Karnak logo
Header image

Selected photos of existing state

None available


Model renderings: 2
Photographs: 0
Archival images: 0
Videos: 0
Object catalog: 0

View complete archive for this feature…


The "edifice of Amenhotep II" is the name given to a low building with a pillared façade located along the southern processional route of the temple, between the ninth and tenth pylons. Originally part of a separate festival court under Amenhotep II, the building was reconstructed in its present location by Horemheb.

Measurements: The "edifice of Amenhotep II" (as reconstructed under Horemheb) was approximately 37m wide and 20m deep.

Phase: Amenhotep II

Amenhotep II constructed a grand festival court south of the 8th Pylon which would have defined the southern-most monumental extension of Karnak (Van Siclen 2010). The court seems to have held a small pylon and porch, a pillared peristyle, and a building with a pillared façade.

Construction materials: sandstone, rose granite

Phase: Horemheb

The festival court of Amenhotep II was torn down by Horemheb during his restructuring of the southern processional route. The king used the disassembled blocks from four buildings of the court to create a new structure on the eastern side of the court between the ninth and tenth pylons.

The new building rested on a small podium with a ramp leading up to its entrance. A portico of fourteen pillars formed the structure's façade, which led directly to a large pillared hall. The doorway between these rooms was lined with a jamb of rose granite. Flanking either side of the central hall were two smaller pillared rooms, leading to yet smaller rooms. The re-erection of this building along the southern processional way (which does not run perpendicular to the east-west axis of the temple proper) appears to have influenced its new form, as the building is shaped as a parallelogram, angled to follow the axis of the pylons.

Sety I seems to have continued work on the temple, later sealing the original east entrance and completing the decoration left unfinished by Horemheb.

Construction materials: sandstone, rose granite

About the reconstruction model of this phase

Image resource: Rendering of Edifice of Amenhotep II, by UCLA
Image resource: Rendering of Edifice of Amenhotep II, by UCLA

The "edifice of Amenhotep II" is shown on the model in its 19th Dynasty form. The reconstruction of the building was based on the plan of Lauffray (1980: fig. 11), the isometric drawings of Homann (1999), and the wooden model designed by CFEETK artist Rashid Migalaa.

The building on the model was given a basic sandstone pattern that reflects the size of the stones in the existing building at Karnak. Detailed photographs of the building were not possible to procure, as this area of the temple is closed to visitors today.

Although the location and possible form of the original Amenhotep II court has been identified by Van Siclen (2010) through excavations, not enough information about this area was available for a digital reconstruction at the time they model was completed.

(page updated 2015)

Bibliography and Sources Used for Model Construction

Carlotti, Jean-François (2005), “Considérations architecturales sur l'orientation, la composition et les proportions des structures du temple d'Amon-Rê à Karnak,” in Structure and significance: thoughts on ancient Egyptian architecture. Wien: Verlag der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, 169-208.

Homann, G. (1999), “Karnak, constructions d'Amenhotep II.” http://gerard.homann.free.fr/WEB_EGYPTE/amen2.htm .

Lauffray, Jean (1980), “Les travaux du Centre Franco-Egyptien d'étude des temples de Karnak de 1972 à 1977.” Cahiers de Karnak, vol. VI, 1-65.

Van Siclen, Charles (2005), “Soundings south of the eighth pylon at Karnak.” annales du service des antiquités de l’Égypte, vol. 79, 187-189.

Van Siclen, Charles (2005), “La cour du IXe pylône à Karnak.” Bulletin de la société d'égyptologie, vol. 163, 27-46.

Van Siclen, Charles (2010), “The Edifice of Amenhotep II at Karnak: an Architectural Pious Fraud,” in Les temples de millions d’années et le pouvoir royal à Thèbes au Nouvel Empire. Cairo: Supreme Council of Antiquities of Egypt., 81-89.

Further reading

Van Siclen, Charles (1982), Two Theban monuments from the Reign of Amenhotep II. San Antonio: C.C. Van Siclen.

Van Siclen, Charles (1989-1990), “Preliminary Report on Epigraphic Work Done in the Edifice of Amenhotep II.” Varia aegyptiaca, vol. 6, no. 1-2, 75-90.