Sunday, March 25, 2007

Luxor Temple

this is the way to Luxor temple.. or might i say temple complex.. this is our first stop in the worshipping a god temple.. the one the day before was for a pharoh.. not gods.. so let me tell you a little bit about this temple complex.. temples were routinely added on to by the ruler of the day .. this complex i do believe was about a dozen temples together.. there were many interesting things to be seen here ...also .. the nile used to flood and deposit silt and then re flood and take it away .. sometimes this could take years between .. so this temple complex was very interesting in that there were actually mosques built on top of parts of this temple because people were unaware there was actually MORE underneath.. so when we had our tour these mosques were about 25 to 30 foot in the air.. they looked out of place in the context we saw them in but of course when they were built they were steeet level.. i think i am getting ahead of myself .. but file these thoughts..

typically the the outside entrance to the temple had a pilon in front.. that is the two high walls you see.. and usually there was an oblesik of some sort as well .. temples were actually built from the back forward .. the pilon being the last thing erected.. and the holiest of rooms where they kept the statues of the gods they were worshipping were built first..

this is the pilon as the sun was going down.. they lighted the temple nicely for night.. as the sun went down the shots got more interesting...

as we entered the temple .. if you looked to the left you saw this avenue of sphinxes.. this avenue at one time connected the temple at luxor and the temple of karnak.. i do believe our guide said this would have been about a mile of sphinxes.. on each side of the road..

here is another shot as the sun was going down

as we entered the temple we were met with a room of columns which was typical of all temples of this time .. about 3000 years ago .. maybe a little less..

there were of course a few of these "columned rooms" in this temple because we were on a complex.. each temple had its own..

another interesting thing about this temple and most others is.. when the nile would flood.. it would deposit silt in these places and stay there for years and years and years.. and because of this.. the floors were raised many feet above the real floor..sometimes 20 or 30.. so new things were built on top of the temples because they were really unaware of every thing underneath.. this mosque is a prime example of this.. there were also graffitis left on the columns that support this.. these are carved high in the columns.. and of course when the nile flooded after all those years.. it washed the silt floor back away leaving these things high in the air ..

also later when the religion of the ancient egyptians was abandoned.. the christians would take these temples and use them as churches.. as a result.. you can see some of the frescoes they put over the ancient glyphs.. and carvings.. and these frescoes served double duty.. they depicted christian scenes but also preserved what was underneath..

so on the way back to the boat .. we passed many cute shops like this .. some designer.. like the gucci you see... in the foreground.. some jewelers .. etc..these were the hassle free fixed price shops .. and after a long day it was nice not to have to haggle for anything.. we bought some water .. and i bought a Stella beer.. i had to try it since it was brewed in egypt.. it was a half liter beer and fairly good.. it had a kind of heinekein-y taste but lighter.. also on the way back we saw.. a small two lane bowling alley and of course we had to stop and take pictures.. it was only two little lanes but really nice ..

so needless to say when we finally hit the boat at about 10.30...after a little bit of shopping and all that sight seeing.. i went up on the top deck.. drank my beer. and did some crocheting.. jessica went to the room and passed out.. after my beer and some nice night air i did the same.. we had Karnak the next day .. and out of all the places we went .. the enormity of this place amazed me.. more on that later ..

posted by ThreeOliveMartini @ Sunday, March 25, 2007  


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