We woke up at 5 am, at sunrise we were approaching the temple of Philae, a small island in the Nile River, definitely an amazing view. I did not expect that, really, probably Philae was the best surprise in my short trip along the Nile river. I jumped out from the small boat and started to take pictures in Philae with wide-angle lens and not only, the light was marvelous and so the result in the photos it quite pleased me.
Philae was remarkable also for the singular effects of light and shade resulting from its position near the Tropic of Cancer forming a striking contrast with the fierce light which embathes all surrounding objects.
By 1960, UNESCO had decided to move many of the endangered sites along to Nile to safer ground. Philae temple complex was moved, piece by piece, to Agilkai, 550 meters away, where it was reassembled and remains today. That project lasted from 1977 to 1980.
For Philae, being accounted one of the burying-places of Osiris, was held in high reverence both by the Egyptians to the north and the Ethiopians to the south, and it was deemed profane for any but priests to dwell therein, and was accordingly sequestered and denominated the unapproachable.
Also in Philae Christians had marked the temple with their symbols without respect and without knowledge of the past.
Philae was so much resorted to, partly by pilgrims to the tomb of Osiris, partly by persons on secular errands, that the priests petitioned Ptolemy Physcon (170-117 B.C.) to prohibit public functionaries at least from coming.
It was reported too that neither birds flew over it nor fish approached its shores.
The islands of Philae were not, however, merely sacerdotal abodes; they were the centers of commerce.
For the rapids of the cataracts were at most seasons impracticable, and the commodities exchanged between Egypt and Ethiopia were reciprocally landed and re-embarked.
- the images have been realized starting from original prints using a scanner HP, wait to load completely the page before click on the photos, be aware that it can take several seconds -
- Philae Island pictures / Egypt – portfolio © www.artphotoasia.net -