The discovery was made by archaeologists from the Sikait Project led by Professor Joan Oller Guzman at the Autonomous University of Barcelona.
The study, which was recently published in the American Journal of Archaeology, describes the Sikait Project’s excavation of a religious complex from the Late Roman Period.
The religious complex, dubbed the “Falcon Shrine” by the researchers, dates from the Late Roman Period, which lasted from the fourth to sixth centuries AD. During this time, the city was partially occupied and controlled by the Blemmyes, as indicated by the discovery of inscriptions on a stele in a small traditional Egyptian temple, which was adapted by the Blemmyes to their own belief system after the 4th century AD.
The Blemmyes were nomadic Eastern Desert people who appeared in written sources between the 7th and 8th centuries BC. The Greek term first appears in a poem by Theocritus and in Eratosthenes in the third century BC. The Blemmyes, according to Eratosthenes, lived with the Megabaroi in the land between the Nile and the Red Sea north of Mero. They had occupied Lower Nubia and established a kingdom by the late 4th century. From inscriptions in the temple of Isis at Philae, a considerable amount is known about the structure of the Blemmyan state.