DAYR AL-MALAK (Dakhlah Oasis)
A badly-decayed mud brick ruin of a monastery, lying in the middle of an inundation area about 11 miles (7 km) northeast of Mut. The interior of the church is divided by four cruciform pillars into nine equal bays. In the east there are three apses lying side by side, each of which probably once contained an altar. Remains of two further apses were identified in the middle of the south and west sides, and very probably there was also an apse on the north side.
These apses give an architectural emphasis to the two main axes, so that the church itself is to be evaluated typologically as a cross-shaped building, even if that does not find expression in the dimension of the different spatial areas. The bays were all covered with domes. The central dome may have been raised above the other domes, and was probably constructed on squinches. Chronologically, the building is a relatively late foundation and resembles the churches of the sixteenth century in the area of Akhmim. A small later chapel adjoins on the south side.
- Grossmann, P. “Bibliographie.” Byzantinische Zeitschrift 75 (1982):503.
- Mills, A. J. “The Dakhlah Oasis Project.” Journal of the society for the study of Egyptian Antiquities 11 (1981):184-85.