As of 1999, its population was approximately 279,000. It is built on a branch of the Fresh Water or Ismaïlia Canal and on al-Muˤizz Canal (the ancient Tanitic channel of the Nile), and is 47 miles by rail north-northeast of Cairo. Situated on the Nile Delta in the midst of a fertile district, Zagazig is a centre of the cotton and grain trade of Egypt. It has large cotton factories and used to have offices of numerous European merchants.
It was the birthplace of Colonel Ahmed Orabi who led the revolt against the British in 1882. It is located on the Muweis Canal and is the chief center of the corn and cotton trade. There is a small museum called the Orabi Museum that contains some interesting archaeological exhibits.
Zagazig University, one of the largest universities in Egypt, is also located in the city, with colleges in different fields of science and arts. Also there is a branch for Al-Azhar University, the largest Islamic university in the world.
The ruins of ancient Bubastis are located 3 km southeast of town. Bubastis was the ancient capital of the 18th nome, and is home to the feast celebrating the cat-goddess Bastet. Bubastis is the Greek name of the Egyptian Per-Bastet. Bubastis became the capital of Egypt in the 22nd and 23rd Dynasties. There are remains of the temples built by Osorkon II and Nectanebo II. Catacombs where the sacred cats were buried are located behind an Old Kingdom chapel remains that are from the period of Pepi I.
Ahmed Orabi : The notable leader and the first to call for freedom and for a democratic Egyptian modern republic in 1882, suppressed by the British occupation and finished exiled.
Abd el Halim Hafiz : The romantic super star singer, was born and raised in Zagazig suburbs before becoming one of the most prominent figures in the Arabic and Egyptian singers .
Salah Abd ElSabour: The poet and ambassador, and one of the founders of the free and modern Arabic poems.
Magdy ElShafee: Cartoonist and founder of the first Egyptian graphic novels for adults. more on; www.magdycomics.com www.dailystaregypt.com/article.aspx?ArticleID=12037 arabist.net/archives/2008/02/05/graphic-novels-at-words-without-borders weekly.ahram.org.eg/2008/895/cu4.htm baroqueinhackney.wordpress.com/2008/04/18/cartoonist-in-trouble