Aswan is positioned at the site of the first cataract, almost 700 miles south of the Nile Delta and close to the boundary between Egypt and the Sudan. The famous dam, which was to alter the landscape so dramatically, was only built in the 1890s, and the area was best known during the mid 19th-century for the ancient ruins at Philae. Girault de Prangey took around 25 photographs in this area, and seems to have limited himself mainly to the use of the smallest format in his repertoire as only two larger views have been identified, both half-plate. He included views of the temples at Philae (see lots 11 and 38) and nearby Djebel Selseleh (see lot 45), landscapes and two Nubian portraits (see lot 86). In this fine example, he places the palms firmly as the dominant feature, but contrives to produce an unusually picturesque scene, with lush foliage and dramatic rocks in the foreground and the river beyond.