The Goddess Mut

After a pre-dawn, chilly hike up the small mountain of Jebel Berkal, I descended to the historical city of Napata. Exploring the ruins, the sun slowly rises. It's not yet hot, but that will only last so long.

During the Kingdom of Kush, the pharaoh Taharqa built the Temple of Mut in the 680s BCE. Centuries earlier, the Temple of Amun was also built here. Mut, being the wife of Amun, is an ancient Egyptian goddess whose name meant "mother" in the ancient Egyptian language.

The rock chambers of the temple of Mut contain paintings that were restored from 2015-2018, meaning I visited roughly in the middle of the restoration work. This painting shows the lion-headed Mut wearing the pschent (double crown) in the center, with Taharqa to the right.

Along with the paintings in this temple are hieroglyphic inscriptions where Taharqa says that he found the temple built by the "ancestors" in "humble work", and that he rebuilt it as "splendid work." The background of the painting is Egyptian blue with the figures painted in ochre and white kaolin.