Friday, October 21, 2005

Face of Ramses lights up tomorrow
"A prominent Egyptian archaeologist has refuted the widely held belief that the sun illuminates the inner sanctum of the main temple at Abu Simbel only on 22 February and 22 October, the birthday and the date of the coronation of Pharaoh Ramses II. On those two days every year the sun's rays shine on seated statues of the sun gods Re-Horakhty and Amun-Re, and a statue of Ramses II. The statues sit in the company of the Theban god of darkness, Ptah, which is shrouded in shadow all year round. 'The sun lights up the statues on the two days in the year that mark the beginning of 'summer' and 'winter' according to pharaonic agricultural calendar,' archaeologist Mohamed Hamid told the Middle East News Agency. Abu Simbel will witness a rare phenomenon when the rays of the sun penetrate the darkness for more than 60 metres inside the temple to illuminate the seated three statues except for that of Ptah that remains in the dark all year round, he added".
This is the complete item from today's Egyptian Gazette.

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