Skip to content Skip to navigation

OpenStax-CNX

You are here: Home » Content » Places in Egypt: Lower Egypt

Navigation

Lenses

What is a lens?

Definition of a lens

Lenses

A lens is a custom view of the content in the repository. You can think of it as a fancy kind of list that will let you see content through the eyes of organizations and people you trust.

What is in a lens?

Lens makers point to materials (modules and collections), creating a guide that includes their own comments and descriptive tags about the content.

Who can create a lens?

Any individual member, a community, or a respected organization.

What are tags? tag icon

Tags are descriptors added by lens makers to help label content, attaching a vocabulary that is meaningful in the context of the lens.

This content is ...

Endorsed by Endorsed (What does "Endorsed by" mean?)

This content has been endorsed by the organizations listed. Click each link for a list of all content endorsed by the organization.
  • TIMEA display tagshide tags

    This module is included inLens: Travelers in the Middle East Archives
    By: Travelers in the Middle East Archive

    Comments:

    " Provides background information to some significant places in Lower Egypt that are represented in the Travelers in the Middle East Archive (TIMEA) collection of digital texts, images and maps. "

    Click the "TIMEA" link to see all content they endorse.

    Click the tag icon tag icon to display tags associated with this content.

Affiliated with (What does "Affiliated with" mean?)

This content is either by members of the organizations listed or about topics related to the organizations listed. Click each link to see a list of all content affiliated with the organization.
  • Rice Digital Scholarship

    This module is included in aLens by: Digital Scholarship at Rice UniversityAs a part of collection: "Places in Egypt"

    Click the "Rice Digital Scholarship" link to see all content affiliated with them.

Recently Viewed

This feature requires Javascript to be enabled.

Tags

(What is a tag?)

These tags come from the endorsement, affiliation, and other lenses that include this content.
 

Places in Egypt: Lower Egypt

Module by: Lisa Spiro, Pamela J. Francis. E-mail the authors

Summary: Provides background information to some significant places in Lower Egypt that are represented in the Travelers in the Middle East Archive (TIMEA) collection of digital texts, images and maps. Part 2 of a 4-part course on identifying places in Egypt, including major cities, archaeological sites, and regions.

Al Jīzah

Alternative Names: Gizeh (Egypt); Gizah (Egypt); Gîza (Egypt); Ghizeh (Egypt); El Gizeh (Egypt); El-Gîza (Egypt)

Latitude/Longitude: 30° 00' 31" N/ 031° 12' 44" E [note: these coordinates are for the city of Gizeh, not the Pyramids of Giza]

Figure 1: Original postcard: "CAIRO. - Sunset at the Pyramids of Giza." 5.25" x 3.25". From TIMEA
Sunset at the Pyramids of Giza.
Sunset at the Pyramids of Giza. (Giza.jpg)

Located on a leveled limestone plateau just south of Cairo on the west bank of the Nile, Giza is the site of the most recognizable archaeological monuments in the world, the Great Sphinx and the Great Pyramid. The complex also features several lesser pyramids, as well as cemeteries. The structures once overlooked the ancient city of Memphis, located in what is now central Cairo. Some of the tombs date to the First Dynasty (3300-2788 BCE), but the majority of construction took place in the 4th Dynasty (2693-2563 BCE).

Related Resources

Alexandria

Latitude/Longitude: 30° 00' 31" N/ 031° 12' 44" E

Figure 2: Original postcard: "Street Scene near Pompey's Pillar, Alexandria." (Raphael Tuck and Sons, ca. 1900). 5.5"x 3.5". From TIMEA
Street Scene near Pompey's Pillar, Alexandria
Street Scene near Pompey's Pillar, Alexandria (Alexandria.jpg)

The area that is now the port city of Alexandria has been inhabited for millennia, perhaps as early as the 13th century BCE. However, the small fishing village did not become a city of note until Alexander the Great asked the Greek architect Dinocrates to build a city there. After marking the outlines of the city, he left it, never to return, except, according to legend, to be buried there. During the Ptolemaic era, the city became quite possibly the largest city in the world, and was certainly the intellectual capital of the world. It developed an atmosphere distinctly different from that of Cairo, reflecting Mediterranean influences more than Egyptian. When the Ottomans came to rule the region, they rebuilt the city, burying many ancient sites and leaving little of archaeological interest.

Related Resources

Banhā

Alternative Names: Benna; Benha; Bandar Banhā; Athribis

Latitude/Longitude: 30° 27' 39" N/ 031° 11' 15" E

Located on the Damietta (east) arm of the Nile, north of Cairo, this city is known for its production of honey and attar of roses. Archaeologically, the only aspect of interest is the nearby scant remains of the ancient city of Athribis, which contain part of a temple dedicated to a goddess, and a cache of silver jewelry found by fellaheen. Nearby is the White Monastery, once a huge complex harboring 4000 thousand monks and nuns, but now reduced to a single church.

Related Resources

Cairo

Alternative Names: Al Qāhirah; Misr; Masr; Le Caire; Kairo; El-Qâhira; El Kahirah; El Kahira

Latitude/Longitude: 30° 03' 00" N 031° 15' 00" E

Figure 3: Original postcard: "View of Cairo, Egypt." (H. C. White Co., 1909). 14 x 9 cm, 5.6 x 3.5 inches. From TIMEA
View of Cairo, Egypt
View of Cairo, Egypt (Cairo.jpg)

Cairo is the seventh largest metropolitan area in the world today. Though its name means “the conqueror”, it is most often referred to as Misr, the local name for the entire country of Egypt. The original town of Cairo was too far from the Nile to support a large city, and the ancient capital of Egypt was located in Memphis, which is just south of the modern city. Modern Cairo dates to the establishment of a Roman fort in 150 and called Babylon-in-Egypt. It became a fair-sized town inhabited by Coptic Christians, but in 642 was captured by the Arabs. The first mosque in Africa was built here, and with the establishment of Al-Azhar mosque and its university, Cairo became a great center of learning. The decline of Baghdad led to the further importance of Cairo, and it was probably the largest city in the world during the fourteenth century. Beginning in the sixteenth century it was governed by the Ottomans, with a brief period of French control. In the nineteenth century it saw a great deal of westernization, due to the influence of Great Britain and the building of the Suez Canal. After independence from Britain in the early twentieth century, it continued to grow, both in area and population. Today it is a huge modern city, known to most of the world as the starting point for travel to the great sites of ancient Egypt.

Related Resources

Giza (Gizeh; Gizah; Gîza); Ghizeh

See Al Jīzah

Heliopolis

Latitude/Longitude: 30° 09' 00" N/ 031° 19' 00" E

Figure 4: Original postcard: "HELIOPOLIS - Panoramic View." (Cairo Postcard Trust, n.d.). 5.5"x 3.5". From TIMEA
HELIOPOLIS - Panoramic View
HELIOPOLIS - Panoramic View (Heliopolis.jpg)

The ancient Heliopolis was inhabited as early as the Predynastic Period and there were many structures built during the Old and Middle Kingdoms. However, today there are few remnants of the complex, as building materials from the temples and other structures were used in the building of Ottoman Cairo. The complex served as the capital of Egypt for a time, and was the location of the grain reserve; in fact, one story from The Book of the Dead recounts Horus feeding the multitudes with 7 loaves of bread. In the Greco-Roman period the city was a center of learning but was later eclipsed by Alexandria. Several monuments were removed from the city, including the famed Cleopatra’s Needle. Today most of the area is under cultivation, but there are some remaining walls. This ancient city should not be confused with the upscale modern suburb of Cairo by the same name.

Related Resources

Imbābah

Alternative Names: Inbada; Imbadah; Imbâba; Ebaba

Latitude/Longitude: 30° 04' 00" N/ 031° 13' 00" E

A city in the Al Jīzah governate, and part of the greater Cairo metropolitan area.

Related Resources

Ismailia

Alternative Names: Al Ismā‘īlīyah; Ismailiyah; Ismailîya; Ismailieh; Al Ismā‘īlīya

Latitude/Longitude: 30° 35' 00" N/ 032° 16' 00" E

Figure 5: Original map: "Ismailiya." From: Baedeker, Karl. "Egypt: Handbook For Travellers. Fourth Remodelled Edition". (K. Baedeker: Leipsic, 1898): 168a. From TIMEA
Plan of Ismailiya
Plan of Ismailiya (Ismailiya.jpg)

This site is unique in that it was built by the in the 19th century by the French engineer Lesseps as a base for the construction of the Suez Canal. Located on the Canal, halfway between Port Said and Suez, the city had many gardens and shady lanes that were severely damaged by the wars of 1956 and 1967. The Ismailia Museum contains many Greco-Roman artifacts, as well as items related to the building of the Suez Canal.

Related Resources

Pithom

Latitude/Longitude: 30° 33' 00" N/ 032° 04' 00" E

Figure 6: Original stereocard: "The Brick store-chambers of Pithom, the city built by Hebrew bondsmen (looking north)" (Underwood and Underwood, 1904). 7.75 x 4.2 inches. From TIMEA
The Brick store-chambers of Pithom, the city built by Hebrew bondsmen (looking north)
The Brick store-chambers of Pithom, the city built by Hebrew bondsmen (looking north) (Pithom.jpg)

The location of Pithom was the subject of much discussion among Bible scholars, as it is mentioned in the Bible as one of the cities built by the Israelites for the Egyptian Pharaoh. Its location was determined in 1883 by Édouard Naville. Located southwest of Ismailia in Lower Egypt, the main discoveries here were a number of large honey-combed chambers, which most likely served as granaries for the Egyptian army.

Related Resources

Port Said

Alternative Names: Būr Sa'īd; Madînet Port Said; Madînat Būr Sa'īd; Bor Sa'īd

Latitude/Longitude: 31° 16' 00" N/ 032° 18' 00" E

Figure 7: Original postcard: "Port Said, Panoramic View" (Cairo Postcard Trust, n.d.). 5.25"x 3.5". From TIMEA
Port Said, Panoramic View
Port Said, Panoramic View (PortSaid.jpg)

This city lacks any connection to Egypt’s ancient past; it is the expansion of what was originally a camp for men working on the Suez Canal. However, by the late 19th century it had become an important port city and was home to numerous consulates. In addition to the attractions of the port, where much of the world’s sea traffic waits to enter the Suez Canal, it is also home to a great deal of 19th century colonial architecture and several museums. Heavily damaged in the wars of 1967 and 1973, it has been rebuilt and is today a very pleasant city of roughly 400,000.

Related Resources

Rosetta

Alternative Names: Rashīd; Rashîd; Rosette; Er-Rashid; Bolbitine

Latitude/Longitude: 31° 24' 16" N/ 030° 24' 59" E

This town is most closely associated with the finding of the Rosetta Stone, which was instrumental in deciphering ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics. However, its strategic location on the Rosetta arm of the Nile and the Mediterranean coast made it a very important site for military bases, even from predynastic eras, and it was of great interest to the Ottomans and other colonial powers. Although its fame is based on the Rosetta Stone, found in 1799 and now housed in the British Museum, today the town is a testament to the glories of Ottoman architecture. At least 22 houses of Ottoman design, along with several mosques and churches, were built with a unique brown brick and feature beautiful mashrabiyyas, the intricately carved window screens so characteristic of North African architecture.

Related Resources

Suez Canal

Alternative Names: Qanat as Suways; Qana el Suweis

Latitude/Longitude: 29.9166667 / longitude 32.55

Figure 8: Original postcard: "Port Said, Steamer Traversing the Suez Canal." (Cairo Postcard Trust, n.d). 5.25"x 3.5". From TIMEA
Port Said, Steamer Traversing the Suez Canal
 Port Said, Steamer Traversing the Suez Canal (SuezCanal.jpg)

Linking the Mediterranean and the Red Sea, this feat of engineering opened in 1869. Although not the first canal (earlier ones, though not exactly in the same location as the modern one, include ones built by Darius I and Trajan), the modern canal stretches over a hundred miles, from Port Said on the Mediterranean to Suez and the Red Sea. Its opening was the cause of international celebration and was attended by royalty from all over the world; it was also marked by the opening of the “Old” Cairo Opera House, which has since been demolished.

Related Resources

Content actions

Download module as:

Add module to:

My Favorites (?)

'My Favorites' is a special kind of lens which you can use to bookmark modules and collections. 'My Favorites' can only be seen by you, and collections saved in 'My Favorites' can remember the last module you were on. You need an account to use 'My Favorites'.

| A lens I own (?)

Definition of a lens

Lenses

A lens is a custom view of the content in the repository. You can think of it as a fancy kind of list that will let you see content through the eyes of organizations and people you trust.

What is in a lens?

Lens makers point to materials (modules and collections), creating a guide that includes their own comments and descriptive tags about the content.

Who can create a lens?

Any individual member, a community, or a respected organization.

What are tags? tag icon

Tags are descriptors added by lens makers to help label content, attaching a vocabulary that is meaningful in the context of the lens.

| External bookmarks