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In 2020, during excavations in the Wadi al-Ghozza in the Eastern Desert of Egypt, archaeologists from the French Archaeological Mission to the Eastern Desert of Egypt discovered a well-preserved Flavian praesidium. This small and unusually shaped fort, identified in ostraca found in the fortress as Berkou (Βɛρκου), lay along a track leading from ancient Kaine (Qena) to the imperial quarries at Porphyrites. The fort lay over the remains of a Ptolemaic village and incorporated elements from the water system of the older settlement. This article presents the results of those excavations, including an overview of the fort’s architecture and associated finds, as well as a discussion of its role in the regional transportation and security network that supported Roman exploitation of the nearby porphyry quarries in the 1st c. CE.

Gates-Foster, J., Goncalves, I., Redon, B., Cuvigny, H., Hepa, M., & Faucher, T. (2021). The Early Imperial fortress of Berkou, Eastern Desert, Egypt. Journal of Roman Archaeology, 34(1), 30-74. doi:10.1017/S1047759421000337

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