(ORDO NEWS) — Archaeologists have found a set of granite blocks, probably used to build a staircase for worshipers to reach the temple.
Egyptian archaeologists have unearthed the ruins of a temple of the ancient Greek god Zeus in the Sinai Peninsula. This was stated by the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities.
Tell el-Pharma, also known by its ancient name Pelusium, dates back to the late pharaonic period and was also used in Greco-Roman and Byzantine times. There are also remains dating back to the Christian and early Islamic periods.
Mostafa Waziri, secretary-general of Egypt’s Supreme Council of Antiquities, said archaeologists have unearthed the ruins of the temple through the entrance gate, where two huge fallen granite columns were visible. The gate was destroyed by a powerful earthquake in ancient times.
Vaziri also said that the ruins were found between Fort Pelusium and the memorial church. Archaeologists have found a set of granite blocks, probably used to build a staircase for worshipers to reach the temple.
Excavations in the area date back to the early 1900s, when French Egyptologist Jean Cledat found ancient Greek inscriptions that testified to the existence of a temple of Zeus-Kasios, but he did not excavate it, the ministry said.
Zeus-Kasios is the confluence of Zeus, God of the sky in ancient Greek mythology, and Mount Kasios in Syria, where Zeus was once worshipped.
Hisham Hussein, director of Sinai archaeological sites, said that inscriptions found in the area show that the Roman Emperor Hadrian (117-138) renovated the temple.
He also said experts would study the found blocks and conduct a photogrammetric survey to help determine the temple’s architectural design.
The temple ruins are the latest in a series of ancient discoveries that Egypt has been touting over the past couple of years in hopes of attracting more tourists.
Contact us: [email protected]