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Map of Lahun and Gurob

Map of Lahun and Gurob in the eastern Fayum (after Petrie).

Lahun, located a few km north of the modern town called el-Lahun or Kahun, is one of several sites in the Fayum with 12th Dynasty pyramids. The pyramid of Senusret II (1897-1878 BC) was built of mudbricks, stablized by stone cross walls, and covered with a limestone casing that has since disappeared.

On the south side of the pyramid were four shaft tombs for members of the royal family. Flinders Petrie, who excavated these in 1913, found that all had been robbed in antiquity. One, however, belonging to princess Sit Hathor-Yenet, still contained a hoard of jewelry in three ebony caskets (now in the Egyptian Museum).

In 2008, a group of well-preserved mummies in wooden caskets were found in mastaba tombs by the Egyptian national archaeological agency. About 1 km to the east of the pyramid lay the valley temple, and near it, a workers' and officials' town built for the pyramid construction.

Petrie made detailed drawings of the rectangular plan of the 12th Dynasty town of Lahun (called Kahun by him), which anciently was called Hetep-Senusret ("Senusret is satisfied"). The town yielded abundant information on social and economic life of the times, and dozens of papyri ranging from legal to medical documents.

To the southwest, on the other side of the Bahr Yusif river, is the ancient town site of Gurob. This site, first excavated by Petrie in 1889, had an 18th-19th Dynasty town and temple complex.


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