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You are here : Home > Pictures and tips for a good travel > Egypt > Temple of Karnak

Karnak temple


The temple of Karnak

Karnak. A map of the temple.-1800 b.C.
The temple is built on two main axis which follow the sun from East to West and from North to South. It's surrounded by 2 enclosures, a brick wall and a moat full of water.
The entrance wall is 36 m high and it's called pylon; it's indicative of the temples built along the Nile. It's an architectural element which we find also in Luxor.
The temple was discovered during the expedition of Napoleon in 1898 by Pierre De Rosette, who was also the autor of the first edition of a scientific map in 9 volumes of the site.
The temple is 1 km long, counting from the pylon ( which means the entrance) to the sacred lake ..


Karnak 2 Arrival in the site.


Karnak 3 /1 Path of androcephalus sphinx , sphinx with ram-head (it symbolizes the strenght).

Karnak 3/2 When it was discovered, the temple was stuck in the sand for about 30 metres, and this as a pieces of evidence there's the drawing of a latin cross on the top of the entrance pylon.

Karnak 3/3 View on the system for the construction of the pylon. They built a brick wall scaffolding to reach the right highness. There's a system of stairs leaned against the wall to transport the stones at 36 m high.


Karnak 4/1 In 332 b.C. Alexandre the Great completes the temple with the construction of the pylon and the East-Western enclosure.
During the 2nd dynasty Ramses III suffers the first strikes in the construction of the temple, and these will last until the end of the egyptian empire. Consequently, they built the Amon temple (veneration of the Sun God) in the same enclosure. This changement will lead this polytheistic population to rebel, cause the belief was becoming monotheistic !
Besides, the system for the construction of the temples start to consider the route of the sun. It's built as a hidden pyramid: the more you get into the temple,the more the ceiling lows.The sun was supposed to enter in the temple and to regenerate the idol.
The temple devoted to Amon hosts 5000 solid gold statues with reliefs adorned with precious stones.
The main quarry in Assuan, at 200 km from Karnak, permitted to ship the pink granit along the Nile.






Karnak 4/3, 5/3 & 6/1/2/3 Hypostyle room with 134 columns.

Karnak 6 Hypostyle room with different capitals (head-dress of the column). Egypt takes inspiration from the nature, so the capitals have the shape either of a palm leaf (palmiform), or lotus (lotiform) or papyrus (papyriform).
Karnak 6/1 Column surmounted from a palmiform capital.
Karnak 6/2 Column surmounted from a lotiform capital.
Karnak 6/3 System of construction columnes + beams.



Karnak 5/1 The hollow fiber cartridge permitted to engrave the stone not to let the mark be deleted, otherwise the kings were represented in relief.

Karnak5_2.jpg Karnak7_3.jpg



Karnak7_1.jpg Karnak7_2.jpg



Karnak 8/1/2 Second hypostyle room.






Karnak 11 Temple of Amon








Karnak 13/1&2 They're still making excavations on the seems that there's still something to discover there !






Karnak 14 Karnak was a temple of worship which permitted the travel of the dead's body trough the eternal life. Here's represented the Sycomore tree with its very long roots, which is the symbol of this q passage.
The frog is the symbol of the longevity and it represents a very long reign.
The cross of the life is the symbol of the power.


Karnak 10 The obelisk symbolizes the egiptian cult of the sun; it's the symbol of the prosperity( sex in erection). These are 31m high and they 330 tonnes weight. The biggest is 42m high and 1000 tonnes weight.

Coloured relief . Natural pigment made with flowers, ink, ground.

During the reign of Ramsès III the temple hosted 80 000 priests



Karnak 15 Sacred lake.





The Sound & Light show.

The Sound & Light show is proposed to you on the way back.

Tips : Don't forget a sensitive film. I had a 800 asa film...and it wasn't enough, as you can see from the results!!!

The aim of the show is to bring you from the entrance of the temple until the sacred lake, where there are some estrades to see the best moment of the show….a description of the atmosphere which was inside the temple…..i had the impressionto fell the incenses burn ….while i was surrounded from the music …
UNFORGETTABLE INFORMATION. it costs15Euros per pers. Children fares.




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Posté le 2013-02-01
this site is so awesome
Posté le 2012-03-27
Very interesting review. Thank you.
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