when life feels weird, go to Karnak
Mut embracing Amun
Stone carving depicting goddess Mut embracing her consort god Amun, detail of a wall relief at Karnak Temple Complex.
AMUN (also Amon, Ammon, Amen) is the ancient Egyptian god of the sun and air. He is one of the most important gods of ancient Egypt who rose to prominence at Thebes at the beginning of the period of the New Kingdom (c.1570-1069 BCE). He is usually depicted as a bearded man wearing a headdress with a double plume or, after the New Kingdom, as a ram-headed man or simply a ram, symbolizing fertility in his role as Amun-Min. His name means “the hidden one,” “invisible,” “mysterious of form,” and unlike most other Egyptian gods, he was considered Lord of All who encompassed every aspect of creation.
Statue of Amun, temple of Karnak, Luxor.
This is a view of the Heret-ib Peristyle Hall with tentpole-shaped capitals inside the Ankhmenou Festival Hall built by Thutmose III. My favorite at Karnak! The paint is exquisitely preserved on the columns, lintels, architraves, and fenestration which all mimick in stone Egyptian tent architecture but on a larger scale. Thutmose III built the “𓅜𓐍𓏠𓏍 Ax(w) mnw” Festival Hall, literally meaning, “the most glorious/blessed of monuments” in his Year 23. The 32 tentpole hall provides ambulatory access to the central sanctuaries dedicated to Amun, especially the gorgeous reliefs known as his “botanical gardens” which showcase reliefs of flora and fauna from across the expansive Egyptian Empire, the Karnak King’s List, the Sokar rooms to the right, and staircase access to the roof in the left end where solar rituals associated with Heliopolis took place. Painted sandstone, New Kingdom, 18th Dynasty, reign of Thutmose III, Karnak Temple, Thebes.
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Relief of Min-Amun
Relief depicting Min-Amun, god of fertility whose cult originated in the predynastic period (4th millennium BCE), shown with an erect penis which he holds in his left hand and an upheld right arm holding a flail.
Detail of a wall carving in the highly sacred precinct of the god Amun-Re, Karnak Temple Complex.
Statue of Amun-Re
Detail from a statue of the god Amun-Re
in the Great Hypostyle Hall, Karnak Temple Complex.
Statue of Mut
Statue of the mother goddess Mut, detail, from Karnak cachette. New Kingdom, Late 18th Dynasty, ca. 1320-1306 BC. Now in the Egyptian Museum, Cairo.
the Great Hypostyle Hall of the Great Temple of the God Amon-Ra at ‘Ipet-Sut’ (“Karnak”), ‘Uaset’-Thebes
Grand Avenue of Rams
Courtyard with sphinxes originally used to line the Corridor of Sphinxes, which led to the Great Hypostyle Hall at the Temple of Amun-Re in Karnak.