Lying within the city center of Madrid is an Egyptian sanctuary, The Temple of Debod. It is an ancient Egyptian temple which was rebuilt in Madrid way back in 200BC. This temple is considered to be the most surprising monument of Madrid where you can experience the ancient culture. Inside the temple, you can witness firsthand the mythology, history and architectural art inside the walls of the temple.
It is considered a treasure from where it lies because historical events happened within those walls. Way back several centuries ago, it was the hill of Spanish Army’s headquarters which was now located in Parque del Oeste (Western Park). That same hill back in May 3, 1808 is also where the French soldiers executed hundreds of people during the Independence War. You can further picture the horrific event with the painting displayed in Prado Museum by Francisco de Goya (The Third of May 1808).
This temple is close to Plaza de España where you can get to by the Metro Station located there or other city bus and tourist bus lines. Luckily, there is no fee in visiting the temple but reservation should be made prior to visiting.
Why is the Temple of Debod in Madrid?
Take into consideration that Spain was never a colony of Ancient Egypt. But, why is the Temple of Debod in Madrid? The temple served as a gift of the Egyptian Government to the Spanish Government way back in 1968.
Historically speaking, Temple of Debod was originally built 15 kilometres south of Aswan, Southern Egypt near the great goddess Isis’ religious center. Over the years of its development way back in Egypt, the original sanctum of their God, Amun, the offering table room and several sanctuary side rooms lay back there. Because this temple was originally near the Great Dam of Aswan, the construction of the Great Dam will greatly affect the welfare of the monument back in 1960. With the help of the Spanish Government, the historical legacy was saved. As a token of gratitude, the temple was donated to Spain in 1968. In 1972, the temple was opened to the public in Madrid.
Some donations made by the Ancient Egypt as a token of their gratitude also includes the Temple of Taffeh went to Leiden (Nederland) and the Temple of Dendur that can be seen today in the Metropolitan Museum of New York. All of them have also some similarities to the Temple of Debod.
Understanding the Temple of Debod
Again, originally, the Temple of Debod was located south of Aswan, southern Egypt near the first cataract of Nile River. Back in 200 B.C., Adikhalamani, the Kushite king of Meroë, initiated the construction as a worshipping avenue for the god, Amin. It’s design and style was patterned to the late Temple of Dakka, in Lower Nubia, from the Meroitic period.
From a small single room chapel, it was extended on all four sides to form a majestic and historical temple (12X15 metres) from when the Ptolemaic dynasty Kings reigned. In 1868, unfortunately, the monument capitals collapsed before its restoration making it appear as if the wall doesn’t compliment the original state of the temple. With this, this temple is one of a kind where you can learn about Ancient Egyptian Art located in Madrid.
Lastly, what made this temple so majestic is when every time twilight approaches. The sun sets behind the monument down the horizon giving a nice panorama view for tourists and people of Madrid. During the night, it provides a unique atmosphere of ancient civilization and sacredness.
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Address: Paseo del Pintor Rosales, 2, 28008 Madrid, Spain
Phone:+34 913 66 74 15
Directions: Google Maps
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