New light on an ancient illumination: The pharos of alexandria

A. S. Elnashai, L. Di Sarno, M. D. Carter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


One of the seven 'Wonders of the Ancient World' according to medieval chroniclers, the Pharos has given its name to lighthouses around the world, and remains a symbol of ancient engineering and construction skills. Yet, invested as it was by ancient Roman and medieval Arab writers with magical, almost supernatural powers, data concerning the design and functioning of the tower remain sketchy. The tallest stone tower in the world for more than 17 centuries, the integrity of the Pharos withstood the weathering of ages, until a series of earthquakes caused its top tiers to fall, leading to its effective demolition in the 14th century. This paper re-examines the historical literature concerning the Pharos to provide a reappraisal of this venerable monument that fell victim to repeated Mediterranean earthquakes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)137-148
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Journal of Nonlinear Sciences and Numerical Simulation
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2006

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Statistical and Nonlinear Physics
  • Computational Mechanics
  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Engineering (miscellaneous)
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)
  • Applied Mathematics


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