July 27, 2012

Hall of Records and Sanctuary | Temple Of Amon At Karnak

Hall of Records, Sanctuary
The granite gateway of the sixth pylon was restored by Seti I and as we pass through it we enter what has become known as the Hall of Records of Thutmose III. These were the state records made by the priests of the temple to detail the sources of gifts and booty received by them. Of course, following Thutmose’s military victories, Karnak was now increasingly filled with gold and silver treasures from far a field, as well as with magnificent bronze weapons of war and furniture of ivory and ebony.

Hall of Records
The most characteristic feature of this Hall of Records are the two stately granite pillars («), one bearing the lotus of Upper Egypt and the other the papyrus of Lower Egypt in high relief. These rather unusual twin symbols emphasise that the unity of the two lands, formed and broken many times in their long history, was intact in the 18th Dynasty.

Beyond is the Boat Shrine (p) comprising two chambers. It is of pink granite and was constructed by the half-brother of Alexander the Great, Philip Arrhidaeus, on the site of an earlier chamber. The walls are finely carved and coloured; the reliefs on the upper reaches of the wall still retain their colour. On the outer wall of the shrine on the right-hand side (q) is a superb relief in excellent condition of Philip being crowned and presented to the gods (above) and of the festal barges of Amon being carried in priestly procession (below). On the left-hand outer wall of the shrine are the Annals of Thutmose III, depicting the cities and tribes subdued in his military campaigns.

The sanctuary that housed the sacred statue was in the large open space to the east where there are very scanty remains of Middle Kingdom structures. These include a huge alabaster base on which the sanctuary containing the gilded statue of Amon was placed.

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