Maat-ka-Ra Hatshepsut

last update: 26.03.2010

Karnak - 8th Pylon


South Face


South view of the 8th Pylon. The pylon is the first building in ancient Egypt, which was completely made of sandstone.

The southern (outer) side of 8th Pylon was decorated with the usual representation "Pharaoh strikes the enemies of Egypt in front of Amun" (as shown below on the west (left) wing). The king depicted is Amenhotep II followed his Ka (see below).

Remnants of an older text on both sides of the passage probably point to Hatshepsut, however, they are not to be deciphered anymore. Amenhotep II had re-decorated the southern front side(s). Beyond that the pylon shows a restoration text of Sethi I.

In front of the southern side of the 8th Pylon a several colossal statues had been erected, these are discussed on a separate page.

Beside the statues the photo above shows the damage of the pylon around the niches wherein the flagpoles had been mounted. Not every pylon had have his flagpoles although the niches intended for the flagpoles had been built. However, in some cases the niches had been (deliberately ?) built in such a way that it was not possible to mount the flagpoles.
Pylons which indeed had been equipped with flagpoles - like the 8th Pylon of Hatshepsut - can frequently be recognized by damage of their niches as demonstrated by the photo above. These devastations result from conquests after the end of the New Kingdom - the conquerors liked to set fire to the flagpoles! As a result of the developing heat the stone at the corners of the niches had burst.

The sides of the southern passage are decorated in the names of Thutmosis II (west wing) and Thutmosis III (east wing). The lintel of the passage (which was a part of the pylon bridge) is completely destroyed.

The photo above shows the southern face of the east wing with the remains of the seated statue of Thutmosis II. and the destroyed niches for the flagpoles.

The space between the two destroyed niches is decorated with the usual representation "Pharaoh (= Amenhotep II) strikes the enemies of Egypt in front of Amun" and a renewal text of Sethi I.

Door and staircase to the roof of the pylon start at the east wing (on the site directed to the Holy Lake). Since the pylon bridge above the passage is destroyed and the staircase ends up suddenly the door to the staircase is closed today (see photo above).


Main Page   North Face   Statues in Front of the South Face

Copyright: Dr. Karl H. Leser (Iufaa)