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Abydos in the First Millennium AD


Editors:  O'Connell E.R.
Year: 2020
ISBN: 978-90-429-3961-5
Price: forthcoming

Throughout their long histories, Egyptís monuments have been adapted, reused and reimagined. At Abydos, the tombs of the first kings became a locus of the national cult of Osiris, which continued with permutations into the Roman period. In Late Antiquity, the oracle of Bes drew an international audience before it was probably closed under the emperor Constantius II c. AD 359. By the end of the 6th century, Bes was remembered as a demon, who was vanquished by the famous monk, Apa Moses of Abydos. Until now, the regionís history has been told largely from the literary sources. Recent fieldwork at Abydos offers deeper and more nuanced understanding of the region. This volume brings together the evidence from six major fieldwork projects and the British Museum collection in order to present the archaeology of Abydos in the First Millennium AD, when traditional ritual practices were largely replaced by Christianity and, later, Islam was introduced. Each paper details the adaptation of earlier architecture, artefacts, or both, including wall paintings, pottery, inscriptions, papyri and ostraca, and other objects of daily life.

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