Queen of Sheba and Treasures of the Silk Road

Thursday, 23 March 2017, 10.30 am – 3.30 pm, Dalmeny Hotel, St Annes

Lecturer Christopher Bradley will give two lectures: The Queen of Sheba, Empress or Enigma, and Treasures of the Silk Road.

The Queen of Sheba, Empress or Enigma: 3000 years ago the Queen of Sheba travelled with a caravan of hundreds of camels, laden with unimaginable riches, through the Arabian deserts to meet King Solomon in Jerusalem. It is one of the world’s oldest love stories and their coming together is detailed in the wonderful Arezzo frescoes by Piero della Francesca. The Queen of Sheba is one of the most intriguing and exotic figures in history. Stories from the Christian, Jewish and Islamic texts reveal where she came from, why she was famous and what she may have looked like. Her story encapsulates the history of ancient Yemen, Ethiopia and the Ark of the Covenant itself. Finally we will look at the real evidence of the Kingdom of Sheba and its ruined Capital, Marib.

Treasures of the Silk Road: The Silk Road extends over 8000 kms from China through Central Asia to the Mediterranean and is the greatest trade route the world has ever known. Early Persian routes expanded towards India allowing the Chinese to exchange silk, jade and ceramics for horses, pearls and gold. The Silk Road was also a highway for expanding religions and new art forms. Buddhism spread throughout Central Asia and we will explore the paintings from the Magao caves and the ‘Caves of the Thousand Buddhas’ at Bezeklik in the Flaming Mountains. Samarkand and Bukhara are the beginning of the great Islamic buildings that continue through Persia and Syria. Along the way we will see murals, ceramics, statues, carpets, architecture, mosaics, tile-work, rock carvings and of course silk itself.

christopher_bradley_52d093c1a361ba793bcaa1c30ebcc6a7NADFAS lecturer Christopher Bradley is an experienced worldwide tour leader and guide, as well as an author, film maker and photographer. He is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, a member of the Society for Arabian Studies; Libyan Studies; and the British Yemeni Society. Christopher is also a qualified PADI scuba diver, marathon runner and triathlete. His adventures include climbing Mont Blanc, crossing the Nubian Desert, cycling in the Moroccan Sahara and walking the length of Wadi Hadramaut in Yemen through desert and Bedouin regions.


Programme for the day:

  • 10.30 – 11.o0 Refreshments on arrival in the St Annes Suite, Dalmeny Hotel
  • 11.00 – 12.15 First lecture
  • 12.30 – A 3 course lunch in the Atrium with waiter service ( a vegetarian lunch is available if required)
  • 1.30 – 2.00 Coffee & tea available in the St Annes Suite
  • 2.00 – Second lecture
  • 3.15 – 3.30 Departure

Cost is £39. A booking form can be downloaded here and sent to: Christina McHugh, SID Co-ordinator, 49 West Cliffe, Lytham FY8 5DR.

For further information please contact Christina McHugh: email: mchugh2be@btinternet.com. Tel: 01253 739368.


Caption: Solomon and The Queen of Sheba Giovanni De Min 1789–1859


Below are photos of this Study Day