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why did the egyptians biuld/carve the sphinx.

 
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Amen-Raâ„¢
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 29, 2005 8:20 am    Post subject: why did the egyptians biuld/carve the sphinx. Reply with quote

what did the sphinx repersent to the egyptians. as you see the sphinx its obviously a combination of artistic's from creating a rock in to something and religion that comes from the head. is there any thing meaningful about it or its just a personification of king to be immortal in peoples eyes.
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anneke
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 29, 2005 1:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

From what I have read:
The royal human head on a lion's body symbolized power and might, controlled by the intelligence of the pharaoh, guarantor of the cosmic order, or ma'at. (from touregypt)

I always thought it was botha symbol of power and protection. It stood near a temple and also next to a large road that went from the temple to the pyramid.

There are different types of sphinxes. There's also one that combines the ram's head of Amen-Ra (i.e. you Smile ) with a lion's body.
Again it seems plausible that they were combining the properties of a god/ruler with the strength of a lion.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 30, 2005 12:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
it seems plausible that they were combining the properties of a god/ruler with the strength of a lion


That's always how I've interpreted it. From the very beginning of the dynastic period the lion (m3i to the Egyptians) represented the strength and power of royalty. In fact the phrase m3i hk3w is interpreted as "king of [foreign] kings." The traditional view is that the Sphinx of the Giza Plateau is the personification of Pharaoh Khafre as protector of his pyramid and all of the other monuments and tombs of the Plateau to that time.

The Sphinx has its very own temple right next to the Valley Temple of Khafre; the Sphinx's temple was never completed, but the stone that went into building it (and the pharaoh's Valley Temple) came from around the Sphinx itself. This is one reason we can dismiss (in my opinion, anyway) the claims that the Sphinx is actually as old as 10,000 years. I find this ridiculous. The top portion of the Sphinx probably began as a limestone massif protruding from the Plateau floor, but it took the cutting of the stone blocks to build the two temples to create probably 90% of the rest of it.

Anneke mentioned the ram-headed manifestations of Amun-Re, a different form of the royal and the divine. Here's a nice photo of the sphinx-lined causeway leading to the entrance pylons of the Luxor Temple (these sphinxes were commissioned by Nectanebo I, 30th Dynasty):



It just goes to show you that though the Sphinx of the Giza Plateau is the biggest and most recognizable of this form, sphinxes in Egyptian artwork existed from the beginning of the dyanstic period to the end.
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kmt_sesh
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 30, 2005 12:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I wanted to add this little fact about the origin and dating of the Giza Sphinx. It's from Craig B. Smith's book How the Great Pyramid Was Built (Smithsonian Books, 2004):

Quote:
The Sphinx stands on the eastern edge of one of the quarry areas [of Khufu's pyramid] and is believed to have been carved from a rocky outcropping that remained following quarry operations. The top of the Sphinx's head is postulated to be at the level of the original ground surface. (p. 109)


The quarry that furnished stone for Khufu's pyramid lay between that monument and where the Sphinx would later be built. After writing my previous post and mentioning that the Sphinx's head may have begun as a massif, I remembered Smith having written the above information in his book. This not only negates what I had written but utterly obliterates the silly notion that the Sphinx began life some 10,000 years ago. Still, the believers will go on believing, even in the face of developing science and evidence. And unfortunately, the less well-informed will sink right along with them. Rolling Eyes
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 8:17 pm    Post subject: The Great Sphinx and the Ka of Inpu Reply with quote

Statues were build for pharaos and it was believed, their ka's could eat the offerings, hear, speak and be part of this world through the statue. The statue was the dwelling place of the soul of the deceased. In a way The Great Sphinx as Giza can be seen as the orakle of Anubis. If you want to know the meaning, just like the three pyramids of Giza are a projection of Osiris-Orion, the Sphinx could well be a projection of Canis Major, with the star Sirius. In this way the Sphinx is the spirit of Isis which sits on the lap (the Orion Nebula being the organ of Osiris just under the belt of Orion) of Osiris. We have Osiris and Isis story right in front of our eyes in stone carvings from the Giza bedrock. When Osiris and Isis knew each other, they can create Horus, the new born sun/son on the horizon (Horus-son). The Sphinx is also called Hor-m-achet meaning Horus in the horizon. Well obviously Horus is the mummy in the Sphinx that will be given life if born again. The Sphinx was part of a complete rising cultus of the missing regenerative organ of Orion. It was made of clay and Isis sat on it. Its in the ancient texts and it is the interpretation of the meaning of the Sphinx. Anubis was the son of Osiris and Nephtys. The high priest of Anubis was the son of the pharaoh who deceased and was responsible for the embalming process. Would you like to mummify your father???
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2012 2:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

...or maybe it was just because sphinxes look extremely awesome. Cool
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 13, 2013 1:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

...or maybe Khafre was not happy about this big ugly rock blocking the view of his pyramid and he told his chief of works "DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT!"

The chief of works goes home, wondering how many workers it would take to completely take down this big ugly rock. He has a few beers and after a while he goes out an looks at the big ugly rock and realizes that it sort of looks like a crouching lion.

Lions are cool, he thinks. More importantly lions are figures of royal power, but what would be even cooler, what would completely insure that Kafre would be absulutely thrilled (and incidently insure his own job security) would be a great, big, humungous lion with Kafre's own supersized smiling face complete with nemes headdress and royal beard carved right there into the rock.

Alright, that's probably not how it happened--but who knows.
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 6:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pyramids ready... Nothing more to do... Boredom?

Greetings, Lutz.
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Tino
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 17, 2014 10:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

At what point did the sphynx become associated with riddles and the artist? Was it Sophocles who added these attributes (ofcourse prophecy is common to both), or did the Egyptians associate the sphynx with that as well?
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Lutz
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 18, 2014 12:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tino wrote:
At what point did the sphynx become associated with riddles and the artist? ... did the Egyptians associate the sphynx with that as well?

Clearly and unambiguously (rare enough in Egyptology), for all we know: No.

If this idea does not have its roots in Greek mythology itself, I could imagine as the origin for that the countrys of Mesopotamia and there different sphinxes-variations.

Greetings, Lutz.
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Tino
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 25, 2014 1:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the answere Lutz!

I do find this interesting, its amazing the extent to which the the sphynx ricoches down western literature and theatre (and I assume art as well, though that is a bit different) with all these connotations and heaped with baggage and yeet the greates sphynx of all may have been completely devoid of all of that.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 25, 2014 10:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Was the Great Sphinx of Giza at all so in the center of perception at times of Herodotus and the Roman authors? I am from my memory not sure at the moment, but they do not mention him in their works, right? Presumably he was well sanded again?

Greetings, Lutz.
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Tino
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 26, 2014 1:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lutz wrote:
Was the Great Sphinx of Giza at all so in the center of perception at times of Herodotus and the Roman authors? I am from my memory not sure at the moment, but they do not mention him in their works, right? Presumably he was well sanded again?

Greetings, Lutz.


I'm not sure. I was referring more to the sphynx as an creature / idea in general.
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