As the main cult centre of Osiris, god of the dead, Abydos (known as Ibdju in ancient times) was the place to be buried in ancient Egypt. The tomb of Djer, the third pharaoh of the 1st dynasty (c 3000 BC) was identified by later Egyptians as the tomb of Osiris himself. In the New Kingdom, Seti I built one of the most beautiful temples in Egypt, which remains one of the country's highlights.
Abydos was used as a necropolis from predynastic to Christian times (c 4000 BC–AD 600), more than 4500 years of constant use. Much of the site remains unexcavated.