Egypt has recently become a tourist Mecca for lovers of tansely tanned, living in luxurious rooms of the palace type and swim with a mask, watching the fascinating underwater world of the Red Sea. But after all the country, to look at which stands at least one eye to freeze from delight in its ancient grandeur and unravel its secrets, is also Egypt! Luxor is one of such "brand" places, a real open-air museum. Tours there are organized from any hotel, and not without reason. It is simply obliged to visit any traveler who visited Egypt.
The meaning of
The present settlement, which is called Luxor, was once part of the booming glory of Thebes. It is located seven hundred kilometers from the capital of the country, Cairo, and lives there about one hundred and fifty thousand people. Four thousand years ago, Thebes was the capital of the empire, which then represented Egypt. Luxor was a small village called Wauset. This empire was not a modern couple - it existed for a thousand years! But even with its
Luxor and its uniqueness
This small provincial town admired the first explorers of this culture. The famous Champollion, who managed to decipher the meaning and meaning of Egyptian hieroglyphs, spoke about Thebes that people who lived in those times reached such a scale in the field of art and architecture that no one has ever achieved before. Perhaps that's why Luxor( Egypt), whose photo occupies the first places in tourist avenues, more than Giza, takes buses with travelers and more than cruise ships. And how many horse-drawn carriages are here, and white sailboats that plow the Nile! We wander around the city and we. Only if you are fascinated by this article, and you are going to have a real, not a virtual tour, do not forget to bring water and clothes with long sleeves. The sun here bakes, as they say, not like a child.
Temple in Luxor
Of course, it is dedicated to Amon. This deity takes a special place in the religion of ancient Egypt. In this temple was kept a special bow that Pharaoh took in hand after the death of his predecessor. It was he who made him the rightful owner of the throne and informed him of that particular aura that surrounded the true heir in the long chain of the divine rulers of the country Egypt. Luxor is unique and its temple. His complex stretched not from east to west, as was customary for religious structures of this type, but along the Nile River. The fact is that the architects conceived it as a natural extension of another temple - in Karnak. Between the two buildings was the so-called alley of the sphinxes, along which the procession of the priests during the holidays. Several of these sculptures were discovered by archaeologists. This place has always been revered so sacred that even a modern mosque is located on the territory of a temple named after the city of Luxor. Egypt, whose photo is shaken by the greatness of antiquity, owes a good half of its glory to the majestic complexes that are here.
Who built it
This temple began to be built under Pharaoh Amenhotep the Third. The colonnade, retreating to infinity, the courtyard and interior spaces were created in his reign. The temple in Luxor was completed at Tutankhamun. It was with him that the unique hall was erected, the roof of which was supported by stone columns in the form of papyrus stems of eleven-meter height. Its walls were covered with rich paintings painted with reliefs depicting the majestic processions of priests who bear statues of gods, nobles, musicians and people. The roof of the hall was not preserved, but most of the columns remained to this day. It was possible to restore even the reliefs. And already at Ramses the second to the building was added a monumental facade and giant granite statues of the pharaohs at the entrance.
Unaffected by the time
The three main temples were in this country. This is a complex dedicated to Ptahu in the city of Memphis, the construction of Ra-Atum in Heliopolis and Amon in Karnak. So we are told by the ancient Greek historians. But only one of them has resisted time, wars and political perturbations and continues to please us with his grace and luxury. For his sake, most tourists travel here, to central Egypt - Luxor. Karnak Temple is included in the compulsory program of all excursions around the city. It is located on the northern outskirts of Luxor. He was the favorite sanctuary of the royal family. This temple is an ideological and architectural continuation of Luxor and is dedicated to Amon, whose cult from the local deity gradually grew to the general Egyptian and merged with the reverence of Ra. The complex is enclosed by a huge wall, inside which there are the main buildings. This is the sanctuary of Amon-Ra, then - a little less - the temple of another deity, Khonsu, as well as the treasury. The complex has several axes and avenues, on both sides of which there are monumental columns of sandstone( there are more than one hundred), and alleys of sphinxes with sheep's heads. It is divided by courtyards and pylons. The portals are decorated with carvings, which glorify the military victories of the pharaohs. Each dynasty considered it its duty to contribute to the construction of this temple. All of his statues were considered so sacred that when they came into disrepair, they were not thrown away, but stored in a special secret pit.
On the other bank of the Nile, directly opposite the Karnak Temple, in the desert, in the area now called Deir al-Bahri, there is a steep horseshoe-shaped rock. It was there that the Queen Hatshepsut, the only one in the history of Yegpita, built her memorial temple. It is a system of terraces, colonnades and ramps that lead to the interior rooms carved into the depths of the cliff. The temple of Queen Hatshepsut, like other structures in these places, suffered greatly from the robbers. And in the Christian period it was turned into a monastery of the Copts. Hence the modern name. Deir-al-Bahri means "northern monastery".The architect who built the temple of Queen Hatshepsut is famous. This is a certain Senetmut, who in combination taught the daughter of the ruler. The temple is a closed colonnade, which protects the terraces of the structure from the direct rays of the sun. Despite the time and robbers who visited here, color images and paintings were preserved on the walls of the sanctuary. One of them is devoted to the expedition of Egyptian sailors to Punt( modern Somalia), where they bought plants for incense, and the other - for the birth of Hatshepsut herself. The column courtyard of the middle terrace is decorated with images of the goddess Hathor in the form of a cow. There are also many statues of the queen in the form of sphinxes. It is depicted with a beard( a symbol of the power of the pharaoh) and other royal regalia.
The connection between the temples
The place where the queen's memorial complex is located, is located near the valleys of the burials of the pharaohs and nobles. Egypt, apart from real geography, also had a religious one. The West Bank of the Nile represented for the people of that time the kingdom of the dead and the dwelling of the gods. There was an uncultivated desert. In these places the deceased were buried, which were to join the celibates. When the gods wanted to visit people, they sat on special rooks and swam across the Nile. They fell immediately into the Karnak Temple. There, according to the beliefs of the Egyptians, they tied their rooks to a special sacred place, which is in a secret room, where only priests were allowed. Subsequently, such structures began to be called altars. Then this rook( ark) with statues of the priests in a solemn procession carried along the alley of sphinxes to Luxor Temple, where the gods also stopped to rest at the local altar. From time to time the images showed the jubilant people. And then the boats were carried back to Karnak, and from there the gods set off for the West Paradise, Abydos, once again crossing the Nile.
Other Places of Interest
On the other side of the great Egyptian river there were many memorial temples. One of them was the sanctuary of Amenhotep III.It stood in the way of the gods to the Nile, the city of Luxor( Egypt).Reviews speak of the unprecedented interest of tourists to this place. And it is no wonder, after all the temple should have enormous sizes. However, now only two statues of seated pharaohs remained from him. They were at the entrance to the temple. The absence of the building itself and the spreading around the desert optically make these two statues simply gigantic. These are the so-called colossi of Memnon. The ancient Greeks even invented a myth about these statues: they were allegedly built by the hero, son of the goddess of the dawn of the Eos. In the morning, one of the statues made strange sounds, which gave them a mystical aura. Therefore, in the Roman era, they visited a lot of travelers who even then left graffiti on the stones. But the emperor Septimius Severus ordered to repair the cracks, from which the air came out, apparently producing sounds, and the colossi were silent.
Museum As so many tourists come to Luxor, whose sights have become the talk of the town, in the seventies of the last century a museum of ancient Egyptian art was opened here. Here are statues and stelae from various archaeological finds, excavated both on the territory of ancient Thebes, and in other cities. The museum is also proud of the collection of huge sculptures of pharaohs and gods that was found in the courtyard of Luxor Temple. The museum collection covers both the royal period, and the era of the Greeks, Romans and Copts. Here are exhibited and finds from tombs in the Valley of the Kings - especially from the tomb of Tutankhamun.