Pylon of Ramesses II at Luxor

3d model and reconstruction

Pylon of Ramesses II at Luxor

For this reconstruction, apart from most of the remains currently repositioned on site, a fundamental role was played by the drawings and plans from the tables in the Description de l’Égypte, published in Paris between 1809 and 1829

The images show the courtyard with the pillar and the inside of the hypostyle hall whose columns, with inscriptions and figures, were painted.

A reconstruction shows the row of wall during the Roman age when it was arranged as a military castrum.

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Short history of

Pylon of Ramesses II at Luxor

Ramesses II (XIX dynasty) added to the building a courtyard with a double porch on the four sides; the largest is that of Amenophis III; colossal granite statues, representing the pharaoh, were placed in the spaces between the columns in the first row on the southern side. The courtyard was preceded by a new pylon and showed an eastward inclination because it was necessary to take into account a small granite temple of the Thutmosis III period (XVIII dynasty), consisting of three chapels dedicated to Amun, to Mut and to Khonsu.

Alexander the Great (4th cent. B.C.) built a sanctuary for the sacred boat of Amun in the third antechamber after the hypostyle hall of Amenophis III, while at the beginning of the 4th century A.D. the first of the antechambers was turned into a sanctuary for imperial cult used by the local garrison.

According to Strabo, Thebes at the time of Augustus was nothing more that a poor village which, however, still included many religious buildings. The Roman Imperial age, however, saw the construction of several monuments, including the chapel of Serapis whose construction was ordered by Trajan (98-117 A.D..) which is the one best preserved.

As part of the global restructuring of the village’s defence under Diocletian (284-305 A.D.) most of the Amun temple complex was incorporated within a huge rectangular raw brick enclosure (about 200 x 260 m), with towers, which strongly limited access by the local clergy and by the faithful. It was exactly because of this fortification (castrum) that this section of the Thebes site was called el-Ouqsor, qasr in the plural, meaning “castle” in Arabic. Christian symbols scuplted on the most ancient bas-reliefs and the construction of churches around the temple are evidence of the site’s Christianisation. Several monastic communities then reoccupied the various tombs in this region (the famous Thebaid), whose paintings were mostly destroyed by the clerics.