Thursday, 24 July 2008

Tod Temple

Yesterday I went to the temple of Tod, a first for me. It doesn’t matter how long you have been coming to Luxor in my case since 1979 or living here since 2003 there is something new to be discovered. In this case I was invited by some regular visitors who had been there 10 years ago. They found out the tickets were available at Luxor Temple ticket office and checked with both that office and the tourist police that no escort was required. Their regular taxi driver had never been there either but found the way easily.

You take the Aswan road out of Luxor on the East Bank. We came from the West Bank so didn’t have to go through the checkpoint which may have saved us some hassle. Anyway about 20 kilometres of 12 miles out of Luxor there was a sign in Arabic pointing to Tod and the driver confirmed with some locals the temple was that way. We went quite away almost parallel to the main road but when ever the driver asked everyone seemed to know the way.

On arrival we presented our tickets Al Tud Temple, Qena 20LE and walked in.
The guardians were up and about and welcoming even though it is Ramadam. Enquiring later they seem to get people out there nearly every day and yet I had never been there before lol

There was a block yard with loads of pieces which seem to be grouped into period.

I definitely saw a 12th dynasty block with Senusert I cartouche and there was 18th, 19th, late period and Roman remains.

According to my Baedeker (which is a great guide book especially for obscure places like this). The large temple was from Ptolemaic and Roman times but there had been a temple on the site as early as Userkaf 5th Dynasty. It had been rebuilt during the Middle kingdom and much enlarged in the New Kingdom. It was in the ruins of the 12th Dynasty temple that the treasure of Amenemhet II was found, now in the Cairo museum. A Coptic church had been built on the site and the temple used for housing. Just outside the precinct there were some Roman baths.

The actual temple was small but well restored and featured Montu and my old friend Tyenenet.

There was a side chapel or kiosk which has Seti I and Ramses II decoration and what looked like a ramp going towards the Nile.

As we walked around you could here the familiar crunch as the dried salts crumbled under our feet and there examples of water damage.

It was a very pleasant place and wonderful for a “get away from the tourists” visit. I do recommend it

This entry was posted on Thursday, September 27th, 2007

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