Elkab


El Kab, Temple of Amenhotep III

Elkab, also named Nekheb, is a site  called  Nekheb  by  the  Egyptians and one of the nation’s earliest villages, dating to c. 6000 B.C.E. Elkab is on the east bank of the Nile, 20 miles  south  of  Eana. The  site  is  across  the  river  from Hierakonpolis and is related to nearby Nekhen (modern Kom  el-Ahmar).  Predynastic  palaces,  garrisoned  ramparts, and other interior defences attest to the years of the site,  which  was  devoted  to  the  goddess  Nekhebet, the patroness of Upper Egypt.

Elkab’s  citizens  rose  against  Ahmose (r.  1550–1525 B.C.E.) when he started the Eighteenth Dynasty, and he dotted the siege of the Hyksos capital of Avaris to put down  the  rebellion.  The  nomarchs  of  the  area  were energetic  and  independent.  Their  rock-cut  graves  are  in the  northern  section  of  the  city  and  display  their  vivacious  access  to  life  and  death. King Tuthmosis III (r.1479–1425  B.C.E.)  erected  the  first  chapel  to  Nekhebet, broken  by  his  heir  Amenhotep II. The  temple  of Nekhebet had a series of lower temples involved as well as a devoted lake and a necropolis. A temple observances the god  Thoth was  started  by  Ramses II (r.  1290–1224 B.C.E.).  The  present  Nekhebet  enshrine  dates  to  the  Late Period (712–332 B.C.E.). In the valley of Elkab shrines of Nubian  gods  were  discovered,  and  in  far  wadis  a shrine  to  a  deity  made  Shesmetet and  a  temple  of Hathor and Nekhebet stand in ruins. The rock-cut tombs of  ’Ahmose-Pen Nekhebet, ’Ahmose, son of Ebana, and Paheri are also on the site. Elkab likewise contains El-Hammam, called “the Bath,” which was seen to the reign of RamsesII. His stela is still evident there. Amenhotep III (r. 1391–1353 B.C.E.) also erected a chapel there for the devoted Bark of Nekhebet.