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BA´BYLON (Βαβυλών, Strab. xvii. p.807; Diod. 1.56; Joseph. Antiq .2.5; Ctesias Fr.; Ptol. 4.5.54), the modern Baboul, was a fortress or castle in the Delta of Egypt. It was seated in the Heliopolite Nome, upon the right bank of the Nile, in lat. 31° N., and near the commencement of the Pharaonic Canal, from that river to the Red Sea. It was the boundary town between Lower and Middle Egypt, where the river craft paid toll ascending or descending the Nile. Diodorus ascribes its erection to revolted Assyrian captives in the reign of Sesostris, and Ctesias (Persica) carries its date back to the times of Semiramis; but Josephus (l.c.), with greater probability, attributes its structure to some Babylonian followers of Cambyses, in B.C. 525. In the age of Augustus the Deltaic Babylon became a town of some importance, and was the head-quarters of the three legions which ensured the obedience of Egypt. In the Notitia Imperil Babylon is mentioned as the quarters of Legio XIII. Gemina. (It. Anton.; Georg. Ravenn. &c.) Ruins of the town and fortress are still visible a little to the north of Fostat or Old Cairo, among which are vestiges of the Great Aqueduct mentioned by Strabo and the early Arabian topographers. (Champollion, l'Egypte, ii. p. 33.)


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  • Cross-references from this page (2):
    • Diodorus, Historical Library, 1.56
    • Claudius Ptolemy, Tetrabiblos, 4.5
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