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sphinx (sfîngks) noun
plural sphinxes or sphinges (sfîn´jêz´)
1. Mythology. A figure in Egyptian myth having the body of a lion and the head of a man, ram, or hawk.
2. Greek Mythology. A winged creature having the head of a woman and the body of a lion, noted for killing those who could not answer its riddle.
3. A puzzling or mysterious person.
[Middle English Spynx, from Latin Sphinx, from Greek.]
604 entity Joking Sphinx
A TERRESTRIAL RIDDLE
The ancient Egyptians apparently built the enigmatic Sphinx by first excavating a limestone formation and then clearing away the debris to expose a huge stone block over 240 feet long and 66 feet high. From this, they carved a lion with a human head out of the soft natural rock.
Once the soft limestone was exposed, the rain and atmosphere began to erode it. R.M. Schoch, a Boston University geologist, studying the weathering patterns on the Sphinx, found signs of water action up to 8 feet deep in the front and sides of the colossal statue. Other structures in the vicinity, made from the same limestone, supposedly at the same time (about 2500 BC), do not display such deep erosion. Based upon the depth of the weathering, Schoch dates the Sphinx at 5000-7000 BC--- much older than the mainstream date of 2500 BC. In fact, Schoch opines that work on the Sphinx could have begun as early as 10,000 BC. Egyptologists, of course, will have none of this. C. Redmount, a Univerisity of California archeologist specializing in Egyptian artifacts, said, "There's just no way that could be true."
Some non-establishment archeologists, such as A. West, have long maintained that the Sphinx is much older than 2500 BC. Supporting the claims of much earlier dates is the massive stone wall and tower of Jericho, whose construction is now placed in the ninth millennium BC. Who knows, the Neolithic peoples of 10,000 BC might have been more precocious than we give them credit for.
(Wilford, John Noble; "A Very Old Sphinx May Be Older Yet," New York Times, October 25, 1991. Cr. J. Covey. Also: Anonymous; "Experts at War over Age of Sphinx," Los Angeles Times News Service, October 24, 1991. C. F. Hurlburt)
Throughout this investigation we have tried to stick to the facts, even when the facts have been very strange.
When we say that the Sphinx, the three Great Pyramids, the causeways and other associated monuments of the Giza necropolis form a huge astronomical diagram we are simply reporting a fact. When we say that this diagram depicts the skies above Giza in 10,500 BC we are reporting a fact. When we say that the Sphinx bears erosion marks which indicate that it was carved before the Sahara became a desert we are reporting a fact. When we say that the ancient Egyptians attributed their civilization to 'the gods' and to the 'Followers of Horus' we are reporting facts. When we say that these divine and human civilizers were remembered as having come to the Nile Valley in Zep Tepi - the 'First Time' - we are reporting a fact. When we say that the ancient Egyptian records tell us this 'First Time' was an epoch in the remote past, thousands of years before the era of the Pharaohs, we are reporting a fact.
Our civilization has had the scientific wherewithal to get to grips with the many problems of the Giza necropolis for less than two centuries, and it is only in the last two decades that computer technology has made it possible for us to reconstruct the ancient skies and see the patterns and conjunctions that unfolded there. During this period access to the site, and knowledge about it, has been monopolized by members of the archaeological and Egyptological professions who have agreed amongst themselves as to the origin, and age, and function of the monuments. New evidence which does not support this scholarly consensus, and which might actively undermine it, has again and again been overlooked, or sidelined, and sometimes even deliberately concealed from the public. This, we assume, is why everything to do with the shafts of the Great Pyramid - their stellar alignments, the iron plate, the relics, and the discovery of the 'door' - has met with such peculiar and inappropriate responses from Egyptologists and archaeologists. And we assume that it explains, too, why the same scholars have paid such scant attention to the solid case that geologists have made for the vast antiquity of the Sphinx.
The Giza monuments are a legacy for Mankind, preserved almost intact over thousands of years, and, outside the privileged circles of Egyptology and archaeology, there is today a broad-based expectation that they might be about to reveal a remarkable secret. That expectation may or may not prove to be correct. Nevertheless in an intellectual culture polarized by public anticipation and orthodox reaction, we feel it is only wise that future explorations at the necropolis should be conducted with complete 'transparency' and accountability. In particular the opening of the 'door' inside the southern shaft of the Queen's Chamber, the videoscopic examination of the northern shaft, and any further remote-sensing and drilling surveys conducted around the Sphinx, should be carried out under the scrutiny of the international mass media and should not again be subjected to bizarre and inexplicable delays.
We cannot predict what new discoveries will be made by such research, or even whether any new discoveries will be made. However, after completing our own archaeoastronomical investigation, and following the quest of the Horus-King, we are left with an enhanced sense of the tremendous mystery of this amazing site - a sense that its true story has only just begun to be told. Looking at the awe-inspiring scale and precision of the monuments we feel, too, that the purpose of the ancient master-builders was sublime, and that they did indeed find a way to initiate those who would come after - thousands of years in the future - by making use of the universal language of the stars.
They found a way to send a message across the ages in a code so simple and so self-explanatory that it might rightly be described as an anti-cipher.
Perhaps the time has come to listen to that clear, compelling signal that beckons to us out of the darkness of prehistory. Perhaps the time has come to seek the buried treasure of our forgotten genesis and destiny:
Stars fade like memory the instant before dawn. Low in the cast the sun appears, golden as an opening eye. That which can be named must exist. That which is named can be written, That which is written shall be remembered. That which is remembered lives. In the land of Egypt Osiris breathes . . .
- _The Message Of The Sphinx: A Quest for the
Hidden Legacy of Mankind_ by Graham Hancock
and Robert Bauval
Why Did The Chicken Cross The Road?
Sphinx: You Tell Me