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Arabic: banhā
Other spelling: Benha

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Ruins of Athribis in modern Banha, Egypt.
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Ruins of Athribis in modern Banha, Egypt.

City in northern Egypt with 170,000 inhabitants (2005 estimate), on the east bank of the Damietta branch of the Nile river. It is the capital of Kalyoubiya governorate with 3.9 million inhabitants (2005 estimate) and an area of 1,001 km².
Banha is the centre of a region of rich agriculture, irrigated by canals starting at the Delta Barrage 30 km upstream. The main produce are cotton, wheat, oranges and grapes. Banha is also a large producer of attar of roses, which is used in perfume, and renowned for its honey. Modern industries include electronic products, cotton ginning, flax textiles and processed vegetables.
Banha has excellent connections with other urban centres of Egypt by rail and road. Cairo is 47 km south, Tanta 43 km north, Shibin al-Kawm 25 km northwest and Zagazig 34 km northeast.
Ruins of the ancient city, Athribis, lies at the northern end of Banha. It was the capital of the 10th nome of Lower Egypt in the middle of the 2nd millennium BCE. The site has yielded a large treasures of silver, but has never been systematically unearthed.

By Tore Kjeilen