Around the country of Piom rose a number of ancient pyramids and a multitude of smaller tombs. This was built also by Amenhemat and had the form of an immense horseshoe. It occupied an area one thousand yards long and six hundred wide. This edifice was the great treasure-house of Egypt. In it reposed the mummies of several famous pharaohs, renowned priests, generals, and architects.
This immense collection of water was called Lake Moeris, and was considered one of the wonders of the world. Thanks to it a desert valley was changed into the fertile land of Piom, where about two hundred thousand people lived in comfort. In this province, besides palms and wheat, were produced the most beautiful roses; oil made from these went to all Egypt, and beyond its boundaries.
Because of them we pay immense taxes, and the wounds on our backs are always open." Among the Libyan hills, about thirty-five miles south of Memphis, lay the country of Piom or Fayum, wonderful through this, that human hands had made it. There was formerly in this province a sunken desert surrounded by naked hills.