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Blocks from Sphinx-Shaped Colossi Unearthed in Luxor

Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Egypt Luxor SphinxLUXOR, EGYPT—Ahram Online reports that fragments of a pair of limestone sphinxes, and pieces of walls and columns decorated with festive and ritual scenes, have been unearthed at Luxor’s temple of Amenhotep III by a German-Egyptian team of researchers led by archaeologist Hourig Sourouzian. Mostafa Waziri of the Supreme Council of Antiquities said the colossal sphinxes, which measured about 26 feet long, were found half-submerged in water. Their heads, he added, depict Amenhotep III wearing the striped nemes headdress, royal beard, and a broad collar around his neck. He said that cleaning of the limestone revealed the inscription “the beloved of Amun-Re” on one of the chest pieces. The column bases and foundation blocks found in the southern part of the temple’s Hypostyle Hall indicate that the structure was larger and had more columns than previously thought, while the sandstone wall decorations show images of the Heb-sed jubilee festival of Amenhotep III. The researchers also discovered additional parts of statues of Sekhmet, the lioness goddess of war. Three nearly intact statues of the goddess had previously been discovered at the temple. To read about a recently uncovered Egyptian settlement dating to the reign of Amenhotep III, go to "Golden City," one of ARCHAEOLOGY's Top 10 Discoveries of 2021.

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