Temple of Khonsu
The Tabernacle of Khonsu is a fine example of a temple for the New Kingdom, almost canonical form of the building, which by almost 500 the years were repeated by pharaohs and emperors. It was built by Ramses III, the last of the great pharaohs, but he only managed to build seven chapels encircling the four-column hall behind the sanctuary by barge. Ramesses IV and Ramesses IX participated in the construction, and also the high priest Herhor and Pinocchem. The tabernacle was dedicated to the moon god Khonsu. An alley of sphinxes and a colonnade lead to the pylon in front of the temple. On the facade of the pylon (height 18 m, thickness 7 m, length 34,5 m) there are four recesses for flagpoles. An informative inscription runs under the torus on the top, that the building was erected by the high priest of Amun, Pinodzem, son of Pianki. The wings of the pylon are covered with reliefs with ritual scenes from the time of Pinodjem.
The temple consisted of a peristyle courtyard surrounded by a portico 28 monolithic columns. On both sides, it stands in two rows of eight columns, and the rest just outside the hypostyle room. In the back wall of the peristyle is the gate of Ptolemy IV Philopator. The hypostyle hall consists of three main naves and two side aisles. The nave ceiling is supported by massive columns (7 m in height) with heads in the shape of an open papyrus canopy. Monolithic columns of aisles (5,5 m in height) they have flower bud-shaped capitals. The hall was connected by a central gate with a sanctuary on a barge. In the lower part you can see Christian crosses. The walls are covered with reliefs with the king making offerings, including. Amon-Re and Mut and the falconry Khonsu. On both sides there are two rooms with stairs to the roof. Through a Ptolemaic door, you enter a four-column pronaos with reliefs from Khonsu, Measure, Mut i Amon. The ceiling is supported by polygonal columns. From here you entered four sanctuaries (one dedicated to the death of Osiris).
A gate from the time of Ptolemy III led to the temple district (Bab al-Amara).
Temple of Opet
This little one, but an immensely important temple dedicated to the hippo goddess Opet (given, Apet, Ipy) rises to the west of the temple of Khonsu. Opet was a carer for women in labor.
Her tabernacle was built by Ptolemy VIII Euergetes II. This is the last great structure in Karnak. Wall decorations were ordered by many rulers, including Octavian Augustus, and though darkened by the smoke of torches, preserved in excellent condition. The temple was also used for Osirian rituals.
The entire complex is surrounded by a wall, inside which is the temple, kiosk, pylon and two courtyards and the main cult building. The Temple of Opet was connected to the Temple of Khonsu through Bab al-Amar, and more gates opened towards the temple of Amun. The entrance was in the back wall of the temple. Gate to the temple of Opet (6,6 m in height) it leads a long passage 12,5 m. The walls are covered with reliefs of King Nachnebef making sacrifices.
You can also see the cartouches of Ptolemy II and Ptolemy III. The main entrance is on the west, and at the eastern facade of the gate there is a small Osirian chapel.
The façade features reliefs from the times of Octavian Augustus. Behind Auguste stands Hapi, personification of the Nile.
In the first courtyard of the temple there is a four-column kiosk.
In the main building of the temple, a two-column room precedes the actual sanctuary. The four faces of the goddess Hathor are carved on the abacuses of the columns. From here it is close to the side sanctuary dedicated to the resurrection of Osiris. On the right is the southern sanctuary, and on the main axis, right outside the entrance, proper sanctuary. A well was carved in the floor, and at the back is a niche decorated with two forms of Opet.
Skansen (Open Air Museum) it stretches to the north of the Great Court of the Temple of Amun at Karnak (the entrance on the north side of the courtyard right through Pylon II).
To visit it, you need to buy an additional ticket (40 EGP). The facility exhibits works extracted from the 2nd and 3rd Pylon of the temple. Among the reconstructed monuments (2001) there is the so-called. Red Chapel from the times of Hatshepsut and Thotmes III.
When Amenhotep III decided to enlarge the temple by adding a new facade with two entrance pylons, ordered to throw in it many blocks from other monuments. This is how Pylon III was created. At the end of the 19th century. it was significantly damaged during the earthquake. W 1924 r. Pierre Lacau commissioned Henry Chevrier to repair the pylon. He decided to dismantle the damaged structure and reassemble it. Among the many blocks from the time of Amenhotep III he found 951 blocks from other buildings. Some of them have survived decorations. First, the White Chapel of Senuseret I was successfully reconstructed, and then the Red Chapel of Hatshepsut.
The Red Chapel I Iatshepsut is a barge chapel. It was erected on the base and with gray diorite frames, the walls are made of red quartzite from Jabal Ahmat (Red Mountains). Quartzite gave the chapel its name, and the ancient builders painted the tabernacle red. The building was built before Hatshepsut's death approx. 1483 r. p.n.e., and Thotmes III continued his work, but he did not finish them. Chapel (more than 17 m in length and 6 m wide) has three doors, leading to three rooms. The middle one was intended for the barge of the god Amun. The monument is covered with incredibly rich decorations, and the paintings were finished with gold paint. Many blocks are decorated with cartouches of Hatshepsut and Thotmes III and scenes from the feast of Opet.
The White Chapel of Senuseret I was the pavilion for the Sed Senuseret I festival. Chevrier undertook the reconstruction. This is one of the oldest buildings in Karnak, with numerous elements once covered with gold. This little one, the simple structure was built of Egyptian alabaster (kalcytu). A ramp leads to the interior of the rectangular chapel on the platform. Supports the ceiling 12 rectangular pillars decorated with reliefs depicting the nomads of Egypt. Between them there is a low wall with a decorated balustrade. The reliefs inside the chapel represent Senuseret I in front of Amon-Re identified with Min.
Chevrier also reconstructed the chapel on Amenhotep I's barge (in the northern part of the open-air museum). You can also watch, among others. the statues of Sekhmet from the district of Mut.