The temple of Hathor was built in the Ptolemaic period and for the Egyptians it represented the east, although in reality the monument is oriented to the north.
It is located in the old Dendera, more precisely 70 km north of Luxor.
The temple of Hathor was erected in 125 BC during the reign of Ptolemy IX, and was improved during the time of Cleopatra VII.
Fortunately for lovers of magical Egyptian history, it is preserved as it was erected, with all its rooms intact and is one of the few that has the upper part in good condition.
Hathor, the cow goddess, was worshiped as goddess of love and feminine beauty. She was also the lady of parties, music and wine.
The famous “Drunken Feast” is documented in Dendera already at the beginning of the Old Kingdom. The name of the goddess means “Mansion of Horus”, god of which she was wife and lover.
Rooms of the temple of Hathor:
Hypostyle rooms: The first room was not part of the original building, but was built during the time of Emperor Tiberius. It has 18 columns in 3 rows of 6 and 9 columns on each side of the entrance hall, which are decorated with sistrate-shaped capitals.
On the ceiling are drawings of the goddess Nut bringing the Sun to the world and on the walls there are scenes of consecration of the temple.
The second hypostyle hall has 6 columns and small rooms for the treasure room, offerings room, a warehouse, a laboratory, temple offerings store and a southern offering room.
The offering room has 4 windows on the roof, it is located behind the lobby; The shrine kept the image of Hathor and is decorated with images of the Nile procession with Pharaoh and the god Ihy, and an invocation to Hathor.
The Mammisi (meaning birth house) are in the temple enclosure, one is decorated by Nectanebo I with images of the birth of Hathor and the breastfeeding of Amun by the divine cows, and the second belongs to the time of Nero and has such a decoration of the first.
The temple also has the tomb of Osiris; this site was used to celebrate rites in honor of Osiris and his resurrection.
An important fact to note is that the Dendera zodiac that is currently in the Louvre museum in Paris was taken from this tomb.
The Isis-Hathor Temple
The temple known as the Temple of the Birth of Isis is located behind the temple of Hathor but did not run the same fate as this; the building is in very bad condition and does not have all its rooms.
This temple had a courtyard, two rooms, 4 columns and a sanctuary; the inner rooms were oriented north facing the temple of Hathor, while the outer rooms were facing south.
Goddess Hathor’s story:
Hathor was a goddess whom the ancient Egyptians worshiped and considered creator of the universe; represented as a cow with stars in the womb that hint that she is the cosmos itself.
In other representations she can be seen breastfeeding Ihy or Horus, and even in the form of a cat or vulture.
In Thebes, she was considered the queen of the land of the dead; she is also understood as goddess of music.