Tall al-Amarna is the name of the archaeological site on the site of the Egyptian capital from the time of the heretic pharaoh Amenhotep IV – Echnatona. Today it is a desert plain surrounded on three sides by hills, on which the border steles were placed. Curiosity, which attracts tourists to this sun-scorched valley, is associated with romantic ideas about a great rebel and his beautiful wife and ignorance of the realities of Amarna.
The name of Tell el-Amarna (Tell el-Amarna) comes from the village of At-Till (el-Till – tall "little hill") and the inhabiting Bedouin tribe of Amarna. Egyptian Akhetaton ("Horizon of Aten") erected approx. 1350 r. p.n.e. on behalf of Amenhotep IV – Echnatona, followers of Aten, who chose a lonely place far from Thebes for his capital, where in a rocky depression, the sun was rising like a hieroglyph on the horizon. He ordered stelae to be carved at the borders, introducing you to the new god.
After the king's death, the center was abandoned after only a dozen or so years.
The sandy valley of Fr. 12 km long stretches along the Nile from north to south. It is separated from the river by arable land and rows of palm trees. City, despite the damage, it is relatively well preserved. It was to be completely unlike Thebes, and its temples with courtyards open to sunlight, the charitable work of Aton, they resisted the dark and mysterious temples of the old faith. Most buildings (temples and royal palaces) erected in 8. the year of Akhenaten's reign. Most – made of mud brick and specially prepared stone cubes, now known as smaller talatat, than in the previous Egyptian construction, which was easy and quick to arrange.
A straight and wide royal road was led through the city from the north to the south (8 km), today called Siqqat as-Sultan. The royal palaces rose to the west. Grand Palace, House of Pleasure in Akhetaton, it consisted of many courtyards, colonnades decorated with colossal statues of the king. Through the window of appearances, the royal family appeared to their subjects and handed out gold necklaces. A bridge connecting the Grand Palace with the Royal House was led over the road (on the eastern side of the road). The mud-brick palace has long since fallen apart. The Royal House was a more practical residence focused on representative functions. It contained a small palace with a courtyard and warehouses. The closest dignitaries of the pharaoh lived in the district in the center – the richest houses were on the royal road.
Administrative buildings rose in the center, such as the House of Life (Per-Anch), where they studied, e.g.. scribes. There was a huge royal archive with diplomatic correspondence, where in 1887 r. the first Tablets of Amarna were found. There was a small temple of Aten between the center and the southern districts (Hut-Aton), Court of Aten in Akhetaton. Perhaps it was the mortuary temple of the king, for it stood in line with his tomb, carved in the rocks of the desert wadi. Today, its place is marked by a single column. North of it was the Great Temple of Aten (Earthquake-Aton, Dom atona; visible outlines of the walls).
Other palaces and steles
North of the city center lay the northern district with the North Palace. It was the residence of Nefertiti, although the king's second-rate wife might also have lived here – Stick, and then the daughter of Nefertiti -Meritaton. Further north was a fortified villa – The North Palace on the River or Kasr (castle). Some consider it the main royal residence.
Most tourists are content only to visit the northern tombs. Remember to take a flashlight with you. Cut into the cliff 25 tombs. Six of them are situated on the northern side of Darb al-Malik, and further 19 on the south. It is best to take a guide with you - it will ensure safety.
Right at the entrance to Huji's tomb (EA1) shows the deceased adoring the solar disk, and beside it is the text of the Hymn to Aten. Huja lubjuja was the servant of Queen Teje, Akhenaten's mother, he was the King's Harem and Treasury Overseer. You can also see Nefertiti and Akhenaten and two seated princesses. Above the royal pair is Aten's sun disk with rays ending in small hands with the sign of life an anchor. Below are the girls playing during the feast, sacrificial table, servants and soldiers. Feasters drink wine. Then Akhenaten and Nefertiti listen to the messages from Reczen (Syria) and Kush. On the left, on the back wall, Akhenaten leans out of the appearance window and gives Hujo a golden necklace. On the other side, the manager presents the rewards received. At the end of the wall on the right is the Temple of the Sun with a great altar and statues.
On the right, the king, surrounded by guards, leads the queen-mother to her mortuary temple dedicated to Amenhotep III and Teje. A solar disk rises above them.
From the vestibule, the corridor leads to a transverse room with a funerary shaft in the corner, where the mummy of Huji was laid. Further on, there is a small chapel with paintings depicting the sacrifice. There is an unfinished statue of the deceased against the back wall.
The next burial place is the tomb of Mcrire Nefertiti, the royal scribe and overseer of the two vaults. To the left of the door on the outer wall, Akhenaten and Nefertiti sit under a canopy. Their three daughters are standing next to them.
On the north wall of the inner room to the right of the door, Merire is again standing under the appearance window (partially preserved colors). There is a character here, which part of scientists thinks is Smenkhkare, successor of Akhenaten, with his queen, probably the daughter of Akhenaten, Deserved.
Destroyed Ahmose's tomb (Jahmesa; EA3) it is most watched by tourists. Ahmose was the Friend at the Right Hand of the King, The servant of the state at Akhetaton and the royal scribe. His tomb is located in the southern part of the northern tombs.
The next monument is the tomb of Merire I (EA4), the high priest of Aten in Akhetaton and the Friend Standing at the Right Hand of the King, and also Father Merire II. The reliefs in the dark tomb are almost invisible. Some people's faces were destroyed by religious fanatics. A colorful cornice runs around the entrance.
A door decorated with floral motifs leads to the outer room. At the entrance, Merire and his wife Tenro are carved praying to Aten. On the left, Merire receives a golden chain from the royal family. Next, the royal family, accompanied by armed troops, sets off from the palace to the Great Temple of Aten. Akhenaten's face and Aten's symbols were forged. Further on, you can see the donation scenes, where the royal family stands in front of the temple with flags. On the other side, he worships Aton. Merire as high priest stands before the king. In the lower corner you can see blind beggars. The corridor leads to the inner hall, where Merire adores Aten is depicted. The scenes on the left are identical to those on the right. There is a view of the Great Temple here. Most of the reliefs have retained their original color.