Sam's Exotic Travels to the Temple of Kom Ombo, Egypt
The Temple of Kom Ombo is an unusual double temple built during the rule Ptolemaic dynasty in the Egyptian town of Kom Ombo. Some additions to it were later made during the Roman period. The building is unique because its 'double' design meant that there were courts, halls, sanctuaries and rooms duplicated for two sets of gods. The southern half of the temple was dedicated to the crocodile god Sobek, god of fertility and creator of the world with Hathor and Khonsu. Meanwhile, the northern part of the temple was dedicated to the falcon god Haroeris, also known as Horus the Elder, along with Tasenetnofret (the Good Sister, a special form of Hathor) and Panebtawy (Lord of the Two Lands). The temple is atypical because everything is perfectly symmetrical along the main axis.
The temple was started by Ptolemy VI Philometor (180-145 BC) at the beginning of his reign and added to by other Ptolemys, most notably Ptolemy XIII (47-44 BC), who built the inner and outer hypostyle halls. Kom Ombo includes engraving of what is though to be the first representation of medical instruments for performing surgery, including scalpels, curettes, forceps, dilator, scissors and medicine bottles dating from the days of the Roman Egypt.
The crocodile was held in especial honor by the people of Ombos; and in the adjacent catacombs are occasionally found mummies of the sacred animal. Juvenal, in his 15th satire, has given a lively description of a fight, of which he was an eye-witness, between the Ombitae and the inhabitants of Tentyra, who were hunters of the crocodile. On this occasion the men of Ombos had the worst of it; and one of their number, having stumbled in his flight, was caught and eaten by the Tentyrites. The satirist, however, has represented Ombos as nearer to Tentyra than it actually is, these towns, in fact, being nearly 100 miles from each other. The Roman coins of the Ombite nome exhibit the crocodile and the effigy of the crocodile-headed god Sobekn Kom Ombo there is a rare engraved image of Cleopatra VII in the walls of the main temple and also the engraving of what is though to be the first representation of medical instruments for performing surgery, including scalpels, curettes, forceps, dilator, scissors and medicine bottles dating from the days of the Roman Egypt.
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