Archaeologists in Egypt have unearthed an military garrison made of mud bricks and sea shells in the Sinai desert. The Tell Heboua garrison dates back 3,500 years and is the key to a whole web of defence installations in the region.
This area was once fertile land, irrigated by a branch of the Nile river flowing into the Mediterranean Sea. This construction, surrounded by outer walls 4 metres thick, could have housed up to 50,000 soldiers at times of high alert. It was also a temple containing brightly painted depictions of the gods and three basins which were used for ritual purifications.