Tell Umm el-'Amr

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Tell Umm el-'Amr (also known as Saint Hilarion Monastery) is an ancient Christian monastery 15 kilometers south of Gaza in the Palestinian territories. Its archaeological remains span more than four centuries, from the Roman Empire to the Umayyad period, and are characterized by five successive churches, bath and sanctuary complexes, geometric mosaics, and an expansive crypt. The site's oldest building, dating to the fourth century, is named for Hilarion, a native of the Gaza region and the father of Palestinian monasticism. The site was abandoned after a seventh-century earthquake and rediscovered by local archaeologists in 1999.[1]

According to the Ministry of Tourism in Gaza, Tell Umm el-'Amr is in dire need of preservation.[2] Current preservation efforts are plagued by war and conflict in the region, as well as a shortage of materials and equipment needed for excavation. The site was included on the 2012 World Monuments Watch and is classified as "Rescue Needed" by Global Heritage Network.[3]


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