Photographer's Note

Temple of Debod is probably THE spot in Madrid for blue hour photography. Sadly, as I elaborated under another photo from Madrid, I did not have a chance to be there at the blue hour. There are plenty of spectacular photos of this amazing place on TE. Manuel has photographed it with all possible sky colors. I am so jealous. In a way my picture is quite original, showing average weather day with uninteresting light... I am still proud that I had a chance to visit it.

Years ago I had the pleasure to visit Egyptian Temples in Abu Simbel. When the Aswan Dam was built it was clear that some of the precious ancient temples will be lost under the artificial lake which will be created. Abu Simbel, being probably the most precious, was cut into pieces and moved to another safe location. This incredible task was sponsored by Egyptian government and UNESCO. International Committee of Experts for Rescue of the Abu Simbel Temple was directed by late Polish archaeologist Kazimierz Michałowski. His contribution was recognized by a memorial bust which was placed in Egyptian Museum in Cairo (2007). I guess contribution of Spanish archaeologists must have been substantially bigger. Instead of a little bust they have received as a thank you gift the remains of Temple of Debod (in this photo).

Temple of Debod (Spanish: Templo de Debod) is an ancient Egyptian temple which was dismantled and rebuilt in Madrid, Spain.
The temple was built originally 15 kilometres south of Aswan in southern Egypt very close to the first cataract of the Nile and to the great religious center dedicated to the goddess Isis, in Philae. In the early 2nd century BC, Adikhalamani (Tabriqo), the Kushite king of Meroë, started its construction by building a small single room chapel dedicated to the god Amun. It was built and decorated on a similar design to the later Meroitic chapel on which the Temple of Dakka is based.
In 1960, due to the construction of the Aswan High Dam and the consequent threat posed by its reservoir to numerous monuments and archeological sites, UNESCO made an international call to save this rich historical legacy. As a sign of gratitude for the help provided by Spain in saving the temples of Abu Simbel, the Egyptian state donated the temple of Debod to Spain in 1968.
The temple was rebuilt in one of Madrid's parks, the Parque del Oeste, near the Royal Palace of Madrid, and opened to the public in 1972. The reassembled gateways appear to have been placed in a different order than when originally erected. Compared to a photo of the original site, the gateway topped by a serpent flanked sun appears not to have been the closest gateway to the temple proper. It constitutes one of the few works of ancient Egyptian architecture which can be seen outside Egypt and the only one of its kind in Spain.

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Additional Photos by Mariusz Kamionka (mkamionka) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 7495 W: 106 N: 19629] (75139)
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