. Much of its walls remain buried. It had been previously thought that the city’s medieval cathedral was situated outside the city walls, but this structure resembles the cathedral unearthed in the center of Faras, the medieval capital of the Nubian kingdom of Nobadia. “There may be more paintings and inscriptions under our feet, just like in Faras,” Obłuski said. To read about a fourth-century A.D. Christian basilica unearthed in northern Ethiopia, go to "Early Adopters."

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