Graffiti and the Goddess


“May the good name remain here.”

This is one of the numerous graffiti scratched into the walls of Isis’ great temple at Philae by one of the many, many pilgrims (and tourists) who have journeyed to Her sacred island over the millennia.

The last-known hieroglyphic inscription in Egypt; Philae Temple of Isis

And so, while our last post ended with graffiti, this one begins with it.

Did you know that Philae is the Egyptian temple with the most graffiti of any existing temple? There are more than one thousand graffiti on the buildings on Philae (now on Agilika island; the temple was relocated in the 1960s to save it from submersion with the building of the Aswan Dam). Graffiti is, quite simply, everywhere; in Demotic, Greek, Meroitic, Latin, and later, French and English. Philae is also the site of the last-known hieroglyphic inscription, as well as the last-known Demotic inscription…

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