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Temple of Isis in Philae

 
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anneke
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 6:06 pm    Post subject: Temple of Isis in Philae Reply with quote

Not sure why I was wondering about this Smile
But apparently the temple of Isis in Philae was the last temple to still function in AE. It seems to have closed in 551 AD.
It would have continued to attract visitors from around the Roman world.

I thought that was pretty interesting actually. There are other temples on the island, right? Were they just seen as archaic remnants from years past towards the end?

I will have to look around and see what is written by visitors from the 5th and 6th century AD. It would still have been cool to see an Egyptian temple in full swing.
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Osiris II
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2009 10:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Actually, anneke, all of the temples on Philae were built in honor if Isis and her various incarnations, including Hathor.
You might find this, from touregypt, interesting.
I don't think many today realize that there is no island of Philae anymore.

http://www.touregypt.net/featurestories/Philae.htm
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anneke
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 07, 2009 1:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's a great (series) of articles Osiris Smile Well illustrated too.

One of the paintings (on page 4) shows the temple many years ago with some of the color still on it. It must have been a magnificent sight.

It's interesting to read that the main Deity is Isis, but that there is mention of not only Osiris and Horus and Nephtys (her family), but also gods like Thoth and Amun.
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kmt_sesh
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 08, 2009 5:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Philae is an interesting site. Of course, the real Philae is now under the waters of Lake Nassir. It was all relocated and set up again on the nearby island of Agilkia.

I once tagged a bunch of the structures in Google Earth, and here's the image:



You're right about its status, anneke. Until Emperor Justinian closed this temple, it was the last one of pagan tradition still operating in Egypt. Christianity was already gaining a strong foothold.

There are actually quite a few structures on the island. The focus is the temple of Isis, along with its associated structures like the Mamissi (Birth House) and a number of things built by earlier Roman emperors, including Diocletian's Gate, Temple of Augustus, Hadrian's Gate, and Trajan's Kiosk.

But in common traditional style there were a couple of temples honoring other deities, including Hathor and Horus. There was also a small temple erected there for a minor Nubian god named Arensnuphis, and a chapel in honor of none other than Imhotep.

Near Hadrian's Gate is the Aswan Nilometer. At the southern tip of the island is the oldest structure, the kiosk of Nectanebo I (Dynasty 30).

It must have been a busy and bustling place in its day. There were few temples ever built strictly in honor of Isis, but recall how popular this goddess became in Rome, so it's not all that surprising that this temple lasted so long.
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Ranoferhotep
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 02, 2010 11:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

As I recall there was also one of the oldest Coptic churches on the island. I believe it was located between the main temple and temple of Augustus. The existing original Coptic church, which was built before the temple got closed was at the time when they moved the complex so ruined that the movers decided not to move it, also due to lack of time.

The main temple was not really closed in 551 AD. The cult of Isis and other Godís got forbidden, but the main temple was transformed in to a church also. Evidence off that we can seen on different reliefs, were the Copts cut crosses in the existing relief. I believe also on the pillars of the main hypostyle hall, but canít find a picture off it.




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