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Memphis

(717 words)

Author(s): Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin)
[German version] This item can be found on the following maps: Achaemenids | Egypt | Caesar | Zenobia | | Diadochi and Epigoni | Alexander | Commerce | Pilgrimage | Aegean Koine | Egypt City in Egypt, situated on the west bank of the Nile about 30 km south of the apex of the Delta. The name M. (Greek. Μέμφις; assyr. Mempi) derived from the name of the pyramid town of king Pepi I. (around 2300), Egyptian Mn-nfr-( Pjpj). The older name, ‘White Wall’ (Egyptian Jnb-ḥḏ; leúkon teíchos/λευκὸν τεῖχος in Hdt. 3,91 and Thuc. 1,104), probably referring to the particularly well-fortified cen…

Dendara

(124 words)

Author(s): Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin)
[German version] (Egyptian Jwnt[- t-nṯrt], Greek Τεντυρα; Tentura), city in Upper Egypt, located on the west bank of the Nile opposite today's Qena, capital of the 6th Upper Egyptian nome. From earliest times, D. was an important centre, and especially significant from the Old Kingdom to the early Middle Kingdom. Details of a large number of the nome's strategoi from the Ptolemaic and Roman periods have been preserved on their monuments. The most important deity was the goddess of love, Hathor. Her sanctuary, dating from the Old Kingdom, was extended …

Sebritai, Sembritai

(108 words)

Author(s): Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin)
[German version] (Σε(μ)βρῖται/ Se(m)brîtai). According to Str. 16,4,8 and 17,1,2 the term ('foreigners') for (allegedly 240,000) Egyptian soldiers who under Psammetichus [1] I (664-610 BC) deserted from their garrison in Elephantine (cf. Hdt. 2,30 and Diod. Sic. 1,67) and settled in Sudan. As for the precise location of this settlement the sources conflict (cf. apart from Str. also Plin. HN 6,191 ff.; Ptol. 4,20 ff.). The historicity of Herodotus's account can not be confirmed from Egyptian sources…

Psammetichus

(583 words)

Author(s): Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin)
(Ψαμμήτιχος; Psammḗtichos). Greek form of the name of several Egyptian rulers of Libyan origin, Egyptian Psmṯk. [German version] [1] P. I Egyptian king 1st king of the 26th Dynasty (664-610 BC), son of Necho [1] I, initially a vassal of the Assyrians, to whom he fled from a Nubian attack (Hdt. 2,152). After the Assyrians expelled the Nubians, he made himself ruler of the whole of Lower Egypt until c. 657, probably with the help of Greek and Carian (Cares) mercenaries (Hdt. 2,151 f.). P. entered into an alliance with Gyges [1] of Lydia and was soon able to free…

Myecphorites

(60 words)

Author(s): Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin)
[German version] (Μυεκφορίτης; Myekphorítēs). Egyptian district, mentioned only in Hdt. 2,166, located on an ‘island’ (surrounded by arms of the Nile or canals) across from Bubastis and inhabited by Calasirieis. The etymology of the name is unclear, it may mean the 20th district of lower Egypt. Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin) Bibliography A.B. Lloyd, Herodotus, Book II, Comm. 99-182, 1988, 195.

Kalasirieis

(126 words)

Author(s): Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin)
[German version] (Καλασιριεῖς; Kalasirieîs). Along with the hermotybies, the Kalasirieis were one of the two classes in the Egyptian caste of warriors (μάχιμοι), instituted, according to Diod. Sic. 1,94, by a king Σεσόωσις/ Sesóōsis (Sheshonk I ?). According to Hdt. 2,166, they were up to 250,000 men strong and lived in Thebes and in certain towns in the Nile Delta. The Egyptian term krj-š (the meaning is uncertain) is attested from the 20th Dynasty on, a corresponding group with military and police functions is attested from the 26th Dynasty until the beginning of Roman rule. Jansen-Wink…

Tachos

(159 words)

Author(s): Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin)
[German version] (Ταχώς, in Manethon Τεώς/ Teṓs; Egyptian Ḏd.ḥr). Second king of the Egyptian 30th Dynasty,  c. 362-360 BC (calculations differ by up to two years), son of his predecessor Nectanebus [1] I and his co-regent during the last three years of his reign (from c. 365). T. tried to exploit the collapse of Persian power in western Asia, and in c. 360 BC, he led a campaign to Syria, with a great number of Greek mercenaries under the Spartan king Agesilaus [2] and a fleet under the Athenian Chabrias. During this campaign, T.'s brother Tjahapimu, who …

Athribis

(87 words)

Author(s): Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin)
[German version] (Egyptian Ḥwt-[t]-ṛj-jb, Arabic Tall Atrı̄b). Capital city of the 10th Lower Egyptian district, in the southern central delta. Main god Chentechtai in older times honoured as a crocodile, in the New Kingdom mostly as a falcon. A. gains additional significance in the New Kingdom. In the 9th-7th cents. BC it forms with  Heliopolis an independent principality. Ammianus Marcellinus (22,16) counts it as one of the most important cities of Egypt. Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin) Bibliography P. Vernus, Athribis, Bibliothèque d'études coptes 74, 1978 LÄ 1, 519-24.

Buto

(229 words)

Author(s): Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin)
[German version] City in the west delta to the north of Sais in the 6th region of Lower Egypt; actually a twin city which, in older sources, only appears in the names of its parts Pe and Dep. The name B. has its origins in the Egyptian Prw dyt, house of Wśdy (Uto), who, in the form of a snake, is the national and crown goddess of Lower Egypt and who, together with  Horus, is the most important local deity. B. was already settled in prehistoric times and was apparently an important centre. Archaeological finds and epigraphic reports about B., ho…

Pelusium

(506 words)

Author(s): Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin)
[German version] This item can be found on the following maps: Egypt | Syria | Zenobia | | Diadochi and Epigoni | Alexander | Commerce | Pilgrimage | Rome | Rome | Egypt (Πηλούσιον/ Pēloúsion; Latin Pelusium). City at the far northeastern corner of the Nile delta (southeast of Port Said), Egyptian Sjn, earlier Snw, 'fortification', from Ptolemiac times also known as P-Pr-jr-Jmn, Coptic ΠΕΡΕΜΟΥΝ, modern Tall al-Faramā. The Greek name P. probably originated from a popular etymological derivation of the Egyptian sjn, 'clay' = Greek pēlós (cf. Str. 17,1,21). Based on the city's name…

Amasis

(240 words)

Author(s): Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin)
(Ἀμασις; Ámasis). Greek form of the name of two Egyptian kings. [German version] [1] Generally Amosis or Ahmose Generally Amosis or Ahmose, c. 1540/30-1515/05 BC, founder of the 18th dynasty and of the New Kingdom. He completes the expulsion of the  Hyksos, conquers their capital city, Auaris, as well as southern Palestine and Lower Nubia [1. 45-47; 3]. Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin) [German version] [2] Egyptian king Egyptian Jḥ-msw, 5th ruler of the 26th dynasty (570-526 BC), overthrows his predecessor  Apries, when the latter sends him out to quell a mutin…

Anysis

(65 words)

Author(s): Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin)
[German version] According to Hdt. 2,137-40, a blind king of a city of the same name, during whose reign the Ethiopians, under S(h)abako, conquered Egypt. Not historically verifiable; this is probably a reminder of the continuing existence of independent rulers in the Delta during the rule of the Nubian kings (25th dynasty). Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin) Bibliography A. B. Lloyd, Herodotus, Book II, Commentary 99-182, 1988, 90-92.

Rosetta Stone

(137 words)

Author(s): Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin)
[German version] Part of a granite tablet discovered in 1799 by French soldiers near the settlement of Rosetta (el-Rashid) on the Egyptian Mediterranean coast (now in the British Museum in London), bearing text in three languages. The inscription is a decree regarding the cult of the ruling monarch in the Egyptian temples, passed by a priestly synod in Memphis on 27 March, 196 BC, on the occasion of the coronation of Ptolemaeus [I 8] V Epiphanes and meant to be displayed in all of the country's te…

Leuke Akte

(78 words)

Author(s): Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin)
[German version] (Λευκὴ ἀκτή; Leukḕ aktḗ). ‘White cape’ on the Libyan coast of Egypt, near the small Catabathmus, modern Ras al-Abja (on the Ras al-Kanais, c. 60 km east of Marsa Matruh), mentioned in e.g. Str. 10,489; 17,799; Ptol. 4,5,3. According to POxy. XI,1380,45, Isis was venerated at Leuke Akte as Aphrodite, Muchis and Eseremphis. There was also an oracle sanctuary of Apollo ( Horus). Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin) Bibliography H. Kees, s.v. L.A., RE 12, 2261.

Calasiris

(38 words)

Author(s): Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin)
[German version] (Καλάσιρις; Kalásiris).The priest C. is one of the main figures in  Heliodorus' [8] novel Aithiopiká. Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin) Bibliography H. Kees, s.v. Kalasiris, RE 10, 1547  A.B. Lloyd, Herodotus, Book II, vol. 2, 1976, 342.

Faiyum

(185 words)

Author(s): Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin)
[German version] Large oasis c. 80 km south-west of Cairo with a lake in the north. Name from Egyptian p-jm (‘the sea’, older names ts̄, ‘lake land’ and š-rsj, ‘southern lake’, Greek ἡ λίμνη ( hē límnē) or Κροκοδιλοπολίτης νομός ( Krokodilopolítēs nomós), from 256/5 onwards Ἀρσινοίτης νομός/ Arsionoḯtēs nomós). The capital city Šdjt ( Arsinoe [III 2]) is mentioned early but it was not until the 12th Dynasty that F. was developed through dam construction, especially under Amenemhet III ( c. 1853-1808) who was still considered a local hero in Roman times. The chief god wa…

Sethos

(338 words)

Author(s): Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin)
(Σέθως; Séthōs). Name of two pharaohs, Egyptian Stẖj. [German version] [1] S. I Second king of the 19th dynasty, c. 1290-1279 BC, already designated successor during the short reign of his father Ramesses [1] I. One of his epithets ('he who repeats creation') suggests that his reign was supposed to be seen as the beginning of a new era, and indeed it was: most of the defining characteristics of the 19th dynasty, which became particularly distinct in the time of his son Ramses [2] II, began with S. He undertook sev…

Metelis

(135 words)

Author(s): Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin)
[German version] (Μέτηλις; Métēlis). Town in the north-western Nile delta, east of Alexandria; the precise location of M. and its Arab successor settlement of Maṣil remains unclear, but probably near Fuwwa (Kom el-Aḥmar?). In the Roman period, M. was the capital of a new nome of Metelites on the territory of the former 7th Lower Egyptian district. Its chief deity was Hathor/ Isis, who was honoured in the shape of a falcon (Egyptian bjk); the placename Bechis (Βῆχις; Bêchis), given by Steph. Byz. for M., is derived from this. In the Byzantine and Arab periods (until the 11…

Apries

(100 words)

Author(s): Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin)
[German version] Fourth king of the 26th dynasty (589-570 BC), Egyptian Wḥ-jb-R, Hophra in the OT, son and successor to Psametich II. At the beginning of his reign, he intervenes unsuccessfully in Palestine against the rule of the Chaldaeans. His support of the Libyans of Cyrenaica against the Greeks there is just as unsuccessful. After a defeat, the army installs  Amasis as the new king. A. is beaten; the sources give contradictory accounts of his death, but he is buried as a king in Sais. Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin) Bibliography Th. Schneider, Lex. der Pharaonen, 1994, 81-83 LÄ 1, 35…

Thmuis

(132 words)

Author(s): Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin)
[German version] This item can be found on the following maps: Education / Culture (Θμοῦις/ Thmoûis; Egyptian T-mw(t), 'new-land'), the modern ( Tall) Timay, town neighbouring Mendes in the northeast of the Nile delta; first mentioned in Jos. BI 4,659, but significantly older (cf. archaeological finds [1]; Hdt. 2,166). In the Roman period T. replaced Mendes as district capital; Amm. Marc. 22,16 cites T. among the most significant cities of Egypt. By 250 AD (until the 10th/11th cent.) T. was a bishopric. In the later…
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