Perring, John Shae ; Andrews, E. J. [Editor]
The pyramids of Gizeh: from actual survey and admeasurement (Band 3): The pyramids to the southward of Gizeh and at Abou Roash... — London, 1842

Page: Beschreibung_der_Tafeln_01
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EfeYPT is naturally divided into the Delta, and the valley of the Nile, which extends from the Delta to Es Souan near the
First Cataract, and which was subdivided by the antients into Middle Egypt, and the Thebaid. The former of these districts is
now distinguished by the name of Bathree (towards the sea); and the latter is divided into Wustanee {the Middle), and Said

{the Upper).

The thirty-six nomes, or provinces, are ascribed to Sesostris by Diodorus Siculus, who also says that they were equal in
number to the apartments in the Labyrinth, which are supposed to have been twenty-seven; the nine others may, therefore, have
included the different oases.

Middle Egypt, called by the Greeks Heptanomis, was at a later period, included in the district, named by the Romans Arcadia
in honour of the Emperor Arcadius; and, according to the " Notitia Imperii" (ascribed to the fourth century), Middle Egypt and
part of the Delta formed the Provincial Augustannicse.

The Pyramids of Middle and of Lower Egypt are thirty-nine in number. They are situated on the western side of the river,
and chiefly on the desert hills, which form the western boundary of the valley of the Nile:—

1 was in the Nome Latopolitis.

33..... Meraphitis.


3..... Crocodilopolitis.

They extend from 29° 16' 56" to 30° 2' SO" north latitude, and occupy a space measuring, from north to south, fifty-three English
miles. The map was laid down from a trigonometrical survey, carefully taken in 1839. It contains the sites of the Pyramids
and the adjacent country, including part of the Delta, for, notwithstanding the supposed origin of its name, that province
appears, according to Ptolemy, to have extended as far south as the Pyramids of Gizeh. Abou Fedeh also places the division
between the upper and lower country at Fostat, or Old Cairo. Parts of five nomes, and the whole of another, are therefore

inserted as follows: —


The nome..............Memphitis.

Aphrod i topoli ti s.
In Middle Egypt, part of the nomes .... I Heracleopolitis.


The situations of antient towns, as far as they can be ascertained, are also marked.

The account that Menes had diverted the river into its present course on the eastern side of the valley has been disputed
by many commentators; but the antient channel has been shewn by Sir John Gardner Wilkinson, and may be traced in the low
ground, between Kafr el Lyal and the Bahr Yousef, to the northward of Barnasht. Indeed, to the southward of this place, the
Bahr Yousef evidently flows in an excavation; but to the northward of it, between the site of Memphis and the Lybian Desert,
it apparently occupies the antient bed of the river, which, according to Herodotus, was used by vessels in their passage from
Naucratis to Memphis.*

From the Bahr Yousef another canal of the same name supplies the Faioum with water. It is said to have been the
work of one of the earliest kings, and is the source of the fertility of that district.


The site of Latopolis has not been discovered. According to Ptolemy, it was near the river, and, by the " Itinerary
of Antoninus," was twenty miles distant from Memphis; it may therefore be supposed to have been situated near the antient
mounds called Kom Achmar. Cercasura was probably at El Eksass. The ruins near the Pyramid of Abou Roash are
supposed to mark the position of Cochone, Cochoma, Cho, or Choe, because Cho signified a hill — and the elevation, upon
which the pyramid was built, is higher than the surrounding country — and because the decayed state of the materials seems
to correspond with the remote era of Venephres, the fourth king of the first dynasty, who, according to Manetho, erected a
pyramid near that city.

In the Delta, part of the nomes


An obelisk and a few mounds are all that remain of Heliopolis, famous for its grandeur, and also for the learning of its
inhabitants. At this city Plato and Eudoxus studied, and Herodotus obtained materials for the history of Antient Egypt.

Cairo occupies the site of an antient city, or, probably, of two small towns called Liou and Tikes-chromi. The adjacent
rocks have been excavated, and contain antient quarries, both of sandstone and of limestone; and Greek and Coptic inscriptions
are found in some grottoes at a little distance to the south, which seem to have been the retreat of the early Christians.

The situation of the modern town Cairo (Misr el Kahirah, built by Moez e Deen, 359 a.h.) was probably chosen on account
of its strength.

Boulac, the port of Cairo for vessels arriving from the northward, seems, from its name, to have had an Egyptian origin.

The Nilometer on the Island of Rhoda appears, from the length of the cubit employed, and from other circumstances, to
be much older than the building, in which it is placed. The building, according to El Makim, was erected by the Kalif
Soliman ebn Abd el Melik, a.h. 97, and was afterwards repaired under Almamon and Mutawakel. It is said that the French
intended to build a fortified town on this island, and to have established a citadel on the island opposite to Boulac.

According to Strabo, Babylon was an antient military post; and, according to Josephus, it was built by Cambyses, on the

deserted site of Latopolis.f It was afterwards the station of a legion, and the present remains are evidently of Roman

construction. Coptic authors state that it held out for seven months against the Arabs, who built near it the first mosque, and

Fostat the first Arab city, which were erected in Egypt. It is now called Old Cairo, and has a port, chiefly used by vessels

coming down the river.


This district commenced immediately above Old Cairo.

Taha Noub, which in Coptic signifies " the place of gold" is now known by the Arabic name of Atar el Nebbi {traces of
the Prophet). It is mentioned by the early Arab authors, and seems to be connected with Venus Aurea, now called Gezeeret
el Dahab,— a place in the Memphite nome, on the opposite side of the river.

Troja, now Tourah, supposed by Strabo to have been built by the Trojan captives carried off by Menelaus, is situated at
the foot of a mountain, called by Pliny and by Ptolemy Troici Lapidis Mons, and mentioned by Herodotus to have supplied the
stones for the erection of the Pyramids. It is composed of compact limestone, which has formed the casing of the exterior,
and the linings of the passages and of the apartments in most of these buildings. The mountain is at present known by the
name of Mokattam (the hewn), on account of the extensive quarries which were worked in it by the antient Egyptians, and which
seem to have been abandoned since the time of the Ptolemies till 1838, when a railroad was made, by the direction of Mahomet
Ali, from the quarries to the river. J

Scenas Mandras was, by the " Itinerary," twelve miles from Babylon, and, according to the " Notitia," a military post. Under
the Emperor Leo I. it was the see of a bishop. It seems to have been called in Coptic Alban, and is now Hellowan. The
town was either rebuilt, or restored, by Abd el Azeez Ebn Merwan (a ruler of Egypt), who made it his residence, and adorned
it with gardens. The adjacent land is very fertile.

Aphroditopolis (by the Egyptians called Ipih, or Petfieh, and now Atfeh, is stated, in the " Notitia," to be a military post,
and, in the " Itinerary," to be thirty-two miles distant from Babylon); according to Strabo, and to other authors, it was situated
near the Arabicus Mons, and contained a temple, in which a sacred white bull was preserved.

Tilosj, or Tisjoe, or Delass, said by Coptic authors to have been near Atfeh, and to have contained a convent, appears
to have been at Soal, a large village near the river.

Ancyronpolis, so called by Stephanus of Byzantium, and Angyron by Ptolemy, was in this nome, and in the same latitude
as Ptolemais. No traces of it are, however, to be found in that position; but the situation of Crumba has the appearance and
the reputation of being an antient site.

Thimonepsi is described, in the " Notitia," to be a military post, and, in the " Itinerary," to be twenty-four Roman miles distant
from Aphroditopolis. It was probably at Wady Bayad, opposite Beni Souef.

# A branch from this canal probably passed under the Pyramids of Gizeh into the Bahr Bela Mar. j- Many towns had this name.

J This work was executed by Mr. Perring, who, in carrying the level to the river, discovered several antient tombs, which contained bodies wrapped in yellow woollen cloth, similar to that found in the Third Pyramid of Gizeh. See "Appendix to Operations carried on at Gizeh," Vol. III.
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