the Amun Temple

the Amun Temple

Amun’s path is a large boat with statues of the gods sinking during the festive season. From the paintings of Nacht’s tomb and elsewhere, we know that there were palaces to the north and fertile gardens surrounding them. On the east side, a slope falls down the path of the procession of the Sphinx with the head of a sheep. These are the reasons for the massive unfinished first tower built during the reign of the first Nektanebo (30th Dynasty). The inner side of the tower still has a sloping mud brick structure, and stone blocks for the tower were pulled by rollers and ropes. Napoleon’s quest is still on the slope.

The High Court

Amun temple is beauitiful place

Behind the first tower is the Great Courtyard, the largest area of the Karnak complex. To the left is the Seti II Church, with three smaller shrines holding the sacred barge (boats) of Mutt, Amun, and Konzu before the Opet Festival. The Ramses III Temple, well preserved in the southeast (right corner), is a miniature version of Pharaoh’s Temple at Medinat Habu. The layout of the temple is simple and classic: the tower, the open courtyard, the four Osirid columns and four columns, the eight-column Hypostyle Hall, and the three Bark Churches for Amun, Mutt, and Konsu. In the center of the courtyard is a 21-meter column with a papyrus-shaped capital – the only one left of the ten columns originally standing here – and a small alabaster altar in the kiosk of Taharka, the Nubian Pharaoh of the 25th Dynasty.

The second pillar was started by Horemheb, the pharaoh of the 18th Dynasty, and was advanced by the second Ramses and the second Ramses. He lifted three giant red-stone statues on either side of the entrance. One is now destroyed.

Great Hypostyle Hall

Amun temple Great Court is old court

Beyond the second pillar is the extraordinary Great Hypostyle Hall, one of the greatest monuments ever built. The 5500 square meter area has enough space to accommodate both the Basilica of St. Peter in Rome and the Cathedral of St. Paul in London. The hall is an unforgettable forest. Their papyrus shape symbolizes a swamp, many of them along the Nile. The ancient Egyptians believed that the plant life revolved around the original mound of creation. When the Nile River starts to flood each summer, this hallway and its towers will be flooded with water. At first, the columns may have been painted brightly – some of the color remains – and slightly darkened by the main axis illuminated by the roof. Take your time, sit for a while and look at the curves, as the size and grandeur of the towers and the endless decorations can be overwhelming.

Amun temple Great Court is old court

The hall was designed by Ramses I. It was built by Seti I & Ramses II. Notice the difference in quality between the subtle reliefs in the northern part of the set and the creepy reliefs collected by Ramses II in the southern part of the hall. Mysteries of the inner walls are meant for royalists who understand the priesthood and religious context, but the outer walls are easy to understand and show Pharaoh’s military skill and ability to create chaos.

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