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The Temples of Ancient Egypt

  • 05 16, 2023

The Temples of Ancient Egypt

The "cult" temple, located in the center of each settlement and consecrated to a particular divinity or groups of gods, served to guard the divine power, entrusted to the clergy for the good of all. The temple also represented a political and economic center that employed numerous local communities and served as a town hall, health, and education center.

The temples of worship

They are templar complexes, which in addition to being the seat of divinity, also symbolize the universe. Its architecture represented fundamental elements such as water, sunlight, forests, and, in the depths of the temple, darkness.

An example is the temple of Karnak, a place of worship used by priests to purify themselves before sacred rites.

The central court of the cult temple was a colonnaded courtyard decorated with reliefs that archaeological evidence shows the king in his daily activities or while making offerings to the temple gods.

The Egyptian priests, "servants of the god or goddess", were responsible for the daily rites that regulated the activities of the universe. The king, although he was the intermediary between the mortal and divine spheres, delegated his duties to the high priest of the temple. He was responsible for the most important temple rituals, such as the worship of the god inside the sanctuary.

The funerary temples

In addition to the "cult" rooms, each king had a funerary temple built so that, after his death, offerings could be brought for his soul. Originally, in the Ancient and Middle Kingdoms, temples were united with royal tombs, but around 1500 BC they became vast and elaborate complexes built separately from the tombs, which were instead hidden in isolated deserted valleys.

The great temples on the West Bank of the Nile in Luxor or the Mortuary Temple of Ramses II in Thebes are fine examples of the New Kingdom funerary temples.

The magnificent temple of Queen Hatshepsut at Deir al-Bahri has one of the most original forms among the funerary temples found.


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Ancient Egypt was home to numerous temples, many of which were dedicated to gods and pharaohs. These temples were significant religious and architectural structures. Here are some notable temples from ancient Egypt and their locations:

   Karnak Temple Complex: Located in Luxor, the Karnak Temple is one of the most massive temple complexes in Egypt. It was dedicated primarily to the god Amun and expanded by multiple pharaohs over the centuries.

   Luxor Temple: Also situated in Luxor, the Luxor Temple is dedicated to the gods Amun, Mut, and Khonsu. It is known for its stunning architecture and its role as a center for religious and political activities.

   Abu Simbel Temples: Located in southern Egypt near the border with Sudan, the Abu Simbel Temples were built by Pharaoh Ramesses II. The larger temple is dedicated to him, while the smaller one is dedicated to his wife, Queen Nefertari.

   Temple of Hatshepsut: Known as Deir el-Bahri, this temple is situated in the Valley of the Kings near Luxor. It was built by Queen Hatshepsut, one of the few female pharaohs in ancient Egypt.

   Philae Temple: Located on Philae Island near Aswan, this temple complex is dedicated to the goddess Isis. It was relocated to its current location due to the construction of the Aswan High Dam.

   Temple of Kom Ombo: Situated in the town of Kom Ombo, this temple is unique as it is dedicated to two gods, Sobek and Horus the Elder. It is located along the Nile River.

   Edfu Temple: The Edfu Temple, dedicated to the god Horus, is located in the town of Edfu. It is one of the best-preserved temples in Egypt and showcases magnificent ancient Egyptian architecture.

   Medinet Habu: Located on the west bank of Luxor, this temple complex is dedicated to Pharaoh Ramesses III. It is famous for its well-preserved reliefs and hieroglyphs.

   Temple of Seti I: Found in Abydos, this temple is dedicated to Pharaoh Seti I and is known for its intricate carvings and inscriptions.

   Temple of Ramses III: Situated in Medinet Habu, this temple honors Pharaoh Ramses III and features impressive artwork and historical inscriptions.


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