Hathor Temple at Mit Rahina was not set on fire

Nevine El-Aref , Monday 1 Jul 2013

After Sunday's mass rallies in Egypt, Hathor Temple stays intact despite rumours of destruction; antiquities minister says all historical sites secured, welcomed visitors

Mit Rahina archaeological site

Egypt's archaeological sites, museums and monuments have been secured and protection measures have increased by the Tourism and Antiquities Police, in collaboration with the army, to prevent theft or destruction, following nationwide protests on Sunday against President Mohamed Morsi.

Minister of State for Antiquities Ahmed Eissa asserted that all archaeological sites in Egypt are unharmed and welcomed its visitors. The Egyptian Museum in Cairo's Tahrir Square received 219 visitors of different nationalities while 585 people visited the Giza Plateau on Sunday and Monday, he stated.

Ministry of State for Antiquities archaeology consultant Mohamed Hamada confirmed to Ahram Online that nothing happened to Hathor Temple at Mit Rahina archaeological site, located about 24kilometres south of Cairo. He also denied rumours that it had been set on fire during.

The temple is very far of the burned grass and plants, Hamada said.

Mit Rahina, known in Ancient Egypt by Memphis, was the capital of Ancient Egypt for over eight consecutive dynasties in the Old Kingdom.

The city reached its peak during the 6th dynasty and became the core of worshiping god Ptah, the god of creation and artworks.

Memphis declined briefly after the 18th dynasty with the rise of Thebes and the New Kingdom, but it remained the second city of Egypt until 641 CE.

It was abandoned and became a source of stone for the surrounding settlements. It includes ruins of Ancient Egyptian, Ptolemaic and Graeco-Roman temples and chapels.

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