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Graham Hancock and Robert Bauval - The Message of the Sphinx A Quest for the Hidden
Legacy of Mankind
free P D F Click Here Excellent book
Here is a little bit from inside
‘There is scarcely a person in the civilized world
who is unfamiliar with the form and features of the
great man-headed lion that guards the eastern
approach to the Giza pyramids.’
Ahmed Fakhry, The Pyramids, 1961
A gigantic statue, with lion body and the head of a man, gazes east from
Egypt along the thirtieth parallel. It is a monolith, carved out of the
limestone bedrock of the Giza plateau, two hundred and forty feet long,
thirty-eight feet wide across the shoulders, and sixty-six feet high. It is
worn down and eroded, battered, fissured and collapsing. Yet nothing
else that has reached us from antiquity even remotely matches its power
and grandeur, its majesty and its mystery, or its sombre and hypnotic
It is the Great Sphinx.
Once it was believed to be an eternal God.
Then amnesia ensnared it and it fell into an enchanted sleep.
Ages passed: thousands of years. Climates changed. Cultures changed.
Religions changed. Languages changed. Even the positions of the stars in
the skies changed. But still the statue endured, brooding and numinous,
wrapped in silence.
Often sand engulfed it. At widely separated intervals a benevolent ruler
would arrange to have it cleared. There were those who attempted to
restore it, covering parts of its rock-hewn body with blocks of masonry.
For a long period it was painted red.
By Islamic times the desert had buried it up to its neck and it had been
given a new, or perhaps a very old, name: ‘Near to one of the Pyramids,’
reported Abdel-Latif in the twelfth century, ‘is a colossal head emerging
from the ground. It is called Abul-Hol.’ And in the fourteenth century El-
Makrizi wrote of a man named Saim-ed-Dahr who ‘wanted to remedy
some of the religious errors and he went to the Pyramids and disfigured
the face of Abul-Hol, which has remained in that state from that time until
now. From the time of this disfigurement, also, the sand has invaded the
cultivated land of Giza, and the people attribute this to the disfigurement
Abul-Hol, the Arabic name for the Great Sphinx of Egypt, is supposed by
most translators to mean ‘Father of Terror’.
An alternative etymology, however, has been proposed by the
Egyptologist Selim Hassan. During the extensive excavations that he
undertook on the Giza plateau in the 1930s and ‘40s he uncovered
evidence that a colony of foreigners—‘Cananites’—had resided in this
part of Lower Egypt in the early second millennium BC. They were from
the sacred city of Harran (located in the south of modern Turkey near its
border with Syria) and they may perhaps have been pilgrims. At any rate
artefacts and commemorative stelae prove that they lived in the
immediate vicinity of the Sphinx—worshipping it as a god under the
In the Ancient Egyptian language, bw means ‘place’. Hassan therefore
reasonably proposes that Abul-Hol, ‘is simply a corruption of bw Hwl, “the
Place of Hwl”, and does not at all mean “Father of Terror”, as is generally
When speaking of the Sphinx, the Ancient Egyptians frequently made
use of the Harranian derivation Hwl, but they also knew it by many other
names: Hu,3 for example, and Hor-em-Akhet—which means ‘Horus in the
Horizon'.4 In addition, for reasons that have never been fully understood,
the Sphinx was often referred to as Seshep-ankh Atum, ‘the living image