THE regions east and south of the Dead Sea have been the last portions of Palestine to be explored. Among the few who have ventured as far south as Petra are Burckhardt in 1812, Irby and Mangles in 1818, Laborde in 1830, Robinson in 1838, Palmer in 1870, E. L. Wilson in 1882, Brünnow in 1896, Sir Charles Wilson in 1898, and an occasional missionary of late. Travel in these parts has hitherto been difficult and unsafe, owing on the one hand to the opposition of the Turkish government, which does not favour foreigners’ running so great a risk, and on the other to the wild Bedouin themselves, who usually plunder those who undertake to make the expedition. Accordingly Moab, especially Edom and the northeastern portion of the peninsula of Sinai, still awaits careful exploration ; but now, inasmuch as the sultan has firmly established himself at Kerak, Tafile, Shobek, and Ma’an, the danger has much decreased.
The Newly Discovered “High Place” at Petra in Edom