Tuesday, April 29, 2008

On the "Greek Temple" in Alexandria

The report from April 21 on Rogue Classicism of the report from several days prior [the link is not working as I type] says this:
A team of archaeologists have unearthed a Greek temple in the Egyptian coastal city of Alexandria, showing that the Greeks worshipped Pharaonic deities more than 2,500 years ago.

An official of the expedition said that the temple was found during the renovation of an area of Alexandria with the relics of the temple unearthed evidence that Greeks were influenced by the ancient Egyptian civilization.

He added that the Greeks believed in the holy trinity of Isis, Osiris and the child Horus, developing these gods after Alexander the great conquered the city in 332 BC.

I cannot offer a substantial source, but a friend in Alexandria tells me that this temple was found during conservation work at the Serapeum, in the western half of the site. "More than 2,500 years ago" would mean pre-Greek, pre-foundation, and definitely pre-date the "Alexandrian trinity." The idea that an Egyptian settlement (Rhakotis) existed on the site before Alexander arrived has been gaining acceptance in Alexandrian studies lately, but this would be a nice proof -- of course, we'll have to wait for some published confirmation or clarification.

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