Greek cross on altar

This was probably a temple site since the 4th century B.C. It was not officially closed until AD 550 by the Byzantine emperor, Justinian. It was the last pagan temple to exist in the Mediterranean world (although a Roman temple to Isis remained in England).

Philae was a seat of the Christian religion as well as of the ancient Egyptian faith. Ruins of a Christian church were discovered and a chapel dedicated to Osiris was later dedicated to Christ. The Philae temple was converted into a church dedicated to the Virgin Mary, until that was closed by Muslim invaders in the 7th century.