Elephantine Island

Is the largest of the Aswan area islands, it is one of the most ancient sites in Egypt; with artifacts dating to Predynastic periods....

Elephantine is an island in the River Nile, located downstream of the First Cataract. It measures some 1.2 km from north to south, and is about 400 m across at its widest. It is a part of the modern Egyptian city of Aswan.
Known to the Ancient Egyptians as Abu or Yebu, Elephantine stands at the border between Egypt and Nubia. The island was an excellent defensive site for a city and its location made it a natural transshipping point for river trade.

According to Egyptian mythology, here was the dwelling place of Chnum, the ram-headed god of the cataracts, who controlled the waters of the Nile from caves beneath the island: he was worshipped here as part of a triad comprising him, his wife Satis, and their daughter Anuket. There are records of a temple to Chnum here as early as the third dynasty, and most of the southern tip of the island is taken up by the ruins of the later temple to him that was completely rebuilt in the Late Period (30th dynasty).


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