The ancient Roman city of Palmyra, whose ruins are listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, risks destruction at the hands of ISIS after the group captured it earlier this year.
The Syrian town of Palmyra, which means “the city of palms,” is home to the monumental ruins of an ancient oasis city that predates the first century A.D. Some findings at Palmyra have provided evidence of settlements dating as far back as 7,500 B.C.
Once a stop in the Syrian desert for travelers, Palmyra became a bustling city under the Roman empire, and its enormous wealth allowed the construction of significant monuments and architectural structures. Palmyrene art, its temples, cemeteries, and statues are so treasured that the city was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1980.