As Luxor gears up to reopen the restored Avenue of Sphinxes in a major ceremony, “SEE” sheds light on key facts about the much-anticipated event.
The reopening ceremony will re-enactment the ancient Egyptian Opet festival.
10 Facts about Ancient Egyptian Opet Festival:
1-It was an annual Ancient Egyptian Festival celebrated in Thebes (Luxor), especially in the New Kingdom and later periods.
2-The festival included a ritual procession of the Barque (a ceremonial boat that was used to transport statues of gods and deities) of the cult statue of “Amun-Re, supreme god, his wife, Mut, and his son, Khons.
3- This procession carried the statue for 2700 meters from Karnak Temple to “Luxor Temple.
4-In this ritual, the meeting of Amun-Ra and his wife Mot is highlighted, and the renewal of birth is the main theme in the celebration of Opet.
The Origin of the word ‘Opet’:
5-The word “Opet” came from the phrase “Hob Nefer en Abit”, which is found in the ancient Egyptian language, and means “The beautiful feast of Opet.”
6-In this celebration, the annual meeting and sacred marriage between the god Amun-Ra and his wife, the goddess Mut took place.
7- The statue of the god Amun-Ra was being moved from the Holy of Holies inside his temple at Karnak, to be placed inside his sacred boat.
8- The sacred boats of “Amun-Re” with his wife “Mut” and his son, Khons was carried on the shoulders of the priests during the Opet Festival.
9-The ceremony was taking place, in the presence of instrumentalists, musicians, and pipers, in addition to a group of soldiers on war chariots.
10-The boats head to Luxor Temple, singing hymns glorifying the god Amun-Ra, and calling him to bestow all of his bounty, care, and protection on the king of the country.
Contributed by Nada Mustafa