Catholic Encyclopedia (1913)/Tentyris

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(TENTYRA)

Seat of a titular suffragan see of Ptolemais in Thebaid Secunda. The city was the capital of the nome of that name, according to Amelineau, the real name being Nikentori or Nitentori, which signifies willow wood or willow earth. Others give the derivation from the goddess Hathor, or Aphrodite, who was specially worshiped there. The crocodile is recognized as the deity of the city and was also venerated as such in the other Egyptian cities, which caused many quarrels, notably with Ombos. Little is known of Christianity in that place, as only the names of two ancient bishops are given: Pachymius, companion of Melece at the begining of the fourth century; and Serapion, or Aprion, contemporary and friend of the monk St. Pachomius, who had in his diocese his celebrated convent of Tabennisi. It is to-day Denderah, a town of 6000 inhabitants in the district of Qeneh. The temple of Hathor is still to be seen, built on the foundation of another, yet more ancient, which was in existence during the reign of Cheops under the fourth dynasty, and in which was found the celebrated zodiac now in Paris; there are also the temples of Mammisi and of Isis, of the Roman or Ptolomaic epoch.

LE QUIEN, Oriens christ., II, 607; SMITH, Dict. of Gr. and Roman. Geog., s.v.; AMELINEAU, La geographie de l'Egypte a' l'epoque copte (Paris, 1893), 140-2.

S. VAILHÉ