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St. Maria in the Capitol church in Cologne, Germany

July 4th, 2008 / / Links: Google Earth, Google Maps, Yahoo! Maps, Virtual Earth / Nearest places
 

St. Maria in the Capitol is a romanesque church in Cologne and the largest Romanesque church in the city with 100 m long and 40 m wide. It is one of the twelve Romanesque basilicas in the old city of Cologne, whose receipt of Friends of Roman churches Cologne supported.

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Baptistery at the Basilica of St.Peter, Vatican City

July 4th, 2008 / / Links: Google Earth, Google Maps, Yahoo! Maps, Virtual Earth / Nearest places
 

Baptistery at the Basilica of St. Peter (right next to the basilica in a southern direction). Paul VI Auditorium in a south-eastern direction from the Baptistery.

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St. Joseph Church, Cracow, Poland

June 22nd, 2008 / / Links: Google Earth, Google Maps, Yahoo! Maps, Virtual Earth / Nearest places
 

St. Joseph Church in Cracow, Poland, built in the years 1993-2002.

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Medinet Habu temple, Egypt

June 14th, 2008 / / Links: Google Earth, Google Maps, Yahoo! Maps, Virtual Earth / Nearest places
 

The ancient Egyptian name for Medinet Habu, in Arabic the "City of Habu" was Djamet, meaning "males and mothers." Its holy ground was believed to be where the Ogdoad, the four pairs of first primeval gods, were buried.

Medinet Habu was both a temple and a complex of temples dating from the New Kingdom. It adjoins the cultivation at the southern end of the Theban necropolis, opposite southern Luxor. The area was one of the earliest places within the Theban region to be associated with the worship of Amun. Hatshepsut and Tutmosis III built a small temple to Amun on the site of an earlier structure. Next to their temple, Ramesses III built his mortuary temple, Medinet Habu’s most conspicuous standing monument.

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Temple of Edfu, Edfo, Egypt

June 14th, 2008 / / Links: Google Earth, Google Maps, Yahoo! Maps, Virtual Earth / Nearest places
 

Dedicated to Horus, the falcon headed god, it was built during the reigns of six Ptolemies. We have a great deal of information about its construction from reliefs on outer areas. It was begun in 237 BC by Ptolemy III Euergetes I and was finished in 57 BC. Most of the work continued throughout this period with a brief interlude of 20 years while there was unrest during the period of Ptolemy IV and Ptolemy V Epiphanes.

This is not only the best preserved ancient temple in Egypt, but the second largest after Karnak. It was believed that the temple was built on the site of the great battle between Horus and Seth. Hence, the current temple was but the last in a long series of temples build on this location. It is said that the original structure housing a statue of Horus was a grass hut built in prehistoric times. At any rate, there is an earlier and smaller pylon of Ramesses II which sits in a 90 degree angle to the current building.

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Kalabsha Temple, Egypt

June 14th, 2008 / / Links: Google Earth, Google Maps, Yahoo! Maps, Virtual Earth / Nearest places
 

Kalabsha Temple originally built at Kalabsha (Talmis) was moved to its present location at New Kalabsha (Chellal) in 1970, together with other monuments from Nubia, including the Kiosk of Qertassi (Kertassi). Also nearby is Beit al-Wali. Reachable by taxi or by boat, depending on the water level, the sandstone edifice was built by the Roman Emperor Octavius Augustus (30 to 14 BC) and dedicated to the fertility and Nubian Solar deity known as Mandulis (Merwel who was the Nubian counterpart of Horus).

It was the largest free-standing temple of Egyptian Nubia and the design of Kalabsha Temple is classical for the Ptolemaic period with pylons, courtyard, hypostyle hall and three room sanctuary. However, the Pylon is offset, which creates a trapezoid in the courtyard beyond. It was built on the site of an earlier structure built by Ptolemy IX as evidenced by a chapel. There is also a small chapel and gate on Elephantine Island from Kalabsha, and a gate built by Augustus was given to the Agyptisches Museum in West Berlin.

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The temple of Dakka, Egypt

June 14th, 2008 / / Links: Google Earth, Google Maps, Yahoo! Maps, Virtual Earth / Nearest places
 

The temple of Dakka, dedicated to Thoth of the Sycamore Fig, was originally located about 100 kilometers south of the Aswan High Dam in what we refer to today as Nubia, though much of that ancient land is covered by Lake Nasser. El-Dakka was known to the Egyptians as Pselqet and to the Greeks as Pselchis. Because of the impending flooding of the region as a result of the High Dam, it was moved to the site of el-Sebua, about 40 kilometers upstream, between 1962 and 1968.

The temple we see today was actually begun by the Meroitic (Nubian) king, Akamani, who the Greeks called Ergamenes, in about 220 BC, though this date is somewhat disputed, with some scholars maintaining that it dates as earlier as Ptolemy II Philadelphus 282-246. However, it is Dakka Temple full viewmore likely that, while Akamani may have been alive early in the reign of Ptolomy II Philadelphus, it is more likely that the temple dates to the reign of Ptolomy IV Philopator (222-205). Irregardless, together with his son named Arka (probably Argamani, Greek Ergamenes II), it's construction appears to have become a combined effort between these Nubian kings and the line of Greek Pharaohs in Egypt, probably commencing with Ptolomy IV, though its construction continued through the reigns of Ptolemy VIII Euergetes II and into the Roman rule of Augustus and Tiberius.

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The Xa Loi Pagoda, Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam

June 14th, 2008 / / Links: Google Earth, Google Maps, Yahoo! Maps, Virtual Earth / Nearest places
 

The Xa Loi Pagoda is the largest pagoda in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. It was built in 1956 and was the headquarters of Buddhism in South Vietnam. The Temple is located in District 3, Ho Chi Minh City and lies on a plot of 2500 square metres. The name Xa Loi is the Vietnamese translation for sarira, a term used for relics of Buddhists.

The pagoda is most well-known abroad for the Xa Loi Pagoda raids, in which the Army of the Republic of Vietnam Special Forces loyal to Ngo Dinh Nhu, the brother of the Catholic President Ngo Dinh Diem, raided and vandalised the pagodas on August 21, 1963.

The temple includes a large statue of Gautama Buddha that was crafted by sculptors from Bien Hoa, a city just north of Ho Chi Minh City. The statue has been in its current state since 1969, when a gold coating was applied to it. In front of the statue is a shrine dedicated to the relics of the Buddha, with the relics being enshrined in a small stupa. The main ceremonial hall is adorned with large artistic depictions by Dr. Nguyen Van Long of the Gia Dinh Art School, which depict various scenes of the Buddha from his birth as Prince Siddhartha to his attainment of nirvana.

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