Qataban and Sheba: Exploring the Ancient Kingdoms on the Biblical Spice Routes of Arabia

By Wendell Phillips | Go to book overview

16
THE SCAIFES

*

With our labor force assembled, the digging, hauling, and dumping of sand began. We lost four of our workers a couple of days later when I received a note from Sherif Abdullah, Governor of Aseilan. It asked if we would mind greatly if four little boys currently employed at the South Gate might be returned home to continue their studies in school. They were later seen with their legs chained together, clanking their way to higher learning. One small Bal Harith boy could not be persuaded however; though only seven years old, his indignation was no less than that of his adult brothers. "I am one of the birds of the desert," he protested, "I must fly over the wide spaces. If you cage me I shall pine away and die."

Only the boys go to school in Beihan, where they study the Koran and learn how to read and write. Girls stay at home, where they learn how to sew, cook, and perform other domestic duties.

Another boy was greeted with open arms and much attention. He was the boy whose face had been eaten away by yaws. I recalled my promise to Dr. McNinch to give him a report on the boy, and I remembered, too, how many medical men in the United States had said, after looking at his picture, "He simply hasn't a fighting chance to survive." But here he was--alive and apparently well. Major portions of his face were missing, as the parts which had been eaten away completely did not grow back. But the eating away had stopped at almost the point it was when Dr. Mac treated

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Qataban and Sheba: Exploring the Ancient Kingdoms on the Biblical Spice Routes of Arabia
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Author's Preface vii
  • Field Staff - American Foundation Arabian Expeditions xi
  • Contents xiii
  • 1 - Turn Backward, Turn Backward 3
  • 2 - Search for a Site 8
  • 3 - The Essence of Mukalla 16
  • 4 - Through the Hadhramaut 23
  • 5 - The Dig 40
  • 6 - Mountains and Clouds Of Sand 53
  • 7 - "Weakness of the Bones" 65
  • 8 - Bal Harith Tribesmen 76
  • 9 - The Lions of Timna 89
  • 10 - The Queen of Sheba 103
  • 11 - Miriam and the Gold Necklace 109
  • 12 - Professor Albright 120
  • 13 - Salaams to the President 125
  • 14 - Mount Sinai 133
  • 15 - Eileen 146
  • 16 - The Scaifes 154
  • 17 - Cities of the Dead 163
  • 18- Lady Bar'At 171
  • 19- Back to 1000 B.C. 180
  • 20 - Temple of Venus 186
  • 21 - Into Forbidden Yemen 194
  • 22 - Audience with the Imam 203
  • 23 - Across Unexplored Land 210
  • 24 - The Queen's City 218
  • 25 - Farewell to Beihan 231
  • 26 - Qataban Revealed 243
  • 27 - Troubles in Marib 248
  • 28 - Confusion Compounded 262
  • 29- Danger at Sheba 273
  • 30 - Escape! 301
  • 31 - Charges And Countercharges 321
  • 32 - Unknown Oman 329
  • Afterword Birth Pains of An Expedition 341
  • Substantial Contributors - American Foundation for the Study of Man 351
  • Index 355
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