Nectanebo II is known as the last native ruler of ancient Egypt; Persians and the ancestors of Alexander the Great took over after his reign. Although these circumstances led to Nectanebo II being one of the most underrated pharaohs of Egypt, the temple of Hibis, completed during his reign, tells a fascinating story of the change that took place between the ancient Egyptian glory days and the change to the new regime.
The temple of Hibis was built during the Third Intermediate Period, around the 6th century BC. It is the best preserved and the biggest temple in the Kharga Oasis. Moreover, the site is one of the symbols of the change of ancient Egyptian authority. It connects the attributes of the powerful Egyptian and Persian kings. The temple is a monument attesting to the last four dynasties in the history of Egypt.
Head of Nectanebo II, Museum of Fine Arts of Lyon. (CC BY-SA 2.0 fr)
Honoring the Gods of the Golden Age
The temple of Hibis is located very close to the modern city known as Kharga. This area is dominated by military structures and many remarkable archaeological sites. Originally, the temple of Hibis was planned as a dedication to Amun, Mut, and Khonsu. However, it became mostly associated with Amun, who is also called the Lord of Hibis. Several influential pharaohs of Egypt worshipped Amun.
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