Abu Sir Bana

The town of Abu Sir Bana is in the central Delta and lies on the Damietta branch of the Nile, to the south of Samannud. Close to the town is the ancient site of Djedu (later Per-Wsir) – one of the oldest cult centres of the god Osiris, which the Greeks named Busiris.

The prehistoric fetish of the Djed pillar became the symbol of the cult centre and its original deity, probably Andjety, who was later supplanted by Osiris. In the Osirian legend when the god’s body parts were scattered throughout Egypt, Busiris laid claim to the burial of the god’s backbone (represented by the Djed pillar). Like Abydos, which became known as the major cult centre of Osiris, Busiris was also a pilgrimage destination and is mentioned in many Old Kingdom texts, such as in the tomb of Ti at Saqqara as well as the Middle Kingdom tombs of Beni Hasan.

Busiris was the capital of the 9th Lower Egyptian Nome, a town mentioned on the Victory Stela of Piye and in annals of the Assyrian King Assurbanipal. It contains a cemetery from the late Old Kingdom, including a decorated tomb.

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