Egypt

Mysteries of ancient Egypt

Akhenaten

Akhenaten ruled ancient Egypt for 17 years and was thought to have died in the 1330s B.C. He is known for ruling with the religious belief in one God (like many modern day religions) as apposed to worshiping multiple pagan-type Gods as was typical during the ancient world.  It is still under debate, but it is thought that his belief in the Aten (or sun God) was not actually the belief in a deity, but the power of nature of the universe as the creator of life.  Eventually, the ancient Egyptians disregarded his belief and returned to polytheism decades after his death.

Interestingly, he was the husband of Nefertit and was recently proven by DNA evidence to be the father of the famous child-King Tutankhamun (King Tut).

Why Akhenaten interests me so much?  Not only was his religious beliefs “radical” for his time, but his image depicted in statues and sculptures does not resemble those of earlier or later ancient Egyptians.  Notably his elongated head (remember my last post?) and strange physique (especially for a pharaoh) makes him an interesting figure in ancient history.

His emergence in the timeline makes for fantastic historical fiction that I plan on running with in my latest work.

akhentaten sculpture

The Great Sphinx

Egyptologists claim that the Sphinx was built around 2,500 B.C. by the pharaoh Khafre.  However, there is very little evidence of this.  There were no inscriptions claiming who built the Sphinx, which is very rare in ancient Egypt. They loved to lay claim to their incredible achievements. The only “evidence” that Khafre built the Sphinx is a small statue that was found near the monument.

There are some geologists who offer evidence that the weathering found on the Sphinx was due to hundreds, if not thousands of years of rainfall.  The problem is that in 2,500 B.C. the region around Giza was still a desert .  Heavy rainfall in the region ended thousands of years before the era of Khafre. You car read about the theory here.

Sphinx2

The original head was probably that of a lion, but then re-carved into a pharaoh.

Also, I believe the head of the Sphinx was re-carved in the image of a pharaoh (the Sphinx was rediscovered by ancient Egyptians buried up to its neck after the Khafre era). The head is not the same proportion as the body, which again, is very rare for the exact precision of the ancient Egyptians.

Why the Great Sphinx fascinates me:

1. I believe the Great Sphinx is much older than mainstream archaeology suggests for two main reasons:
– The water weathering suggest it existed during a time of great rainfall in the regions (about 12,000 years ago).
– There is no evidence that the ancient Egyptians built the Sphinx. It is more likely that they re-carved the head in the image of a pharaoh.

2. I think the ancient Egyptians found the Great Sphinx. The “dream stela” was erected in 1400 BC and tells the story of how it was rediscovered years earlier buried up to its head.

Take a look at the head in comparison to the rest of the body. Was the original Sphinx a monument of Anubis, the Egyptian jackal god.  What do you think?
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