HISTORY OF EGYPTIAN ARCHITECTURE
DEIR EL-BAHARI No.1
: Deir El-Bahari; Mortuary Temple of Hatshepsut (18th Dinasty, B.C. 1490-1468) and Mentuhotep II,III (11th Dinasty, B.C.2061-1998), Thebes, Egypt
- For Thebes, the early Eighteenth Dynasty was a genuinely creative period in architecture. The most important building of this period, surpassing all others in originality and boldness of conception, is the terraced temple of Queen Hatshepsut on the cliff valley at Deir el Bahari.
Deir el Bahari was named from the Christian monastery called "northern monastery" that once nestled among the ruins.
- In Deir el Bahari the mortuary temple of Mentuhotep II (11th Dynasty) and the mortuary temple of Hatshepsut (18th Dynasty) are preserved. In 1962, the temple which had been constructed by Hatshepsut for her father Tuthmosis I (Thot-Mosis I) and herself was found between two temples.
- The complex of the mortuary temple of Hatshepsut is a remarkable example of the aesthetic adaptation of a building to its natural setting.
It is the work of the architect Senmut, the queen's favorite, and it shows a solution that takes over from the earlier model only the outward-directed effect of its open galleries and additional influences from Twelfth Dynasty architecture of the Upper Egyptian nomarchs' tombs, with their numerous terraces clinging to the cliffs.
- The temple at Deir el Bahari served not only for her own funerary cult and that of her father Tuthmosis I and of her husband Tuthmosis II but was also dedicated to the cults of Amon, her divine begetter, and other gods.
- The rock-tomb of her was built by Architect Hapuseneb at the Valley of the Kings ( not the Queens!) 500m far from here with the rock-tomb of Tuthmosis I. Queen Hatshepsut was a special queen.
- The Mortuary Temple of Queen Hatshepsut, seen from The first terrace.
- The design of the temple of Hatshepsut, called Djeser Djeseru or "the most magnificent of the magnificent" by the ancient Egyptians, is unique and avant-garde in Egyptian architecture.
The temple, which faces eastwards, has a series of vast terraces continuing ochre-coloured mountain.
- An avenue of sphinxes which must reach to the valley temple 1km far from the temple provided access to the first terrace (forecourt).
The first terrace is enclosed on the far side by a portico consisiting of 22 pillars and flanked by two Osiris pillers.
The broad court was planted with palm trees and grapevines. In front of the main structure ponds fringed with papyrus were laid out on either side of the center axis.
- Central ramps lead to the second terrace, 8m high from first terrace, and buttressing walls are faced with colonnades of square pillars.
- The second ramp leads to the uppermost terrace.
- Ancient Architecture; Architecture of Egypt by Hans Wolfgang Muller, Harry N.Abrams, Inc., Publishers, New York
- Luxor; by Casa Editrice Bonechi, Florence, Italy
Photo: Shoji Hiramatsu
[No.1]Temple of Hatshepsut; Scenic view
[No.2]Temple of Hatshepsut; Facade, Third terrace.
[No.3]Temple of Hatshepsut; Second terrace south wing
[No.4]Temple of Hatshepsut; Interior of second terrace nouth wing
[No.5]Temple of Hatshepsut; Anubis chapel, Hathor chapel
[No.6]Temple of Mentuhotep II
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