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ASWAN (Arabic : أسوان‎; Coptic : ⲥⲟⲩⲁⲛ) is a city in the south of Egypt
Egypt
, the capital of the Aswan Governorate .

Aswan
Aswan
is a busy market and tourist centre located just north of the Aswan Dams on the east bank of the Nile
Nile
at the first cataract . The modern city has expanded and includes the formerly separate community on the island of Elephantine .

CONTENTS

* 1 Other spellings and variations * 2 History * 3 Climate * 4 Education * 5 Transport * 6 Gallery * 7 See also * 8 References * 9 External links

OTHER SPELLINGS AND VARIATIONS

"Aswan" is pronounced (English: /ˌæsˈwɑːn/ . Spellings in other languages include Egyptian Arabic : أسوان‎ Aswān ; Ancient Egyptian : Swenett; Coptic : ⲥⲟⲩⲁⲛ Souan; Ancient Greek : Συήνη Syene), and it was formerly spelled Assuan.

HISTORY

swnt.t in hieroglyphs

Aswan
Aswan
is the ancient city of SWENETT, later known as SYENE, which in antiquity was the frontier town of Ancient Egypt
Egypt
facing the south. Swenett is supposed to have derived its name from an Egyptian goddess with the same name. This goddess later was identified as Eileithyia by the Greeks and Lucina by the Romans during their occupation of Ancient Egypt
Egypt
because of the similar association of their goddesses with childbirth, and of which the import is "the opener". The ancient name of the city also is said to be derived from the Egyptian symbol for trade, or market.

Because the Ancient Egyptians oriented toward the origin of the life-giving waters of the Nile
Nile
in the south, Swenett was the southernmost town in the country, and Egypt
Egypt
always was conceived to "open" or begin at Swenett. The city stood upon a peninsula on the right (east) bank of the Nile
Nile
, immediately below (and north of) the first cataract of the flowing waters, which extend to it from Philae . Navigation to the delta was possible from this location without encountering a barrier.

The stone quarries of ancient Egypt
Egypt
located here were celebrated for their stone, and especially for the granitic rock called Syenite. They furnished the colossal statues, obelisks , and monolithal shrines that are found throughout Egypt, including the pyramids ; and the traces of the quarrymen who worked in these 3,000 years ago are still visible in the native rock. They lie on either bank of the Nile
Nile
, and a road, 6.5 km (4.0 mi) in length, was cut beside them from Syene to Philae .

Swenett was equally important as a military station as a place of traffic. Under every dynasty it was a garrison town; and here tolls and customs were levied on all boats passing southwards and northwards. Around 330, the legion stationed here received a bishop from Alexandria
Alexandria
; this later became the Coptic Diocese of Syene . The city is mentioned by numerous ancient writers, including Herodotus
Herodotus
, Strabo
Strabo
, Stephanus of Byzantium , Ptolemy
Ptolemy
, Pliny the Elder
Pliny the Elder
, Vitruvius
Vitruvius
, and it appears on the Antonine Itinerary
Antonine Itinerary
. It also is mentioned in the Book of Ezekiel and the Book of Isaiah . View from the west bank of the Nile, islands, and Aswan
Aswan

The latitude of the city that would become Aswan
Aswan
– located at 24° 5′ 23″ – was an object of great interest to the ancient geographers. They believed that it was seated immediately under the tropic , and that on the day of the summer solstice , a vertical staff cast no shadow. They noted that the sun's disc was reflected in a well at noon. This statement is only approximately correct; at the summer solstice, the shadow was only  1⁄400 of the staff, and so could scarcely be discerned, and the northern limb of the Sun's disc would be nearly vertical. However, Eratosthenes
Eratosthenes
used this information together with measurements of the shadow length on the solstice at Alexandria
Alexandria
to perform the first known calculation of the circumference of the Earth.

The Nile
Nile
is nearly 650 m (0.40 mi) wide above Aswan. From this frontier town to the northern extremity of Egypt, the river flows for more than 1,200 km (750 mi) without bar or cataract. The voyage from Aswan
Aswan
to Alexandria
Alexandria
usually took 21 to 28 days in favourable weather.

CLIMATE

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Aswan
Aswan
has a hot desert climate ( Köppen climate classification BWh) like the rest of Egypt. Aswan
Aswan
and Luxor
Luxor
have the hottest summer days of any city in Egypt
Egypt
. Aswan
Aswan
is one of the hottest, sunniest and driest cities in the world. Average high temperatures are consistently above 40 °C (104.0 °F) during summer (June, July, August and also September) while average low temperatures remain above 25 °C (77.0 °F). Summers are long, prolonged and extremely hot. Average high temperatures remain above 23 °C (73.4 °F) during the coldest month of the year while average low temperatures remain above 8 °C (46.4 °F). Winters are short, brief and extremely warm. Wintertime is very pleasant and enjoyable while summertime is unbearably hot with blazing sunshine although desert heat is dry.

The climate of Aswan
Aswan
is extremely dry year-round, with less than 1 mm (0 in) of average annual precipitation. The desert city is one of the driest ones in the world, and rainfall doesn't occur every year, as of early 2001, the last rain there was seven years earlier. Aswan
Aswan
is one of the least humid cities on the planet, with an average relative humidity of only 26%, with a maximum mean of 42% during winter and a minimum mean of 16% during summer.

The weather of Aswan
Aswan
is extremely clear, bright and sunny year-round, in all seasons, with a low seasonal variation, with almost 4,000 hours of annual sunshine, very close to the maximum theoretical sunshine duration. Aswan
Aswan
is one of the sunniest places on Earth.

The highest record temperature was 51 °C (124 °F) on July 4, 1918, and the lowest record temperature was −2.4 °C (27.7 °F) on January 6, 1989.

CLIMATE DATA FOR ASWAN, EGYPT

MONTH JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC YEAR

RECORD HIGH °C (°F) 35.3 (95.5) 38.5 (101.3) 44.0 (111.2) 46.1 (115) 47.8 (118) 50.6 (123.1) 51.0 (123.8) 48.0 (118.4) 47.8 (118) 45.4 (113.7) 42.2 (108) 38.6 (101.5) 51.0 (123.8)

AVERAGE HIGH °C (°F) 22.9 (73.2) 25.2 (77.4) 29.5 (85.1) 34.9 (94.8) 38.9 (102) 41.4 (106.5) 41.1 (106) 40.9 (105.6) 39.3 (102.7) 35.9 (96.6) 29.1 (84.4) 24.3 (75.7) 33.6 (92.5)

DAILY MEAN °C (°F) 15.3 (59.5) 17.5 (63.5) 21.8 (71.2) 27 (81) 31.4 (88.5) 33.5 (92.3) 33.6 (92.5) 33.2 (91.8) 32.8 (91) 27.7 (81.9) 21.5 (70.7) 16.9 (62.4) 25.9 (78.6)

AVERAGE LOW °C (°F) 8.7 (47.7) 10.2 (50.4) 13.8 (56.8) 18.9 (66) 23 (73) 25.2 (77.4) 26 (79) 25.8 (78.4) 24 (75) 20.6 (69.1) 15.0 (59) 10.5 (50.9) 18.5 (65.3)

RECORD LOW °C (°F) −2.4 (27.7) 3.8 (38.8) 5.0 (41) 7.8 (46) 13.4 (56.1) 18.9 (66) 20.0 (68) 20.0 (68) 16.1 (61) 12.2 (54) 6.1 (43) 0.6 (33.1) −2.4 (27.7)

AVERAGE RAINFALL MM (INCHES) 0 (0) 0 (0) 0 (0) 0 (0) 0.1 (0.004) 0 (0) 0 (0) 0.7 (0.028) 0 (0) 0.6 (0.024) 0 (0) 0 (0) 1.4 (0.055)

AVERAGE RAINY DAYS (≥ 0.01 MM) 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.1 0.0 0.0 0.5 0.0 0.25 0.0 0.0 0.85

AVERAGE RELATIVE HUMIDITY (%) 40 32 24 19 17 16 18 21 22 27 36 42 26.2

MEAN MONTHLY SUNSHINE HOURS 298.2 281.1 321.6 316.1 346.8 363.2 374.6 359.6 298.3 314.6 299.6 289.1 3,862.8

Source #1: World Meteorological Organization
World Meteorological Organization
,

Source #2: NOAA for mean temperatures, humidity, and sun, Meteo Climat (extremes 1918–present)

EDUCATION

In 1999, South Valley University was inaugurated and it has three branches; Aswan, Qena
Qena
and Hurghada . The university grew steadily and now it is firmly established as a major institution of higher education in Upper Egypt. Aswan
Aswan
branch of Assiut University began in 1973 with the Faculty of Education and in 1975 the Faculty of Science was opened. Aswan
Aswan
branch has five faculties namely; Science, Education, Engineering, Arts, Social Works and Institute of Energy. The Faculty of Science in Aswan
Aswan
has six departments. Each department has one educational programme: Chemistry, Geology, Physics and Zoology. Except Botany Department, which has three educational programmes: Botany, Environmental Sciences and Microbiology; and Mathematics Department, which has two educational programmes: Mathematics and Computer Science. The Faculty of Science awards the following degrees: Bachelor of Science in nine educational programmes, Higher Diploma, Master of Science and Philosophy Doctor of Science. Aswan
Aswan
also has Aswan
Aswan
Higher Institute of Social Work that was established in 1975 making him the oldest private higher institute of Social Work in Upper Egypt
Egypt

TRANSPORT

Aswan
Aswan
is served by the Aswan International Airport . Train and bus service is also available. Taxi and rickshaw are used for transport here.

GALLERY

*

Archangel Michael's Coptic Orthodox Cathedral, built in the Coptic style *

El-Tabia Mosque in Aswan
Aswan
*

The Lotus-Tower near Aswan
Aswan
*

Nubia
Nubia
Museum entrance *

Fatimid Cemetery *

Unfinished Obelisk
Obelisk
in Aswan
Aswan
*

Monastery of St. Simeon *

A street parallel to Corniche in Aswan
Aswan
*

Aswan
Aswan
Bridge *

Aswan
Aswan
Botanical Garden *

Aswan
Aswan
Courthouse *

Aswan
Aswan
souq *

Aswan
Aswan
station *

Gharb Seheil *

Nubian village in Elephantine Island *

Qubbet el-Hawa *

Feluccas in Aswan
Aswan
*

A view along the street connecting the railway station and the Nile
Nile

SEE ALSO

* Wadi Allaqi national park * Abu Simbel * Aswan Dam
Aswan Dam
* Elephantine * Philae * Luxor
Luxor

* Kitchener\'s Island * Temple of Kalabsha * Tombs of Nobles in Aswan
Aswan
* Nubia
Nubia
* Banu Kanz * Coptic Diocese of Syene

REFERENCES

* This article incorporates text from a publication