History Embalmed

Egyptian Temples

Ancient Egyptian Temples were believed to be the dwelling places of the Egyptian Gods. Only the Pharaoh and the Priests were allowed inside the temples and the priests would undergo ritual purification in a deep stone pool before they entered the Inner Sanctum of the Temples. This not only cleansed them but also gave them contact with the primeval moisture of life. Ordinary Egyptians were only allowed to come to the gates, or forecourt, of the temples to pay homage and offer gifts to the Gods. The Priests would collect the gifts and say prayers on behalf of the person in the confines of the temples.

The priests would conduct ceremonies, sacrifices and chant magical incantations, sometimes referred to as spells. The temples would consist of heavy gates which accessed a massive hall with great stone columns, and then a series of many other rooms through which processions of priests would pass. These rooms, or chambers, were lit by candles and incense would be burnt to purify the air of the Temples. The chambers gradually decreased in size, the lighting in the temples was deliberately and significantly reduced to create an atmosphere of deepening mystery until the priests reached the chapel and the shrine which contained the Naos. The Naos was the stone tabernacle inside the shrine which housed a great statue to the god to whom the temple was dedicated.

Famous Ancient Egyptian Temples
The most famous Ancient Egyptian Temples include the following:

  • Luxor - The Temple of Luxor built by Amenhotep III and Ramses II dedicated to the gods Amun Ra and Horus
  • West bank of Luxor - the temple at Deir el Bahari - The mortuary temple of Hatshepsut was built by the Great Steward of Amun who was called Sennemut dedicated to the god Amun
  • Karnak - The most famous temple at Karnak is the Temple of Amun. Originally the temples at Karnak and Luxor were connected with a two-mile avenue of sphinxes
  • Abu Simbel - The most famous temples at Abu Simbel are the Temples of Ramses and Nefertiti
  • Agilika Island - Temples of Philae built by the Ptolemaic pharaohs
    Edfu - The Temple of Horus built by the Ptolemaic pharaohs and dedicated to the god Horus
  • Kom-Ombo - The Temple of Kom-Ombo built by Ptolemy VI dedicated to the god Sobek

List of Famous Ancient Egyptian Temples
The following list of Ancient Egyptian Temples contains details of the temple, the Pharaoh builders and the gods who were worshipped at them.

Location of Temple
  Name of Temple
  Pharaoh Builder
  Egyptian God
Abu Simbel, Nubia
  Temple of Ramses, beloved of Amun
  Pharaoh Ramses II
  Amon Ra ( aka Amun)
Abu Simbel, Nubia
  The Temple of Nefertari dedicated to the goddess
  Pharaoh Ramses II built this temple in honor of his wife Nefertiti
Amarna, the city of Akhenaten
  Great Aten Temple at Amarna ( destroyed after the death of the Akhenaten, the heretic )
  Pharaoh Akhenaten
  Temple of the Oracle
  Pharaoh Ahmose II
Bahariya Oasis
  Temple of Alexander the Great
  Alexander the Great
  Amun and Horus
Bahariya Oasis
  Temple of Bes
  Temple of Amada
  Pharaoh Tuthmosis III
  Temple of Thoth (Dakka)
  House of Ptah
  Ramesses II
South of the High Aswan Dam in ancient Nubia
  Temple of Wadi al-Sabua aka House of Amun
  Ramesses II
  Temple of Luxor
  Amenhotep III and Ramses II
  Amun Ra, Horus
Thebes, West bank of Luxor
  Mortuary Temple of Amenhotep III
  Amenhotep III
  Amun, Ptah and Osiris
Thebes, West bank of Luxor - the temple at Deir el Bahari
  Mortuary Temple of Queen Hatshepsut
  Queen Hatshepsut
West bank of Luxor
  Mortuary Temple of Mentuhotep II
  Pharaoh Mentuhotep II
West bank of Luxor
  The Ramessuem
  Pharaoh Ramses II
West bank of Luxor
  The Temple of Millions of Years
  Pharaoh Seti I
  Amun Ra
  Mortuary Temple of Merenptah
  Pharaoh Merenptah
Dendera, north of Luxor
  Temple of Hathor
  Temples of Mut, Montu and Amun
  See below
  Great Temple of Amun
  Several Pharaohs incl. Ramses II and Seti
  Temple of Montu
  Tutmosis I
  Amun, Osiris
  Temple of Mut
  Amenhotep III and others
  Moon Goddess Mut
Kharga Oasis, Al Wadi Al Gadeed
  Temple of Al-Ghuwaytah
  Ptolemy III, IV and X
  Amun, Mut and Khonsu
Dakhla Oasis
  Deir al-Hagar Temple
  Roman Emperor Nero
  Amun, Mut and Khonsu and Seth
Kharga Oasis
  Temple of Hibis
  Darius I & Apries (Haaibre)
  Amun, Mut and Khonsu
  Temple of Horus
  Ptolemaic pharaohs
Kom-Ombo, north of Aswan
  Temple of Kom-Ombo
  Ptolemy VI
  Temple of Khnum
  Tuthmosis III
Tanis (San El-Hagar)
  Complex of Temples
  Several Pharaohs
  Amun, Mut and Khonsu
  Temple of Osiris
  Ramesses II
  Temple of Seti I
  Seti I
  Osiris, Isis & Ptah
Agilika Island
  Temples of Philae
  Ptolemaic pharaohs
  Isis, Osiris & Horus
Medinet Habu
  Temple of Ramesses III
  Ramesses III

Egyptian Temples
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Ancient Egypt

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