写真

Photographer's Note

This is a fallen colossal black granite head of one of the two statues of the pharaoh Ramesses II (19th dynasty 1279-1212 BC) which once stood here. The head is situated in the second courtyard of his mortuary temple at Qurna, West Thebes. Behind this fallen head are the remains of a portico with Osiride pillars which forms the entrance to the temple's hypostyle hall. Attached to the pillars are enlarged statues of the pharaoh represented as Osiris the god of the dead. The heads of these statues were hacked away by early Christians when the temple was converted into a church during the 1st century AD. Probably the same iconoclasts even hammered away the nose of the head in order to deprive the statue's right to breath and thus leading to its final death. Ramesses began his mortuary temple in the second year of his reign and it was completed some 20 years later. The egyptian name of the temple was "The House of millions of years of Ramesses that unites with Thebes-the-city in the domain of god Amun. Today it is known as Ramesseum, a name given to the temple by J-F Champollion, who regarded it as perhaps the greatest of all the monuments at West Thebes. Originally the complex consisted of two temples and a palace as well as many administrative buildings. Few tourists are visiting the temple today, which in my opinion is a great advantage to experience the ruins without beeing disturbed by the large tourist crowds.
The title of the photo is a reflection over the ruinous state of this head and the remains of the temple that once was the pride of Ramesses the Great and thus contradictory to the ancient egyptian belief that building in stone would last for eternity.

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Additional Photos by Christian Stocker (ChristianS) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 968 W: 60 N: 809] (2997)
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