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four granite obelisks. Of these two only are now erect : a third lies broken on the ground, and the other has either been carried away, or is buried under the surrounding ruins.
These obelisks must have stood within an hypethral naos, or open cella, which appears to have been surrounded by a colonnade of Caryatic figures (if the anachronism may be permitted) each, with arms folded across the breast, holding the Sacred Tau, or Key of the Nile.
On either side the entrance to the sanctuary is a beautiful little Obelisk of rose-coloured granite, having their north and south faces carved (in relievo), with a lotus flower shooting from a long stem, and their other sides, with two figures bound together, in amity. One of these, painted white, is somewhat larger than the other, which is a reddish brown divinity, and holds the sacred tau. The bird of the mighty Jove hovers over their heads, and, though the hieroglyphics appear to refer to the lesser figure, the other is evidently the more powerful, and superior
in rank. They, probably, are emblematic of Alexander the Great and Egypt, or may be yet more modern, and refer to Julius Cæsar and Cleopatra.
These obelisks are clearly the work of a much later date than any portion of the temple, rendering it probable that the sanctuary was restored by the politic Greeks, after the destruction of the building itself by Cambyses.
The central passage that leads through the sanctuary is sixty feet long. A narrow avenue branches off from it to the North, which is lined with grey granite; and, though obstructed by the ruins of the fallen roof, may be traced to lead to a small chamber occupied by an enormous block of calcareous spar, the mummy of a colossal statue, but of which not a feature can now be distinguished. It probably was the principal deity of the temple (Osiris, or Jove), and, therefore, the first object to fall under the holy rage of the Persians.
Another immense apartment, larger even than any of the preceding divisions of the temple, and containing one hundred and sixtyeight columns, has to be traversed ere reach
GROUP OF FIGURES.
ing the posticum. In a niche, on the northern side wall of this chamber, is a handsome sarcophagus of white marble, and nearly under it a gateway.
In a small recess over the posticum is a group, carved in one block of crystallized limestone, consisting of two figures, very similar to those on the obelisks in front of the sanctuary; and in advance of the gateway are four statues, which, from their posture and folded arms, seem, like those before mentioned, to have been caryatic figures: and-facing outwards -to have stood in a kind of opisthodomus.
In front of them (or, to speak correctly, of their pedestals, for only one of the statues was standing) is another open court, or dromos, which appears to have carried the great temple yet further to the east, or rather to have connected it with a temple dedicated to some inferior deity, which is built on the same alignement.
In front of the western entrance to this edifice (that is, facing the posticum of the great temple) are two mutilated granite colossi. The dimensions of the building itself are
small, but immediately beyond it is a spacious (though much ruined) peristyle court, at the eastern extremity of which, standing apart from any other building, is a small but handsome pylon, having a gateway in its centre, corresponding with the grand avenue that passes through the great temple, and making its entire length, from west to east, sixteen hundred feet.
are the ruins of several others. The largest of these communicated with it by the lateral gateway, already noticed ; the avenue passing through its various courts and apartments being directed upon it. A double row of sphinxes prolongs this avenue to a gateway similar in all respects to that on the eastern side of the great temple.
On the south side of the great temple, and distant from it about two hundred feet, is a large walled tank, beyond which are the ruins of other buildings, but so embedded in sand as to be traced with difficulty.
To the westward of the tank are four huge ruined propylæ, standing parallel to each other, and to the south wall of the great temple, but disposed slightly “en echellon," so that their gateways are not aligned. They are of unequal dimensions, but all built of immense blocks of sandstone; the first and last, only, have their gateways lined with granite. Two colossal statues formerly adorned the front of each propylon, and the most distant of the four has also two facing the rear.