A town in middle Egypt located some 8 miles (13 km) north of Bani Suef. Dalas was home to a bishop at least as early as the Decian persecutions of 250 when Chaeremon, bishop of Neilopolis/Dalas, fled for safety from his bishopric and was never heard from again (Eusebius Ecclesiastical History 6.42.3).
Monasticism also had an early beginning in Dalas. The “mountain of Tilodj [Dalas]” was the home of Saint ANTONY for a time and monks from TABENNESE came to the monastery of Tilodj/Dalas to learn about Antony after the death of PACHOMIUS (Lefort, 1952, pp. 174, 177).
Though we have no certain attestation of a bishop in Dalas in the Arabic period, the fact that the town is mentioned in medieval Copto-Arabic scales and lists of Egyptian bishops is an indication that it was still a bishopric in the Middle Ages (see Munier, 1943, p. 64).
- Amélineau, E. La Géographie de l’Egypte à l’époque copte, pp. 138. Paris, 1893.
- Lefort, L. T. S. Pachomii Vitae Sahidice Scriptae. CSCO 99-100, Scriptores Coptici 9-10. Louvain, 1952.
- Munier, H. Recueil des listes épiscopales de l’église copte. Cairo, 1943.
- Timm, S. Das christlich-koptische Ägypten in arabischer Zeit, pt. 2, pp. 498-502. Wiesbaden, 1984.