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Christianity in Dandara and Medamud

Christianity in Dandara and Medamud

(p.87) 9 Christianity in Dandara and Medamud
Christianity and Monasticism in Upper Egypt
Gawdat GabraHany N. Takla
American University in Cairo Press

The capital of the sixth province in Upper Egypt during the pharaonic period was known as Dandara. The oldest tradition of Christians in Dandara is found in a reference in the Arabic Synaxarion under 15 Bashans (Basset 1904—29, vol. 4: 386). Because of Pachomius's influence, Dandara would go on to become an important monastic center, and its presence and orientation encouraged others to found more monasteries in this area. The Arabic Synaxarion, under 3 Amshir, mentions Apa Yahudha, who established a new monastery in Dandara. Coptic literature has preserved the martyrdom of two saints from Dandara, namely Paphnutius and Ptolemy. Paphnutius was a hermit in Dandara in the reign of Diocletian when Arianus was the governor of the Thebaid. After Paphnutius had been betrayed, Arianus traveled to Dandara and sent his soldiers to seize him.

Keywords:   Upper Egypt, pharaonic period, Dandara, Pachomius, Synaxarion, Christianity, monasteries, Arianus, Paphnutius, Ptolemy

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