Bir Gidami

An overview of the central part of the main settlement at Bir Gidami, looking west towards the low end of the wadi:
East of the main settlement of Bir Gidami, at the very end of the wadi, is a small satellite settlement:


Objective of visit:
To draw a measured plan of the site and study the surface remains (including the ceramic finds).
Date of visit:
  - June 1999
Fellow visitors:
  Prof.Dr. Steve Sidebotham (University of Delaware) and Prof.Dr. Jim Harrell (University of Toledo).
A survey was performed using the Global Positioning System, a theodolite and steel tape measures. Off-site assistance was given by pottery expert Dr. Roberta Tomber (Museum of London). No excavations took place. Our plans and description were published in: S.E. Sidebotham, H. Barnard and G. Pyke; Five enigmatic late Roman settlements in the Eastern Desert; Journal of Egyptian Archaeology 2002; vol. 88: pp. 187-225.
Approximate position and date of the site:   Bir Gidami is in the central part of the Egyptian Eastern desert, just south of the Qena-Safaga asphalt road. Surface pottery dated to the late Roman period (ca. 300 - 600 AD).
Short description of the site:   Bir Gidami was a large settlement of simple huts, built in dead-end wadi far from any ancient roads, mines or quarries. Surface finds were limited to potsherds and the function of the settlement remains enigmatic.
Additional remarks:
The main settlement at Bir Gidami has two satellite settlements, one to the north and one to the east. The reason for their existence might have been the hunting or gathering of yet unknown commodities or the temporary residence for political or religious refugees. Our work was sponsored by the University of Delaware and private donors.