Sunday, November 22: After our amazing balloon ride over the monuments of the west bank, we drove north to Dendera. Dendera was a very important site throughout Egyptian history, but the majority of what still stands at Dendera dates to the Ptolemaic and Roman Periods. The temple complex is surrounded by a large enclosure wall inside of which is a series of buildings: 2 birth houses (mammisi), temple of Isis, sacred lake, and the remains of a Coptic church. Particularly special is the survival of the roof of the temple, supported by Hathor-headed columns in the outer hypostyle hall. The famous "zodiac" ceiling from one of the Osiris chapels now resides in the Louvre, but a copy rests in its place. At the back of the temple, a large relief shows an offering scene of Cleopatra VII and Ptolemy XV Caesarean. In addition, the face of Hathor which once decorated the rear of her sanctuary has been carved away by pilgrims who collected the sacred stone dust.
OI Splendors of the Nile is a photographic and textual complement to the Oriental Institute's Splendors of the Nile program escorted by Dr. Nadine Moeller.
This trip is a great introduction to Egypt and a treat for anyone who wants to see Egypt through the eyes of a Nile traveler. We will experience many of the famous landmarks of Egyptian history as well as exclusive site visits and on-site learning.
Oriental Institute Travel Programs provide exclusive visits and on-site learning privileges not enjoyed by other institutions and travel groups. Participants learn directly from some of the most eminent archaeologists and scholars in the world, at sites the OI has been excavating and researching for almost a century. For more information on Oriental Institute Travel Programs including future departures for 2010, visit the Travel Programs website or contact the OI Membership Office.