Cambridge Astronomical Association
Cambridge Young Astronomers


Zoomcast Presentation

Karnak and the Temples of Dendera
Saturday 23rd May 2020
Start time : 16:00

Speaker : Richard White

The Temple of Dendera and Karnak.
including the hidden Zodiac in the Eastern Dessert, 81Km from Luxor v Aswan



The Egyptions built huge complexes to their Gods. Karnak (constructed 2,000 BCE - 1700 BCE) formally Thebes, was actually used as the location for The Spy Who Loved Me in 1977, where Bond gets in the way of Jaws. Apart from the Hypostile halls at 80ft tall featured in the Bond film, there is a strange site of a Coptic church sitting on top of one of the pillars with no access, as the ground below was removed in a 2nd excavation by Nepoleons army in the 1898 - 1801.


The Temple of Dendera whose foundation dates back to pre 2,500 BCE but is mainly a temple with connections to the Ptolemaic era. It is a sacred site dedicated to Hathor a major goddess in ancient religion. She was the symbolic mother of their earthly representatives, the Pharaohs.

The massive main Dendera Temple ceiling has recently been painstakingly and meticulously cleaned of the obscuring black mould which may have been caused by huge tourism traffic from just their human breath, the same as in the case of Tutankhamun's tomb which prompted the Egyption Dept of Antiquities to close it for restoration. It took 10 years to complete from 2009 - 2019. Our Speaker visited all these sites in 2003.

We will explore the two temples for their main features with a mysterious hidden treasure in the latter temple with connections to the Babylonians.

Our talks are aimed at the beginner level and can be enjoyed by all ages and levels of experience.

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