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Ashmunein (Hermopolis)

Ashmunein (Hermopolis)

Egypt Cruises - The Open Air Museum of Ashmunein (Hermopolis)

There is little left to see of the ancient town of Ashmunein (also known by its Ptolemaic name of Hermopolis or Hermopolis Magna).  There is a group of 24 slender columns (below left) and there's also an Outdoor Museum of antique stone carvings and statues, such as the funeral stelae (example below right) and the colossal baboon statues (main picture) which once upheld the ceiling of the Temple of Thoth built by Ramses II.  The town was a cult centre from early Dynastic times, venerated as the site of the primeval mound where the sun god emerged from the cosmic egg.  The ruins lie close to the modern village of Ashmunein.