Der Tempel des Chnum der 18. Dyn. auf Elephantine

Translated title of the contribution: The temple of Khnum of the 18th Dynasty on Elephantine

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis


The aim of this thesis is the reconstruction of the temple of Khnum of the 18th Dynasty on Elephantine on the basis of stone fragments either reused in later buildings or still free accessible on the island. Apart from a preliminary report published in the mid-90s the temple of Chnum of the 18th Dynasty was never investigated so far. As for different reasons excavations which could have brought new data or proofs for the plan suggested were not carried out until autumn 2000 this thesis is based on the 196 accesible architectural fragments known until 2000 only. Beside the reconstruction of the plan it, too, came to the realization of the building history of the this temple. While still under the reign of Thutmose II the existing temple of the MK was completed by a court, Hatshepsut started to build the temple anew with sandstone from Gebel es-Silsilah, obviously in parallel with the simultaneous errection of the temple of Satis in a close distance to the north. The cultic connection between the two temples already existing in the MK in ways of a staircase was marked by a doorway in the northwall of the temple of Chnum. But as she only succeeded to decorate the walls along the main axis of the temple, as can be seen by the barque room decorated in the name of Thutmose I it was her successor Thutmose III who finished the main building as a peripteros. In addition Thutmose III errected a pylon of sandstone in front of a open court, which repeated the 6th pylon of Karnak by it's measurements. Following it's decoration depicting the 8th military campaign of Thutmose III this pylon must have been finished after the king's 33rd regnal year thus following the decoration of the 7th pylon of Karnak. Although his successor Amenhotep II claimed in his so-called Elephantine-stela that it was him who errected this pylon this can be excluded by reading the dedication formulae of the upper end of the pylon. But at the latest under this ruler a festival court between the main buliding and the pylon must have been errected. By it's two L-shaped symmetrical galleries this festival court connected the main building in it's west and pylon in it's east. In the east in front of the pylon Amenhotep II should have errected a terrace with two obeliscs as well. According to the inscriptions of the obeliscs the buliding can be understood as a sun-altar. Because Amenhotep II did not succeed in finishing the decoration of the festival hall his successor Thutmose IV ended this work and completed the terrace with two more obeliscs. Recently found fragments of a stela can be added to a formerly known fragment of a historical inscription of this ruler. During the reign of Amenhotep III the precessional way were extended as a balustrade shows which was decorated in his name. The further history of the temple of Chnum until the reign of Nectanebo II will be reserved to another study which will include namely the ramesside extensions of this temple. Nevertheless this thesis ends with the temple's demolition history and the conlusions which can be won for the reconstruction of the plan according to the order of moving of it's former building elements.
Translated title of the contributionThe temple of Khnum of the 18th Dynasty on Elephantine
Original languageGerman
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
  • Heidelberg University
  • Assmann, Jan, Supervisor, External person
Publication statusUnpublished - 2000
Externally publishedYes


  • Egyptology
  • New Kingdom
  • architecture
  • rituals
  • reconstruction
  • epigraphy
  • Archaeology and art--Egypt


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