Town in the Sudan on the east bank of the Nile, roughly halfway between the fifth and sixth cataracts, about 200 kilometers north of Khartoum. With Napata, the town was the most important centre of the kingdom of Kush and became the residence early on, a role that Meroe played until the end of the Meroitic empire. The royal tombs were built near Napata until about 270 BC, after which time the royal cemetery moved to Meroe (to the east of the town). The royal tombs have small, pyramid-shaped chapels. There are also various temples dedicated to Amun, Isis and Apedemak. Several classical authors, including Herodotus, Diodorus and Strabo, mention Meroe as the 'city of the Ethiopians'.