also known as the Djeser-akhet (Ancient Egyptian: Ḏsr-3ḫ.t „Holy of Horizon“).

It’s a temple of Ancient Egypt located in Upper Egypt. Built for the Eighteenth Dynasty pharaoh Thutmose III, it was located beneath the cliffs at Deir el-Bahari on the west bank of the Nile near the Valley of the Kings.

The Temple was first revealed in February 1962 by excavators of the Polish Centre of Mediterranean Archaeology, under the direction of Kazimierz Michalowski. Poorly preserved, this structure was designated in pharaonic times as (Amun)-Djeser-akhet.

The temple was dedicated primarily to the god Amun, both in the form of Amun-Re and Amun-Kamutef, and probably paid some role within the funerary cult of the Eighteenth Dynasty pharaoh Thutmose III. The king’s actual funerary temple Henkhet-Ankh was located a short distance away, a little to the south of the entrance to Deir el Bahari and adjacent to the hill of Gurna. The temple probably played an important role within the “Beautiful Feast of the Valley”, presumably being intended to receive the barque of the god during its travels and thereby supersede the Temple of Hatshepsut in one of its intended functions.

Small in size compared to the other complexes erected earlier at Deir el-Bahari (some 40 metres N-S x 45 metres E-W), the temple is located on a small elevated terrace to the immediate north-west of the funerary temple of Mentuhotep II, and therefore positioned tightly between it and the temple of Hatshepsut immediately to the north-east. The larger part of the temple is positioned above the level of the upper terrace of the temple of Hatshepsut and rests on a roughly square platform partially cut from the rock and partially constructed of loose stones, supported by a stone revetment. No evidence exists for previous construction on this site.

Constructed of both sandstone and limestone, the temple’s erection was supervised by the high official Rekhmire, vizier to Thutmose III, during the last decade of the king’s reign. Documentary evidence – in the form of a series of limestone ostraka found at the site and published by W.C. Hayes [1960] – reveals that construction began in regnal year 43 and was probably not finished by regnal year 54 when Thutmose III died. The temple was likely then brought to completion by his successor Amenhotep II, in the early years of his reign.

Despite the clear existence of a causeway leading up to the site, the temple remained hidden from archaeologists until the 1960s as the result of an ancient rock fall from the high cliffs above – scholars have posited the temple’s almost complete destruction by landslide towards the end of the 20th Dynasty, some 250 years after its completion. Thereafter, the site was apparently plundered of its sandstone building blocks for the construction of other projects. Completing the temple’s devastation was the eventual collapse of the built-up portion of its supporting platform, causing the south-eastern corner of the temple to precipitate on to the Temple of Mentuhotep II immediately below. Relief fragments from the Djeser-Akhet were subsequently discovered amongst the rubble in the temple of Mentuhotep II by the Egypt Exploration Society excavators, conveniently foreshadowing the temple’s re-discovery by the Poles several decades later.

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