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Memphis was the capital city of ancient Egypt during the Old Kingdom (c. 2575-c. 2130 BCE). Closely associated with the ancient city's site, 25 km south of Cairo, are the cemeteries, or necropolises, of Memphis, where the famous pyramids of Egypt and the Great Sphinx are located. From north to south, the main pyramid fields are: Abu Ruwaysh, Giza, Zawayet el-Aryan, Abu Sir, Saqqarah, and Dahshur. Memphis was founded around 3100 BCE, perhaps by the pharaoh Menes who united upper and lower Egypt for the first time. One of the greatest cities of the ancient world, it was filled with palaces, gardens, and temples. Apart from the royal pyramids and other tombs of its necropolises, much of it is permanently lost.
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