Petra, Jordan at night / unknown photographerThe ancient city of Petra was literally carved from the sandstone cliffs of southern Jordan. There the Nabataeans built temples and tombs, houses and halls, altars and aquaducts. And they built a civilization that stood at the crossroads of the ancient Near East, a center for commerce as the spice routes and trading trails of the time all flowed through Petra. At its peak the city of Petra was home to some 20,000 Nabataeans who, in the midst of the desert, built an ingenious system of waterways to provide their city with the precious liquid. Since the early 1800s, when it was “rediscovered,” clues to daily life in this “lost city of stone” are being unearthed and today we are beginning to see once again what Petra looked like 2,000 years ago. .