This monastery, today in ruins, was situated on the left bank of the Nile 2.5 miles (4 km) north of the , at the bottom of a large wadi that opened on the stony desert at the foot of the mountain. At the foot of a high cliff is a rectangular enclosure 200 by 264 feet (60 by 80 m), a deep hole that marks the position of a well, and another excavation occupied by an enormous antique capital. The remains of brick structures are distinct. At the foot of the cliffs are two caves and, in front of them, a church, marked by the remains of columns and capitals. Coins of the have been found there (Mond and Myers, 1937, Vol. 1, pp. 77-79; 1940, Vol. 1, pp. 146-50).

Drawings and from the site will be found reproduced in Winkler (1938- 1939, Vol. 1, p. 17 and p1. I.3). Like DAYR and other , this one seems to have been a religious center for hermits living in the adjoining caves. This may be the Monastery of of which the recension of the speaks at 14 and 2 , with reference to Anba and and his nephew (perhaps Jonas).

The archaeologists and , who excavated the site, gave it the name . Several documents deriving from Thebes mention a topos (church or monastery) of Saint John; some add “in the desert” (cf. , 1902, no. 310; and Crum, 1926, Vol. 1, p. 114, and Vol. 2, nos. 84 and 397; , 1900, pp. 143-44; Crum, 1921, no. 139). This is perhaps a case of different sites with the same name, but the specification “in the desert” seems to be added to distinguish this dayr from the others and fits well with the situation of the site.


  • Crum, W. E. from the Collections of the Egypt
  • Exploration Fund, the and Others. London, 1902.
  • . Short Texts from Coptic Ostraca and . London, 1921.
  • Doresse, J. “Monastères coptes aux environs d’Armant en Thebaïde.” 67 (1949):327-49.
  • Mond, R., and O. H. Myers. Cemeteries of Armant, 2 vols. London, 1937.
  • . Temples of Armant, 2 vols. London, 1940.
  • Revillout, E. “Textes coptes, extraits de la correspondance de St.
  • Pesunthius, évêque de Coptis et de plusiers documents analogues (juridiques ou économiques).” Revue d’égyptologie 9 (1900):133-77; 10 (1902):34-47; and 14 (1914):22-32.
  • Winkler, H. A. Rock-Drawings of Southern Upper Egypt, 2 vols.
  • Egypt Exploration Society, Survey 26-27. London, 1938-1939.
  • Winlock, H. E., and W. E. Crum. The Monastery of Epiphanius at Thebes, 2 vols. New York, 1926.

, S.J.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *