What you might not know about the Sphinx

What you might not know about the Sphinx

0_a9863_580ba0b2_origThe Great Sphinx of Giza, the Great Sphinx of Egypt (Great Sphinx) is a world famous monument carved out of a monolithic rock with a body of a lion and the head of a man. The Great Sphinx is a unique statue 73 m long and 20 m high, 11.5 meters high at the shoulders, face width 4.1 m, face height 5 m, carved out of a limestone monolith forming the rocky base of the Giza Plateau. Along the perimeter, the body of the Sphinx is surrounded by a moat 5.5 meters wide and 2.5 meters deep. Nearby are 3 world famous Egyptian pyramids.

There is some interesting information that you might not know. Check yourself ...

Vanishing Sphinx

It is believed that the Sphinx was erected during the construction of the pyramid of Khafre. However, in the ancient papyrus relating to the construction of the Great Pyramids about him there is no mention. Moreover, we know that the ancient Egyptians meticulously wrote down all the costs associated with the construction of religious buildings, but no economic documents relating to the construction of the Sphinx were ever found. In the V century BC. erThe pyramids of Giza were visited by Herodotus, who described in detail all the details of their construction. He wrote down “everything he saw and heard in Egypt,” but he did not say a word about the Sphinx.

Before Herodotus, Egypt was visited by Hekatei of Miletus, after him - Strabo. Their records are detailed, but there is no mention of the Sphinx. Could the Greeks not notice the sculpture 20 meters high and 57 meters wide? The answer to this riddle can be found in the work of the Roman naturalist Pliny the Elder "Natural History", which mentions that in his time (I century AD) the Sphinx was once again cleared of sand deposited from the western part of the desert. And indeed, the Sphinx regularly "released" from sand sediment until the XX century.

Ancient pyramids

Restoration work, which began to be carried out in connection with the emergency state of the Sphinx, began to suggest to scientists that the Sphinx is possibly older than previously thought. To test this, Japanese archaeologists, led by Professor Sakuji Yoshimura, first elucidated the pyramid of Cheops using a sonar, and then examined the sculpture in a similar way. Their conclusion struck - the stones of the Sphinx are older than those of the pyramid.It was not about the age of the breed itself, but about the time of its processing. Later, the Japanese were replaced by a team of hydrologists - their findings also became a sensation. On the sculpture, they found traces of erosion caused by large streams of water.

The first assumption that appeared in the press - the bed of the Nile in ancient times was held in a different place and washed the rock from which the Sphinx was hewn. The guesses of the hydrologists are even bolder: "Erosion is more likely not the trail of Nile, but of the flood - the mighty spill of water." Scientists came to the conclusion that the flow of water went from north to south, and the approximate date of the disaster - 8 thousand years BC. er British scientists, repeating the hydrological studies of the breed from which the Sphinx was made, pushed the flood date back to 12 thousand years BC. er This is generally consistent with the dating of the Flood, which, according to most scholars, occurred about 8-10 thousand BC. er


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What is sick Sphinx?

Arab sages, amazed by the majesty of the Sphinx, said that the giant is timeless. But over the past millennia, the monument got pretty, and, first of all, people are to blame. First, the Mamluks practiced the accuracy of shooting at the Sphinx, their initiative was supported by Napoleonic soldiers.One of the rulers of Egypt ordered the nose to be repulsed with a sculpture, and the British stole a stone beard from a giant and brought it to the British Museum. In 1988, a huge stone block fell off the Sphinx and crashed. Weighed her and were horrified - 350 kg. This fact caused the greatest concern of UNESCO. It was decided to gather a consultation of representatives of various specialties in order to find out the reasons that destroy the ancient structure. As a result of a comprehensive survey, scientists discovered hidden and extremely dangerous cracks in the Sphinx’s head, and found that external cracks sealed with poor-quality cement are also dangerous - this creates a threat of rapid erosion.

Paws of the Sphinx were in no less depressing condition. According to experts, the Sphinx is primarily harmed by human activity: the exhaust gases of automobile engines and the acrid smoke of Cairo factories penetrate the pores of the statue, which gradually destroys it. Scientists say the Sphinx is seriously ill. For the restoration of an ancient monument need hundreds of millions of dollars. There is no such money. In the meantime, the Egyptian authorities restore the sculpture on their own.

Mysterious face

Among most Egyptologists, there is a firm conviction that the face of Pharaoh IV of the Chefren dynasty is depicted in the appearance of the Sphinx. This confidence cannot be shaken by anything - neither by the absence of any evidence about the connection between the sculpture and the pharaoh, nor by the fact that the head of the Sphinx was repeatedly altered. The fact that Pharaoh Hefren himself appears in the face of the Sphinx is convinced by a well-known expert on the monuments of Giza, Dr. I. Edwards. “Although the face of the Sphinx is somewhat mutilated, it still gives us a portrait of Khafre himself,” the scientist concludes. Interestingly, the body of Khafre himself was never found, and therefore the statues are used to compare the Sphinx and the Pharaoh.

First of all, it is a sculpture carved from black diorite, which is stored in the Cairo Museum - it is for this that the image of the Sphinx is compared. To confirm or refute the identification of the Sphinx with Khafre, a group of independent researchers connected the case with the famous New York police officer Frank Domingo, who created portraits to identify the suspects. After several months of work, Domingo concluded: “These two works of art depict two different faces.Frontal proportions - and especially the corners and facial protrusions in the side view - convince me that the Sphinx is not Hefren. ”

Mother of Fear

Egyptian archaeologist Rudwan Al-Shamaa believes that the Sphinx has a female couple and hides under a layer of sand. The Great Sphinx is often called the "Father of Fear." According to the archaeologist, if there is a “Father of fear”, then there must be a “Mother of fear”. In his reasoning, Al-Shama'ah relies on the mindset of the ancient Egyptians, who firmly followed the principle of symmetry. In his view, the lonely figure of the Sphinx looks very strange.

The surface of the place where, according to the assumption of the scientist, the second sculpture should be located, rises several meters above the Sphinx. “It is logical to assume that the statue is just hidden from our eyes under a layer of sand,” says Ash-Shamaa. In support of his theory, the archaeologist gives several arguments. Al-Shamaa recalls that between the front paws of the Sphinx is a granite stele, which depicts two statues; there is also a limestone tablet, which states that a lightning struck one of the statues and destroyed it.

Chamber of Secrets

In one of the ancient Egyptian treatises on behalf of the goddess Isis, it is reported that the god God placed the “sacred books” in a secret place, which contain “the secrets of Osiris” and then enchanted this place so that the knowledge would remain “undiscovered until Heaven will not give birth to beings who will be worthy of this gift. " Some researchers today believe in the existence of a "secret room". They recall how Edgar Cayce predicted that one day in Egypt, under the right paw of the Sphinx, a room called the Hall of Testimony or Hall of Chronicles would be found. The information stored in the "secret room" will tell humanity about a highly developed civilization that existed millions of years ago.

In 1989, a group of Japanese scientists, using a radar method, found a narrow tunnel under the Sphinx’s left paw, stretching towards the pyramid of Khafre, and an impressive cavity was found north-west of the Queen’s Chamber. However, the Egyptian authorities did not allow the Japanese to conduct a more detailed study of the underground premises. Research by American geophysicist Thomas Dobetsky showed that under the paws of the Sphinx there is a large rectangular chamber.But in 1993, his work was suddenly suspended by local authorities. Since then, the Egyptian government officially forbids conducting geological or seismological studies around the Sphinx.

Sphinx and penalty.

The word “sphinx” in the Egyptian language is etymologically related to the word “seschep-ankh”, which literally translated into Russian means “the image of Existence”. Another well-known translation of this word is “the image of the Living One.” Both of these expressions have a single semantic content - “the image of the living God.” In Greek, the word “sphinx” is etymologically associated with the Greek verb “sphing” - suffocate.

Since 1952, five hollow sphinxes were discovered in Egypt, each of which served as a place of execution and at the same time a grave of those executed. The archaeologists who revealed the mystery of the sphinxes with horror discovered that the bones of many hundreds of corpses covered the floors of the sphinxes with a thick layer. From the ceilings hung leather belts with the remnants of the bones of human legs. It is believed that among these corpses there could be workers who built the pyramids and tombs of the Egyptian pharaohs, and sacrificed in order to preserve their secrets.

Apparently the hollow bodies of sphinxes deliberately scattered throughout the country served as a place of execution and torture for an extended period of time.The death of those executed was long and painful, and the bodies of the victims hanged by their legs were not deliberately removed. The cries of the dying were bound to inspire horror alive.

The fear of winged sphinxes was so great that it was preserved for centuries. When a winged sphinx with a human head was found during excavations in the ruins of Kalah in 1845, panic was gripped by all the workers from the local residents. They refused to continue the excavation, because the ancient tradition was still alive that the winged Sphinx would bring them misfortune and cause the death of everyone living on the earth.

And further ...


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This is a familiar look. It seems that the pyramids are sand-covered, lost somewhere far in the desert, and in order to get to them, you need to make a long transition on camels.

Let's see how things really are.


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Giza is the modern name of the large Cairo necropolis, occupying approximately 2000 square meters. m

The third largest population after Cairo and Alexandria is the city, which is home to more than 900 thousand inhabitants. In fact, Giza merges with Cairo.Here are the famous Egyptian pyramids: Cheops, Khafre, Mikeren and the Great Sphinx.


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More recently, just over a century ago, only the residents of the surrounding villages who cultivated irrigation fields knew the provincial road to the pyramids. Today, the pyramids of Giza are the center of attraction for tourists, whose number is increasing every year. The fields around the ancient ritual structures were built up with shops, cafes, restaurants and nightclubs, but local authorities do not show much dissatisfaction on this occasion, because tourism is one of the most important items in the Egyptian budget.

And this is how this place looked in 1904.

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  • What you might not know about the Sphinx

    What you might not know about the Sphinx

    What you might not know about the Sphinx

    What you might not know about the Sphinx

    What you might not know about the Sphinx

    What you might not know about the Sphinx

    What you might not know about the Sphinx

    What you might not know about the Sphinx

    What you might not know about the Sphinx

    What you might not know about the Sphinx

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