Invitation to visit the great Beni Suef Museum 2021
The Beni Suef Museum is one of the most important historical museums scattered in every Egyptian village and city.
Egypt, as everyone knows, possesses a third of the world’s historical monuments, and it is considered an open museum, where you encounter antiquities since ancient times everywhere on the land of Egypt. The antiquities discovered inside villages and cities are collected in museums, with information attached to them, so that visitors can identify them.
Before we talk in detail about the Beni Suef Museum, we will learn about some important information about the city of Beni Suef.
Beni Suef Museum: a brief history of the city of Beni Suef
Beni Suef has located 115 km from Cairo, the Egyptian capital, and in an intermediate location between the Egyptian governorates, as it overlooks the mighty Nile River.
The beautiful city of Beni Suef is called the Pearl of Upper Egypt, as it is considered the northern gateway to the cities of Upper Egypt, and was the capital of the old state during the era of the ninth and tenth dynasties, as it possesses many elements of agriculture, industry and tourism.
The city of Beni Suef contains many treasures of the historical monuments of Egypt, the most important of which is the Pyramid of Meidum, which was built by “King Honi”, the last king of the Third Dynasty, and completed by his son, King Sneferu, the first king of the Fourth Dynasty.
Ancient Egyptian monuments varies in the centres and villages of Beni Suef in the areas of Abu Sir Ahnasya, Sadmant necropolis, al-Jabal, Dashshah, al-Hiba, and al-Mudhal. St. Anthony in Nasser Center, and Mary Gerges Monastery in Sadmant Al-Jabal.
There are also many Islamic monuments in Beni Suef, where there is the tomb of Prince Ahmed Shedeed in the village of Suds al-Omara, the Mosque of Sayyida Houria, and the cemetery of Marwan bin Muhammad in the village of Abusir al-Malaq.
Beni Suef Museum and surrounding antiquities
The need has arisen to establish the Beni Suef Museum, in order to be a suitable place to display many of the antiquities that are successively discovered, and so that these they are recorded in a scientific manner, benefiting visitors and science seekers, in order to learn about the history of each artefact, and all the information about it.
It is not surprising that the museum is located in that area, which includes many important monuments, which we will mention in the next part of today’s article.
Antiquities of ancient Egypt
The pyramid of Meidum comes at the forefront of the tourist places in Beni Suef, and it has a strange look, because Its construction had begun by the last kings of the Third Dynasty, then King Sneferu, the first king of the Fourth Dynasty, completed the construction of the pyramid.
The pyramid of Meidum is characterized by a very special shape in the form of a stepped pyramid, but it is clad on the outside. It is considered the first complete pyramid, and it is older than the Giza pyramids.
the Nefermaat and Att mastaba
There is also the Nefermaat and Att mastaba, in which the painting known as Oz Meidum was found. This mural was found in the Nefermaat and his wife Att’s mastaba, as it was located below one of the walls of the vestibule, which leads to a cabin that Att. Colors of natural materials were used in it. The white colour is from Limestone, red from iron ore, and green from malachite. These materials were mixed together with egg white. They depict three pairs of geese feeding on grass, of which three turns to the right, and the other three look at the other side in symmetry.
Wadi Sanur Cave Reserve
Wadi Sanur Cave Reserve is an important tourist attraction, and the cave is a unique phenomenon because it is the third cave in the world.
Contacts are currently underway in order for an international donor to undertake the restoration, development and security work of the cave, under the auspices of UNESCO.
Al-Hiba monuments area
The area of Al-Hiba monuments east of the Nile, in Al-Fashn, south of Beni Suef Governorate, is one of the most important archaeological areas in Egypt, where there is the Temple of Amun, as well as many of the ancient city’s buildings, as well as a number of castles and military fortresses.
Dashsha traces area
The Dashshah archaeological area is one of the most important tourist and archaeological sites in Beni Suef Governorate. It is added to the Beni Suef Museum, which is a distinct ancient Egyptian cemetery located at the top of the western mountain at an altitude of 40 meters from the surface of the earth.
And there are two tombs “Shado” and “Anti”, which look like a tunnel or a cave because they are carved in the rock.
Abusir antiquities area
In 1973, a sarcophagus made of grey granite and weighing 12 tons with a lid was discovered. It belongs to “Ba.kha.ds.” It dates back to the Roman era and is unparalleled in all parts of Egypt in terms of historical and religious importance, and antiquities dating back to the era were also found. During the excavations that took place in the years 1987-1989, the most famous relics discovered were two decorated ceramic saddles, which are currently in the Beni Suef Antiquities Museum.
The ruins of Ihnasiya (the capital of ancient Egypt)
Ihnasiya is one of the most important cities in the Beni Suef Governorate, located to the west of the city. It was the capital of Egypt during the ninth and tenth dynasties for more than two centuries, from 2242 to 2452 BC.
In the city there are the remains of the Temple of King Ramses II and two statues of the king made of quartz located in front of the front hall of the temple, followed by a hall of two-columns with crowns decorated with palm leaves, and another hall of columns leading to the inside of the temple.
Coptic monuments in Beni Suef
In addition to the Beni Suef Museum, there are many monasteries, which are unique to the city, the most important of which are:
Its construction dates back to the fourth century AD and is attributed to Saint Anba Abu Ishaq. It is a wide basin with the main temple of the Virgin Mary and another of Saint George.
Which is known as St. George, is distinguished by its own traditional festival (Moled), which Copts and Muslims flock to from different places to visit every year.
The Monastery of the Virgin Mary
The Monastery of the Virgin Mary is one of the largest monasteries in Beni Suef Governorate. The monastery is located on the eastern bank of the Nile towards the city of Beni Suef.
The Monastery of Anba Antonios
The Monastery of Anba Antonios, which has a church of a distinct style, it was built in the style of the Church of the Holy Sepulcher in Palestine.
The Monastery of Anba Paula
The Monastery of Anba Paula is located in the city of Nasser, 7 km from Beni Suef.
Among the important Islamic monuments in Beni Suef
- The tomb of Marwan bin Muhammad (Marwan II), the last ruler of the Umayyad state in the Abu Sir area.
- There is also the tomb of Prince Ahmed Shedid in the village of Suds al-Amara>
- The mosque of Sayyida Houria in the city of Beni Suef.
Beni Suef Museum
Location of Beni Suef Museum: Located next to the governorate building and behind the zoo, the museum is the main tourist attraction in Beni Suef. There is a small but noteworthy collection of antiquities of ancient Egypt to the period of Muhammad Ali with fine Ptolemaic carvings, and Coptic tapestries from the 19th century.
Then he chose the location of the museum on the agricultural road leading to Upper Egypt, where it was built on an area of 4860 square meters, and it also contains a museum garden with an area of 21080 square meters. In addition, the museum has been equipped with modern lighting, display cabinets and available educational aids, which fulfill the museum’s mission to serve the community. The museum was opened in 1997.
Components of Beni Suef Museum
It consists of two floors and we will get acquainted with the details of the holdings of each floor.
The holdings of the upper floor of the Beni Suef Museum
It includes Coptic and Islamic antiquities, as well as some belongings of the Muhammad Ali family, including:
The windows of the palace appear with delicate geometric and vegetal motifs that are hollow and cursive.
These windows contain a manuscript of twenty-nine leaves, written in black ink interspersed with phrases in red ink, as it was a lantern of a glass of the type that was used to light mosques since the Mamluk era. The niche also contains coloured enamel decoration and decorative writing in Naskh script.
On the upper floor, there is also the double horn of bounties, a statue of a winged sphinx, a statue of a Greek woman, part of a sunken dish, a boy carrying a lamb, a wooden ornament, an earring, a sword and a pouch, a door of wood
The ground floor holdings of the Beni Sussef Museum
The ground floor includes antiquities from prehistoric and ancient Egyptian times until the Greco-Roman era.
The holdings of the Beni Suef Museum on the ground floor include the following:
- Statue of the ancient Egyptian scribe, sitting cross-legged in a short tunic, holding a papyrus with his left hand.
- An offering table, and it was rectangular in shape with three basins, two of the basins were rectangular, with another square in the middle, below which was a scene representing the deceased sitting in front of the offering table.
- An imaginary door on which there is a picture of the owner of the tomb, holding a lotus flower in her left hand and sitting in front of the offering table topped with bread.
- Below this scene is a picture of two boys, each one holds a lotus flower, and on the “door” is a strip of hieroglyphic writing that ends with a view of the two daughters of the cemetery’s owner.
- A model of a man preparing food, and represents a man who is kneading, sitting cross-legged, resting on a base, and in front of him there is a bowl that he holds with his left hand and the right hand is engaged in kneading.
- Statue of the god Thothi, where the statue appears in the form of a baboon.
- Statue of the god Ptah standing, wearing a long cloak and a false chin, holding the sign of life.
- A statue of the Apis calf in one of its distinctive positions, made of cast bronze, showing the skill of the Egyptian artist since ancient times in bending and forming metals; This is according to fixed standards and ratios throughout antiquity.
- Wooden coffin.
- The amulet of the god Hermaphrodite, which is an amulet with remnants of colours in the form of the god Hermaphrodite, standing wearing the royal apron (Shendit) and the royal headdress (Nemes), which is the main deity in Ehnasia and was usually depicted in the form of a human with a ram’s head.
The ground floor of the Beni Suef Museum also houses artefacts related to the history of the area, as it was an important agricultural centre known for producing textiles. There are artefacts from nearby ancient Egyptian sites such as Abu Sir and Herakleopolis Magna (Ihnasiya al-Madina) on the ground floor.
Work is currently underway in the restoration and maintenance of the museum, the work of an external drainage network for groundwater, the preparation of the basement as administrative offices, and the development of the general site of the museum.
The Beni Suef National Archeology Museum also displays a limestone panel of a person named (Thinni and his wife) making offerings, on which are inscriptions in vertical lines in the ancient Egyptian language dating back to the era of the Old Kingdom and found in Saqqara.
The most important collections of the Beni Suef Museum throughout historical times
The museum was designed in the form of a Meidum pyramid, and it includes a group of the most beautiful antiquities dating back to the ancient Egyptian, Greek, Coptic, Islamic and modern eras.
They are stone, bronze and pottery statues, utensils of different shapes and materials, stones and various necklaces, coffins, paintings, silver and gold coins, in addition to fabrics that represent ancient Egyptian history.
In the museum, there is a collection of statues of the kings, gods and individuals of ancient Egypt, funerary paintings, human coffins, entrails, i.e. Canopic utensils, and amulets.
From the Greek and Roman periods, there is a group of statues of individuals, deities and funerary paintings.
Among the Coptic antiquities, there are some icons, metal and wooden tools, and models of Coptic textiles.
Among the Islamic antiquities, there are niches, wooden doors and manuscripts, and among the holdings of the Muhammad Ali family, there are various types of tiles, porcelain, weapons and clothing are displayed.