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Kalabsha Temple

Kalabsha Temple originally built at Kalabsha (Talmis) was moved to its present location at New Kalabsha (Chellal) in 1970, together with other monuments from Nubia. This sandstone edifice was built by the Roman Emperor Octavius Augustus (30 to 14 BC) and dedicated to the fertility and Nubian Solar deity known as Mandulis (Merwel who was the Nubian counterpart of Horus).

It was the largest free-standing temple of Egyptian Nubia and the design of Kalabsha Temple is classical for the Ptolemaic period with pylons, courtyard, hypostyle hall and three room sanctuary.

However, the Pylon is offset, which creates a trapezoid in the courtyard beyond. It was built on the site of an earlier structure built by Ptolemy IX as evidenced by a chapel. There is also a small chapel and gate on Elephantine Island from Kalabsha, and a gate built by Augustus was given to the Agyptisches Museum in West Berlin. The courtyard inside the pylon once had columns on three sides.

There is also a small chapel, which can be reached from stairs in the first chamber, which then descend from the roof into the chapel set inside the wall.As you leave the temple, be sure to note the rear wall with images of Mandulis with his vulture-feathered cloak.


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