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Khirbet ed-Dharih

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Frieze block depicting Cancer


Outside of Petra, a number of Nabataean settlements had large religious sanctuaries. Khirbet ed-Dharih, Arabic for "ruins of Dharih," was such a place. Located about 45 miles (70 kilometers) north of Petra, it is only a short distance from the neighboring hilltop sanctuary of Khirbet et-Tannur. Recent excavations at Dharih have uncovered the remains of a Nabataean town with a monumental temple complex.

In contrast to the dry, remote setting of Khirbet et-Tannur, the site of Khirbet ed-Dharih was situated near three springs in a fertile territory of irrigated plantations and agricultural fields. From an early period, it was a stable, settled community, and by Nabataean times it had become a prosperous town.

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