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Memnon, His Ancient Visitors And Some Related Problems

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Chapter Summary

Memnon is known from ancient Greek sources as a king of Ethiopia. It is common knowledge that Roman and other visitors came to the Theban West Bank to hear a strange acoustic phenomenon - the "miraculous" voice of Memnon - caused probably by an earthquake at the beginning of the Roman period. Ancient visitors arrived there on donkey back after having seen other curiosities of the Theban West. Some tourists state that they visited all the syringes, others give the number of the tombs they had seen (the maximum explicitly mentioned is six). In the tomb of Memnon, the graffiti are found in various parts. Their location may throw additional light upon the conditions of visit. Important members of the élite of the Graeco-Roman and Byzantine Egypt visited the tomb, both civilian and military.

Keywords: Ethiopia; Memnon; Theban West Bank



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