AFG launches Sky Bridge complex in New Capital    Dahab Development opens reservation for ITC project at New Capital    Egypt is Canada's top trading partner in Africa: Ambassador Louis Dumas    Hope Givers Foundation honours Egyptologist Ali Abu Dashish    EJB forms new board, pledges to support national economy    Travel bans due to Omicron "hammer blow" to South Africa's local economy recovery: official    Egypt celebrates Day of Mediterranean    MICO entertainment platform enters Egyptian market    Health Ministry advises public to adhere to protective measures to tackle Omicron variant    Art D'Egypte concludes 4th contemporary art exhibition "Forever is Now" at Giza Plateau    Austrian Cultural Forum in Cairo to launch exhibition highlighting Arab-Austrian ties    Egypt, Israel sign deal sign MoU to increase gas supplies, hydrogen transport    Egypt's stocks end week in green as benchmark EWX 30 surges 0.69%    Mortada Mansour sets road map for Zamalek, after normalization committee depart    I seek to secure stable financial sources to build strong judo team: Motei Fakhr El-Din    Egyptian karate players dazzle world in UAE    Orascom Construction joins consortium to develop Egypt's first green hydrogen production facility    Egypt's high committee to organise COP27 convenes to review preparations    98 potential candidates run for Libyan presidency    'Lake Victoria – Mediterranean' navigation corridor awaits feasibility studies, funds: official    Egypt's trade with Nile basin countries climbs 26% y-o-y in 9 months    Palestine's Foreign Ministry rejects UK's decision to designate Hamas as terror group    Egypt selected to host COP27 international climate conference in 2022    Number of British tourists to Egypt seen hitting 500,000 this winter – envoy    The unvaccinated prohibited from entry to Egypt state institutions starting December 1    Egypt, Greece ink deal for first subsea power link between Europe and Africa    SCOHRE sparks discussion on harm reduction, tobacco control    Egypt to receive first of six high-trains from Spain's Talgo in mid-November    Egypt's iron and steel exports jump 197% in 8 months    Ethiopia halts work at its embassy in Egypt for 'economic reasons'    It's a bit frustrating to draw at home: Real Madrid keeper after Villarreal game    Russia says it's in sync with US, China, Pakistan on Taliban    Shoukry reviews with Guterres Egypt's efforts to achieve SDGs, promote human rights    Sudan says countries must cooperate on vaccines    Johnson & Johnson: Second shot boosts antibodies and protection against COVID-19    Egypt to tax bloggers, YouTubers    Egypt's FM asserts importance of stability in Libya, holding elections as scheduled    Brazil calls up 8 EPL players for World Cup qualifying    We mustn't lose touch: Muller after Bayern win in Bundesliga    Egypt records 36 new deaths from Covid-19, highest since mid June    Egypt sells $3 bln US-dollar dominated eurobonds    Sisi calls on House, Senate to commence second legislative sessions on 3, 5 October    Gamal Hanafy's ceramic exhibition at Gezira Arts Centre is a must go    Italian Institute Director Davide Scalmani presents activities of the Cairo Institute for ITALIANA.IT platform    Qa'a play showing at Lycee El Horreya Theatre, Alexandria is a must go    APO Group enters new exclusive agreement with Getty Images on African press releases and images    On International Museum Day, Egypt opens two new museums at Cairo Airport    Old Cairo's Al-Fustat will be revamped on Egyptian President's directives    







Thank you for reporting!
This image will be automatically disabled when it gets reported by several people.



Esna restoration begins
Published in Al-Ahram Weekly on 13 - 12 - 2018

In the small town of Esna almost 50km south of Luxor stands the Esna Temple dedicated to the god of the Nile Khnum with its distinguished architecture and wall paintings, reports Nevine El-Aref.
Its history goes back to prehistoric times, although Esna was first mentioned in the pharaoh Thutmose III's annals when it was part of the Upper Egyptian region extending from Al-Kab in the north to Armant south of Luxor.
During the Ancient Egyptian Middle Kingdom, Esna was an important centre for trade, as it was the focal point of convoys from Sudan going to Thebes. During the Graeco-Roman period, Esna was called Latopolis in honour of the Nile perch that was worshipped there.
In 1971, a necropolis dedicated to the Nile perch was uncovered west of the town.
The Esna Temple is one of the most important archaeological sites in the town and goes back to the reign of the 18th-Dynasty Pharaoh Thutmose III and was built on the remains of a Saite temple.
The present temple dates from the Graeco-Roman period when the town of Esna was the capital of the third district of Upper Egypt.
Although it was originally dedicated to the god Khnum, the Temple was also dedicated to other deities, including Neith, the goddess of war and weaving, Heka, the personification of magic, Satet, the goddess of the Nile, and Menhet, the lion goddess who was the wife of Khnum.
Engravings and paintings on the temple walls
The temple consists of a hypostyle hall and chamber as well as a sanctuary and a gallery. It was built almost nine metres below ground level and was uncovered in 1843 during the reign of the khedive Mohamed Ali.
Earlier the area had hosted French soldiers during the French Expedition to Egypt in 1799. “The names of some of the soldiers are engraved on the upper surface of the Temple,” Director of the Antiquities Documentation Centre (ADC) Hisham Al-Leithi said.
Although some masonry blocks indicate that the Temple was constructed during the reign of Thuthmosis III, it was reused in later periods.
The oldest complete part of the Temple is on the west side where the back wall of the hypostyle hall, built during the Ptolemaic period, features depictions of Ptolemy VI Philometer and Ptolemy VIII Euergetes.
The rest of the building was built by Roman emperors from Claudius to Decius.
The roof of the hypostyle hall is supported by 24 columns with beautifully carved and painted foliage capitals in different shapes and designs. The columns are decorated with texts describing religious festivals and depicting Roman emperors before the ancient Egyptian gods.
Among the most impressive is one depicting the emperor Trajan before the goddess Menhet.
On the northern wall of the hall an ancient Egyptian king is depicted catching wild birds to show him subduing evil spirits.
At the east corner there is a hymn to Khnum in which the name of the god is written using the hieroglyph of a crocodile. At the opposite corner the hymn is repeated but with the name of the god written with the more traditional ram's head.
Engravings and paintings on the temple walls
The decorations also include a number of calendars, and the ceiling is decorated with Egyptian astronomical figures on the northern side and Roman zodiacal signs on the southern side.
The earliest king mentioned is Ptolemy V, who is offered a libation by his son Ptolemy VII. The part of the temple we see today is around a quarter of the size of the original building.
The temple façade is constructed in the style of the period with the usual screen walls inset with columns.
The Ministry of Antiquities' restoration project includes the consolidation of the walls, the cleaning of the paintings and strengthening of their colours, the removing of bird deposits, and installing a new lighting system, said Mustafa Waziri, secretary-general of the Supreme Council of Antiquities.
The restoration work came after the completion of state-of-the-art documentation work in June 2017.
Al-Leithi told Al-Ahram Weekly that the documentation of the Esna Temple had started in 1993, but that it had stopped due to the high level of subterranean water that had leaked inside the temple at the beginning of the restoration work.


Clic here to read the story from its source.