"High and mighty Hatshepsut's temple" Temple of Hatshepsut Tip by Tijavi
Temple of Hatshepsut, Luxor: 91 reviews and 227 photos
More than the Hollywood-glamorized Cleopatra VII (yes, there were seven of them), Hatshepsut represented the apex of female supremacy in ancient Egypt. She became pharaoh herself following the death of her husband and half-brother Tuthmosis II, much to her stepson's anguish - who later became Tuthmosis III.
Hatshepsut's 20-year reign was marked by peace and prosperity. She died of mysterious circumstances - many say on orders of Tuthmosis III - in 1458 BC.
THEY'VE FOUND HER! The antiquities authorities in Cairo have announced on 27 June 2007 that they have identified a once-overlooked mummy found in the Valley of the Kings to be that of Hatshepsut's. The event was regarded as the most significant since the discovery of Tutankhamun's tomb in 1922. Finally, Egypt's greatest female pharaoh has been given her fair share of fame and limelight, although those harboring images of a svelte, goddess-like Hatshepsut would be dismayed to know that she died an obese woman suffering from diabetes and liver cancer. Hail Hatshepsut!
Her temple at Deir al-Bahri, on Luxor's West Bank, reflects her glorious reign. The terraced facade set against a backdrop of sheer limestone cliffs is as dramatic it could be. From afar and up close, the temple seamlessly merges with the surrounding cliffs. The intricate reliefs on the temple walls are clearly the work of skilled artisans. Most of the reliefs and statues had been beautifully-preserved, although most of those referring to Hatshepsut had been vandalized by Tuthmosis III (as an act of vengeance) and subsequently by the early Christians.
As it stands today, Hatshepsut's temple is one of finest monuments in all Egypt. One could only imagine how more regal it would had been during ancient times when it was surrounded by landscaped gardens of exotic plants and trees with the causeway leading to the entrance lined with stately sphinxes.
Address: Luxor West Bank
Directions: My visit was part of an organized Nile cruise. Solo travelers could hire taxis for a day at about EGP 120 as of May 2007.
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