The larger temple was dedicated to the
three main gods at that time, the Sun God
Horakhty, Amon of Karnak and Ptah of
Memphis. The larger temple is 119 feet
wide and 110 feet high. The four statues
at the entrance of the temples, the three
gods and Rameses himself, are 67 feet in
height. It is thought the temples were
positioned at that location to show any
of Egypt’s potential enemies,
traveling from the south, just how mighty
Egypt really was.
In the early 1960s, the High Dam was
built at Lake Nasser to control the
flooding of the Nile. Between 1964 and
1968, the temples of Abu Simbel were cut
out of the rock. They were then moved 200
feet further up the sandstone cliff to
keep them from being submerged in the
The last Pyramids were built in the
Middle Kingdom 2040 – 1640 BC.
During the New Kingdom 1570 – 1070
BC, all the pharaohs and important
citizens were buried in elaborate tombs
in the Valley of the Kings. The death of
Rameses the Great, in his nineties, led
to his burial in the Valley of the Kings.
His tomb, listed as KV7, covers more than
820 square meters. The tomb of his
favorite wife, Nefertari, was discovered
in the Valley of the Queens in 1904. Like
all but one tomb, that of Tutankamun, it
had already been opened and looted, the
sarcophagus smashed and the mummy gone.
The tomb of Nefartari is now considered
by many as the most beautiful of all the
tombs in Egypt.
The tomb of Rameses the Great was
opened by 21st Dynasty priests so they
could relocate his mummy to a tomb high
in the mountains, along with other
pharaohs. This action was taken to
protect them from looters. The priests
repaired any damage done by robbers, and,
remove any valuables before moving them
to the new location at Deir el-Bahri.
The brothers, Ahmed and Hussein
Abd-er-Rasoul, found the royal mummy
cache at Deir el-Bahri in the 1870s.
These brothers, who liked to be known as
guides and donkey-masters, were really
tomb-breakers and mummy-snatchers. With
the capture of the brothers in 1981, and
after a few weeks of torture, the
location of the mountain tomb at Deir
el-Bahri, known as the Royal Cache, was
given to the authorities. The first to
enter were astounded by what they found.
In a tomb originally carved for a 21st
Dynasty high priest of Amun and his
family, there were forty mummies and
coffins, including royals from the 17th
– 20th Dynasties, New Kingdom
nobles, and family members of the 21st
Dynasty priest-king, Pinudjem I.
The discovery of the mountain tomb,
with the remains of Rameses the Great,
allowed his mummy to be moved to the
Cairo Museum where it is now one of the
Most mummies were damaged or removed
from their tombs, as, many had objects
made from gold and precious stone placed
between the layers of wrappings.
Rameses the Great was known as the
last great pharaoh, as, after his death,
Egypt went into decline. By about 1070
BC, Egypt was being invaded by Libyans,
Ethiopians, Assyrians, Persians, Greeks