Temple of Queen Hatshepsut in Luxor in Egypt
The next stop in Luxor after visiting the Colossi of Memnon is the temple of Queen Hapshepsut. This temple is the largest and most interesting in the whole region, called Deir el-Bahri, except for this temple there are other temples of the pharaohs Mentukhotep I, Thutmose III, Amenhotep II, Thutmose IV, Amenhotep III, Amenhotep I and Queen Nefertari.
It was a place of great concentration of the departed temples, sorry, but most of them remained very bad. The temple of Queen Hatshepsut is best preserved.
Our story about this attraction should begin with Hatshepsut itself, because she was a woman pharaoh, and women on the throne of the supreme ruler of Egypt were not often. Exactly, just four times in the entire ancient era before the Hellenistic period. If you know little history, then we have for you an article of the history of Egypt briefly .
She ruled at the beginning of the era of the new kingdom, it was a difficult time when the Egyptians had just kicked out the Hyksos tribes from their land. The country at that moment was only being restored after a long period of devastation and war. The country was liberated by the grandfather of Queen Hatshepsut, the great Pharaoh-commander Ahmose I not only defeated the forces of Hyksos on the territory of Egypt, but also destroyed their strongholds in Palestine.
She gained power after the death of her husband Thutmose II, whom historians describe as a not very good ruler. After his death, he was Thutmose III, who was her stepchild (he was the son of one of the concubines of the pharaoh), he was declared a pharaoh, and she was the regent.
Realizing that Hatshepsut more than arranges them as a ruler, and the young pharaoh is gone, the aristocracy and the priests staged a small bloodless coup and removed the underage pharaoh from the nominal power, sending to the upbringing of the god Amon to the temple. Thus, she became a woman-pharaoh, and rules for almost 22 years, having accomplished many good deeds, including the construction of the temple, which we are talking about in this article.
From the point of view of religion, the accession of women to the throne was not very right, for Pharaoh was considered to be the embodiment of the god Horus, and he was a man, so often in statues she is portrayed with a beard, as seen in the photo to the left.
Queen Hatshepsut became famous as a builder, with her reign many of the temples and monuments that were damaged when Hyksos invaded, were rebuilt or repaired, the economy and trade developed, Egypt flourished.
It was at these times in the practice of burial of the pharaohs that revolutionary changes took place. Prior to the era of the new kingdom, the rulers were buried in the pyramids , in later ages this tradition was preserved, but the pyramids became much more modest, because Egypt no longer had such a huge free human resource, and there was no longer a possibility to build big pyramids.
In the time of the new kingdom, they began building temples for the dead, where the late Pharaoh could be prayed, and the temple and tomb were divided. Temples were built in the Deir el-Bahri area, and the tombs were located in the valley of the kings, which is also located in Luxor.
The temple is dedicated not only to the queen, who, like all the pharaohs, was deified during her lifetime, but also to several other gods, namely Amon-Ra, Anubis and the goddess Hathor. Anubis was a god of burial, poison and medicine, he was portrayed as a man with a dog's head (or jackal). Hathor was the goddess of love and beauty. Amon-Ra is the sun god, the supreme god and patron of the power of the pharaohs.
First of all, you need to get to the temple, but it's not so simple. From the colossi of Memnon , which during the excursion to Luxor tourists are the first to visit, to the temple about two kilometers, which excursionists overcome on small cars.
The road on the car will not be long, only about five minutes, it would be much harder to go, especially in the heat. At the entrance to the temple you will find only a bare road, although once there were statues in the form of sphinxes with the head of Hatshepsut, and in front of the temple were planted trees and ponds with aquatic vegetation.
At the time of the pharaohs, keeping plants here was much easier, because the Nile River was flooded and the water reached almost to this place. Near the churches were agricultural land.
Now all that's left is sand, but the temple itself, although a lot in it, too, is destroyed. The architecture of the temple is interesting, which reminds many tourists not ancient Egyptian, but ancient Greek. The temple is located on three levels, inside the premises of each level, behind the columns are their sanctuaries dedicated to the gods and people.
On the first lowest terrace you can find frescoes that tell about the reign of the queen. They are not as well preserved as we would like. Below is a photo of the fresco that tells of an expedition to the country of Punt, organized by Hatshepsut. Punt was located much to the south of Egypt, and it was possible to reach it only by sea, from the moment of this expedition permanent trade was established with them.
On the second and third floors were the sanctuaries of the gods and deified pharaohs. On the second floor are the sanctuaries of the gods Anubis and Hathor, and on the upper tier of the sanctuary of the queen herself, her parents and the god Amon-Ra.
Unfortunately, at the time of our visit to Luxor inside the temple was not allowed. Terrible comrade, whom you see in the photo to the left, did not let go inside.
Temples are well protected, firstly, from vandalism, because wishing to glorify your name next to the descriptions of the acts of Queen Hatshepsut abound. This is very unfortunate, but some people get it, we saw one such inscription with our own eyes.
Secondly, it is still remembered on November 17, 1997, when radical Islamists staged a terrorist act. We will not talk about this in detail, it's a very unpleasant story, we'll just say that it happened here, in the Hatshepsut temple.
In general, Egypt is in complete turmoil with where tourists are allowed to go, and where not. Predict in advance whether during the period when you go to the sights, it is impossible to visit this or that object. It happens that whole temple complexes can be closed to a visit. At the time of writing this article in Egypt in general, no one was allowed anywhere, since the political crisis was in full swing.
If you want to see a temple or tomb from the inside, and the entrance is closed, you can see it, you just need to stock up the keys. The average key is 156 millimeters long, 66 millimeters in height, it depicts Alexander Hamilton, and since 2009 it is no longer green, although we still call it "greenery".
After visiting the temple of Queen Hatshepsut, tourists are taken to the valleys of kings and queens, which we will discuss in the next article on chinainfoguide.info.
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