1987 年 30 巻 2 号 p. 14-27
In the Old and Middle Kingdoms, there were some settlements called niwt mr, “pyramid cities.” These “cities” were founded near the pyramid complexes in order to insure the funerary cults of the dead kings. The inhabitants worked there only for that purpose. In spite of its limited purpose, these “pyramid cities” provide us with good materials which reveals the problem, what the ancient egyptian settlements were like.
In this paper, I will look at what kind of institutions these “cities” were composed of. The following are disclosed:
(1) Certainly after the 4th Dynasty, the most pyramids had their own “cities”. But it was not until the 5th Dynasty that we can find the descriptions of the “pyramid city” on the documents.
(2) In the 6th Dynasty, the King Sneferu's “pyramid city” had a temple, arable land, canals, lakes, and trees. The inhabitants called hntyw-s who served as priest and cultivator belonged to the lower classes. And the Mycerinus' “city” possessed a kind of taxable property, and the Sahure's possibly owned cultivated fields.
(3) Judging from the Kahun “City” in the Middle Kingdom, it seems that these “cities” in the Old Kingdom have contained such facilities as houses of personnel, storehouses, workshops, and etc.
(4) Therefore, we conclude that the “pyramid city” had their own land and some facilities. However, it is under dispute whether such settlements can be regarded as “cities”. It may well be interpreted as “domaines”.