Homepage Timeline Maps A-Z index Learning

Ihnasya el-Medina, Heracleopolis Magna
(Ehnasya; Ancient Egyptian: Henen-Nisut)

(2922' N 3041'E)

Principal town of the 20th province of Upper Egypt, near the Fayum. The place was especially important in the First Intermediate Period, when the Egyptian kings came from here and maybe also used the town as residence. The town kept its importance throughout the Egyptian history, and was again the seat of local kings in the late Third Intermediate Period. The main local god was Herishef. The temple was excavated by Naville in 1891 and Petrie in 1904. The town is now being excavated by a Spanish expedition.

The Roman town (Thomas 2000: 27 - plan of the site)

When Petrie excavated at Ihnasya there were still big mounds belonging to the Roman, Byzantine and Islamic Periods. Petrie excavated some of the houses and gave them letters in his publication. The coins found in these houses seem to offer a rough guide to the dates for the objects found in the houses. The latest of these houses date to the seventh century AD (coins of Heraclius). Many lamps were found and published with others purchased by Petrie during this and other seasons. They give a fair impression of the lamps used in Roman Egypt.


Roman plaster | Ihnasya on a map of Egypt | typology of Roman lamps

Roman houses (a selection of finds, only for house K, E and 'two houses' are there published plans):

House A | House B | House D | House F | House K | House E | two houses


Copyright © 2002 University College London. All rights reserved.