The ‘Phocas Pillar’ 2: Petrie, 1922

By this date the section of the column drawn by Denon had vanished; clearance of sebakh (the ancient site soil, prized as fertilizer: see Petrie’s letter) was slowly revealing the column’s lower courses.

The column has been named the ‘Phocas pillar’ because it bears at the top a roughly cut inscription in honour of the late Roman emperor Phocas, on the part of the Blues circus faction. The column itself is much older than this, perhaps dating from the second century AD.

Phocas Pillar 3 / The Site