29 December 2014

Qasr al-Farid - Madain Saleh

Qasr al-Farid is probably the most photogenic and most iconic symbol of Madain Saleh. Qasr al-Farid means "the Lonely Castle," is the largest tomb in Madain Saleh and is located at the southwest of the site. It was given the name Qasr al-Farid because it is completely isolated from the other tombs, “farid” meaning “lonely” in Arabic. Qasir al-Farid is situated all by itself in a separate rocky monolith and includes an architectural feature not found in other tombs, namely the two Nabatean columns found on the lower part of the facade, as well as the side columns, whereas all the other façades at Madain Saleh bear only two pilasters, standing on each side of the façade.  The tomb was never completed as is evident in its lower portion and the open space before the entrance. The foundation inscription of the tomb, which reads “For Hyyan bin Kuza and his descendants”, is undated. The light is best in the evening for photographing and viewing this tomb