Makhurah (Mareotis)

MAKHURAH (Mareotis)

A small late Roman settlement on the coast about 10 miles (16 km) west of ABUSIR (Taposiris Magna). Up to now the significance of the place has not been ascertained. Apart from two large churches, there are only a few domestic buildings within the surrounding wall, and the people that lived in them would have been far too few in number to fill these churches. On the other hand, the site is too exposed for a monastery.

Of the two churches only the older central church, which has a higher elevation, has been partially uncovered. It comprises a very short five-aisled basilica with a sanctuary that boasts a remarkable number of rooms including two baptisteries. The majority of them would have been added later. In the walls of the church, which were all constructed badly and with poor material, a number of shapeless dungeons were let in, possibly at a later date.

The western church situated on a lower plateau is a more substantial and carefully built structure and comprises a long three- aisled basilica with narthex and atrium. The east end is made up of five rooms of which the two outer ones extend beyond the side walls. The altar room is narrower at the back than at the front. It cannot be seen whether an was installed.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Grossmann, P. “ frühchristliche Kirchen in ’Ain Mahura.” In Festschrift Elmar Edel. Bamberg, 1979.

. “Arbeiten in Mahura al-qibli.” Mitteilungen des deutschen archäologischen Instituts—Abteilung Kairo 36 (1980):225-27.

PETER GROSSMANN