Intercolumnar Wall C (139-143)

Esna 139

Cartouches of Domitian.

Esna 140

  • Location: Intercolumnar Wall C
  • Date: Domitian
  • Hieroglyphic Text
  • Bibliography: Elgawady (2016), p. 203.
  • Photograph


    1ỉr snṯr n bȝ.w fdw wr.w

    1 Doing incense for the four great rams.

    The King

    (ỉwtkr(tr) ksrs)
    (tymtyns ḫwỉ)

    2 King of Upper and Lower Egypt,
    (Autokra(tor) Caesar),
    3 Son of Re,
    (Domitian Augustus)

    The Four Rams

    4bȝ n šw nb Iwny.t
    5bȝ n Rʿ ḫnt ỉȝ.t-[ṯȝ.wy]
    6bȝ n Gbb nb ḥw.t-ỉt
    7bȝ n Wsỉr nb tȝ-sn.t

    4 The Ba of Shu, Lord of Iunyt.
    5 The Ba of Re within the Nome of [the Chicks]366.
    6 The Ba of Geb, Lord of Temple of the Father.
    7 The Ba of Osiris, Lord of Esna.

Esna 141

This is a potentially significant scene. The Bas of Pe and Nekhen carry the Roman emperor Hadrian in a sedan chair, just as if he were celebrating a classical Pharaonic jubilee (Sed Festival). Similar reliefs can be found at Karnak under Ramesses II and Ramesses III. Hadrian actually visited Upper Egypt in 130-131 CE, including trips to famous monuments such as the Colossus of Memnon in Western Thebes, and he reportedly interacted closely with local Egyptian clergy.367

This unique relief does not fit in with the other intercolumnar scenes at Esna, which otherwise show the well-attested ritual sequence of building the temple and seeing the chief divinities. Nonetheless, similar scenes of the king carried on a sedan chair can accompany scenes of “appearing from the palace,” as depicted in Esna 52 and Esna 74.368 Since most of the surrounding reliefs were decorated under Domitian, including the inscriptions immediately above this scene ([Esna 139), Esna 140), it is tempting to speculate this scene commemorates a visit by Hadrian himself to the temple of Esna. At the very least, it seems as if the cartouches were finished during his reign. The royal names carved beneath his feet (below, 12) more closely resemble the name of his predecessor, Trajan.

Above Hadrian

(ȝwtwktr kysrs)
2zȝ-Rʿ nb-ḫʿ.w
(ỉtrỉnỉs nty-ḫwỉ)

3nṯr nfr
psḏ m nbw
wṯz-ḫʿ ḥr tnṯȝ.t
ȝm ḥḥ
m sḏd nsy.wt
ḫfʿ [nḫȝḫȝ?]
[ḥr] ḥȝq […]

1 The King of Upper and Lower Egypt,
Lord of the Two Lands,
(Autokrator Caesar)
2 Son of Re, Lord of Appearances,
(Hadrian Augustus)

3 The good god,
who shines in gold,
who wears crowns on the palanquin,
who grabs Heh
while making kingship endure,369
who grasps [the fly whisk?]
taking […]

4ṯnỉ.tw ʿ
ẖr šw.ty n tȝ-ṯnn
m sḏḏ=f n ẖnmw nb Iwny.t

Mnḥy.t m hnn=f
mỉ mḥn.t 5ḥr-tp n nṯr.w nb.w

wbn m ȝḫ.t rʿ-nb zp-snw
mỉ ỉtn tp dwȝw

4 He is distinguished, he is pleasing,
wearing the double plumes of Tatenen,
in his image of Khnum Lord of Iunyt.

Menhyt is on his brow,
like the uraeus 5 atop all gods.370

Shine in the Akhet every day!
Like the sundisk in the morning.

ḥry-tȝ n ẖnmw
msw.t n R
snn ʿnḫ n 6Ptḥ
pr.t ȝḫ.t n nb-(r)-ḏr
wtṯ.n=f sw
r ỉdn s.t=f

qmȝ.n šw
pʿpʿ.n tfn.t
7dỉ(.w) r tȝ m ḥqȝ ns.t
mw n tȝ
bẖ.n Nw.t
ḫnmm.n N.t
šd.n ỉh.t
rr.n Wr.t-ḥkȝw
8sṯny n nb.w Iwny.t

The successor of Khnum,
image of Re,
living statue of 6 Ptah,
glorious seed of the All Lord,
whom he begot
in order to fill his throne.

Created by Shu,
conceived by Tefnut,
7 given birth as Ruler of the throne;
seed of the earth,
born of the sky (Nut),
nursed by Neith,
raised by the Ihet cow,
nourished by Weret-hekau:
8 distinguished by the Lord of Iunyt.

nsw.t m pr=f
ḥqȝ tp nwd.t=f
nb wʿ ḥr ndb.t=f

9zȝ Wsỉr
ms.n Is.t
bỉk n nbw
ḫʿ.tw ḥr srḫ

nsyw.t=f ḥn.ty nḥḥ
10smn ḥp.ty=f
ỉn nb sḫm.ty
šnw n tȝ ẖr s.t-ḥr=f
nb tȝ.wy
mỉ nb tȝ.wy
šzp nsyw.t
m hrw n

King when he emerged,
ruler atop his swaddling clothes,
sole lord upon his territory.

9 Son of Osiris,
born of Isis,
falcon of gold,
appearing upon the serekh.

His kingship is the limits of eternity,
10 his boundaries where established
by the Lord of the double crown,
the globe is under his supervision,
lord of the two lands,
like the Lord of the Two Lands(?),
who received kingship
on the day he was born.

11rmn sw wṯz sw
ỉn bȝ.w P Nḫn
r ʿh
n qdỉ rmṯ
ỉr nṯr.w ỉm=f

12ḏỉ=f n=f nsyw.t n Rʿ
ḥqȝ n šw
ỉmỉ.t=pr n (Wn-nfr mȝʿ-ḫrw)
ḥr s.t-ḥr
ḫnty ʿnḫ.w ḏ.t

11 He is carried, he is elevated,
by the Bas of Pe and Nekhen,
toward the palace
of he who built people
and makes gods therein.

12 May he give to him the kingship of Re,
the rule of Shu,
the inheritance of (Wennefer, justified),
upon the throne of Horus,
foremost of the living, forever.

Bas of Pe

13bȝ.w P
šms(.w) ḥr m tȝ-mḥw
wṯz bỉty
mỉ ỉt=sn

13 The Bas of Pe,
Followers of Horus in Lower Egypt,
who carry the bỉty-king,
like their father.

Bas of Nekhen

14bȝ.w Nḫn
šms(.w) ḥr m tȝ-šmʿ
fȝỉ nsw.t
mỉ skr m ḥnw

14 The Bas of Nekhen,
Followers of Horus in Upper Egypt,
who carry the nsw-king,
like Sokar in the henu-bark.

Beneath the King’s Feet

NB: Text moves in two directions from the center.

ḫȝs.wt nb.w ḫbỉ(.w)
n bȝw n nṯr nfr
(trȝyns ḫwỉ)

ḫȝs.wt nb.w snḥ(.w)
ẖr ṯb.ty n nsw.t-bỉty
(trȝtyns ḫwỉ)

All foreign lands are bent down
to the power of the good god,
(Trajan(?)371 Augustus)

All foreign lands are bound
beneath the sandals of the king
(Trajan(?) Augustus)

Esna 142

m nsw.t-bỉty
rn n nṯr nṯr.t [nb?]
qn(.w) m kȝ.t=f m nḏm-ỉb
m ḏ(d).n Rʿ ḏs=f

ẖnmw-Rʿ nb tȝ-sn.t
ʿq=k r=f
wbn=k m-ḫnt=f
r wḏ-mdw n tpy.w-tȝ=s

mn=f ẖr bȝ=k
wȝḥ=f [ẖr sštȝ=k?]
[…] ḏ.t

as372 the King of Upper and Lower Egypt,
and the name of [every?] god and goddess; being happily completed in its work,373
as Re himself said.374

Khnum-Re, Lord of Esna:
May you enter it,
and shine within it,
to issue commands to its citizens.

As it remains bearing your Ba,
it endures [bearing your secret image?]375
[…] eternally.

Esna 143

  • Location: Intercolumnar Wall B, soubassement
  • Date: Domitian
  • Hieroglyphic Text
  • Bibliography: Elgawady (2016), pp. 205-206; Tattko (2014), pp. 375-376, 415-416 (translation of Nile figure, with parallels)
  • Parallels: Esna VI, 634, 20-23, No. 10; Urk VIII, 122, 3 (for the Nile figure)

1 - Nile

1mw mtr
2mȝwỉ=f r tr=f

ỉỉ.n nsw.t-bỉty
(ȝwtwkrtr kysrs)
N.t wr.t mw.t-nṯr
nb.t tȝ-sn.t

ỉn=f n=t mw [mtr]
smtr šdy.wt
nʿy=f [n=t]
4[ḥms.n]=f [ḥr ỉdb].w
bʿḥ.n=f tȝ.wy m nfrw=t
r srwḏ pȝw.t
n nṯr.w

ntṯ ỉt nfr
rs ḥr [pr ỉm=s]
mw.t mnḫ.t
nfr šd.t

1 The Mtr water,376
2 he renews at his time.
3 Words spoken:

The King of Upper and Lower Egypt,
(Autokrator Caesar)
has come before you,
Neith377 the great, Mother of God,
Lady of Esna.

He brings to you the [precise] water
who corrects the fields,
he travels [for you]
4 [As he settl]ed [upon the ban]ks,
he flooded the two lands with your beauty,
to make flourish bread offerings
for the gods.

You are the good father,
who watches over [what comes from] her378,
an effective mother,
good at nurturing.

2 - Field

5sḫ.t […]
6sḫn [ḥr]r.w=s

ỉỉ.n zȝ-Rʿ
(ỉtrynỉs nty-ḫwỉ)
N.t wr.t mw.t-nṯr
nb.t tȝ-sn.t

ỉn=f n=t sḫ.t […]
8[…r] sȝw s.t=ṯ
smn=s wʿb.w=t
sʿšȝ.n=s wdpw(?)=t

ntṯ šȝʿ ḥtp.w-nṯr

5 The field […]
6 who unites with her [flowe]rs.
7 Words spoken:

The Son of Re,
(Hadrian Augustus)
has come before you,
Neith the great, Mother of God,
Lady of Esna379.

He brings to you the field […]
8 […] to broaden your place,
she establishes your priests,
and multiplies your servants(?).

You are she who began divine offerings