Temple of Karnac in Upper Egypt

H. W. Brewer

c. 1880

Signed lower left

Source: Stevenson’s House Architecture, I, 52

“Mass and stability — the sense of eternal duration — seem to have been what the Egyptians aimed at in their buildings. They used stones of enormous size, and of the hardest kind, and long ranges of monolithic columns and figures. They built their walls sloping inwards, as being the most stable form of construction; carrying this so far in the pyramids as to sacrifice to it every other kind of architectural expression. Their ornament, grand, simple, and restrained in its lines, aided the general effect. They sometimes covered their walls with hieroglyphics, but the cutting was so shallow that it never destroyed the sense of mass. The engraving of the Temple of Karnac in Upper gives some inadequate notion of the gigantic size of the masses of the architecture” (I, 53-54).

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