Who Is The Great Sphinx?
The Great Sphinx is one of the most famous images from ancient Egypt and is a famous symbol of the ancient pharaohs. The Great Sphinx is a limestone image of a reclining Sphinx, an ancient Egyptian recluse, which is known as the’Sphinx of the Gods’. It stands on the Giza Plateau in Giza, Egypt on the western bank of the River Nile. The Great Sphinx was made by the Pharoahs in ancient times as a tribute to the kings of the land, but it later became a sacred monument to honour the unity of the Egyptian people.
Where Located The Great Sphinx of Egypt
This great Sphinx of Egypt stands today on the bank of the river at Giza. It is about forty-three feet high and weighs around two thousand tons. It has an image of the sun god on its chest and is encircled by a band of stylized circles and rays around it. Around the outside of this limestone statue are several smaller circles.
There are many theories surrounding exactly where the sphinx comes from. Some say that it was carved right before the pyramids were built, others say that it was sculpted onto the inside of the large granite blocks that would soon be built by the pharaohs. The truth is that there are many indications that this particular Sphinx was carved sometime around thirty-five hundred years ago. Some say it was a relief carving, others say it was carved onto one of the large granite blocks used to build the pyramids. However it is generally believed to have been carved onto the inside of the blocks.
Important Egyptian Monument
The Great Sphinx is considering the most important Egyptian monument. It is located at Giza at the southern tip of the island. This is the same place where the Pyramids were built. The Great Sphinx has seven aspects including the face, the neck, the body, the legs, the wings, and the tail. The Egyptians placed seven stars around the Great Sphinx to represent the seven phases of the sun god. erosion caused the entire face to break down reducing it to a mere skeleton.
An interesting fact about the Great Sphinx is that it ranks as the fifth greatest UNESCO World Heritage Site in Egyptology. It was listed by UNESCO in 1992. Some people believe that it should be placed in the top three to four places on the list due to its age and the erosion that have caused it to become a broken down version of its former glory.
The Great Sphinx sits upon a great granite pedestal that is carved into the shape of a lion.
- On its right side there are two large temples that have been carved into the side with the image of the lion within.
- The right temple is believed to have two smaller temples that face each other in the centre.
These two sides of the statue have an intricate border of stylized lions around them. At the base of the statue there are lion paw prints.
The Lion Sphinx Statue
The lion Sphinx statue itself is not that old; however, it does hold many clues as to the beliefs of ancient Egyptologists. For example, the egyptologist Cleopatra often times has her cats resting upon her lap and this is what led to the concept of her cats being divine and bringing her good luck. Another clue to this theory is the fact that when she went to bed one night she erected a golden statue of a lion over her cot and within a few days her cats disappeared.
Symbol of The Egyptian Pantheon
The Great Sphinx is considered sacred to Cleopatra because it is the very symbol of the Egyptian pantheon. Its size was used to represent the greatness of her kings; it was the height of their power. The pharaohs were very closely associated with the sphinx and this connection has stayed with mainstream Egyptology for centuries and was recently strengthened when an inscription was discovered on the Sphinx’s forehead reading as follows: “The Great Sphinx lives upon the banks of the river Cygon, in the heavens above, and in the earth below.” Therefore, it can be seen that both Egyptology and astronomy view of the Great Sphinx as a source of protection, guidance, and advice to its users.
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