During the first seven centuries AD there arose at Aksum in the highlands of northern Ethiopia, a unique African culture which has been described as “the last of the great civilizations of antiquity to be revealed to modern knowledge”. Although its monuments have long been known, their full significance has only recently been recognized. Ancient Aksum maintained a wide-ranging international trade and produced unparalleled coinage in gold, silver and copper. Its kings adopted Christianity in the 4th century AD and the Christian civilization of the Ethiopian highlands traces its origins to Aksumite roots. This text, based on the author's field research, presents an illustrated account of Aksumite civilization of the Ethiopian highlands, tracing its origins to Aksumite roots.