Episode 36: The White Chapel

Senuseret I (Part 3): Karnak.

The reign of Senuseret I is notable for the swathe of construction projects initiated at the king’s command. For the first time since the Old Kingdom, monuments are being erected up and down the Nile Valley. Most noteworthy are the contributions at Karnak, where the legendary temple finds its genesis; Elephantine, where existing temples are re-modeled and reconstructed; and Heliopolis, where Senuseret’s obelisk is the only surviving monument of antiquity.

The king’s pyramid at al-Lisht also attempts something new…with mixed results.

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A digital reconstruction of the White Chapel (Source: the UCLA Digital Karnak Project).

(More images of the White Chapel can be found here: Flickr User: Kairoinfo4u).

A digital reconstruction of the early Amun Temple at Karnak

(Source: the UCLA Digital Karnak Project).

The later Satet Temple at Elephantine. The surviving temple dates from far later than the Middle Kingdom (Source: Dominic Perry, 2008 – Use as you wish).


The Satet Temple looking Eastward. Near to this portion is deep pit, used to measure the annual Nile flood, for which Satet was partly responsible

(Source: Dominic Perry, 2008 – use as you wish).

The obelisk of Kha-kheper-Re Senuseret I at Heliopolis, erected as part of the Atum-Re temple (Source: Wikipedia).


The collapsed pyramid of Senuseret I at al-Lisht (Source: Wikipedia).

The king’s pyramid in diagram, showing the sixteen “cells” which made its construction so unique (Source: Wikipedia).

A polished shell, with the cartouche of the king (Source: Digital Egypt by UCL).


Wolfram Grajetzki, The Middle Kingdom of Ancient Egypt, 2006.

James H. Breasted, A History of Egypt, 1905 (1959 Edition).

UCLA Digital Karnak Project.


4 Comments Add yours

  1. Danielle W. says:

    I just have to say your podcast is an amazing resource. Up until now, the kings and elites were merely dry names in my books, surrounded with accomplishments lacking sufficient context.
    Now, they live and breath.
    I also appreciate your episode organization, images, and resource drops. The way it is introduced and summarized makes it very easy to reference while I work.

    1. DominicPerry says:

      Hi Danielle,
      Thank you very much! Such kind words 🙂 I’m glad you are enjoying the show, and I hope it continue to meet your expectations!
      Best regards,

  2. Wendy Ellyn says:

    Dominic, I am so grateful for your podcast! I’m working my way through the episodes in preparation for Nile cruise / tour of Egypt in December. ( I wish I had known about your January 2020 trip before booking the cruise, I would’ve loved to come along! Maybe next time. ) It’s clear how much craft and care you put into each episode. The delivery, structure, and pacing are excellent. I am consuming them at the rate of 3 to 5 per day and I know I will be disappointed when they end!

    I am wondering about the music at the end of Episode 36, and used elsewhere as well. Is it part of a longer recording I can download or purchase somewhere?

    Thank you again for the podcast.

    1. DominicPerry says:

      Hi Wendy,
      Thanks for listening! This is the piece “Many Roads, Many Travels” by Keith Zizza which you can find on his website here http://keithzizza.com/projects/children_of_the_nile

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