Friday, March 12, 2010

Avenue of the sphinx Luxor to Karnak

Today is the 12/3/10  and its 4 days past our dear president Hosni Mubarek  opening the first section of the avenue,   the reason he could not be here in Luxor  He had to get hospital treatment in  Heidelburg
Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak's condition is improving after successful gallbladder surgery in Germany on Saturday, a hospital spokesman said on Tuesday.
The spokesman added it was unclear how long the 81-year-old Mubarak would remain in the hospital in the western city of Heidelberg, but the medical team would give an update on his condition in the next two days.
And a  swift recovery  is wished  Mr President.
 in this area 2 years ago was a Mosque  and the local police station  while taking the later down many people came  to throw stones at the once prison cells.  we can all guess why,  and I wonder if the police and  imprisoned persons knew they where using a urinal that was depositing its contents on the heads of  the sphinxes, or did the people  going to prayer know that the bathing water would also be cleansing the once Gods of Egypt ,
since the people realized the president was not coming much of the newly  laid stone path has been dug up
 and laid properly,    and the mud brick walls are now in place  so as when in the future our rich tourists will get a feel of the ancients that took two days in ceremony  to walk this 3 kilometer path to the Karnak temple.
 they say this new walk way of sphinxes is going to cost an estimated 50 million dollars.  but will be regenerated by the tourist in twelve months after opening,  so this means  that we will have to pay to walk the 3 kilometers to Karnak or vice versa. the next shot is the new dig after taking some of the buildings down.
And another view from the church to the temple in time will be adorned with the sphinxes 
Like this photo shows not much of the original stone has been found  to date from all the digs only one almost  complete sphinx has been recovered,   also note the mud and brick walls.
the last dig before the church  this is how the whole dig has been all they have found are remnants of the bases to the once proud standing Sphinxes. gone are the buildings hurriedly taken down and carted off to some landfill project.
The newly unearthed avenue of the Spinx looking from Karnak temple towards Luxor Temple soon all in its path will be demolished 
Looking at the new dig near the Luxor temple  Only one Spinx up to date has been found almost complete,
 photo taken 20/2/10

these are the mud bricks that are being used to back up the concrete walls. so when walking along the avenue it will give a feeling its very  old   but the Spinx themselves are being rebuilt in whatever stone they find from the dig and mortar in place of what they think the Spinx looked like 3500 years ago. now if I was too build myself a home in this area say 200 years ago. and found a load of stone ( From the avenue)  I would have built my home in it,  especially the foundation stones  because the Nile level was much Higher than what it is today  building my foundation in mud brick as i would  the rest of the house  would have been a bit of a miscalculation of what Water and mud  does  (not Mix) ,   but this Job of demolition of the houses was done at such speed with large bulldozers and  mechanical shovels 50 ton Lorries carting the debris away to some place maybe to the reed beds.   no one knows if the the stones from the avenue where also carted off .   so in a few hundred years time  we will have another Egyptologist  finding what looks like the head of a sphinx. and digging up all of  what  was  reed beds thinking he is going to find another avenue of sphinxes,  and  a vane  of asbestos and gypsum. 
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after walking one block some 200 yards we come to the next part of the dig  looking towards  Karnak temple 
and back towards the Church and Luxor 

The crane is in Karnak Temple and has been there for the past 8 years for me to know. 

18/3/10   the next phase of demolition is underway
the project involves the restoration of a 2.7-km (1.7-mile) alley that connects the grand temples of Luxor and Karnak on the east bank of the River Nile.Lined with a number of statues in the shape of sphinxes -- thus the name "Avenue of Sphinxes" -- the alley was built by the 30th Dynasty king Nectanebo I (380-362 B.C.), who replaced an older path dating from the Eighteenth Dynasty (1550-1292 B.C.).
The pathway was the location of important religious ceremonies in ancient times. One of the most important was the Opet festival, whose main event was a procession with a cult statue of Amun carried from Karnak to Luxor, the site of the ancient city of Thebes.
 "The avenue had some branches with rest places and shrines. Queen Hatshepsut recorded on her red chapel in Karnak temple that she built six chapels dedicated to the god Amun-Re along this route," Sabry Abd El Aziz told Discovery News.

Indeed, remains of the chapels built by Hatshepsut (1502-1482 B.C.), then reused by king Nectanebo I in the construction of sphinxes, have been found along with remains of Roman wine factories and a huge cistern for water.
During the first part of the excavation, in which about a third of the pathway has been dug up, Egyptian archaeologists have unearthed 650 sphinxes out of the original 1350, and several reliefs.
One of the reliefs features the ancient symbol of Cleopatra (51-30 B.C.). According to Dr. Zahi Hawass, chief of Egypt's Supreme Council of Antiquities, Cleopatra likely visited the avenue during her Nile trip with Mark Anthony and implemented restoration work that was marked with her cartouche.
The fragmented sphinxes are now under restoration. Soon they will be placed on display along the avenue.


Anonymous said...

Interesting..have a good day :)

Parag said...
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