Mortuary Temple of Hatshepsut - MywallpapersMobi

Mortuary Temple of Hatshepsut

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21. Mortuary Temple of Hatshepsut and Kneeling Statue

  • Mortuary Temple of Hatshepsut is cut into the stone of the cliff-side
    • done purposefully to increase the perceived power of a structure by making it seem as though it is almost a part of nature and holds the stability of the mountainside itself
    • we can see aspects of symmetry as well as the use of columns (Egyptians didn’t know how else to hold up a roof!)
  • Kneeling Statue is made from granite, which is very durable
    • is also very large at almost nine feet tall (would impress any viewer, especially because it would be placed with a number of other large statues depicting the queen) 
  • Kneeling Statue depicts Queen Hatshepsut in a kneeling position
    • she was one of the only, and most powerful, female pharaohs
    • though we can tell that she is female, she has many male physical features:her breasts are de-emphasized, she has the classic beard of the pharaohs, and wears the royal male headdress
    • her masculine depiction is consistent with the upkeep of continuity and stability for Egyptian rulers (there is no word for “queen” in Egyptian–she truly saw herself as a king) 
    • different style than other Egyptian statues–her kneeling position humanizes her, and she is depicted in offering, most likely to a deity  
  • Temple features a lengthy, colonnaded terrace 
    • you must walk up a long ramp to enter into the temple (reminiscent of the horizon, Egyptian creation mound)
    • temple held many statues of Hatshepsut, as well as relief depictions of her as well as the gods in the afterlife 
    • aligned with the winter solstice sun 
  • Mortuary Temple was a funerary shrine to Queen Hatshepsut
  • was a place for people to go and appreciate her power by looking at all of the different statues of her
  • especially important because she was female, so she had to work extra hard to establish her authority
  • meant to help her in her journey to the afterlife
  • people could pray to the gods “housed” in the temple
  • statues impressed upon people Hatshepsut’s power and piety
  • shows an interesting aspect to traditional Egyptian continuity
    • break in continuity that Hatshepsut was a female, but many aspects were kept the same–she was still depicted in the stiff, idealized form for her statue, and wore the male accoutrements of office
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