The Red Chapel of Hatshepsut or the Chapelle Rouge originally was constructed as a barque shrine during the reign of Hatshepsut. She was the fifth pharaoh of the eighteenth dynasty of Ancient Egypt and ruled from approximately 1479 to 1458 BC. Although it had been demolished and parts were reused in antiquity, following rediscovery, the chapel has been reconstructed using its original materials. Its original location is thought to have been in the central court of the temple of Amun at Karnak, near Thebes. Alternatively, it might have been situated between the two obelisks of Hatshepsut. It also is thought that behind it, Hatshepsut erected several smaller chapels and the Chambers of Hatshepsut.Ancient Egyptians believed that a sacred barque was used in a nightly journey of the sun deity, traveling from the western horizon at sunset behind the earth to the eastern horizon where the sunrise would occur. During the early eighteenth dynasty, the sun deity was Amun. During religious ceremonies the deity would be transported from one temple or section of a temple complex to another in a model which the pharaoh and other religious leaders kept for such religious ceremonies. The chapel would have been its sacred temple. A barque also was believed to transport the dead to the afterlife and royal ones would carry the pharaoh on a journey to become a deity. Eventually, in addition to the reliefs and paintings of barques, model copies were placed in the tombs of pharaohs, royalty, and all who could afford to provide one for their burial. The chapel consists of two open courts and is approximately 18 metres long, 6 m wide, and 5.5 m high. Its upper portion is made of red quartzite (hence the name); the foundation is built of black diorite. Black granite and grey diorite also were used in its construction. In the center of the first of three courts contained in the building, is a basin, probably used to hold a model of a barque. In the center of the inner court, two rectangular stone slabs mark places where statues or barques might have been placed.It was erected at the temple of Karnak in the sanctuary of Amun-Ra and placed immediately in front of a mud-brick and limestone temple remaining from the Middle Kingdom. To the north and south of the Red Chapel stood a collection of smaller sandstone cult shrines known as the Hatshepsut Suite, whose decorations showed Hatshepsut making offerings to the deities. The chapel consisted of two rooms, a vestibule, and a sanctuary, which were raised on a diorite platform and could be accessed using short ramps on either side. The purpose of the chapel was to house the Userhat-Amun, the barque believed to be used by the deity Amun to travel about on festival days. The Userhat-Amun was a small-scale wooden boat covered in gold that bore an enclosed shrine in which the Amun statue was placed to be protected from the public view. On holy days, the statue of Amun would be placed on the barque and carried in procession from Karnak on the shoulders of priests. When the statue of Amun was not traveling, however, the barque rested in its own shrine. During the early New Kingdom, the barque had become an increasingly important aspect of Egyptian theology and barque shrines were built for many temples. During the reign of Hatshepsut, the Red Chapel was the prominent barque shrine of Amun at Karnak. The structure, decoration, and complex history of the Red Chapel divulge secrets about the reign of Hatshepsut and the Egypt of the eighteenth dynasty.