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Capital, Mammisi, Dendera The impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Ra-Harakhte as Falcon, Dendera The impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Khnum creates Ihy for Hathor & Thoth, Dendera Unfinished relief inside the Roman Mammisi at Dendera. Much of the rich carving was never finished, particularly these panels within the colonnade. The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Mammisi, Dendera The impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Mammisi, Dendera The impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Mammisi, Dendera The impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Mammisi, Dendera The impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Mammisi, Dendera The impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Mammisi, Dendera The impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Heh Deities, Mammisi, Dendera The impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Hathor Faces, Mammisi, Dendera The impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Hathor & Horus, Mammisi, Dendera The impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Hieroglyphs, Mammisi, Dendera The impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Ankhs holding Was Sceptres, Dendera The impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Capital, Mammisi, Dendera The impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Offerings to Hathor, Mammisi, Dendera The impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Trajan makes Offering, Dendera Relief panel from the impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period, these scenes depicting Emperor Trajan in Egyptian guise making offerings to Hathor. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Harpokrates, Dendera Relief panel from the impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period, these scenes depicting Emperor Trajan in Egyptian guise making offerings to Hathor. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Harpokrates, Dendera Relief panel from the impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period, these scenes depicting Emperor Trajan in Egyptian guise making offerings to Hathor. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Hathor suckles Ihy, Dendera Relief panel from the impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period, these scenes depicting Emperor Trajan in Egyptian guise making offerings to Hathor. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Emperor Trajan, Dendera Relief panel from the impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period, these scenes depicting Emperor Trajan in Egyptian guise making offerings to Hathor. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Hathor, Dendera Relief panel from the impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period, these scenes depicting Emperor Trajan in Egyptian guise making offerings to Hathor. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Ra Harakhte, Dendera Relief panel from the impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period, these scenes depicting Emperor Trajan in Egyptian guise making offerings to Hathor. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Emperor Trajan, Dendera Relief panel from the impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period, these scenes depicting Emperor Trajan in Egyptian guise making offerings to Hathor. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Trajan offers to Hathor, Ihy & Harpokrates, Dendera Relief panel from the impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period, these scenes depicting Emperor Trajan in Egyptian guise making offerings to Hathor. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Trajan offers to Hathor, Ihy & Harpokrates, Dendera Relief panel from the impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period, these scenes depicting Emperor Trajan in Egyptian guise making offerings to Hathor. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Trajan offers to Hathor, Ihy & Harpokrates, Dendera Relief panel from the impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period, these scenes depicting Emperor Trajan in Egyptian guise making offerings to Hathor. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Decorated Facade, Mammisi, Dendera The impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Unfinished Facade, Mammisi, Dendera The impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Mammisi, Dendera The impressive mammisi at Dendera dating mainly to the Roman period. Much of the rich external carving was never finished, but on the south side it is fairly complete and in good condition (aside from the defaced Bes figures above the capitals). The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Ruined Portal, Dendera The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Ihy holding Sistrum, Dendera Blocks with fragments of carved relief can be seen re-used in the footings of later structures such as the mammisi and Coptic church. The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Reused Relief Blocks, Dendera Blocks with fragments of carved relief can be seen re-used in the footings of later structures such as the mammisi and Coptic church. The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Reused Relief Blocks, Dendera Blocks with fragments of carved relief can be seen re-used in the footings of later structures such as the mammisi and Coptic church. The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Khnum fashions Ihy, Dendera The ram-headed god Khnum fashions the bodies of men on his potter's wheel assisted by the frog goddess, Heket. Detail of a wall relief in the mammisi of Nectanebo II. The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Ram God Khnum, Dendera Detail of the mammisi of Nectanebo II at Dendera. The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Frog Goddess Heket, Dendera Detail of the mammisi of Nectanebo II at Dendera. The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Hathor & Khnum, Dendera The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Hathor suckles Ihy, Dendera Detail of the mammisi of Nectanebo II at Dendera. The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Hathor, Seshat & Ra, Dendera Detail of the mammisi of Nectanebo II at Dendera. The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Khnum fashions Ihy aided by Heket, Dendera The ram-headed god Khnum fashions the bodies of men on his potter's wheel assisted by the frog goddess, Heket. Detail of a wall relief in the mammisi of Nectanebo II. The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex
Ankh Decoration, Dendera Detail of the mammisi of Nectanebo II at Dendera. The Temple of Hathor at Dendera is one of Egypt's best preserved and most beautiful ancient shrines. This magnificent edifice dates to the Ptolemaic period, late in Egyptian history, though the site long had been the cult centre for the goddess Hathor for centuries before (the earliest extant remains date to c360BC but a temple is recorded here as far back as c2250BC). Most of the main building dates to the reigns of the last Cleopatras and further decoration and building work within the complex continued in the Roman period up to the reign of Trajan. The dominant structure in the complex is the Temple of Hathor, an enormous structure with a rectangular facade punctuated by the Hathor-headed columns of the hypostyle hall within. This hall is an architectural wonder, a masterpiece of ancient Egyptian design and decoration, which covers every surface and has been recently cleaned, revealing a superb astrological ceiling in all its original vibrant colours. Sadly there was much iconoclasm here during the early Christian period and most of the reliefs of the walls and pillars have been defaced. Worse still is the damage to the 24 Hathor-head capitals: not one of the nearly a hundred huge faces of the goddess that once smiled down on this hall has been left unblemished, most with their features cruelly chiselled away. The main temple building is otherwise structurally intact, and extends into further halls and chapels beyond, again with much relief decoration (much of which is again defaced). In one corner is an entrance to a crypt below, an unusual feature in Egyptian temple architecture consisting of several narrow passages adorned with carved relief decoration in good condition. There are further sanctuaries and chapels above on the roof of the temple, accessed by a decorated staircase and including the room where the famous Dendera Zodiac was formerly located (today its place in the ceiling taken by a cast of the original, now displayed in Paris). The highest part of the roof complex is no longer accessible to tourists, but I can still recall making the ascent there on our first visit in 1992. Several other buildings surround the main temple, the most impressive of which is the mammisi or 'birth-house'. This consists of a large rectangluar hall surrounded by a colonnade near the entrance to the site and has some well preserved relief decoration on its exterior. Most of this structure dates to the Roman period, but the ruins of its predecessor built under Nectanebo II (Egypt's last native pharoah) stand nearby. Dendera temple is one of the most rewarding in Egypt and shouldn't be missed. It is one of the most complete and evocative ancient monuments in the country and its recent restoration has revealed a surprisingly extensive amount of colour surviving within (we were amazed by the dramatic contrast with the soot-blackened ceiling we'd beheld on our previous visit in the 1990s). Despite its relative youth (in Egyptian terms at least!) it is easily one of my favourite sites in Egypt. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dendera_Temple_complex

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