Abydos III

The First Courtyard


Now move on. Your way in is via a small door in the northern wall of the temple, near its corner with the eastern pylon front.

There may well be an ‘official’ stationed here to ensure the correct etiquette is observed, shoes are removed etc. You may also buy special offerings for your devotion, usually a cylindrical loaf of bread and a small clay pot of beer. Once inside you see two square ablution basins in the centre of a perfectly square courtyard, open to the sky. Wash yourself, removing any unnecessary associations of your journey. Look around you. Depending upon time of day and season, different part of the relief on the walls will be clearly visible. But in the general the images are of Sety’s son Ramesses II and his various
achievements in the outer world.


For the ancient Egyptians, warfare, expansion of empire and defence of secure borders were
pinnacles of earthly achievement. Do not despise this, try to see the essence that lays behind it, and cast in your own idiom, what the equivalent might be. Pause for a while and explore this.

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