ROME, ITALY OR LUXOR, EGYPT?

Definitely LUXOR, EGYPT – after an hour flight from Cairo we arrived in Luxor. We checked into the hotel, the Winter Palace. A hotel everybody should stay once – old charm, a lot of history – Churchill, Lord Cavanaugh, and Agatha Christie, to name just a few – ‘slept here.’  During lunch Ahmed, my vivacious, very knowledgeable Egyptologist who I was travelling with, suggested to postpone our visit to Luxor Temple until around 4 pm, when it would be cooler.

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When we arrived at the Temple most of the tourists had already gone back to their hotels and the sun started to fade, leaving a soft, warm breeze.  Ramses II two huge statues, standing on either side of the entrance look like the gatekeepers of the castle……

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While we were walking through the passage leading into the main part of the temple, Ahmed, who never misses to point out anything along the way, was unusually quiet. I now think he  did not want to distract me from what was to come. When we reached a large open space,  he said   “I have a surprise for you – look up, to the left.”

IMG_1780-2 And there, from way up, a group of Roman faces looked down on us – Romans here? I must have looked really puzzled “You didn’t expect this, did you” Ahmed asked and then

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IMG_7904-2explained that these frescos on lime plaster, were painted in the late 3rd century AD during the reign of Diocletian, and that this group of men are believed to be Roman senators in front of the imperial throne.

This is a rather recent discovery and thanks to the American Research Center in Egypt, the restorations began in 2005 –  first it was not clear if there was  enough preserved to justify the effort and expense. But when the project was completed in 2009 the results were spectacular.

I am grateful that I came to Egypt after 2009 and could see these Roman senators,  who after  more than 1700 years (third century 201 – 300 AD)  still let us see their faces IMG_7903-2

showing their fear, their expectation, and their admiration for the one who is hidden from us.

More from Egypt soon

BrigitteGEESE

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About Brigitte Nioche

Author of Living Longer, Living Well - How to Embrace the Challenges of a Long Life. Other titles - Dress to Impress, The Sensual Dresser, What Turns Men On.
This entry was posted in Ancient Stones, Art, Egypt, Italy, Luxor, Pharaohs and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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