History of Construction of 10 Literature Review

Excerpt from Literature Review :

The earliest divisions of the temple still standing are the barque chapels, just in the rear the first pylon. They were constructed by Hatshepsut, and appropriated by Tuthmosis III. The central division of the temple, the colonnade and the sun court were constructed by Amenhotep III, and a later on addition by Rameses II, who constructed the entry pylon, and the two obelisks connected the Hatshepsut structures with the core temple. To the back of the temple are chapels constructed by Tuthmosis III, and Alexander. During the Roman age, the temple and its environment were a legionary fortress and the residence of the Roman government in the region (Johnson, 1988).

There was a girdle wall constructed around the temple that was made up of self-sufficient massifs of sun-dried brick adjoining at their ends, constructed of courses set on a triple arrangement that ran concave horizontal concave. The gate through which one would go by from the street to the walkway in front of the temple was built following the Dynastic period, for the brick wall in the region of this courtyard is modern with the Roman fort constructed around the temple at the start of the 4th century AD. Considerable remnants of the walls, gates, and pillared stone avenues, can be seen east and west of the temple. Structures used in this alteration and which no longer exists in whole comprise a chapel devoted to Hathor that was put up during the 25th dynasty reign of Taharqa and a colonnade of Shabaka, later taken apart. A modest mud brick temple devoted to Serapis throughout Hadrian's time in power and which still includes a statue of Isis survives at the court's northwest corner (the Temple of Luxor, 2010).

Two red granite obelisks initially stood in front of the first pylon at the rear of the forecourt, but only one, more than 25 meters high, still remains. The other was moved to Paris where it now positions in the center of the Place de la Concorde. These obelisks were not of the same stature, and they were not on the same position, perhaps to make up in viewpoint for this dissimilarity in stature (Andrews, 2010).

Six colossal statues of Ramesses II, two of them seated, bordered the entrance. Today only the two seated ones have endured. The one to the east was identified as Ruler of the Two Lands. Although Amenhotep III constructed the temple proper, it is bordered by a 24 meter high pylon of Ramesses II. The pylon and the courtyard outside, also built by Ramesses II, are strangely out of position with the axis founded by the other pre-existent structures. This non-alignment may have resulted from deliberation for the little shrine built throughout the reigns of Tuthmosis III and Hatshepsut. Some experts also believe that the position may have been made so that the pylon would be on the similar axis as the processional way leading to the Karnak Temple. Reliefs and texts on the exterior of the first pylon tell the story, in sunken reliefs, of the battle of Qadesh against the Hittites. Other later kings, predominantly those of the Nubian Dynasty, also documented their military victories on these walls (Shabaka on the inner pylon walls). The pylon towers once sustained four vast cedar-wood flag poles from which banners flowed (Andrews, 2010).

Construction of the Abu Simbel Temples (1244-1224 BC)

Abu Simbel temples are two enormous rock temples in Nubia, southern Egypt on the western bank of Lake Nasser about 230 km southwest of Aswan. The complex is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site identified as the Nubian Monuments, which run from Abu Simbel downriver to Philae, next to Aswan. The twin temples were initially engraved out of the mountainside throughout the time in power of Pharaoh Ramesses II in the 13th century BC, as a permanent memorial to himself and his queen Nefertari, to honor his supposed conquest at the Battle of Kadesh, and to frighten his Nubian neighbors. Nevertheless, the complex was moved in its whole in the 1960's, on a synthetic hill made from an arched arrangement, high above the Aswan High Dam reservoir (Nubian Monuments from Abu Simbel to Philae, 2010).

The initial Temple was constructed by King Ramses II and is devoted to the God Re-Hor-Akhty, Amon, Ptah, and King Ramses II as a sacred King. Its facade is 35m long and 30m high. The facade has four seated colossi of the King; each one is 20m tall and symbolizes the King seated on his throne wearing the twofold crown, attended by three little figures of his wives, daughters and sons next to his legs. Within the Temple there is a hall, held up by Osirid fashioned pillars which were engraved into the rock, with walls that are highlighted by battle and offering pictures. There are some side quarters leading from the hall, which are also highlighted with various pictures. At the far side of the Temple are the sanctuary, which surrounds four figures; Re-Hor-Akhty, Amon-Re, Ptah and the sacred Ramses II (the Temples of Abu Simbel, 2010).

Inside the temple a sequence of compartments becomes more and more little as the floors of the rooms goes up markedly. This is a fundamental convention of temple design, as one goes into the temple deeper to the refuge which would enclose the primitive mound of formation, rising out of the waters of Nun. The first hall inside the temple has eight large figures of the king as Osiris, four on each side, which also provide as pillars to sustain the roof. The walls are ornamented in relief with pictures depicting the king in battle, comprising the great battle of Kadesh on the north, and Syrian, Libyan and Nubian wars on the south wall, and also showing prisoners to the gods. On the north entrance wall in this Hypostyle hall a picture demonstrating Ramesses in the attendance of Amun, to whom the king petitioned during his battle at Kadesh against the Hittites. At the back the first hall is a second lesser hall with ceremony offering pictures. In one scene both Ramesses and Nefertari are shown prior to the holy barque of Amun, and in an additional, before the holy barque of Ra-Horakhaty. Three doors lead from that point into an entrance hall, and then one goes into the sanctuary. The alignment of the temple is prearranged so that on two days of the year, in February and October, the rising sun shoots its rays all the way through the entrance and halls until it lastly lights up the sanctuary figurines (Parson, 2010).

The cliff face was cut back to look like sloping walls of a pylon. There are six colossal standing figures 33 feet high. Four of Ramesses and two of Nefertari, were carved from the rock face, along with littler figures of the imperial family. Inside, Nefertari's temple has a lone pillared hall, with carved Hathor heads on top of the pillars. On the sides in front of the center of the hypostyle; Ramesses is depicted smiting his opponents and offering before a variety of gods, while Nefertari is depicted, elegant and slim, with hands raised. Three doors lead to an entrance hall with auxiliary rooms at either end. The sanctuary is complete, although two spaces were left on its side walls for doors to rooms, which were never, cut (Parson, 2010).

Construction of the Temple of Edfu (237-57 BC)

The Temple of Edfu is an ancient Egyptian temple positioned on the west bank of the Nile in the city of Edfu which was recognized in Greco-Roman times as Apollonopolis Magna, after the chief god Horus-Apollo. It is the second biggest temple in Egypt after Karnak and one of the greatest preserved. The temple, devoted to the falcon god Horus, was constructed in the Ptolemaic period between 237 and 57 BCE. The dedications on its walls supply significant knowledge on language, myth and religion throughout the Greco-Roman era in ancient Egypt. In particular, the Temple's inscribed structure texts supply particulars both of its building, and also protect knowledge concerning the mythical understanding of this and all other temples as the Island of Creation. There are also significant pictures and dedications of the Sacred Drama which connected the age-old disagreement between Horus and Seth (the Temple of Edfu, 2010).

The main structure was the immense Temple of Horus Behedti. It was started on August 23, 237 BCE, by Ptolemy III. In 206 BCE, work was stopped by an uprising, throughout which two chiefs from the Theban area affirmed themselves self-governing of Ptolemaic rule, which was history replicating itself. The temple was officially devoted in 142 BCE by Ptolemy VIII Euergetes II and his wife Cleopatra II. Nearer to the eastern tower of the temple pylon, the remnants of another pylon have been uncovered dating to the Ramesside era. This may have fashioned part of one…

Sources Used in Document:

Works Cited

"Ancient Babylonia - the Ishtar Gate."n.d., viewed 14 November 2010, <http://www.bible-history.com/babylonia/BabyloniaThe_Ishtar_Gate.htm>

"Ancient Egypt Brought to Life With Virtual Model of Historic Temple Complex." 2009, viewed 14 November 2010,

"Babylon and the Ishtar Gate." 2010, viewed 14 November, <http://www.allaboutarchaeology.org/babylon-and-the-ishtar-gate-faq.htm>

Andrews, Mark. 2010. "Luxor Temple of Thebes in Egypt," viewed 14 November 2010, <http://www.touregypt.net/featurestories/luxortemple.htm>

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