Kom Ombo

Kom Ombo (Arabic: كوم أمبو Coptic: Ⲉⲙⲃⲱ Embo Ancient Greek: Ὄμβοι Omboi Ptol. IV § 73 Steph B. sv It. Anton page 165) or Ombos (Juv. Xv. 35 ) or Latin: Ambo (Not Imp. Section 20) and Ombi - is an agricultural town in Egypt famous for the Kom Ombo temple. It was originally an Egyptian city called Nubt meaning the Golden City (not to be confused with the city north of Naqada which was also called Nubt / Ombos). Nubt is also known as (Nubet) or Nubyt (Nbyt). [1] It became a Greek colony during the Greco-Roman period. The location of the city on the Nile 50 kilometers north of Aswan (Syene) gave him some control over the trade routes from Nubia to the Nile Valley but his main eruption was the erection of the temple of Kom Ombo. in the 2nd century BC.


In antiquity the city was in the Thebaid capital of the Nomos Ombites on the eastern bank of the Nile; latitude 24 ° 6 \'north. Ombos was a garrison city under each Egyptian Pharaonic Macedonian and Roman dynasty and was celebrated for the magnificence of its temples and its hereditary feud with the inhabitants of Tentyra.


Sobek at the Kom Ombo temple.
Ombos was the first city below Syene to which remarkable remains of antiquity occur. The Nile indeed at this part of its course was ill suited to a dense population in antiquity. It runs between steep narrow sandstone banks and deposits but little of its fertilizing mud on arid arid shores. There are two temples at Ombos built with stone from the nearby quarries of Hadjar-saltseleh. The most magnificent of the two stands at the top of a sandy hill and seems to have been a sort of Pantheon since according to the existing inscriptions it was dedicated to Aroeres (Apollo) and the other deities of the nome Ombite by the soldiers neighborhoods there. The smallest temple in the northwest was sacred to the goddess Isis. Both indeed are of an imposing architecture and still preserve the brilliant colors of which their builders adorned them. They are however of Ptolemaic age with the exception of a sandstone door built in a brick wall. It was part of a temple built by Tuthmosis III in honor of the crocodile-headed god Sobek. The monarch is depicted on the tress the jambs holding the reed and scissor of measure the emblems of the building and in the act of dedicating the temple. The Ptolemaic parts of the largest temple present an exception to an almost universal rule in Egyptian architecture. He has no propylon or dromos in front of him and the portico has an odd number of columns in the fifteen arranged in a triple row. Of these columns thirteen are still standing. As there are two main entrances the temple seems to be united in one reinforcing the supposition that it was the Pantheon of the Nome Ombite. On a cornice above the door of one of the adyta there is a Greek inscription recording the erection or perhaps the restoration of the sekos by Ptolemy VI Philometor and his sister-wife Cleopatra II 180- 145 av. The hill on which the Ombite temples stand has been considerably dug at its base by the river which here is steeply inclined towards the Arab shore.

The crocodile was held especially by the people of Ombos; and in adjacent catacombs are sometimes mummies of the sacred animal. Juvenal in his fifteenth satire gave a vivid description of a combat of which he was an eyewitness between the Ombitae and the inhabitants of Tentyra who were crocodile hunters. On this occasion the men of Ombos had the worst; and one of them having stumbled in his flight was caught and eaten by the Tentyrites. The satirist however has represented Ombos closer to Tentyra than he really is as these cities are nearly 160 kilometers apart. The Roman coins of the nome Ombite present the crocodile and the effigy of the crocodile head god Sobek.

At Kom Ombo there is a rare engraved image of what is believed to be the first representation of medical instruments for surgery including scalpels curettes forceps dilators scissors and medicine bottles. dating from Roman Egypt.

On this site there is another Nilometer used to measure the water level of the river. On the opposite side of the Nile was a suburb of Ombos called Contra-Ombos. The city was a bishopric before the Muslim conquest and under the name Ombi is included in the list of titular seats of the Catholic Church. Karol Wojtyła (the future Pope John Paul II) was bishop of Ombi from 1958 to 1963 when he was appointed archbishop of Krakow. [2] Geography Climate The climatic classification system of Köppen-Geiger classifies its climate as hot desert (BWh)