'General View of Koum Ombos', 1859.
© National Media Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
A stereoscopic photograph of the ruined Temple of Kom Ombo, Egypt, partly buried in sand, taken in 1859 by Francis Frith (1822-1898). This image is from a series of one hundred stereoscopic photographs taken by Frith for Negretti and Zambra and published in 1862 in a book entitled 'Egypt, Nubia and Ethiopia Illustrated'. Kom Ombo, near Aswan, stood on the important caravan route from the Nubian gold mines. The temple stands on a nearby hilllock at the ancient site of Ombos.The northern half of the temple is dedicated to the falcon god Harwer, or Horus The Elder, the southern half to the crocodile god Sobek. Francis Frith was a pioneer of travel photography. He was also one of photography's greatest entrepreneurs, founding a company that was to become the largest publisher of photographs in the world. Frith saw himself as a romantic adventurer in the mould of Byron. Between 1856 and 1860 he travelled and photographed extensively in Egypt and the Holy Land. His work was published in