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Edward Lear (London 1812-1888 San Remo, Italy)
Denderah on the Nile
signed with monogram ‘EL’ (lower right) and with inscription ‘DENDERAH NILE’ (on verso)
pencil and watercolour heightened with bodycolour and gum arabic on paper
7.1/8 x 14.7/8 in. (18.2 x 37.7 cm.)

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Lot Essay

Lear visited Egypt three times with his first journey in 1849 when he explored Cairo and Mount Sinai. In his second trip, in December 1853, Lear left Cairo for a journey up the Nile to Philae, passing Denderah in the middle of January and again on his return about a month later.
Denderah is on the west bank of the Nile between Abydos and Luxor and is the ancient city of Tantere (Greek Tentyis). However, the temple, which is dedicated to Habdos, goddess of Love, though one of the best preserved in Egypt, is also one of the latest, dating from the 1st century B.C.

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