ICCROM Mora Samples Collection
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Abu Simbel, Nefertari Temple: MRA-EGY-Sim005

Type Sample Item

Sample ID


Sample Material Type

Mural painting

Sample Sub-type


Geographic Location

Abu Simbel


Egypt (EGY)
Abu Simbel
Temple of Nefertari

Historical note about the site/monument

The Small Temple, located at the north of the Great Temple, in Abu Simbel, is adorned by colossi across the front facade, three on either side of the doorway, depicting Ramses and his queen Nefertari, to whom the temple was dedicated. The prestige of the queen is so visible that Nefertari, bearing the horns of Hathor, is rendered the same size as Ramses, an indication of her high status. The walls of this temple are covered with compositions showing Ramses and Nefertari making offerings to the gods, as well as with depictions of the goddess Hathor.
In 1960’s the temples were saved from the floods caused by the Aswan High Dam, thanks to UNESCO and to the Egyptian government, as well as more than 50 countries, which combined efforts allowed the replacement of those gigantic structures. Abu Simbel was designated a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1979.

Further reading:
“Abu Simbel temples” in Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abu_Simbel_temples (Accessed: 10 October 2019).
Britannica, The Editors of Encyclopaedia. "Abu Simbel". Encyclopedia Britannica, 6 Apr. 2021, https://www.britannica.com/place/Abu-Simbel (Accessed: 2 May 2021).

Chronological period (sample)

13th century BC