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Petra

PETRA

ancient city carved from the cliffs in today's jordan.

In about 500 b.c.e., the Nabatean Arabs established a presence in the region east of the great Jordan-Dead Sea rift. They built their capital and trading center at Petra, in southern Jordan, close to the Wadi Araba and adjacent to the contemporary village of Wadi Musa. In its location and appearance, Petra is a unique city. The only easy access is through a half-mile-long (1 km) narrow passage called the siq. At its terminus is the treasury, a large edifice carved into the rock of the rose-colored cliffs. This vista is repeated with additional buildings as well as with simple houses hewed within the stone precipices of the ancient city. They include a huge monastery, a palace, tombs, and an amphitheater, most of which were crafted in a modified GrecoRoman style. For tourism, Petra is one of Jordan's most important archaeological sites and attractions.


Bibliography


Harding, G. Lankester. The Antiquities of Jordan, revised edition. New York: Praeger, 1967.


peter gubser

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Petra

Petra an ancient city of SW Asia, in present-day Jordan. The city, which lies in a hollow surrounded by cliffs, is accessible only through narrow gorges. Its extensive ruins include temples and tombs hewn from the red sandstone cliffs. It was the capital of the country of the Nabataeans from 312 bc until 63 bc, when they became subject to Rome.

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Sela

Sela or Selah (sē´lə) [Heb.,=rock], in the Bible, unidentified town, S of the Dead Sea. Amaziah captured it and renamed it Joktheel. Some identify Sela with Petra. Sela in the first chapter of Judges seems to be another rock.

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Petra

Petra

Christian rock band

For the Record

Selected discography

Sources

From the Greek word for rock, Petra, one of the strongest voices in popular Christian music, takes its name and its purpose. The group is committed to delivering quality, no compromise Christian music that runs the gamut from hard rock to lyrical ballads and lush harmonies. Petra was founded by Bob Hartman in 1972 while he was attending the Christian Training Center in Fort Wayne, Indiana. With three other students, Hartman began playing around the Fort Wayne area, meeting opposition from many churches whose attitude toward rock music was decidedly negative. To many Christians the rock and roll sound was considered, very simply, evil. Petra disagreed. Said Paul Jackson, the groups business manager, To say that rock and roll is evil is to give Satan credit for creating it. Satan created nothing. Satan robs and steals. We ask anyone to look at the fruit these are young people whose lives have taken positive directions because of the minsitry of this band.

With the backing of their college the group managed to play some venues, and gradually, according to the

For the Record

Band formed by guitarist Bob Hartman in Fort Wayne, Ind., in 1972; current members include Hartman; drummer Louie Weaver (joined band in 1980); keyboardist John Lawry (joined band in 1985); lead singer John Schlitt (replaced Greg Volz in 1986); and bass guitarist Ronny Cates (joined band in 1988); released first album in 1974; have conducted tours in the United States, Australia, and Europe.

Awards: This Means War! named Hollands contemporary Christian album of the year, 1988.

Addresses: Officec/o P.O. Box 50358, Nashville, TN 37205.

Petra press kit, they became more aware of the potential of their music. Late in 1973 the band auditioned for Word Records and was accepted onto their newly formed contemporary label, Myrrh. Their subsequent recordings, a self-titled album released in 1974 followed by Come and Join Us in 1977, met with modest success, opening the door to a brand new market. Reported Michael Levans in the Chicago Tribune, This wasnt the same old church hymn or gospel sing-along; this was music that carried the Christian message to a younger generation through the same crunching rock chords and hip phrasing that was being used by other bands in the early 70s. It wasnt until 1979 that, as the lead act on Star Song Records, Petra achieved a hit. Why Should the Father Bother, from their Washes Whiter Than album, provided the band with the airplay needed to popularize them on a national level.

The following year drummer Louie Weaver joined the band, and in 1982 the group spent 300 days on the road promoting their Never Say Die album, which features Petra standards The Coloring Song and For Annie, a gently rendered but pointed ballad about the tragedy of teen suicide. In 1983 the band did a marathon 240-day tour promoting More Power To Ya and Not of This World, both widely varied in their use of heavy metal sounds of pounding drums and sharp-edged vocals (Second Wind and Judas Kiss) as well as melodic ballads with strong harmonies (More Power To Ya, Road to Zion, Not of This World). Remarkably, Petras songwriters, including the bands own Hartman and lead singer Greg Volz, showed the keen ability to combine verbatim passages from Bible scriptures with the music most appealing to the young audiences the band sought to reach. With the release of these albums, the group became an overnight success after ten hard years of struggle.

While their next album would not be out until 1985, 1984 marked the first time Petras work began to be recognized by the music industry. They received both a Grammy nomination (contemporary gospel group) and two nominations for the Dove Award from the Gospel Music Association. Many more would follow.

In 1985 Petra added John Lawry, a top Christian keyboardist formerly of the Joe English Band, and recorded Beat The System, a slick, fast-paced contemporary-sounding rock album that might easily do well on a secular radio stations playlist, given the chance. It Is Finished, a driving, almost militant retelling of the Crucifixion of Christ, became one of the groups most popular live performance songs, with concertgoers joining in on the thundering chorus. Hollow Eyes effectively laments the situation of children starving in Nigeria; Witch Hunt attacks subgroups within the Christian faith who are off on another Witch Hunt looking for evil wherever [they] can find it; off on a tangent, hope the Lord wont mind it.

The bands next change in personnel resulted when Greg Volz made the decision to pursue a solo career. The slot was quickly filled by John Schlitt, a former member of the secular rock band Head East. According to Performance, after becoming a Christian, Schlitt had almost given up rock entirely until Bob Hartman contacted him. Wrote Jackson, John Schlitt has brought a new dimension into the band. There has in the past been a certain well, mystique about Petra, not that that was deliberate; it just turned out that way. Now we are trying to make the band more accessible.

Making Petra more accessible has included the bands participation in school assemblies and speaking to youth groups. Their 1986 album, Back to the Street, reflects this slight change in directionmoving back from the slick, high-tech earlier efforts to a more straightforward rock and roll sound. All the same, the album is professional through and through, the music and lyrics just as creative, as precise and telling as in the past. This Means War!, released in 1987 and climbing immediately into the number one position on national Christian album sales charts, continued in what could be labeled a back to basics rock and roll direction. According to the Petra press kit, This Means War! outsold the number two album by as wide a margin as three to one in some parts of the country and remained at the top spot on the charts throughout the end of 1987 and into 1988. The strength of the bands message and international appeal became apparent when, in 1988, the album was named Hollands contemporary Christian album of the year.

That year also marked the arrival of the bands new bass guitarist, Ronny Cates, a native of Shreveport, Louisiana. He joined in time to play on the On Fire! album, which has been called the hardest rocking Petra album ever. Singles First Love and Mine Field filled the number one and three slots of Musiclines four airplay charts as the group prepared for an international tour that would take them across the United States, Australia, and Europe. Said Evan James, program director of a Cleveland radio station, this recording captures a raw musical power that reaches all the way into the headbangers realmAll Fired Up, Hits You Where You Live however, [it] does not totally abandon the Petra power pop stronghold First Love and The Homeless Few satisfy the need for softer cuts.

Despite their popularity and numerous honors and awards, opposition to the group continues. Petras sound (but not content) is often faulted for being too secular. Said James, Petra remains the biggest name with the least amount of Christian radio play. In response, the groups members simply rock on, emphasizing a ministry that reaches young people, delivering a message to them in a language they can understand. The message, according to Hartman, is twofold. First is the ministry. The second part is the music as the device to deliver the message in a direct, hit-you-where-you-live manner. Being on fire for God is not some ethereal state of mind that we psych ourselves into, Hartman asserts, Neither is it a one-time experience that we receive from God. It is a daily dying to self that begins in the inner man and works its way out into our lives. We become a defector from our previous habits, our concept of Christian charity will be readjusted,and we will truly be a light to a world that is dying to know He lives.

Selected discography

Petra, Myrrh, 1974.

Come and Join Us, Myrrh, 1977.

Washes Whiter Than, Star Song, 1979.

Never Say Die, Star Song, 1982.

More Power To Ya, Star Song, 1983.

Not of This World, Star Song, 1983.

Beat The System, Star Song, 1985.

Captured In Time and Space, Star Song, 1986.

Back To The Street, Star Song, 1986.

This Means War!, Star Song, 1987.

On Fire!, Star Song, 1988.

Sources

Chicago Tribune, May 25, 1989.

Contemporary Christian Music, November 1988.

GMN, August 1987.

Performance, 1987.

Petra Press Kit, Atkins-Muse and Associates, Inc.

The Tennessean, April 18, 1988.

Meg Mac Donald

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Petra

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Petra

PETRA

PETRA (Gr. "rock," a translation of the Heb. sela), a ruined site in Edom, 140 mi. (224 km.) S. of Amman, 60 mi. (96 km.) N. of Elath. It is assumed that the biblical Sela was situated farther north (ii Kings 14:7). In later sources (Jos., Ant., 4:161; Tosef., Shev. 4:11) it is called Rekem, a derivation of the Nabataean name Raqmu. Petra is situated in a broad valley, which is approached from the east by a long, narrow, and winding canyon, the Sīq, also called the Wadi Mūsā, which has several confluents in the plain of the city. The valley is surrounded by steep rocks of reddish Nubian sandstone. The place is safe from attack once the Sīq and its continuation to the west, the still narrower and more difficult Sayl al-Siyāgh, are barred. The earliest settlement is indicated by Edomite pottery found at the top of a rock called Umm al-Biyāra in the southwestern part of the site. This rock served mainly as a place of refuge, the last time during the attack on the Nabateans by Antigonus. Owing to its secure position, Petra was adopted by the Nabatean kings as their capital; the caravan routes from the Syrian desert, Elath, Gaza, and the Mediterranean converged there. In 106 c.e. the city was incorporated into the Roman Empire, remaining the capital of the region – Provincia Arabia – until the time of Hadrian, who endowed it with the title of metropolis. Papyri discovered in the caves of the Judean Desert reveal that Petra had a senate and archives, and that it was visited by the Jewish inhabitants of the province; possibly, a number of Jews lived there. When the capital of Arabia was transferred to Bosrah, the city began to decline. In the time of Diocletian (late third century), it was included in Palestine and in the fifth century became the metropolis of the province of Palaestina Tertia. It disappeared from history in Arab times, apart from a brief Crusader interlude when it was known as Li Vaux Moyse ("the valley of Moses"). Its ruins were discovered by Burckhardt in 1812. It has since been explored by numerous scholars, in particular by R.E. Brünnow and A. von Domaszewski, G. Dalman, Th. Wiegand, S. and A. Hersfield, D. Kirk-bride, and P.J. Parr. The first plan of Petra was made by W. von Bachmann in 1921, and a new accurate and measured map has been prepared in recent years by the architect C. Kanellopoulos. In the early 1980s Z. Muheissen made a study of the water-management systems of Petra and its vicinity. A major study of the architecture of Petra and its decorations was made by J. McKenzie and published in 1990. Excavations between 1988 and 1997 by B. Kolb have uncovered residential buildings close to ez-Zantur. Since 1993 major excavations have been undertaken at the Great Nabataean Temple and elsewhere by M.S. Joukowsky. A number of Byzantine churches have been investigated in an acor project led by P. Bikai, with the discovery in 1993 of an amazing cache of Greek papyri from the sixth century in one of the churches (St. Mary).

In the center of the plain of Petra are the remains of the town, which is partly surrounded by a wall extending from the southern suburb of al-Katūte to the tower sanctuary on ʿArqūb al-Hīsha in the east. The remains are mainly Hellenistic (Nabatean) and Roman, with additional Byzantine remains extending towards the north ridge. After 106 c.e., al-Katūte was abandoned and the town life was concentrated in the main colonnaded street (with shops) in the bed of the Wadi Mūsā. On the northern side of this street are, from east to west, two nymphaea and pool near the issue of Wadi al-Matāha, a "royal palace," and the Temple of the Winged Lions or Temple of Al-Uzza ("gymnasium"). On the southern side the "Trajanic Arch" leads to the "upper market" (agora) surrounded by a porticoe, with another market further west (the "middle market"), the Great Temple, with a lower temenos in front of it, and with an adjacent pool and garden complex (the so-called "lower" market) and a public bath. A triumphal arch (the "Temenos Gate") crosses the street not far from the bath, with towers to the north and south. Beyond it is the "Small Temple" and further to the west the Temple of Dushares, also known as Qaṣr al-Bint Farʿun ("the castle of Pharaoh's daughter"), one of the best-preserved buildings at Petra; it is a temple in antis on a podium with pronaos, cella, and an adytum in three parts. Another remarkable structure is the rock-cut theater close to the Siq, which was excavated in 1963. It consists of three tiers of seats with a scenae frons resembling that of the theater at Beth-Shean. Of principal interest at Petra are the rock-cut facades. Some of these may belong to temples (as e.g., the famous al-Khazna in the Sīq – recently additional chambers have been found at a lower level below the steps) and dwelling houses, but above all, they belong to monumental tombs of the kings and princely merchants of the city, including that of the Roman governor, Sextus Florentinus. At least 800 tombs are known. These facades are imitations of the scenae frons of the Hellenistic theater with several tiers of columns usually crowned with the type of capital known as Nabatean. The lowest tier has a doorway and mock windows and often, an inscription. The second tier is divided into round or square pavilions with broken gables and a tholos crowned by an urn in the center. There are also several "high places" and numerous rock carvings of a religious nature at and near Petra.

bibliography:

R.E. Bruennow and A. v. Domaszewski, Die Provincia Arabia, 1 (1904), 125–428; G. Dalman, Petra und seine Felsheiligtuemer (1908); idem, Neue Petra-Forschungen (1912); A. Kammerer, Petra et la Nabat-ène (1930); S. and A. Horsfield, in: qdap, 7 (1938), 1ff.; 8 (1939), 87ff.; 9 (1942), 105ff.; G.L. Harding, The Antiquities of Jordan (1959), 114–35; D. Kirkbride, in: adaj, 415 (1960), 117–22; Parr, in: pefqs, 89 (1957), 5ff.; 91 (1959), 106ff.; 92 (1960), 124–35; Wright, ibid., 93 (1965), 124ff. add. bibliography: W. Bachmann, T. Watzinger, and T. Wiegand. Petra, Wissenschaftliche Veröffentlichungen des Deutsch-Türkischen Denkmalschutz-Kommandos (1921); C.M. Bennett, "The Nabataeans in Petra," in: Archaeology, 15 (1962): 233–43; I. Browning, Petra (1982); R.E. Brünnow and A. von Domaszewski, Die Provincia Arabia (3 vols) (1904–1909); G. Crawford, Petra and the Nabataeans: A Bibliography, atla Bibliography Series (2003); P.C. Hammond, The Nabataeans: Their History Culture and Archaeology (1973), 11; J.S. McKenzie, The Architecture of Petra. British Academy Monographs in Archaeology (1990); P.J. Parr, "Sixty Years of Excavation in Petra: A Critical Assessment," in; First International Conference, The Nabataeans. Oxford, 26–29 September 1989, in: aram, 2 (1990), 1 and 2:7–23; J. Starcky, "Pétra et la nabatène," in: Dictionnaire de la Bible, Supp. 7 (1966), 886–1017; J. Taylor, Petra and the Lost Kingdom of the Nabataeans (2001); F. Villeneuve, "Pétra et le royaume nabatèen," in; L'historie, 11 (1979), 50–58; F. Zayadine, (ed.), Petra and the Caravan Cities. Proceedings of the Symposium organized at Petra in September 1985 (1990); Z. Al-Muheisen and D. Tarrier, "Water in the Nabatean Period," in: aram, 13–14 (2001–2002): 515–24; T.S. Akasheh, "Ancient and Modern Watershed Management in Petra," in: ane, 65:4 (2002), 220–24; L.A. Bedal, "Desert Oasis: Water Consumption and Display in the Nabatean Capital," in: ane, 65:4 (2002), 225–34; M.S. Joukowsky, "The Petra Great Temple: A Nabatean Architectural Miracle," in: ane, 65:4 (2002), 235–48; J. Bodel and S.K. Reid, "A Dedicatory Inscription to the Emperor Trajan from the Small Temple at Petra, Jordan," in: ane, 65:4 (2002), 249–50; C. Kanellopoulos, "A New Plan of Petra's City Centre," in: ane. 65:4 (2002), 251–54; B. Kolb, "Excavating a Nabatean Mansion," in: ane, 65:4 (2002), 260–64; M.A. Perry, "Life and Death in Nabatea: The North Ridge Tombs and Nabatean Burial Practices," in: ane, 65:4 (2002), 265–70; P.M. Bikai, "The Churches of Byzantine Petra," in: ane, 65:4 (2002), 271–76; M. Lehtinen, "The Petra Papyri," in: ane, 65:4 (2002), 277–78.

[Michael Avi-Yonah /

Shimon Gibson (2nd ed.)]

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Petra

Petra (pē´trə), ancient rock city, in present-day Jordan, known to the Arabs as Wadi Musa for the stream that flows through it. A narrow, winding pass between towering walls leads to the open plain upon which stood the ancient city. The plain is surrounded by hills in which tombs have been carved in the pink sandstone. The site includes some 800 structures, the best known of which is the Khazneh el-Farun (or so-called Pharoah's Treasury), a mausoleum, monument, or temple with a two-story facade and Hellenistic split pediment.

Petra was early occupied by the Edomites (see Edom) and by the Nabataeans (an Arab tribe; see Nabataea), who had their capital there from the 4th cent. BC until the Roman occupation in AD 106. The city is referred to as Sela in the Bible (2 Kings 14.7). It was for many centuries the focal point of a vast caravan trade but declined with the rise of Palmyra; however, it remained a religious center of Arabia. Under the Romans in the 2d and 3d cent. it was included in the province of Arabia Petraea. An early seat of Christianity, it was conquered by the Muslims in the 7th cent. and in the 12th cent. was captured by the Crusaders, who built a citadel there. Petra was unknown to the Western world until its ruins were visited by Johann Burckhardt in 1812.

See M. I. Rostovtsev, Caravan Cities (1932, repr. 1971); I. Browning, Petra (1974); M. G. Amadasi Guzzo and E. Equini Schneider, Petra (2002); J. Taylor, Petra and the Lost Kingdom of the Nabataeans (2002).

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Petra

Petra Ancient city in what is now sw Jordan. It was the capital of the Nabataean kingdom from the 4th century bc. It was captured by the Romans in the 2nd century ad. The city, which was rediscovered in 1812 and is the scene of extensive excavation, can be reached only through narrow gorges. Many of its remarkable, ruined houses, temples, theatres and tombs were cut from the high, pinkish sandstone cliffs that protected it.

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