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Temple of Kheny, Gebel el Silsila

Temples - Buildings - Builders & Buildings

Where: Quarry Site of Gebel El Silsila

What: Rock Cut Temple

Notes: Dedicated to Crocodile God, Sobek, known as “Lord of Kheny”

When: At least 3,300 years old Worshipped on site until at least 12th Century. Defaced reliefs mark the point during the Ramesside Reigns, when the God Sobek changed from a revered Deity to that of a repulsed Deity who was part of the Underworld

Ruins found show the Temple’s foundations and blockwork. Currently, it is not known to whom the Temple is dedicated but it is educationally thought to be to the crocodile God Sobek.

The Temple originally had 4 floor levels which show that it has been occupied over a period of 1500 years.

The changeover of the construction method for Temples from limestone to sandstone may have begun with the Temple of Kheny.

The oldest phases of the Temple were made from Limestone and then the newer parts were built using Sandstone. Making it the “mother temple” to all future temples built with sandstone.

Excavations have revealed 100s of painted and decorated stone block, including 300 limestone fragments decorated in the Thutmosid period style(1500-1450BC).

Two fragments of these fragments are part of a decorated ceiling showing the stars and sky and contain trace of the original paint.

Other excavated finds include stables, rock-hewn shelters and a sphinx.