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Originally posted by mblahnikluver
Ever since I did a paper on the Sphinx 8 years ago in school (college) I have come to believe it is older than what they say it is and that it had the face of a lion first. It always bugged me how out of proportion the Sphinx is.
The best evidence that the Sphinx dates to the reign of Khafre is based on archaeology and architecture. The location of the Sphinx and the architectural similarity of its temple to Khafre’s valley temple make it most likely that the statue dates to Khafre’s reign. In addition, the temples are both built on the same terrace, and some of their walls are aligned. A drainage trench running along the northern side of Khafre’s causeway and opening into the Sphinx ditch proves that the Sphinx was carved after the causeway was built, since the ancient engineers would not have designed the trench to drain into the ditch. All of these things point to the Sphinx having been created during the reign of Khafre.
Then, in 1980, Lehner recruited a young German geologist, Tom Aigner, who suggested a novel way of showing that the Sphinx was part of Khafre's larger building complex.
Limestone is the result of mud, coral and the shells of plankton-like creatures compressed together over tens of millions of years. Looking at samples from the Sphinx Temple and the Sphinx itself, Aigner and Lehner inventoried the different fossils making up the limestone. The fossil fingerprints showed that the blocks used for the wall of the temple must have come from the ditch surrounding the Sphinx - as the statue was being carved, the quarried blocks were being hauled away to build the temple.
Antoine Gigal has unearthed historical evidence that shows that until the 11th century AD, a Second Sphinx existed on the Gizeh plateau, which has since been dismantled. In 1858, François Auguste Mariette was charged by the Duke of Luynes to verify the proposition of Pliny the Elder that the Sphinx had been constructed, and was not monolithic. He opened a trench near the pyramid of Khufu (4th Dynasty, 2589-2566 BC) and in a sanctuary of Isis (dating from the 1st century BC), where he found the so-called “Inventory Stele”. The stele states that “during the reign of Khufu, he ordered the construction of a monument the length of the Sphinx.” This logically concludes that the Sphinx was already there, and that the standard theory, which is that the Sphinx is contemporary with Khafre (4th Dynasty, 2520-2494 BC), is incorrect.
There is also a text from Pharaoh Amenhotep II (ca. 1448-1420 BC), in which the Sphinx is mentioned and is labelled “older than the pyramids”.
Most importantly, in the Inventory Stele, there is mention of a lightning strike that struck the cap of a Second Sphinx, as well as a sycamore tree, a sacred tree in those days, which was burned by the same lightning strike. The lightning strike marked the beginning of the end of this Second Sphinx.
According to archaeologist Michael Poe, who refers to papyrus fragments from the Middle Kingdom, the Second Sphinx was located face to face with the still-existing Sphinx. It was located on the other side of the Nile, and was destroyed by a violent rising of the river Nile ca. 1000 AD. The local people took stones from the structure to rebuild their villages.
This thesis is confirmed by other texts, such as those of the great Arab geographer and scholar Al-I-Drisi (1099-1166 AD) in his two geographical encyclopaedias (Kitab al Mamalk, Al-Mamsalik, and Kitab al Jujori).
Other authors also mention the existence of two sphinxes. The famous historian Musabbihi writes about a “sphinx smaller than the other” (likely because the other one had deteriorated badly by that time) on the other side of the Nile, made from bricks and stones (Annals of Rubi II, ca. 1024).