vintage egyptian

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Elizabeth Taylor’s wardrobe for Cleopatra (1963). She allegedly made 65 costume changes in the film however since the film was cut by several hours only 38 outfits appear. You can see images from the cut scenes and outfits not included here.

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Weekly World Music: “Ya Habibi Taala (Come, My Love)” - Asmahan

Born in Syria to Syrian and Lebanese parents, Amal al-Atrash, better known by her stage name Asmahan, was a popular singer and actor in 30s and 40s Egypt. Famous for her wide vocal range and comfort with both Western and Arbabic tarab styles, her life was a tumultuous one, from her family’s flight to Egypt from the crumbling Ottoman Empire in childhood, to her death under mysterious circumstances in a car crash in 1944. Since her death, she has become a musical legend in the Arab world. 

Arabic lyrics:

يا حبيبى تعالا الحقنى شوف اللى جرالي….من بعدك
سهرانه من واجبى باناجى خيالك … مين قدك
و انا كاتمة غرامى، و غرامى هالكنى
و لا عندى لا أب و لا أم و لا عم أشكيلة … نار حبك

روحى و قلبى و جسمى و عقلى و جمالى … فى يدك
محتارة اعملك اية فى دلالك … و ف_صدك
لية هاخبى غرامى … و غرامى هالكنى
لأشكى و أبكى و أحكى بلك يا غزالى … يلين قلبك

يا حبيبى تعالا الحقنى شوف اللى جرالي….من بعدك
سهرانه من واجبى باناجى خيالك … مين قدك
و انا كاتمة غرامى، و غرامى هالكنى
و لا عندى لا أب و لا أم و لا عم أشكيلة … نار حبك

أبعت مراسيل و اكتب جوابات اشكيلك … و اتألم
ساكتة و صابرة و راضية بأحوالك … م_الأول
و انا كاتمة غرامى … و غرامى هالكنى
وافديك بحياتى و روحى و اهلى و مالى … و لا تسألش

روحى و قلبى و جسمى و عقلى و جمالى … فى يدك
محتارة اعملك اية فى دلالك … و ف_صدك
لية هاخبى غرامى … و غرامى هالكنى
لأشكى و أبكى و أحكى بلك يا غزالى … يلين قلبك

يا حبيبى تعالا الحقنى شوف اللى جرالي….من بعدك
سهرانه من واجبى باناجى خيالك … مين قدك
و انا كاتمة غرامى، و غرامى هالكنى
و لا عندى لا أب و لا أم و لا عم أشكيلة … نار حبك

English translation:

My darling come follow me
Look what’s happened to me
In your absence
I’m sleepless and obligated to confide in your specter
Who could equal you?
I’m holding in my passion, and my passion is consuming me
And I have no father or mother or uncle to complain to about the torment of your love

My soul, heart, body, mind and beauty are in the palm of your hand
I don’t know what do you with you teasing me and rejecting me
Why should I hide my passion when it is consuming me?
I’ll complain, cry and speak, and perhaps, my dear, your heart will soften

I send letters and write responses complaining to you, and it hurts
I’ve been silent, patient and satisfied with this state from the start
I’m holding in my passion, and my passion is consuming me
And I’d give you my life and soul for you, my family, everything I own
And you don’t ask

‘The exoticism of the 1920’s was influenced by the many cultures that had reached Western Europe: Orientalism that had continued from the 1910’s, an Egyptian style spurred by the discovery of Tutankhamen’s tomb (1922), and the Mexican craze influenced by Aztec art. Amazing and luxurious exotic evening dresses were the perfect party attire of the decade.’

Caption: Paul Poiret, evening dress with Egyptian-style motifs, 1923.