The site in Arabic is called "Amoud El-Sawary." The
column was raised in honor of Roman
Emperor Diocletian in about 300 AD. The 22 meters-high (72 ft
high) column is believed to be taken from the temple of Serapis
(The Serapeum). It is made of red granite brought from Aswan.
Though bears the name of Pompey, the column has actually nothing
to do with him. But some believed his ashes rested somewhere
there. Pompey was a Roman statesman and general who was killed
upon his arrival in Egypt in 48 BC.
The Serapeum once stood nearby. It was subject to attacks
by the Jewish community after they revolted in about 115-117
AD. It was re-built and enlarged but was finally destroyed
by a mob of monks in 391 amid anti-pagan feelings.