Hathor Temple at Dendera - detail

Located rather isolated on the desert edge, about 2.5 km south-west of the Town, lay what Dendera is known for, the mostly Greco-Roman Temple Complex, Dendera, known in ancient Egyptian as Iunet or Tantere. The modern Arab town is built on the ancient site of Ta-ynt-netert which means 'She of the Divine Pillar', or Tentyra which is Greek for Dendera. It was once the capital of the 6th Nome (Pharaonic province) of Upper Egypt, also named Nikentori or Nitentori, which signifies willow wood or willow earth. Others give the derivation from the sky and fertility goddess Hathor, also associated with the Greek Aphrodite, who was specially worshiped there. The twin temples were originally carved out of the mountainside during the reign of Pharaoh Ramesses II in the 13th century BC, as a lasting monument to himself and his queen Nefertari, to commemorate his alleged victory at the Battle of Kadesh, and to intimidate his Nubian neighbors.

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