on 5/28/04 3:33 PM, Peter Montgomery at [log in to unmask] wrote:
> The only train that even halfway fits the situation, that
> I know of, is The Orient Express. Is that mentoned in the Letters.
Notwithstanding anything else, think geography. There have been rail systems
in the Nile valley for the last 150 years -- as noted below. The original
Wagons-Lits Orient Express in its heyday ran from from Lodon/Paris through
central and eastern Europe to the European side of Istanbul. The
southernmost spur on that route was on occasion, Athens. Nowhere near Luxor,
which is way up the Nile in Southern (Upper) Egypt.
In 1851 the then Khedive of Egypt, Abbas I, entered into negotiations with
Robert Stephenson for the construction of a railway from Alexandria to
This was the first railway on the African continent... From Cairo the
railway was carried on to Suez, thus completing the overland route by rail.
Until the opening of the Suez canal in 1869 it was a source of considerable
revenue to the Egyptian State Exchequer.
Luxor, 340 miles from Cairo, was reached in 1898, the Nile having been
crossed again at Nag-Hamadi, a town between Assiut and Luxor. Kena, a town
some miles north of Luxor, was the southern limit of the State Railway
system, and the line from Kena to Aswan, or Assuan was built by the
Kena-Aswan Railway Company, a private enterprise.