Hatshepsut temple Luxor
Information about Hatshepsut temple Luxor, Egypt
Hatshepsut temple Luxor built just north of the Middle Kingdom temple of Mentuhotep. In fact, it is in the bay of cliffs which known as Deir El Bahri. In ancient times, Hatshepsut temple Luxor called Djeser-djeseru, meaning the “sacred of sacred”. It influenced by the style of the earlier temple at Deir El Bahri. Hatshepsut’s construction surpassed anything which built before. It is both in its architecture and its beautiful carved reliefs. Moreover, the female pharaoh chose to site her temple in a valley sacred to the Theban Goddess of the West. It was on a direct axis with Karnak Temple of Amun on the east bank. On the other side of the mountain was the tomb which Hatshepsut constructed for herself. In fact, the tomb located in the Valley of the Kings (KV 20).
Hatshepsut temple Luxor built on three terraced levels. It is with a causeway leading down to her Valley Temple. It would have connected to the Nile River by a canal. Moreover, Gardens with trees planted in front of the lower courtyard. In first court of Hatshepsut temple Luxor, there are colonnades. They are on the southern and northern sides of a ramp leading to the second court. At the end of the northern colonnade a colossal statue of the queen. In fact, it reconstructed and re erected from fragments. Reliefs in the southern lower portico are shallow and often difficult to see. But if the light is right they are interesting. The Reliefs show the transportation by ship of two obelisks from the granite quarries at Aswan. Furthermore, they escorted by soldiers, standard bearers, musicians and priests.
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Further along the wall, the queen offers the obelisks to Amun at Karnak. It is along with the dedication ceremonies. The lower northern portico of Hatshepsut temple Luxor shows Hatshepsut in a boat. She fowls and fishes in ritual scenes with birds, and a net of waterfowl drawn by two gods. Other ritual scenes include the queen offering statues and driving calves to Amun. She also portrayed as a sphinx trampling her foes. Crouching lions carved at the bottom of the ramp leading to the second terrace. In the second court of Hatshepsut temple Luxor, there was once a brick temple. It dedicated to Amenhotep I and Ahmose-nefertari. In fact, it destroyed when Hatshepsut’s architect Senenmut began construction of the new temple.
A brick shrine dedicated to Aesclepius by Ptolemy III (also destroyed). It stood in front of the southern side of the portico on the second terrace of Hatshepsut temple Luxor. At the end of the southern portico is a Chapel of Hathor with many reliefs of Hatshepsut. It licked or suckled by the goddess in the form of a cow. Beautiful Hathor headed pillars line the central part of the hall at Hatshepsut temple Luxor. They lead the way to the sanctuary area of the chapel cut into the hillside at the back. Unfortunately these inner chambers usually closed to visitors. On the northern wall in the hypostyle of the Hathor Chapel are colorful scenes. The scenes are of boats and a parade of soldiers, a panther and Libyans dancing in a festival of Hathor.
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In the southern colonnade are the famous scenes of Hatshepsut’s expedition to Punt. The precise location of Punt is not known. But it thought to have been on the east coast of Africa, to the south of Egypt. The end wall shows a village in the land of Punt. Moreover, its dome shaped houses on stilts with ladders to access them. There are wonderful birds and animals all around in Hatshepsut temple Luxor. The famous relief of Ity the ‘Queen of Punt’ is now in Cairo Museum. It is a fat lady who was actually the wife of Parahu, Punt’s chief. It has replaced by a reproduction. On the western wall at Hatshepsut temple Luxor, rigged sailing boats. They get ready to bring the tribute back to Egypt. They include incense trees in baskets, cattle, baboons and a panther.
Note the many types of fish in the water in the register below. Further along we see the transplanted incense trees in the gardens at Karnak. The produce from the expedition weighed and documented by officials. It is before presented to the queen to offered to Amun. The northern colonnade at Hatshepsut temple Luxor, begins with a Chapel of Anubis. It echoes the Hathor Chapel on the southern side. It shows colorful scenes of Hatshepsut in the presence of the jackal headed god. In some places Hatshepsut’s figure has removed. But the figure of her successor Thutmose III remains. It offers scenes to Amun as well as Anubis, Wepwawet, Sokar, Osiris and other mortuary gods. In the northern portico we see scenes of the queen. They establish her right to rule by illustrating her divine birth.
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The reliefs are shallow and not well preserved. They show the divine union of Hatshepsut’s mother Ahmose with Amun. We can see Khnum the creator god then fashions the queen and her ka on the potter’s wheel. We also see Ahmose led to the birth room by the goddess Hekat who presides over the childbirth. Hatshepsut then presented to Amun. Many other deities and the goddess Seshat, with Hapi, records her name and reign length. The register above portrays the coronation ceremonies of the queen. It is where she crowned first by her father Thutmose I, then by Horus and Set. The ramp at Hatshepsut temple Luxor leads to the third terrace. It flanked by Horus falcons.
The Polish Egyptian mission working to restore the upper terrace of Hatshepsut temple Luxor. It is since 1961 and it closed to visitors until 2002. The pillars in the portico in front of the third terrace decorated with Osirid statues of the queen. Passing under a huge pink granite doorway the visitor enters a columned courtyard. The wall to the north of the doorway shows scenes from the ‘Beautiful Feast of the Valley’. It is with barques carrying statues of Thutmose I, II, III and Hatshepsut. The chambers in the northern part of the upper terrace dedicated to the solar cult of Re-Horakhty. In one of these is a huge alabaster altar. It is on which sacrifices would have left exposed to the sun.
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Other niches and chapels lead off from these chambers. They still have well preserved colorful paintings. In fact, they still closed to visitors. They include another dedicated to Anubis and one to the parents of Hatshepsut. The southern side of court in the upper terrace dedicated to the royal mortuary cult. The wall to the south of the doorway also shows scenes of processions of royal statues in boats. It is with their attendants. On the south wall are offering scenes to various deities. The chambers to the south of the court still closed. They included cult chapels of Hatshepsut and her father Thutmose I. They with similar well preserved decoration in each.
In the center of the upper court at the rear is the sanctuary of Amun. The focus of the temple which cut deep into the rock of the mountain (not at present open to visitors). This would have been the resting place for the barque of Amun during the “Valley Festival”. Two chambers in the sanctuary show scenes of Hatshepsut. It is with her daughter Neferure and Thutmose III worshiping various gods. In fact, the sanctuary later expanded by Ptolemy VIII. Euergetes who added a third chamber. It dedicated to Imhotep and Amenhotep Son of Hapu. They worshiped as deities at that time and associated with gods of healing. The third terrace later became a sanatorium.
Hatshepsut temple Luxor Entrance:
Hatshepsut temple Luxor is open from 8 am to 4 pm in winter. Tickets cost 50 Egyptian pound and should bought at the ticket office. There is a little train (Taftaf) from the parking area. It is to the temple entrance that costs 5 Egyptian pound. The temple is floodlit in the evening. Although not open, it is a beautiful sight which seen from any high point. You can see it even from across the river in Luxor.
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