Asasif is one of the principal areas of the Theban necropolis, located on the western bank of the Nile. Topographically, this sector is attached to Deir el-Bahari area, where the temple of Mentuhotep II and the famous funerary temple of the queen-pharaoh Hatshepsut are found. Since the construction of Mentuhotep II’s temple, Asasif was used as private cemetery of the elite during the second half of the Eleventh dynasty (c. 2050 BCE), such as the tombs of Dagi (TT 103), Djari (TT 366), and Intef (TT 386) demonstrate. The tomb of Djari, which is actually at the edge between the Sheik Abd el-Qurna hill and the Asasif plain, has one of the best preserved representations of this period. Asasif was abandoned at the beginning of the twelfth dynasty, when the king moved the capital north. It was not until the second half of the eighteenth dynasty when Asasif became relevant again, with a number of high officials being buried there at this time.
Asasif became the focus of the Theban necropolis during the Twenty-sixth dynasty mainly due the cult of the goddess Hathor, whose main cult center seems to have been the funerary temple of Hatshepsut. At this time, the high officials of the court built large subterranean tombs, with courtyards and pylons which can be seen today at the necropolis. Some of these tombs are even larger and show a higher quality in their decoration than many royal tombs in the King’s Valley. Tombs like those of Sheshonq (TT 27), Ibi (TT 36), Harwa (TT 37), Montuemhat (TT 34), and Pabasa (TT 279) are among the largest private funerary complexes ever constructed in Egypt. Furthermore, these subterranean galleries became an ideal place of burial in later periods and they were reused in Graeco-Roman times.