Radiocarbon dating is a method for determining the age of an object containing organic material by using the properties of radiocarbon, a radioactive isotope of carbon. The method was developed by Willard Libby in the late 1940s, Libby received the Nobel Prize for his work in 1960. The radiocarbon dating method is based on the fact that radiocarbon is constantly being created in the atmosphere by the interaction of cosmic rays with atmospheric nitrogen. The resulting radiocarbon combines with oxygen to form radioactive carbon dioxide. When the animal or plant dies, it stops exchanging carbon with its environment, and from that point onwards the amount of 14C it contains begins to decrease as the 14C undergoes radioactive decay. Measuring the amount of 14C in a sample from a plant or animal such as a piece of wood or a fragment of bone provides information that can be used to calculate when the animal or plant died. The idea behind radiocarbon dating is straightforward, but years of work were required to develop the technique to the point where accurate dates could be obtained.
Research has been ongoing since the 1960s to determine what the proportion of 14C in the atmosphere has been over the past fifty thousand years. The resulting data, in the form of a curve, is now used to convert a given measurement of radiocarbon in a sample into an estimate of the samples calendar age. Other corrections must be made to account for the proportion of 14C in different types of organisms, additional complications come from the burning of fossil fuels such as coal and oil, and from the above-ground nuclear tests done in the 1950s and 1960s. Conversely, nuclear testing increased the amount of 14C in the atmosphere, measurement of radiocarbon was originally done by beta-counting devices, which counted the amount of beta radiation emitted by decaying 14C atoms in a sample. The development of dating has had a profound impact on archaeology. In addition to permitting more accurate dating within archaeological sites than previous methods, histories of archaeology often refer to its impact as the radiocarbon revolution.
Radiocarbon dating has allowed key transitions in prehistory to be dated, such as the end of the last ice age, and they synthesized 14C using the laboratorys cyclotron accelerator and soon discovered that the atoms half-life was far longer than had been previously thought. This was followed by a prediction by Serge A. Korff, employed at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia and it had previously been thought that 14C would be more likely to be created by deuterons interacting with 13C. At some time during World War II, Willard Libby, who was at Berkeley, learned of Korffs research, in 1945, Libby moved to the University of Chicago where he began his work on radiocarbon dating. He published a paper in 1946 in which he proposed that the carbon in living matter might include 14C as well as non-radioactive carbon, by contrast, methane created from petroleum showed no radiocarbon activity because of its age. The results were summarized in a paper in Science in 1947, Libby and James Arnold proceeded to test the radiocarbon dating theory by analyzing samples with known ages
Kingdom of Aksum
The Kingdom of Aksum or Axum, known as the Aksumite Empire, was a Habasha trading nation in the modern-day area of Eritrea and the Tigray region of Ethiopia. It existed from approximately 100 AD to 940 AD, the Persian Prophet Mani regarded Axum as one of the four great powers of his time, alongside Persia and China. The Axumites erected a number of stelae, which served a religious purpose in pre-Christian times. One of these columns is the largest such structure in the world. In the 7th century, early Muslims from Mecca sought refuge from Quraysh persecution by travelling to the kingdom and its ancient capital, called Aksum, was in northern Ethiopia. The Kingdom used the name Ethiopia as early as the 4th century, tradition claims Axum as the alleged resting place of the Ark of the Covenant and the purported home of the Queen of Sheba. Aksum is mentioned in the 1st-century AD Periplus of the Erythraean Sea as an important market place for ivory, which was exported throughout the ancient world.
It states that the ruler of Aksum in the 1st century AD was Zoskales and he is said to have been familiar with Greek literature. They cite evidence indicating that the Sabaean settlers resided in the region for more than a few decades. Over 95% of Aksum remains unexplored beneath the city and its surrounding area. The Kingdom of Aksum was an empire centered in Eritrea. It existed from approximately 100–940 AD, growing from the proto-Aksumite Iron Age period c. 4th century BC to achieve prominence by the 1st century AD, according to the Book of Aksum, Aksums first capital, was built by Itiyopis, son of Cush. The capital was moved to Aksum in northern Ethiopia. The Kingdom used the name Ethiopia as early as the 4th century, the Empire of Aksum at its height at times extended across most of present-day Eritrea, Djibouti, Egypt and Saudi Arabia. The capital city of the empire was Aksum, now in northern Ethiopia, today a smaller community, the city of Aksum was once a bustling metropolis and economic center.
Two hills and two lie on the east and west expanses of the city, perhaps providing the initial impetus for settling this area. Along the hills and plain outside the city, the Aksumites had cemeteries with elaborate grave stones called stelae, other important cities included Yeha, Hawulti-Melazo, Matara and Qohaito, the last three of which are now in Eritrea. By the reign of Endubis in the late 3rd century, it had begun minting its own currency and was named by Mani as one of the four powers of his time along with Persia, Rome
A portico is a porch leading to the entrance of a building, or extended as a colonnade, with a roof structure over a walkway, supported by columns or enclosed by walls. This idea was used in Ancient Greece and has influenced many cultures. Some noteworthy examples of porticos are the East Portico of the United States Capitol, the portico adorning the Pantheon in Rome, porticos are sometimes topped with pediments. Bologna, Italy, is famous for its porticos, in total, there are over 45 km of arcades, some 38 in the city center. The longest portico in the world, about 3.5 km, in Bologna, porticos stretch for 18 km. Palladio was a pioneer of using temple-fronts for secular buildings, in the UK, the temple-front applied to The Vyne, Hampshire was the first portico applied to an English country house. A pronaos is the area of the portico of a Greek or Roman temple. Roman temples commonly had an open pronaos, usually with only columns and no walls, the word pronaos is Greek for before a temple. In Latin, a pronaos is referred to as an anticum or prodomus, the different variants of porticos are named by the number of columns they have.
The style suffix comes from the Greek στῦλος, the tetrastyle has four columns, it was commonly employed by the Greeks and the Etruscans for small structures such as public buildings and amphiprostyles. Roman provincial capitals manifested tetrastyle construction, such as the Capitoline Temple in Volubilis, the North Portico of the White House is perhaps the most notable four-columned portico in the United States. Hexastyle buildings had six columns and were the standard façade in canonical Greek Doric architecture between the archaic period 600–550 BC up to the Age of Pericles 450–430 BC. With the colonization by the Greeks of Southern Italy, hexastyle was adopted by the Etruscans, Roman taste favoured narrow pseudoperipteral and amphiprostyle buildings with tall columns, raised on podiums for the added pomp and grandeur conferred by considerable height. The Maison Carrée at Nîmes, France, is the best-preserved Roman hexastyle temple surviving from antiquity, octastyle buildings had eight columns, they were considerably rarer than the hexastyle ones in the classical Greek architectural canon.
The best-known octastyle buildings surviving from antiquity are the Parthenon in Athens, built during the Age of Pericles, and the Pantheon in Rome. The destroyed Temple of Divus Augustus in Rome, the centre of the Augustan cult, is shown on Roman coins of the 2nd century AD as having built in octastyle. The decastyle has ten columns, as in the temple of Apollo Didymaeus at Miletus, the temple of Venus and Rome, built by Hadrian in Rome about 130 A. D. was decastyle, the only known example in Roman architecture. Classical architecture List of classical architecture terms Hypostyle Loggia Stoa Greek architecture, Encyclopædia Britannica,1968 Stierlin, From Mycenae to the Parthenon, TASCHEN,2004, Editor-in-chief Angelika Taschen, Cologne, ISBN 3-8228-1225-0 Stierlin, Henri
A column or pillar in architecture and structural engineering is a structural element that transmits, through compression, the weight of the structure above to other structural elements below. In other words, a column is a compression member, the term column applies especially to a large round support with a capital and a base or pedestal and made of stone, or appearing to be so. A small wooden or metal support is called a post. For the purpose of wind or earthquake engineering, columns may be designed to resist lateral forces, other compression members are often termed columns because of the similar stress conditions. Columns are frequently used to support beams or arches on which the parts of walls or ceilings rest. In architecture, column refers to such an element that has certain proportional. A column might be an element not needed for structural purposes, many columns are engaged. All significant Iron Age civilizations of the Near East and Mediterranean made some use of columns, egyptian columns are famously present in the Great Hypostyle Hall of Karnak, where 134 columns are lined up in 16 rows, with some columns reaching heights of 24 metres.
Some of the most elaborate columns in the ancient world were those of the Persians and they included double-bull structures in their capitals. The Hall of Hundred Columns at Persepolis, measuring 70 ×70 metres, was built by the Achaemenid king Darius I, many of the ancient Persian columns are standing, some being more than 30 metres tall. The Minoans used whole tree-trunks, usually turned upside down in order to prevent re-growth, stood on a set in the stylobate. These were painted as in the most famous Minoan palace of Knossos, the Minoans employed columns to create large open-plan spaces, light-wells and as a focal point for religious rituals. These traditions were continued by the Mycenaean civilization, particularly in the megaron or hall at the heart of their palaces. Being made of wood these early columns have not survived, but their bases have and through these we may see their use. The Greeks developed the classical orders of architecture, which are most easily distinguished by the form of the column and their Doric and Corinthian orders were expanded by the Romans to include the Tuscan and Composite orders.
Columns, or at least large structural exterior ones, became less significant in the architecture of the Middle Ages. Early columns were constructed of stone, some out of a piece of stone. Monolithic columns are among the heaviest stones used in architecture, other stone columns are created out of multiple sections of stone, mortared or dry-fit together
The Sabaeans or Sabeans were an ancient people speaking an Old South Arabian language who lived in what is today Yemen, in the south west of the Arabian Peninsula. The kingdom of Saba has been identified with the land of Sheba. The view that the kingdom of Sheba was the ancient Semitic civilization of Saba in Southern Arabia is controversial. The Kingdom fell after a long but sporadic civil war between several Yemenite dynasties claiming kingship, resulting in the rise of the late Himyarite Kingdom. Sabaeans are mentioned in the books of Job, Joel and Isaiah, and in ayat 2,62,5,69. The origin of the Sabaean Kingdom is uncertain, the Sabaean kingdom was finally conquered by the Ḥimyarites in the late 3rd century and at that time the capital was Marib. It was located along the strip of desert called Sayhad by medieval Arab geographers, the Sabaean people were South Arabian people. The Sabaeans, like the other Yemenite kingdoms of the period, were involved in the extremely lucrative spice trade, especially frankincense.
They left behind inscriptions in the monumental Musnad alphabet, as well as numerous documents in the cursive Zabūr script. The Book of Job mentions the Sabaens for slaying his livestock, each of these temples had a characteristic geometric shape, a characteristic color, and an image made of one of the seven metals. They had two sects and idol worshippers, and the doctrine was similar to one that come from Hermes Trismegistus. The Sabaeans were mentioned in the Quran twice as قوم سبأ, the Quran mentions the kingdom of the Saba in the 34th Chapter. The Quranic narrative, from sura 27, has Suleiman getting reports from the Hoopoe bird about the kingdom of Saba, Suleiman sends a letter inviting her to submit fully to the One God, Lord of the Worlds according to the Islamic text. The Queen of Saba is unsure how to respond and asks her advisors for counsel and they reply by reminding her that they are of great toughness in a reference to their willingness to go to war should she choose to. She replies that she fears if they were to lose, Suleiman may behave as any other king would, entering a country, despoiling it and she decides to meet with Suleiman in order to find out more.
Suleiman receives her response to him and asks if anyone can bring him her throne before she arrives. A jinn under the control of Suleiman proposed that he will bring it before Suleiman rises from his seat, One who had knowledge of the Book proposed to bring him the throne of Bilqis in the twinkling of an eye and accomplished that immediately. The queen arrives at his court, is shown her throne and asked and she replied, as though it were it
Ethiopia, officially the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, is a country located in the Horn of Africa. It shares borders with Eritrea to the north and northeast and Somalia to the east and South Sudan to the west, and Kenya to the south. With nearly 100 million inhabitants, Ethiopia is the most populous landlocked country in the world and it occupies a total area of 1,100,000 square kilometres, and its capital and largest city is Addis Ababa. Some of the oldest evidence for modern humans has been found in Ethiopia. It is widely considered as the region from modern humans first set out for the Middle East. According to linguists, the first Afroasiatic-speaking populations settled in the Horn region during the ensuing Neolithic era, tracing its roots to the 2nd millennium BC, Ethiopia was a monarchy for most of its history. During the first centuries AD, the Kingdom of Aksum maintained a unified civilization in the region, many African nations adopted the colors of Ethiopias flag following their independence.
It was the first independent African member of the 20th-century League of Nations, Ethiopias ancient Geez script, known as Ethiopic, is one of the oldest alphabets still in use in the world. The Ethiopian calendar, which is seven years and three months behind the Gregorian calendar, co-exists alongside the Borana calendar. A slight majority of the population adheres to Christianity, while around a third follows Islam, the country is the site of the Migration to Abyssinia and the oldest Muslim settlement in Africa at Negash. A substantial population of Ethiopian Jews, known as Bete Israel, resided in Ethiopia until the 1980s, Ethiopia is a multilingual nation with around 80 ethnolinguistic groups, the four largest of which are the Oromiffa, Amhara and Tigrayans. Most people in the country speak Afroasiatic languages of the Cushitic or Semitic branches, Omotic languages are spoken by ethnic minority groups inhabiting the southern regions. Nilo-Saharan languages are spoken by the nations Nilotic ethnic minorities.
Ethiopia is the place of origin for the coffee bean which originated from the place called Kefa and it is a land of natural contrasts, with its vast fertile West and numerous rivers, and the worlds hottest settlement of Dallol in its north. The Ethiopian Highlands are Africas largest continuous mountain ranges, and Sof Omar Caves contain Africas largest cave, Ethiopia has the most UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Africa. Ethiopia is one of the members of the UN, the Group of 24, the Non-Aligned Movement, G-77. In the 1970s and 1980s, Ethiopia suffered from civil wars, the country has begun to recover recently however, and now has the largest economy in East Africa and Central Africa. According to Global Fire Power, Ethiopia has the 42nd most powerful military in the world, the origin of the word Ethiopia is uncertain
Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church
The Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church is the largest of the Oriental Orthodox Christian Churches. Ethiopia is the country only after Armenia to have officially proclaimed Christianity as state religion though some argue it may even be the first. The Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church is a member of the World Council of Churches. Tewahedo is a Geez word meaning being made one and this word refers to the Oriental Orthodox belief in the one perfectly unified Nature of Christ, i. e. The Oriental Orthodox Churches adhere to a Miaphysitic Christological view followed by Cyril of Alexandria, according to these, both natures in Christ are perfectly preserved after the union in mia physis - One Nature, not resulting in a distinct third Nature. Many traditions claim that Christian teachings were introduced to the immediately after Pentecost. John Chrysostom speaks of the Ethiopians present in Jerusalem as being able to understand the preaching of Saint Peter in Acts,2,38, possible missions of some of the Apostles in the lands now called Ethiopia is reported as early as the 4th century.
Ethiopian Church tradition tells that Bartholomew accompanied Matthew in a mission which lasted for at least 3 months, paintings depicting these missions are available in the Church of St. Matthew found in the Province of Pisa, in northern Italy portrayed by Francesco Trevisan and Marco Benefial. The earliest account of an Ethiopian converted to the faith in the New Testament books is a royal official baptized by Philip the Evangelist, the angel of the Lord said to Philip, Start out and go south to the road that leads down from Jerusalem to Gaza. So he set out and was on his way when he caught sight of an Ethiopian and this man was a eunuch, a high official of the Kandake Queen of Ethiopia in charge of all her treasure. The passage continues by describing how Philip helped the Ethiopian treasurer understand a passage from Isaiah that the Ethiopian was reading, after Philip interpreted the passage as prophecy referring to Jesus Christ, the Ethiopian requested that Philip baptize him, and Philip did so.
The Ethiopic version of this verse reads Hendeke, Queen Gersamot Hendeke VII was the Queen of Ethiopia from c.42 to 52, the same kind of witness is shared by 3rd and 4th century writers such as Eusebius of Caesarea and Origen of Alexandria. As a youth, Frumentius had been shipwrecked with his brother Aedesius on the Eritrean coast, the brothers managed to be brought to the royal court, where they rose to positions of influence and baptized Emperor Ezana. Ezana sent Frumentius to Alexandria to ask the Patriarch, St. Athanasius, Athanasius appointed Frumentius, who returned to Ethiopia as Bishop with the name of Abune Selama. From on, until 1959, the Pope of Alexandria, as Patriarch of All Africa, union with the Coptic Orthodox Church continued after the Arab conquest of Egypt. Abu Saleh records in the 12th century that the patriarch sent letters twice a year to the kings of Abyssinia and Nubia. Cyril, 67th patriarch, sent Severus as bishop, with orders to put down polygamy and these examples show the close relations of the two churches throughout the Middle Ages.
In 1439, in the reign of Zara Yaqob, a discussion between Abba Giyorgis and a French visitor led to the dispatch of an embassy from Ethiopia to the Vatican
In addition to its publishing role, the Society organises and participates in meetings and conferences relating to the history of geographical exploration and cultural encounter. It is a charity and a non-profitmaking institution administered by a voluntary team of council members and officers. Membership is open to all with an interest in its aims, the Society is named after Richard Hakluyt, a collector and editor of narratives of voyages and travels and other documents relating to English interests overseas. The Society was created at a meeting convened in the London Library, St James’s Square and he took the major role during the Societys formative period, assisted by Corney and Smith, while Murchison occupied little more than a figurehead position. Meetings were initially held in a room at the London Library, but in 1849 transferred to the offices of the Society’s printer in St Martins Lane, from 1872 they were held at the Royal Geographical Society’s premises, originally in Savile Row and subsequently in Kensington Gore.
A General Meeting on 4 March 1847 agreed a constitution and a list of works to be published, the Society was to be governed by a President, two Vice-Presidents, a Secretary and 17 elected council members. The Society attracted 220 members in its first two years and its first publication, Bethunes Observations of Sir Richard Hawkins, appeared in December 1847, followed by Majors Select Letters of Christopher Columbus. Richard Hakluyts Divers Voyages touching the Discovery of America, which the Society had intended for its publication, was postponed until 1850. Early print-runs were relatively small – around 250 copies to satisfy the existing membership, Murchison served as President until his death in 1871, although his position was largely honorary. He was succeeded by Sir David Dundas, a lawyer and politician, and by Sir Henry Yule, Yule took a more direct interest in the editing of the societys publications than either Murchison or Dundas, and it was his decision that all future volumes should be indexed. R. H.
Major, who had taken over as Secretary from Cooley in 1849, held the office until 1858 when his place was taken by the geographer and expedition promoter Clements Markham. Markham served as Secretary 1858–87, and as President 1889–1909, from 1893 he was assisted by William Foster, the East India Company historian and India Office archivist, who served as Secretary until 1902. The first permanent Treasurer, appointed in 1908, was Edward Heawood, in 1908, the final year of Markhams rule, the Society broke with tradition and published its first post-1700 text, Bolton Corneys Voyage of Captain Don Felipe Gonzalez. In 1909 Markham was succeeded as President by Sir Albert Gray, from this time onwards the Society began to extend its activity beyond that of publication. The period saw the emergence of women as editors and translators, notably Sigfus Blondal, Bertha Philpotts, Lavinia Anstey, membership increased, largely on account of institutional subscriptions which by 1911 accounted for half of the 440 members.
Sir William Foster, the former Secretary, served as President 1928–1945, the main activity of the Society is the publication of scholarly editions of primary sources on the voyages and travels undertaken by individuals in many parts of the globe. These include early accounts dealing with the geography and natural history of the regions visited, the Society has to date published over 200 editions in some 350 volumes. All editions are published in English, translations from Spanish, Italian, French or Dutch have regularly appeared, and occasional translations from Russian, Latin, Mandarin, Persian or Arabic
Rock-cut architecture is the creation of structures and sculptures, by excavating solid rock where it naturally occurs. Rock-cut architecture is designed and made by man from the start to finish, in India and China, the terms cave and cavern are often applied to this form of man-made architecture. However and caverns, that began in natural form, are not considered to be rock-cut architecture even if extensively modified, although rock-cut structures differ from traditionally built structures in many ways, many rock-cut structures are made to replicate the facade or interior of traditional architectural forms. Interiors were usually carved out by starting at the roof of the planned space and this technique prevents stones falling on workers below. The three main uses of rock-cut architecture were temples and cave dwellings, some rock-cut architecture, mostly for tombs, is excavated entirely in chambers under the surface of relatively level rock. If the excavation is made into the side of a cliff or steep slope, there can be an impressive facade, as found in Lycian tombs, Ajanta.
Ellora in India and Lalibela in Ethiopia provide the most spectacular, rock-cut architecture is said to be cut, etc. from the living rock. Another term sometimes associated with architecture is monolithic architecture, which is rather applied to free-standing structures made of a single piece of material. Monolithic architecture is often rock-cut architecture but monolithic structures might be cast of artificial material, the largest monolithic statue in the world is situated at Shravanabelagola, India. It was built in 983 A. D and was carved out from a single block of granite. In many parts of the world there are rock reliefs, relief sculptures carved into rock faces. Ancient monuments of architecture are widespread in several regions of world. It dates from about 1280 BCE, and consists of a monumentally scaled facade carved out of the cliff, in the 5th century BCE, the Lycians, who inhabited southern Anatolia built hundreds of rock-cut tombs of a similar type, but smaller in scale. Excellent examples are to be found near Dalyan, a town in Muğla Province, since these served as tombs rather than as religious sites, the interiors were usually small and unassuming.
The ancient Etruscans of central Italy left an important legacy of architecture, mostly tombs, as those near the cities of Tarquinia. The creation of rock-cut tombs in ancient Israel began in the 8th-century BCE, the Nabataeans in their city of Petra, now in Jordan, extended this tradition, carving their temples and tombs into the yellowish-orange rock that defines the canyons and gullies of the region. These structures, dating from 1st century BCE to about 2nd century CE, are important in the history of architecture given their experimental forms. Here too, because the structures served as tombs, the interiors were rather perfunctory, in Petra one even finds a theater where the seats are cut out of the rock
Ancient South Arabian script
The ancient Yemeni alphabet branched from the Proto-Sinaitic script in about the 9th century BC. It was used for writing the Old South Arabian languages of the Sabaic, Hadramautic, Himyaritic, the earliest inscriptions in the alphabet date to the 9th century BC in the Akele Guzai region, Eritrea. There are no vowels, instead using the mater lectionis to mark them, in Ethiopia and Eritrea it evolved into the Geez script, with added symbols throughout the centuries, has been used to write Amharic and Tigre, as well as other languages. Zabūr is the name of the form of the South Arabian script that was used by the ancient Yemenis in addition to their monumental script. As yet only one thousand such texts have been discovered, of which perhaps some 26 have been published. It is usually written from right to left but can be written left to right. When written from left to right the characters are flipped horizontally, the spacing or separation between words is done with a vertical bar mark. Letters in words are not connected together and it does not implement any diacritical marks, differing in this respect from the modern Arabic alphabet.
The South Arabian alphabet was added to the Unicode Standard in October,2009 with the release of version 5.2, the Unicode block, called Old South Arabian, is U+10A60–U+10A7F. Note that U+10A7D OLD SOUTH ARABIAN NUMBER ONE represents both the one and a word divider. Photos from National Museum of Yemen, Photos from Yemen Military Museum, Eduard Glaser Carl Rathjens Stein, the Ancient South Arabian Minuscule Inscriptions on Wood, A New Genre of Pre-Islamic Epigraphy. Jaarbericht van het Vooraziatisch-Egyptisch Genootschap Ex Oriente Lux, die altsüdarabischen Minuskelinschriften auf Holzstäbchen aus der Bayerischen Staatsbibliothek in München. Il trono della regina di Saba, Roma. pp. 149–155, Ancient scripts on South Arabian SI Omniglots entry on South Arabian
Tigray Region is the northernmost of the nine regions of Ethiopia. Tigray is the homeland of the Tigray and Kunama people, Tigray is known as Region 1 according to the federal constitution. Tigray is bordered by Eritrea to the north, Sudan to the west, the Afar Region to the east, and the Amhara Region to the south and southwest. Besides Mekele, major cities include Hawzen, Abiy Addi, Mekoni, Adwa, Humera, Maychew, Shire, there is the historically significant town of Yeha. For the history of the Tigray area prior to 1991, see Tigray Province, at the same time, a growing urban middle class of traders and government officials emerged which was both suspicious and distant from the victorious EPRDF. In 1998, war erupted between Eritrea and Ethiopia over a portion of territory that had been administered at part of Tigray, with an estimated area of 41,409.95 square kilometers, this region has an estimated density of 100 people per square kilometer. In the previous census, conducted in 1994, the Regions population was 3,136,267, of whom 1,542,165 were men and 1,594,102 women, urban inhabitants numbered 621,210 or 14% of the population.
According to the CSA, as of 2004,53. 99% of the population had access to safe drinking water. At 96. 55% of the population, the region is predominantly inhabited by the Tigrinya speaking Tigray people. The Tigrinya language is classified as belonging to the Semitic branch of the Afro-Asiatic family of languages, most other residents hail from other Afro-Asiatic speaking communities, including the Amhara, Afar and Oromo. There are a minority of Nilo-Saharan-speaking Kunama Nilotes, the working language is Tigrinya, although most urban people are able to speak Amharic, which was taught in schools. A distinctive feature of Tigray are its rock-hewn churches, similar in design to those of Lalibela in the Amhara Region, these churches are found in four or five clusters – Gheralta, Teka-Tesfay and Tembien – with Wukro sometimes included. Some of the churches are considered earlier than those of Lalibela, mostly monolithic, with designs partly inspired by classical architecture, they are often located at the top of cliffs or steep hills, for security.
For example, Tigrays ancient Debre Damo monastery is only by climbing a rope 25 meters up a sheer cliff. Looting has become an issue in the Tigray Region, as archaeological sites have become sources for construction materials. The area is famous for a single rock sculptured 23 meter long obelisk in Axum as well as for other fallen obelisks, the Axum treasure site of ancient Tigrayan history is a major landmark. Yeha is another important local landmark that is little-known outside the region