February 12, 2012

The History of Philae Temples Facts

Philae 's Early History
In his journey , about 450 B.C., the Greek historian Herodotus stopped at Elephantine Island , four and a half miles below Philae , but he did not mention Philae. There was nothing remarkable about the region a that time. However , Strabo, the Roman geographer and historian (BC. 24), does mention the island.

Philae temples egypt - Ancient Egypt
The earliest architectural temple is that if King Nectanebo II (B.C. 350-341) of the XXX Dynasty. It was dedicated to Hathor, Isis m and the gods of Senmet ( Island of Bigeh) near at Band. At this time, there was the belief that Philae was one hallowed by the burial of one of the members of the mutilated body of Osiris . The island became the scene of one of the Osiris passion-Plays, Similar to those held at Abydos and elsewhere. The great shrine of Osiris at Abydos had, by this time , fallen into decay and its reputation transferred to Philae . This brought crowds of worshipers to the island . The temple was restored by Ptolemy II, Philadelphus (B.C 283-245) . It was originally supported by fourteen columns but only six Survive. These have floral capitals and sistrum capitals bearing Hathor head. The columns were united by stone screen six feet high having reliefs showing Nectanebo sacrificing to the gods. These columns are crowned with cavetto cornices and rows of uraei.

Close ti the Temple of Nectanebo Nectanebo, at the southern end of the east colonnade leading to the Temple of Isis , is the ruined Temple of Arsenuphis, the local incarnation of the ancient air-god Shu. The base of the Pronaos wall Survives with a procession of figures of the Nile god, Hapi. Remains of the reliefs show the builder of the temple Ptolemy IV, Philopator (B.C. 221-205) and Ptolemy V, Epiphanes (B.C.204-180) various deities.

The name Philae is a Greek equivalent for the ancient Egyptian "Pilak" meaning "the end" . This well identified this island in that it is at the southern most limit of Egypt. The Arabs called it "Kasr Anas el-Wogud," the ""Castle of Ans el-Wogud", after the hero of one the tales in The Thousand and One Nights. In the Egyptian version, this tale took place in Philae.

The tale relates : The king's son , Anas el-Wogud , fell in love with the vizier's daughter. She met him secretly until they were discovered through the imprudence of the maiden's servant. The vizier became angry and imprisoned his daughter in this far away island in a string castle ( the Temple if Isis) . Anas el-Wogud wandered far and wide in search if her and his travels showed kindness to the carious animals he met in his way. On reaching the riverbank opposite the island , he found that he was unable to cross the river because it was full of crocodiles. As he stood lamenting his fate, one of the crocodiles agreed ti carry him to the island on its back in gratitude for his previous kindness to his fellow animals . On his arrival , his sweetheart's birds assured him that she was on the island, but warned that he could not see her. Meanwhile, she descended from the window by means of a rope made from her clothes. A compassionate ship captain took her fro the island just before Anas arrived . After long search , the lovers found on another ad were married.

The Western Colonnade 
The Western of Philae Temples
The Western colonnade at the southern end of the island leads from the Temple of Nectanebo towards the Great Temple of Isis providing a remarkably beautiful approach to the temple 100 yards in length . It is one if the most attractive features of the island . The colonnade consists if thirty-two columns. These support portions of the roof which are decorated with stars and figures of vultures. The rear wall is well preserved and decorated with two rows of reliefs showing Clausius. Tiberius and Germanicus before carious gods; the rear windows overlook the river. The capitals of the columns are floral and palm-leafed showing great variety. Above them are impost blocks and architraves supporting a cavetto cornice . At right angles to the colonnade is a subterranean passage leading to the water. This was a Nilometer.

The Eastern Colonnade 
Eastern Colonnade of Philae Temples
The eastern colonnade leading from Temple of Arsenuphis was never finished . It has seventeen columns, but of these only six were completed. The remaining eleven are only roughhewn. Five doorways. Which were never decorated, are located in the rear wall. All five doors lead into a court in which stands the ruins of the small Temple of Mandulis ,a local form of the sun-god. near the great Temple of Isis a sixth for leads into the court of the small Temple of Imhotep, the vizier of King Zoser of the 3rd Dynasty. The Greeks equated him, under the name if Imouthes, with Asclepius, the Greek god of medicine. The door was leading into the temple is on the north side if the court showing Ptolemy V, Epiphanes before Imhotep on the left; and in the right , he appears before Osiris, Isis and Imhotep and the cataract triad, Khnum, Stet and Anuquet. The two Chambers beyond the door are undecorated. The temple was actually built by Ptolemy II, Philadelphus. Between it and the pylon of the Great Temple stands a fine gateway which is also the work of Ptolemy II, Philadelphus.

Web Search:
  • Temples of Philae Island
  • Temples of Philae Egypt
  • Temples of Philae at Aswan
  • Temples of Philae Tour
  • Philae 's Early History

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