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Abul Simbel

In the 1960's the two Temples at Abul Simbel were threatened to be swallowed by the waters of Lake Nasser. Their preservation by Unesco must be one of the greatest engineering achievemenst of our time. Almost as great as the original building the temples by Ramases II over 3000 years ago.

The Great Temple of Ramses II was dedicated to the gods Ra-Harakhty, Amun and Ptah and to the self appointed God Rameses II himself. while the smaller temple of Hathor was dedicated to the cow-headed goddess of love and built in honour of Ramases' favourite wife, Queen Nefertari.

 

 

These temples were carved out of the mountain on the west bank of the Nile between 1290 and 1224 BC. By the did 1800's, the sandstone cliff face and temples were all but covered in sand. Although they were partially cleared many times, it wasn't until the British began excavating around the turn of the century (1900) that their full glory was revealed.