Elkab (Nḫb)

city, temple enclosure, mine, necropolis


Nome: 3rd Upper Egyptian nome

Geographical coordinates: 25º10´N / 32º50´E

Elkab is located on the east bank of the Nile opposite Hierakonpolis. The site is very extensive but only in two places the presence of monuments and artefacts from the reign of Hatshepsut can be attested: in the temple in the city and in the rock-cut necropolis. The city is situated on a flat open area close to the river, at the mouth of the Wadi Hellal. The main necropolis of Elkab was cut in the rock massif 450m south-west of the city.


Elkab: cemetery ; Elkab: temple 


The site was used during the whole history of Egypt, so many sites from different periods are scattered in the area around the city. The prosperity of Elkab can be connected with the presence of deposits of natron in the Wadi Hellal,[1] as well as with the quarrying of the local sandstone of good quality attested from the Old Kingdom onwards.[2] The traces of the early New Kingdom activity was observed there as well by R.R. and D. Klemm.[3] So far, no constructions built of the Elkab sandstone outside Elkab itself could be confirmed.[4]

Only two sites come from the reign of Hatshepsut: the temple and tombs of high officials. The temple was situated inside the Late Period city walls, measuring 520 x 590m, 12.5m wide and approximately 11m high.[5] In the city the west corner of another wall was excavated by P. Gilbert, which probably can be dated to the early New Kingdom, its orientation differs from the orientation of the Late Period temple and the temple of Amenhotep II.[6] The remains of the temple were found in the foundation with blocks coming from other earlier temples, e.g. of Sebekhotep III[7] and Amenhotep I[8] and among them blocks of Thutmose III. It is impossible to determine the plan of the temple, its size and relationship to other temples. Nothing can be said either about the layout of the city during Hatshepsut time. The only pieces of information about people's activity in the area come from the decoration of the tombs and titles of officials represented there. The tombs of high officials were located in the cemetery at a distance of 450m north-east from the city walls. There is no data concerning the necropolis of the lower class people in the times of Hatshepsut, although, the necropolis of the Second Intermediate Period and the early New Kingdom is attested and cut in the same hill[9] and to the east of the temple.[10]


  1. ^ 486: El-Kâb and Its Temples - - 1922 - Clarke, Somers; 484: Ancient Egyptian materials and industries - - 1999 - Lucas, Alfred, Harris, James Rendel; 485: Die Umgegend von Schaghab und El-Kab (Ober-Ägypten) - - 1904 - Schweinfurth, G..
  2. ^ 270: Stones and Quarries in Ancient Egypt - - 2008 - Klemm, Rosemarie, Klemm, Dietrich D..
  3. ^ 270: Stones and Quarries in Ancient Egypt - - 2008 - Klemm, Rosemarie, Klemm, Dietrich D..
  4. ^ 270: Stones and Quarries in Ancient Egypt - - 2008 - Klemm, Rosemarie, Klemm, Dietrich D..
  5. ^ 488: The Walls of Elkab - - - Hendrickx, Stan, Huyge, Dirk, Newton, Claire.
  6. ^ 488: The Walls of Elkab - - - Hendrickx, Stan, Huyge, Dirk, Newton, Claire.
  7. ^ 490: Die Barquenkapelle des Königs Sobekhotep III. in Elkab: Beiträge zur Bautätigkeit der 13. und 17. Dynastie an den Göttertempeln Ägyptens - Musées Royaux d’Art et d’Histoire, Brepols Publishers - 2002 - Eder, Christian.
  8. ^ 581: Les fouilles d'El Kab  - - 1937 - Capart, Jean; 60: Upper Egyptian Notes - - 1908 - Weigall, Arthur E.P..
  9. ^ 477: Elkab, 1937-2007: seventy years of Belgian archaeological research - - 2008 - Limme, Luc; 491: Une tombe intacte du début de la 18e dynastie. Elkab, BE 18 - - - Hendrickx, Stan, Newton, Claire, Warmenbol, Eugène, Depuydt, Frans, Moelants, Lieven, Roloux Françoise, Vandenbruaene, Marit.
  10. ^ 489: Report on Certain Excavations Made at El-Kab during the Years 1901, 1902, 1903, 1904 - - 1905 - Sayce, Archibald Henry, Clarke, Somers.

Jadwiga Iwaszczuk


Ancient people connected to the site: Ah-mes , Pa-heri , Djehuti-nefer , Henut-er-neheh , Pa-heri , Uhemu , Sen-nefer , Tjen-na , Kem , Amen-mes , Ra-hetep , Ta-dedit-es , Iri-hat-sen ,