You’ve probably heard of “the Egyptian Sphinx mystery”? And I’m going to share with you some fascinating secrets about its true age. So how old is the Sphinx – really?
On the plateau of Giza west of Cairo, Egypt, sits the Great Sphinx of Giza, a statue 240 feet long, with a lion’s body and a human head wearing the headdress of the Pharaohs.
WATER DID IT!
It is surrounded by desert sand. But there’s evidence of erosion. Erosion by wind-borne sand? No. By WATER! The edges of the rock are rounded. And there are apparently deep fissures in the rock.
The impressions on the stones are not horizontal, as would be caused by sand and wind (like the pyramids in the area); instead, they are vertical. This suggests that the Sphinx has been subjected to heavy rainfall.
The erosion is stronger on the upper parts of the Sphinx and its enclosure walls than around the base. This erosion of these “upper” surfaces exhibits a pattern of weathering commonly associated with exposure to rainwater run-off.
There is a rolling and undulating vertical profile, with many vertical and sloping channels where joints in the bedrock have been opened up. French scholar R. A. Schwaller, independent Egyptologist John West, and geologist Robert Schoch examined it. Schoch contrasted this situation at the Sphinx with the state of weathering seen at other rock-cut features of the Giza Plateau.
For example, in various Old Kingdom tombs, erosion by windblown sand has picked out areas of poorer quality rock, but has left the anciently cut facades and doorways not markedly damaged. But the highly rounded weathering on the Sphinx and its enclosure indicates the action of rainwater over a long period.
WAS IT FLOOD OR RAIN?
You ask, could the erosion have been caused by the Nile flooding and washing around the Sphinx at some remote time?
The answer is that to erode the monument up to its neck would have required floods of twenty meters or more over the Nile Valley. No, if thiswas erosion by water, then it had to be rainwater.
RAIN SO HEAVY!
Do you know, there is good evidence that Egypt experienced very heavy rainfall in the earliest period. According to popular view, the transition from ice age to the present desert environment took place between 10,000 and 3000 BC. Then rainfall tapered off to its current level of about 20 cm per year by about 2200 BC.
CONSTRUCTED 7000 BC?
So if we must go back 9,000 years for sufficient precipitation to cause this pattern of rainfall erosion on limestone, thought West and Schoch, then the Sphinx must have been constructed either during or before this transition – say, 7000 BC.
That meant, it could be twice as old as “officially” claimed.
OR 10,500 BC?
Enter Robert Bauval and Graham Hancock. These two writers believe that the Sphinx was built not around 2500 BC… not in 7000 BC… but in 10,500 B.C.
According to their theory, the stars of the Belt of Orion and Leo the Lion, as arranged in the sky, almost match the positions of the pyramids of Giza. And they believe that the time when the pyramids were in perfect alignment with the Belt of Orion was when it was at its lowest point, in 10,450 B.C.
They believe the Sphinx was probably built during this time. Of course, however attractive this may sound, it is a theory not proven. I’m sorry, but there is no stable background of FACT to support 10,500 B.C.
As much as we might wish it to be, attempts to establish vast ages for civilizations on the basis of astronomical data, must fail – for the simple reason that the earth was violently tipped off its axis in 2345 BC.
The locations of the stars as seen from every fixed point on earth were radically altered. So you cannot count back using earth’s present stability as a reference point. To claim that you can is wishful thinking.
WHAT ABOUT 2000+ BC?
The 10,500 BC and 7000 BC theories are rejected by other scientists for several reasons:
1. There is no evidence of an Egyptian civilization so old.
2. Architectural evidence dates the Sphinx to around the same time as the nearby Pyramid of Khafra. And that pyramid may now be dated to 2144 BC. (See my recent book The Corpse Came Back, p.251)
- (a) Khafra had four twenty-six foot long sphinxes constructed. Two were in front of each entrance to his Valley Temple. A drainage channel from the causeway to Khafra’s pyramid empties into the Sphinx enclosure, which presumably would have desecrated the enclosure if it had already existed.
- (b) The center court of the Sphinx Temple is identical to the center court in Khafra’s Mortuary Temple adjacent to his pyramid.
- (c) The core blocks of the Sphinx Temple match some of the strata of bedrock in the Sphinx enclosure and show that the Temple was built as the enclosure was being excavated. It may be inferred that if other
Khafra structures and the Sphinx Temple dated to the same time, then the excavation of the Sphinx itself dated to that time as well.
3. The Sphinx, a rapidly weathering structure, appears older than it is.
4. Subsurface water drainage (periodic wetting of the limestone by water-saturated sand) or Nile flooding could have produced the pattern of erosion. The water in the surrounding sand would have been drawn up to elevations higher than flood levels due to capillary action. (The Sphinx and Valley temples have been covered by sand for most of the time of their existence.)
5. There are thought to be two reasons why the erosion of the higher elevated Giza Pyramids is different from the erosion of the less lower altitude Sphinx:
- (a) The Nile floods were partly the source of the flood water filling the Sphinx enclosure (which is lower than the pyramids).
- (b) If the Sphinx erosion was caused by rainfall 7000 years ago and if the other structures in the Giza Plateau (built 4000 years ago) show normal wind based erosion, why didn’t the weathering by wind destroy the older water-based weathering? (You must admit, that’s
6. The Sphinx is believed to resemble Khafre, the pharaoh who built one of the nearby pyramids of Giza. He lived not too long before 2000 BC.
It has also been suggested that weathering on the Sphinx depends more on the properties of the rock itself. The middle layer of the Sphinx shows the most erosion because it is made of more porous limestone. The pores of the rock being larger, they invite a process called “salt crystallization”.
This occurs when morning moisture condenses on and in the rock, dissolving the natural salt present in the rock. During the day, this moisture evaporates. The salt crystallizes then presses against the pore walls. This process generally weakens the rock and enlarges pre-existing fissures.
RADICAL NEW EVIDENCE
The climate of Egypt right up to 2000 BC was RAIN… RAIN… RAIN! Plant and animal species depicted in the early tomb paintings show that the weather of Egypt was then wetter than it is now. Yes, it did rain in the Old Kingdom, more than today.
I shall now toss a cat among the pigeons. There is startling new evidence that Egypt did NOT spring up UNTIL AFTER the Great Flood of 2345 BC. That’s right! There’s been a massive dating mistake! (But that’s for another time.)
And the transition from ice age to the present desert environment did NOT take place between 10,000 and 3000 BC, but as recently as 2250 to 2000 BC. And around 2200 BC Menes (Mizraim) and his followers arrived, embanked the Nile and established the Egyptian civilization. That’s when the pyramids and the Sphinx were built!
AN EMBARRASSING SCANDAL
In other words, we’ve been had. So you can forget just about all you’ve been told in school and in the media about dating ancient remains.
Jonathan the Gray!