A town located about 7.5 miles (12 km) northwest of Cairo in the Giza province. Ancient Egyptians knew the town as Khem. In Greek it was called Letopolis and in Coptic it was known as bous/m (Boushem).

The town has a long Christian tradition. The martyr Phoibammon (see MARTYRS, COPTIC), who was killed in the early fourth century, hailed from Awsim (O’Leary, 1974, pp. 229- 31). By the Awsim was a bishopric, as evidenced by a reference to a Bishop Jamul (Shamul) Shamul of the town in the life of ALEXANDER II (705-730) recorded in the HISTORY OF THE PATRIARCHS.


  • Amélineau, E. La Géographie de l’Egypte à l’époque copte, pp. 51-54. Paris, 1893.
  • Maspero, J., and G. Wiet. Matériaux pour servir à la géographie de l’Egypte, p. 231. Cairo, 1919.
  • O’Leary, de L. The Saints of Egypt. London and New York, 1937.
  • Repr. Amsterdam, 1974.