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Francis Frith 
Sculptures at Dendara, Egypt 
1857 
  
Albumen print, from wet collodion negative 
Private collection of John Hannavy 
 
LL/31339 
  
"I prepared my pictures by candlelight in one of the interior chambers of the temple [at Dendara]. It was the most unpleasant apartment - the hole in which I worked. The floor was covered to the depth of several inches with an impalpable, I'll-flavoured dust, which rose in clouds as we moved; from the roof were suspended groups of fetid bats - the most offensively-smelling creatures in existence; in some of the tombs, the odour which they emit is so powerful as to render the place 'impossible'." Francis Frith in 'Egypt and Palastine photographed and described' (1859)
 
As Dendara can, today, only be accessed with a police escort, and invariably after 11am, this remarkable view captured by Frith at dawn is not possible for today's visitor. This photograph encapsulates many of the problems Frith encountered - the streaks show the collodion drying as it was poured to the edges of the plate, reducing in sensitivity as it dried. This picture, therefore, exemplifies the whole process of making collodion negatives in the desert heat, as well as describing the intricate scultures. (John Hannavy, 2008)
 
This photograph was included in the book by John Hannavy "Great Photographic Journeys - in the footsteps of Pioneer British Photographers" (Dewi Lewis Publishing, 2008 - # ISBN-10: 1904587542, # ISBN-13: 978-1904587545) 
 
 
  

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Photographer: 
  
Francis Frith 
  
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Francis Frith
Related online exhibitions: 
  
Egypt, The Pyramids and other archaeological sites 
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John Hannavy: Great Photographic Journeys 
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Scientific: 19th Century Archaeology 
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Themes 
  
Archaeology 
Architecture 
Egypt 
Graffiti 
Remnants of the Ancient and Classical world 
 
Fragments and slideshows 
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Egypt: Dendara (Subscribers) 
Egypt: Wall art, bas-relief, hieroglyphics and graffiti (Subscribers) 
Francis Frith: Egypt (Subscribers) 
 
  
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