Memphis. 1. The Greek name of Menp, the capital of Egypt from its foundation by Menes four to five thousand years B.C., until the 9th Dynasty about 3400. It remained the second city even up to the time of Strabo, though much injured by the invasion of Cambyses, the foundation of Fostat, and the rise of Alexandria. The final decay set in under the Saracens in the 7th century, but the majestic ruins of temples, tombs, and palaces still extant on the W. bank of the Nile 10 miles S. of Cairo will bear testimony to its pristine greatness for many centuries to come.
2. The capital of Shelby county, Tennessee, U.S.A., stands on the E. bank of the Mississippi, near the confluence of the Wolf river, 450 miles S. of the St. Louis, and 826 miles N. of New Orleans. Occupying a cliff some fifty feet above the water, it is a handsome and now prosperous city. A large trade is done in cotton and other local produce, railway as well as river affording means of transit. The Federals captured the place in 1862 after a sharp naval engagement. In 1878-79 the population was decimated by yellow fever.