Barque Chapel – Ancient Egyptian Temple Elements 14

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Just prior to the sanctuary there might also be located a barque chapel, which was a room that housed the portable barque on which the statue of the god rested during processional ceremonies and other occasions on which it was moved. The barque is a form of boat, though in the case of portable barques it was more of a symbolic concept, for these did not usually take on the shape of an actual boat. Rather, it was designed to be carried on the shoulders of the priests and would be loaded on a real boat if transported by water.

Most temples had some form of barque shrine to house this sacred means of transportation for the god, though in some temples it might be located in the inner sanctuary itself. Wherever it was located, adjacent walls were usually decorated with scenes of the king leading a procession in which the barque was depicted.

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