Positive Progress Through The Benevolent Use Of Knowledge

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Temple of Hathor- Dendera

Spirit of Sankofa writes.......
Hathor was the wife of god Horus .
She became the goddess of the sky and fertility. Dendera was a beautiful place, of healing. Actually an ancient healing center. So exquisite, the Romans built statues beside Egyptian gods and pharoahs.
Read about the roof chapel, that is dedicated to Osiriis. Whick details a sundial and circular zodiac.
Interesting reading.
Dendera Edfu
Giza to Dahshur Kom Ombo

Temple of Hathor, Dendera
The Temple of Hathor Dendera. Photo
Back of the Temple of Hathor. .
Face of Hathor. Photo Templar1307 .
Capitals with faces of Hathor. Photo Andrew .

The Temple of Hathor at Dendera, on the Nile north of Luxor, is one of the latest Egyptian temples. Dedicated to the wife of the god Horus, it was built in Roman times and its decorations include Roman emperors alongside Egyptian gods. Along with Abydos further north, Dendera is a popular day trip from Luxor .


The Temple of Hathor was built between 30 BC and 14 AD, making it one of the youngest Egyptian temples. However, it was built on top of an older temple, the date of which remains unclear. It is probable that the design of the later temple is based on that of the older one.

Dendera was an ancient healing center , comparable to a Greek Asklepion or the Catholic Lourdes . Hathor, wife of Horus, was the goddess of the sky, fertility and healing, and the rituals performed by her priestesses included the use of a sistrum, or rattle.

What to See

The Temple of Hathor is boxy in shape and surrounded by a portico with thick columns and walls about half as tall as the roof. There are many reliefs of figures and rituals on the exterior of the temple, including pharaohs, Egyptian deities, and Roman emperors.

Inside, the most fascinating sight is the roof chapel dedicated to Osiris, which contains a sundial and circular zodiac . The zodiac, a replica of the original that is now in the Louvre, consists of two superimposed constellations. One is centered on the geographical north pole, the other on the true north pole. An axis passes through Pisces, confirming what we know from archaeological evidence: it was built in the age of Pisces , just over 2,000 years ago.

Interestingly, two hieroglyphs on the edge of the zodiac seem to indicate that another axis passed through the beginning of the age of Taurus (about 4,000 BC; a thousand years before dynastic Egypt). This may be a clue to the great age of the first temple that stood here.

Among the many other structures here are the remains of a 5th-century Christian basilica , an excellent example of early Coptic church architecture. There is also a sanatorium , where pilgrims could bathe in the sacred waters or take holy water — which had been run over magical texts to infuse it with power — home with them.

Location Map

Colin Wilson, Atlas of Holy Places and Sacred Sites (DK, 1996).
Dendera and the Temple of Hathor - Tour Egypt - includes floor plan and site plan

More Information

Private Tour to Dendara and Abydos
Virtual Tour of Dendera - Egypt Voyager
Dendera Zodiacs
The Dendera Reliefs

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