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Bani Hassan


A little more than 20km (12.5 miles ) South of el-Minya are the remains of the Middle Kingdom provincial capital of Beni Hasan, with its famous tombs. Just to the south of this site is the Speos Artemidos,an unusual rock temple built by the New Kingdom queen-pharaoh Hatshepsut for the local lion-goddess Pakhet. The temple is unfinished,as may be seen by the rough nature of the Hathor-headed columns of the façade,but an extensive dedicatory text containing a famous denunciation of the Hyksos was completed above the temple’s entrance.The pillared hall of the temple is decorated with painted scenes depicting Hatshepsut and various deities.The cartouche names in this hall,however,are those of Sethos I who usurped the monument without completing it.The inner room is unfinished,but contains a rock carved image of the goddess Pakhet in a niche cut into its back wall.