JORDAN

The Government of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, whose land is the seedbed of many civilizations and religions, is represented by one of the most striking buildings at the Fair. It is a multi-peaked-and-domed structure covered with gold mosaic and sparkling blue glass. The undulating roof surfaces swoop to the ground, forming Arabic arches: They shade the stained-glass windows that make up two sides of the building and walls with bas-reliefs that make up other sides. Inside the building diverse exhibits - including a scroll from the Dead Sea area - reflect some of the cultures that rose in this region of ancient Palestine. A theater provides entertainment by Arab dancers and a military band.

As the guidebook description says, the Jordan pavilion was a striking design. The gold and blue colors were particularly effective in the sunlight. (CD #23 Set 123 #12)


 

A view from the Swiss Sky Ride. (CD #10 Set 53 #30)


 

Christ and Mohammed.  In stained glass (best seen from inside the pavilion), the story of Christ's agony and death is told in the traditional Fourteen Stations of the Cross, rendered in unusual abstract forms created by Spanish painter Antonio Saura. On the other walls (seen only from outside the pavilion) are bas-relief representations of the Roman-built city of Jarash; the ancient city of Petra, which was carved from rock in ancient times and populated by robber bands that preyed on caravans; and the Dome of the Rock of Jerusalem, where, according to Moslem tradition, Mohammed prayed before ascending to heaven. (CD #TBD Set 338 #8)


 

Twenty Hundred Years. One of the Dead Sea Scrolls, written by the ascetic Essene sect about the time of Christ, is shown in an exhibit area together with a replica of the cave in which it was discovered. Also on display are a scale model of the Dome of the Rock, statues of the Three Kings, a Christian creche, and many articles from antiquity, including a column from Jarash to be presented to the City of New York for permanent display in the Flushing Meadow Park.

The column is still there in the park today. (CD #15 Set 73 #2)


 

Dancers and a Movie. A troupe of Arab dancers and The Band of the Arab Army put on frequent performances in the 245-seat theater. At other times a half-hour color movie of modern Jordan is shown. (CD #TBD Set 338 #11)


 

Jewelry and Barbecues. Large color transparencies and slide viewers show Jordan's expanding economy and increasing numbers of schools, hospitals, roads and other facilities. A bazaar sells Hebron glass, olive-wood carvings, mother-of-pearl work and Bedouin jewelry. A restaurant and snack bar serve such Jordanian specialties as homas (an appetizer of mashed chick peas mixed with spices and oil, eaten cold), shaurmah (spiced and barbecued lamb), Arab and Turkish pastries, coffee and wine.

The gift shop offered visitors a wide variety of goods, including many with a religious motif (CD #18 Set 95 #3)


 


Want more information on the Jordan pavilion?

7-2-63 - Groundbreaking booklet
Al-Mat' Am Menu
Jordan Pavilion Fact Sheet
Translation of the Dead Sea Scrolls
 

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