But for detailed descriptions of the arts of ancient Egypt and faience in particular, 'the first high-tech ceramic' you need look no further than the marvellously evocative Gift of the Nile
- Ancient Egyptian Faience by various authors, (Thames and Hudso n: pounds 42).
For the ancient Egyptians the Nile was a holy river, revered as the god Hapi.(22) The famous Greek historian Herodotus wrote in the Fifth Century BC, "Egypt is the gift of the Nile
." The dependence of Egypt on the Nile has not diminished.
However, what has occurred made Egypt, the "gift of the Nile
" -as Herodotus the Greek historian said- run out of the Nile's water.
Egypt is the gift of the Nile
, but also the Nile is the gift of Africa where the three circles: Arab, African and Islamic intersect.
When the Greek philosopher in the 5th century described Egypt as the Gift of the Nile
, by which he meant that the Nile made Egypt and not the vice versa, he might not have realized that there were so many people upstream who also depended on their living on this very Nile waters as a crucial factor of production that created once the famous North Sudan and Egyptian Pharaoh Civilization.
In this manner, while ancient Egyptian civilization was undoubtedly 'the gift of the Nile
' in that it grew up in an environment of otherwise extreme aridity, its most remarkable monuments were unquestionably a gift of the sea.