Mosque of Abu'l Haggag at Luxor Temple.
Viewed from the tops of the architraves in the Colonnade Hall, the mosque
of Abu'l Haggag dominates the first court at Luxor Temple and aptly demonstrates
the continuing adaptation of ancient monuments to modern use. Luxor remained
very much intact during the Roman period, when the monument was incorporated
within the Roman camp and devoted to the cult of the Roman emperor. Later,
the temple was surrounded by churches, and by the late sixth century B.C.E.
one had been constructed within the first court itself. Nestled within
the ancient walls of the court of Ramesses II, and built on the ruins
of earlier Christian basilicas, the mosque of Abu'l-Haggag represents
a tradition of continuous worship at Luxor Temple for almost thirty-five
centuries. During the festival of this modern Muslim saint, boats are
paraded around the temple, perhaps an echo of the ancient procession of
the barks of Amun, Mut, and Khonsu during the Festival of Opet.
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