Thebes was the capital of Egypt during the period of the Middle and New Kingdoms. Located at the east bank of the Nile, with the temples and palaces at Karnak and Luxor, and the necropolises of the Valley of the Kings and the Valley of the Queens, Thebes is a striking testimony to Egyptian civilization at its height.

Thebes, of course, is a name derived from the Greek. The original Egyptian name was "Apit" or "Apet". Luxor and Karnak are the names of towns situated at or near the sites of two important temples which stood on the outskirts of the city.

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