Sphinx of Giza - The symbol of royal power


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Sphinx is located in Giza, near Cairo, in Egypt, being the guardian of ancient Egypt, the world's largest statue of a figure that is half human and half animal. Although,  some argue that there is another sphinx similar sized in Sao Conrado district, Rio de Janeiro, on the Atlantic coast, but there is currently no scientific evidence of this, being sort of skeptical.

Sphinx was first excavated in the reign of Pharaoh Tutmosis IV, who ordered a stone between his paws, inscribed with the history of his discovery. The story goes like that: A young prince, the future Tutmosis IV, was tired one day after hunting in the Memphis area. He fell asleep in the shade of a huge rock that comes out of the sand. Then the statue spoke to him as a father, bagging him to excavate it and he said to the prince: ‘’Look at me, contemplating me, oh my son Tutmosis, I am your father Harmakhis-Khopri-Ra-Tum, I give you the sovereignty of my domain ... sand desert covered me. Save me, leading to fulfillment all that is in my heart.''. (Dominique Mallet, Stela's Tutmosis IV, quoted from harmakhis.org). Stela stand between the paws of the Sphinx and today.

The Sphinx is carved in a single limestone and the researchers found that the stone is broken, being eroded by water. Some scientists have suggested that the statue could date from the very distant past, when Egypt was covered with forests and rain falling regularly. If the hypothesis were true would change the all definition of the contemporary and our knowledge of human civilization, though the major part of scientists remain skeptical.

Many researchers argue that the presentation of the sphinx as a lion with a human face was inspired by similar figures in ancient Mesopotamia. They consider that the statue of Giza had the Sumerian centaur model - a creature with the body of the human head and arms. The Centaur and the Sphinx are found also in Greek mythology. Ancient Greeks believed that these creatures half human, half horse really existing in Thessaly and Arcadia mountains.

The nose of statue not survives and there are no copies of the monument or paintings depicting the Sphinx nose. The face damage was attributed to the Napoleonic soldiers, who allegedly pulled whit a gun the Sphinx. The second theory assumes that the monument was vandalized in 1378, on the orders of a fanatic priest named Saim Muhammad al-Dahr, who was outraged by the fact that people in the city of Cairo put food in front of the statue, as oblation.

The Sphinx of Giza is one of the most mysterious ancient monuments around the world, being made of a monolith stoned and a stone probably used also at the Great Pyramid, located about 330 m away. Sphinx has a royal miter and a cobra on his forehead, so it is believed that it is the image of the pharaoh Kefren.

Archaeologists believe that the initial Sphinx statue, was holding between its paws a smaller statue, which unfortunately did not survived and was replaced by the stela of Tutmosis, a stone plaque with an inscription. Most researchers believe that the Sphinx was built by order of Khafre of the Fourth Dynasty of the Old Kingdom, as it is mentioned in one sentence of the star's Tutmosis, the only evidence that can prove that the Sphinx comes from the reign of the pharaoh Khafre. The Sphinx remains among the great unsolved mysteries of ancient life, whose construction period cannot be defined precisely.

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