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The Age of the Sphinx

Pharaoh's profile picture
Published in 
Egypt
 · 5 Nov 2023
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The Sphinx is a cyclopean architectural work. According to the beliefs of modern Egyptologists, the #Sphinx made its appearance during the Ancient Kingdom, in the form of a crouching lion with the pharaoh's head covered by the "nemes", as a representation and symbol of the power and strength of the sovereign, exterminator of enemies: this is the Sphinx which represents the pharaoh Chefren.

The sphinx may originally had a lion head
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The sphinx may originally had a lion head

Subsequently, while retaining its function as a royal image, it was also connected with the solar cult and also became the "living image of Horus on the horizon". Her divine character eventually led her to act as guardian and protector of the doors of temples and palaces.

Dobecky, the geophysicist who collaborated with J. A. West (author of the theory on the erosion of the Sphinx by water, which we will talk about later), made some interesting discoveries. One of the basic methods for studying the deeper layers of rock is to use vibrations. A metal blade is inserted deeply with a sledgehammer, the vibrations pass through the rock and then come back, the effect is similar to that of an echo which is then recorded by geophones positioned on the ground; the data is then interpreted by a computer.

Dobecky made one of his first discoveries a few meters deep beneath the Sphinx's front legs, where there appeared to be one or more underground chambers.

Legends spoke of the existence of chambers of this type, containing ancient secrets but were generally mentioned by writers who were a little too extravagant.

For example in "Dramatic Prophecies of the Great Pyramid" by Rodolfo Benevides, published in 1969, we find a drawing of the Sphinx with a kind of underground temple (the prophecies based on the internal proportions of the Great Pyramid also spoke of small green extraterrestrials that would land in 1970 and of a world war that would break out between 1972 and 1977).

Secret chamber and passages under the Sphinx
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Secret chamber and passages under the Sphinx

Dobecky's discovery seemed to confirm that at least some of the strange legends of the Sphinx were not simply fantasy.

In October 1994 the Associated Press reported that restorers of the Sphinx had discovered a secret passage leading to his body. The authorities at the Giza plateau immediately announced that further excavations by international groups would be postponed until 1996 since the renovation of the Sphinx was the main project...

Another of Dobecky's discoveries was very important in determining the age of the Sphinx. Vibrations can also be used to determine weathering effects caused beneath the surface of porous rocks. Dobecky discovered something very strange: on the front part of the Sphinx the effects of atmospheric agents caused beneath the surface of the porous rocks could be detected. Dobecky discovered something very strange: on the front part of the Sphinx the effects of atmospheric agents could be detected up to a depth of 2.5 meters while on the rear part they had only reached a depth of 1.2 meters. So, in theory, the front of the Sphinx should be thousands of years older than the back. Even assuming that the back part dates back to Khafre's time (4500 years ago) the front part would have to be twice as old. And if the back was carved long before Khafre's reign, then the front must be even older.

As we have seen, precession is a movement similar to that of a clock hand pointing towards different constellations every 2160 years. According to the theory of modern Egyptologists the Sphinx was built in the centuries in which there was the Age of Taurus, but it seems unlikely that a pharaoh used a lion in the wrong era as an equinoctial marker, so it is conceivable that the Sphinx was built in the Age of Leo, in 10,500 BC.

Furthermore, the Sphinx head is in better condition than the rest of the enormous architectural work and then looking from above the head of the Sphinx is disproportionate and therefore according to West the figure we see as it is not the original one.

The Sphinx head is too small compared to the body
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The Sphinx head is too small compared to the body

A very strange thing is that the Sphinx is not located on the line of the pyramids, since the Egyptian architects left nothing by chance. A ramp of stones is offset by 14° degrees compared to the pyramids and further to the right the Sphinx.

According to Bauval and Hancock the #Egyptians moved the ramp and the Sphinx from the line of the pyramids so that the sun rises over the ramp and the Sphinx reflected on the horizon with its head and shoulders.

SCHWALLER DE LUBICZ AND THE AGE OF THE SPHINX

John Anthony West's "Serpent in the Sky" is essentially a study of the work of an "independent" Egyptologist, René Schwallwer de Lubicz. The central point of his thesis was that Egyptian civilization, and in particular the Sphinx, was millennia older than historians believed. Schwaller de Lubicz observed that the strong erosion of the body of the Great Sphinx of Giza is due to the action of water and not that of wind and sand. If confirmed, this fact alone would revolutionize the entire chronology of the history of civilization and imply a drastic reevaluation of the assumption of "progress", the assumption on which all modern culture is based. It would be difficult to find another issue this simple and with more serious implications.

The Sphinx body has been probably eroded by water.
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The Sphinx body has been probably eroded by water.

The erosion of the Sphinx by water is by importance comparable to the convertibility of matter into energy in physics. The problem is that, although the last chapter is titled "Egypt: the heirs of Atlantis", in reality the book says very little about this possible connection. The most important comment is found in the introduction, which implies the senselessness of those who use it. We are not talking about the fantastic Atlantis of Verne's Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, but simply about the fact that the Egyptian's civilization could be much older than we believe.

GURDJIEFF AND THE SPHINX

An esoteric thinker of the 20th century: George Ivanovich Gurdjieff who in 1914 told his follower Ouspensky that there is a fundamental difference between "real art" and "subjective art". Real art is not a mere expression of the artist's feelings, it is objective like mathematics and will always produce the same impression on anyone who observes it.. According to Schwaller this is exactly what the Egyptians wanted to achieve with their temples, monuments and statues.

In "A New Model of the Universe", written by Puspensky after becoming a disciple of Gurdjieff, the author said about the Sphinx: In reality the Sphinx is older than historical #Egypt, its deities and the pyramids which, in turn, are older than we believe. But how could a work of art make the same impression on everyone even if the sensitivity of the observer is sufficiently developed? Isn't it true that art attracts the personal element within us?

ROBERT SCHOCH AGREES TO EXAMINE THE SPHINX

West bitterly noted that there were very few open-minded scientists. In 1985 a friend at Boston University said that maybe he knew who was right for him. It was Roberto Schoch, a geologist from Boston University, who according to the presentation of "Who's Who" could have been his ideal supporter. At just over 20 years old he had published four books and was already considered an authoritative stratigrapher (geologist who studies the layers of sedimentary rocks) and paleontologist. At first he seemed evasive, just like the Oxford geologists. West was advised not to attempt to contact him directly as this could make him nervous. West received periodic reports: Schoch had been approached, Schoch agreed to examine the material, Schoch reacted with skepticism... ; after having studied all the material that West was able to provide him, Schoch began to prudently express his interest but he was about to obtain a tenured position and it would have been absurd to risk losing it by expounding ideas that would surely have unleashed the ire of his academic colleagues.

A few years passed and West finally decided to go to Boston to meet him. West had brought a box full of slides, after examining them they discussed the topic, Schoch clearly explained what worried him. Obviously he would have to go to Egypt to see for himself, but he had to wait until he had the tenured position before doing so.

He finally got the position in April 1990.

Two months later they were in Cairo. West was very tense as they approached the Giza site, somehow expecting Schoch to find some geological error that would demolish his theory. At first glance he did not notice anything that would destroy the hypothesis of erosion by water. The limestone walls protecting the Sphinx on two sides showed the wavy shape typical of the rain effect. Schoch wanted to study everything in depth with the help of a geophysicist and also with modern seismographic equipment. It is likely that the stone in which the Sphinx's head was carved was a large spur of rock that stood on the side of the Nile. According to Schoch, the rock had been carved in a remote past, when the area was not yet desert. The body appeared to have been added later.

The ancient builders dug around, in the more yielding limestone, creating a space to work between the two walls. The large blocks they moved (200 tons each) were used to build two temples in front of the Sphinx. The style of the temples can be defined as cyclopean. The builders used huge blocks (whereas it would have been much easier to work with a dozen smaller blocks) to erect simple, bare structures like Stonehenge (which is fundamentally not that simple). The next step was to sculpt the rock mass that would form the body of the Sphinx and which would be 73 meters long and 20 meters high, like a six-story building.

From the perspective of posterity it is a shame that the entire Sphinx was not carved from the same type of rock as the body has been eroded much more than the head and shoulders. The current damage to the Sphinx's head was caused in 1380 by a fanatical Arab sheik and then by the Mamluks who used it as a target.

What evidence do we have for the age of the Sphinx?

Strangely, Herodotus does not mention it and so we must assume that it was covered by sand when he visited Egypt in about 450 BC or the rock outcrop bore so little resemblance to a face that Herodotus did not even notice it.

The sand that buried the Sphinx up to its neck was removed in 1817. A small temple was discovered between his paws. It contained the statue of a lion and three steles. The date of the stele that was found on the chest of the Sphinx belonged to the era of King Tutmose IV who ascended the throne in 1425 BC. The main stele told that, during a hunting trip, King Tutmose IV had fallen asleep near the Sphinx which was the home of the god Kheper, a form of Ra, god of the sun and creator of the universe who spoke to him in a dream asking him to remove the sand that covered him. #Thutmose did what was asked of him and also restored the body of the Sphinx.

It seems that the same operations had already been carried out in the past. The name of Pharaoh #Chefren appeared on the same stele, but many sentences are illegible and therefore the meaning is unclear.

Gastom Maspero supposed that Chefren had also had the sand removed and probably had also had the Sphinx restored.

The restorations of the back part date back to the Old Kingdom, lasting about 450 years, from 2575 to 2130 BC. It is logical to ask oneself a question: whether the Sphinx was built by Khafre in around 2500 BC, why would it need to be renovated after just 350 years? It was well protected and certainly almost always remained buried under the sand.

Dr. Zahi Hawass, former head of the Cairo Museum and a staunch opponent of the West theory, maintained that the quality of the limestone of which the Sphinx was made was so poor that erosion by atmospheric agents began when the work was completed.

West countered that in this case there would have been an erosion of about 30 centimeters every 100 years and in this case the Sphinx would have disappeared completely about five centuries ago.

However, if Maspero was right, then Khafre had limited himself to having the Sphinx restored after bringing it back to light. Maspero actually said that this proved that the Sphinx was already covered in sand in the times of Cheops (#Khufu) and his predecessors. In fact, Egyptologists of the last century thought that the Sphinx was much older than the pyramids.

Only in the 20th century Egyptologists, based on the fact that Khafre's name appears on the stele of Thutmose IV, established that the Sphinx was erected by Khafre and that the sculpted head is a portrait of the #Pharaoh. They reached this conclusion based on the same elements that led Maspero to think that the Sphinx was much older than the pyramids. Most of the Sphinx is below the level of the surrounding ground, so whoever built it must have thought that it would soon be covered by sand (it seems to have taken about twenty years). Perhaps then, when the Sphinx was erected the Sahara was a green land: this would explain the erosion of the Sphinx by water. We know that the Sahara was once not a desert but a fertile land and that it has transformed over millennia. It is not known exactly how long it was a green land, probably until around 3500 BC. It is possible that it still was in Khafre's time.

WHO CARVED THE SPHINX?

Most Egyptologists maintain that the Sphinx was erected during the reign of Pharaoh Kafre (Chefren), i.e. in 2500 BC. However, scientists who conducted an unprecedented series of studies at the Giza site claimed that their evidence shows that the Sphinx existed long before #Kafre. According to the evidence, Kafre limited himself to having the Sphinx restored. According to Schoch it dates back to an era between 5000 BC and 7000 BC, it would therefore be the oldest monument in Egypt, twice as old as the Great Pyramid. The Californian archaeologist Carol Redmount, an expert on Egyptian artifacts, instead states:

It is possible that this is true

The population living in that region did not have the adequate technological means nor the intention to build such a structure. Other Egyptologists say they are unable to explain the geological evidence but simply insist that the theory is not compatible with the enormous archaeological research carried out in the region. If geologists are right, much of what Egyptologists think they know would be wrong. It therefore seemed that there was evidence that the Sphinx could be much older than previously thought. Gurdjieff gave great importance to the concept of alchemy; in his most important work, "Beelzebu's Tales to his Grandson", he explains that what we generally call alchemy, that is, a "great science" known to the Ancients before man began to degenerate.

In the book Gurdjieff has Beelzebub, a superior creature from a solar system in the Milky Way, explain:

Atlantis, destroyed by two natural disasters and that the Sphinx was originally populated by the survivors of Atlantis, destroyed by two natural disasters and that the Sphinx and the pyramids of Giza were built by the inhabitants of Atlantis. Some time later, around the time of dynastic Egypt, a spiritual cataclysm occurred that caused man to degenerate. Man began to see the only existing reality in the material world and to believe that the spiritual world was only the reflection of the material world.

This is reminiscent of Schwaller's theories that mankind has degenerated from a race of giants, towards a semi-animal level. Paradoxically, Schwaller's interest in the age of the Sphinx and other Egyptian monuments was nothing more than a consequence of his interest in alchemy and his beliefs on the evolution of mankind. He thought he had found in ancient Egypt a completely new way of thinking, a model of thought that cannot be expressed in the analytical concept of language but only shown with myths and symbolism. This knowledge also included the sophisticated technology that allowed the 200-ton stone blocks with which the Sphinx temples were built to be moved and stacked.

In short, Schwaller believed that the Egyptians had inherited all their knowledge from an older civilization, whose way of thinking was fundamentally different from that of modern man. He believed that the secret of this system of knowledge was hidden in ancient Egypt. Schwaller did not want to compromise the reputation of his mathematical studies on the temple of Luxor, for this reason he did not want to be too precise regarding his opinion on the age of the Sphinx but in "The Pharaonic Theocracy", in the chapter on the legends of Egyptian prehistory, he talks about ancient traditions that date back to an era in which the Nile delta did not yet exist, that is, before the #Nile transported the tons of mud that today form its mouth.

He does not believe that the Sphinx was submerged by the sea. However, Anthony West was struck by the fact that this notion (erosion by water) should be scientifically demonstrable. He expressed his opinion of it in 1978 in "Serpent in the Sky," a study of Schwaller and ancient Egypt. Over the next decade he attempted to arouse the interest of scholars. For example, he asked a geologist from Oxford to lend himself to an experiment: he showed him a photo of the Sphinx where the head and other features had been hidden with duct tape, it looked like a photo of a fragment of rock.. The geologist replied without hesitation that it was erosion by water. West removed the tape, revealing his head and paws; the surprised geologist refused to say anything else, justifying himself by explaining that he was not an expert on the desert. Other scholars to whom West had written did not even respond. It was only after several years of finding an open-minded geologist that he agreed to go to Egypt. It was the beginning of an important phase in the search for Atlantis.

SCHOCH ACCEPTS THE EROSION OF THE SPHINX BY WATER

West therefore had to prove that Maspero and the other 18th century experts were right and that the Sphinx was already an ancient monument in Khafre's time. By demonstrating that the body of the Sphinx and the enclosure wall had suffered erosion from water and not from sandstorms, he would have taken an important step forward in that direction. West's first task was to find the necessary funds to bring a group of experts to Egypt. Boris Said, a video producer, coordinated the project. Collaborators included geophysicist Thomas L. Dobecky, two other geologists, an architect, and an oceanographer. After an interminable struggle, the local authorities granted permission to carry out excavations. Now that Schoch could study the Sphinx up close, his doubts disappeared. If the Sphinx was the same age as the Giza site, how could the action of atmospheric agents be explained? The surrounding tombs date back to the Old Kingdom but have been carved to a much lesser extent. Furthermore, it was clear that the deterioration of the tombs was due to sandstorms. It was obvious that the Sphinx must be older. The effect of the wind on the other graves provided a useful comparison. Limestone rocks are sedimentary rocks composed of particles glued together. It is known that it is a layered formation similar to that of a cake. When the raised sand hits the side of this "layer cake" the more compliant layers wear away, forming indentations, the result is a series of parallel layers with an irregular profile. When a stone surface is eroded by water the effect is completely different. The rain streams dig vertical channels in the rock on the surface of which rounded protuberances form, similar to a row of hills. The group of scholars agreed on the fact that both the body of the Sphinx and the surrounding wall had suffered the effect of the water since their surface did not present the most homogeneous appearance determined by the action of the wind.

The two temples in front of the Sphinx
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The two temples in front of the Sphinx

The two temples in front of the Sphinx known as the Valley Temple and the Temple of the Sphinx are further demonstrations of this thesis. If they had not been restored they would have shown the same signs of erosion as the Sphinx and the wall. However, clear evidence shows that the temples were restored by the ancient Egyptians who decided to prevent further damage by protecting them with granite slabs, many of which were removed by subsequent generations who used them to build their homes. The external walls left uncovered were so irregular that any architect worth his salt would have been ashamed.

Evidently these walls had been seriously damaged by atmospheric agents, just like the Sphinx, and to restore them it was necessary to modify them to obtain a sufficiently flat surface, but since they would have been covered with granite their appearance mattered little. When the granite covering was removed it was discovered that the irregular appearance of the limestone blocks had been produced by the same atmospheric agents that damaged the Sphinx and the wall. The internal face of some of the granite slabs has been carved to fit the eroded shape of the limestone. Those who restored the temples found them badly eroded by water, these relics of a bygone Cyclopean era stood alone, with the exception of the Sphinx, on a desert plateau.

The temples in front of the Sphinx raised another problem ignored by "orthodox" Egyptologists. Their architecture is quite different from that of most Egyptian temples, characterized by circular columns and inlaid rectangular pillars, topped with similar blocks, without decorations that recall a completely different era, certainly not that of the great Egyptian temples.

Schoch presented his theory in San Diego, arousing the interest of the international press; according to his suppositions the Sphinx would be twice as old as is generally attributed to it, that is, about 9000 years.

Near the step pyramids of Saqqara there are tombs that were built with mud bricks a hundred years before the Great Pyramid. West points out that they do not appear to have suffered the action of the atmospheric agents that damaged the Sphinx, yet they are just 15 kilometers away and therefore suffer the influences of the same climate; furthermore, the material they are made of is much less resistant.

Why aren't they eroded like the Sphinx? When Schoch presented his case to the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Mark Lehner was chosen as the opposition representative. Here is Lehner's now well-known objection: if the Sphinx was erected, around 7000 BC, by a civilization much older than the Egyptian one, what happened to its remains? West was not allowed to participate in the debate because he was not an accredited academic, he had to listen sitting in the audience. However, he later did not hesitate to point out that Lehner's behavior was absurd. He and Schoch had demonstrated with evidence that the Sphinx was older than the surrounding tombs. Lehner was supposed to refute their thesis and not ask for further evidence that has not yet been found. Schoch was, according to Lehner, incompetent; he said:. According to Lehner, the layers of the Sphinx extend beneath the tombs, which is why the latter are made with a different type of limestone, much more resistant to atmospheric agents. If this were true, Schoch's theory would collapse.

When the BBC decided to present Schoch and Boris Said's programme, an independent expert was commissioned to establish whether Lehner was right. The expert carefully studied a tomb a hundred meters from the Sphinx which certainly dated back to the same era as the pyramids. He discovered that the tombs were made of the same type of fragile limestone that the Sphinx is made of and that they contained precisely the same type of fossils. The layer of the tomb was the same from which the Sphinx was made. This was an important victory for Schoch and West.

FRANK DOMINGO STATES THAT THE SPHINX IS NOT CHEFREN

It was after the discovery of an intact statue of Khafre that Egyptologists established that the face closely resembled that of the Sphinx, another statue even represented the Pharaoh in the form of a Sphinx. At the height of the controversy that followed the San Diego geological conference, Mark Lehner attacked West in the magazine on which a computer image of the face of the Sphinx and a photograph of the face of a statue of Chefren found in the Temple in the Valley were published. The images were superimposed. According to Lehner this demonstrated that the face of the Sphinx was that of Chefren. According to West it was absurd: the Sphinx looked nothing like Khafre. But in any case, computer models always impress.

Producer Boris Said had a brilliant idea: ask for the collaboration of a police designer specialized in facial reconstruction. They asked who was the best in New York and discovered Detective Frank Domingo, who had served the city's police department for many years. Domingo's skill was known to all and his collaboration was often requested even by archaeologists and historians. The artist-policeman is simply based on the description given by the witness, the similarity of the portraits is sometimes so surprising as to suggest the existence of a telepathic link. However, in cases such as Khafre's identification, only great scientific precision was necessary. Domingo went to the Cairo, took many photos of the Sphinx and the statue of Khafre in the Cairo Museum. He concluded that the Sphinx's chin was much more prominent than Khafre's. Furthermore, the line connecting the ear and the corner of the Sphinx's mouth had an inclination of 32°, a similar line drawn on the face had an inclination of just 14°. These and other differences led Domingo to the conclusion that the Sphinx definitely could not be the portrait of Khafre.

IS THERE A SECRET UNDER THE HIND LEGS OF THE SPHINX?

Some scholars asked where the vernal point was located (in astronomy this name indicates the first point of Aries or vernal equinox or point g) in 10,550 BC, and discovered that it was located exactly 111.111 degrees east of the position occupied in 2500 BC.

Then it was located at the head of the Hyades - Taurus near the "right bank" of the Milky Way; 8,000 years earlier it was located below the hind legs of the constellation Leo.

If this point has an earthly counterpart, it could suggest the existence of some secret, never discovered, beneath the Sphinx's hind legs. The text of the sarcophagus speaks of something sealed in darkness, surrounded by fire that contains the emanations of Osiris and is located in Rostau.

Could it be that something hidden, in a chamber beneath the Sphinx's hind legs, is a treasure that will transform our knowledge of ancient Egypt? Edgar Cayce predicted the discovery of the Hall of Memories beneath the Sphinx towards the end of the 20th century and Graham Hancock and Bauval wondered if this had been inspected by the group of official Egyptologists, the only ones who are allowed to get closer to the Sphinx.

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Comments

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guest's profile picture
@guest

The Egyptians carved or painted hieroglyphs depending on convenience. The attribution of the Sphinx to Khafre is ancient, dating back to the "Dream Stele" of Thutmose IV (XVIII dynasty, dated around 1400 BC). For most of its existence, the monument remained buried in sand, with only the face mostly visible. The stele recounts how the "god" appeared in Thutmose's dream, then a prince, asking him to free him from the sand and restore him, offering in return the kingship over the Two Lands.

The same goes for the pyramids (Egyptians recognized some monuments as created in the First Time/age of the gods, but among these, pyramids are not included, rather their probable mythical predecessor, the primordial hill within the temple of Ra at Heliopolis).

The funerary priesthood of the pharaohs of the IV dynasty is attested throughout the Old Kingdom, and the pyramids are placed in a well-defined and repetitive archaeological context (with inscriptions): temple downstream, temple upstream, tombs of dignitaries/family members, pyramid. Moreover, inscriptions of the pharaohs have been found in the quarries where the blocks originated.

Lastly, it is possible to trace the evolution of pyramids from Djoser (step pyramid at Saqqara; whose designer is known by name - Imhotep - and was considered one of the sages of ancient Egypt and venerated as a deity in later periods) to Snefru (father of Khufu, who had 2 pyramids built before succeeding in erecting one, the "Red" or "Northern" one at Dahshur, which did not collapse under its weight).

12 Jun 2024
Pharaoh's profile picture
@Pharaoh

Thank you for the clarification 😍 The pyramids of Egypt, although widely studied, have not yet revealed their secrets

12 Jun 2024
DrWatson's profile picture
@DrWatson

An article from 1913 discusses the discoveries made by Professor G.A. Reisner, an Egyptologist from Harvard, regarding the Sphinx. According to the article, the professor informed authorities about discoveries concerning the mysterious Sphinx; inside, he reportedly found a temple dating back to 6,000 B.C. dedicated to the sun, as well as galleries leading to unexplored caves. Inside the Sphinx, there were said to be quarries and buildings of a golden city.

The 1913 article states that excavations at the time focused on the chamber near the Sphinx's head, a chamber 18 meters long and 4.2 meters wide, connected to the sun temple located in the paws through tunnels. Hundreds of relics and ankh crosses, some made of gold and adorned with bells, were found. The article mentions photographs taken inside the structure that were shown at Harvard and the Lowell Institute in winter.

source: The Straits Times, 4 March 1913, Page 12.

8 Jul 2024
lostcivilizations's profile picture
Lost Civilizations (@lostcivilizations)

There is another unmentioned mystery about which little is known: the mystery of the hole on the head of the Sphinx.

8 Jul 2024
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