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So what if West has authored a book on astrology [6] and propounds other unorthodox views? Over all, I have found that Egyptology is a fascinating, but emotionally charged, discipline.

This has no more bearing on the hard data relevant to the age of the Great Sphinx than does the color of my eyes, or the politics of Islam‑‑or does it? My training as a scientist did not fully prepare me for the strong personalities that I would confront among the ranks of Egyptophiles. West, "Civilization Rethought," Cond Nast Traveler 28:2 (February 1993), 100‑105, 168‑171, 175‑177.

Egyptologists strike me as overly sensitive about New Agers, psychics, religious fanatics, believers in "pyramid power," and so forth, perhaps with good reason when you have all sorts of "bizarre" claims as to the meaning and purpose of the pyramids, et cetera [7], including the contention that the two larger Giza pyramids were landing beacons for a spaceport that was built on the Sinai peninsula in ca. Indeed, even some scholars well entrenched within the Egyptological establishment have New Age connections. Mark Lehner's interest in ancient Egypt and the Sphinx originated due to his connection with the Association for Research and Enlightenment (A. The Egyptologist is initially suspicious; he often rejects results out of hand, and is unwilling to work with scientific data. During the 1992 AAAS debate on the age of the Great Sphinx my staunchest opponents, Drs. Lal Gauri, were unable to successfully refute my older date for the Great Sphinx. Seki, 1987, Non‑Destructive Pyramid Investigation (1) ‑‑ By Electromagnetic Wave Method, Studies in Egyptian Culture No. 103), forensic expert Frank Domingo's analysis and reconstruction of the face of the Sphinx (p.

He believes that he can do better with his own methodology. The AAAS Sphinx debate is well‑described by Paul William Roberts in his book River in the Desert: Modern Travels in Ancient Egypt (1993, Random House, New York, pp. While most Egyptologists have violently disagreed, at least initially, with my conclusions regarding the antiquity of the Great Sphinx, there have been exceptions. Nakagawa, 1987, The First International Symposium on the Application of Modern Technology to Archaeological Explorations at the Giza Necropolis: The Substance of Speech, Waseda University, Tokyo; Yoshimura, S., S. 104), and various comments made by critics of the Sphinx redating hypothesis. 1‑2, January 1992) and articles printed in THE NEW YORK TIMES 24 October 1991, THE WASHINGTON POST 11 November 1991, NEWSDAY [New York] 25 October 1991, THE INDEPENDENT [London] 14 October 1991, USA TODAY 10 October 1991, THE BOSTON GLOBE 23 October 1991, THE SAN DIEGO UNION 23 October 1991, LOS ANGELES TIMES 23 October 1991, THE CHRONICLE OF HIGHER EDUCATION 13 November 1991, 11 December 1991, and 15 January 1992, THE EGYPTIAN GAZETTE 28 October 1991, VANCOUVER SUN 28 October 1991, INTERNATIONAL HERALD TRIBUNE 12 November 1991, and THE HOUSTON CHRONICLE 23 October 1991, THE NEW YORK TIMES 9 February 1992, THE WASHINGTON POST 17 February 1992, THE SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE 8 February 1992, THE DAILY TELEGRAPH (London) 10 February 1992, SCIENCE 14 February 1992, NEW SCIENTIST 15 February 1992, THE HOUSTON CHRONICLE 12 February 1992, and THE CHICAGO TRIBUNE 24 February 1992.

[4] Here it is not my purpose to restate the scientific evidence for an older Sphinx (interested readers are referred to the articles already cited in the footnotes, or may write to me directly at Boston University); rather, in this note I will briefly describe a few of the interesting tactics used by some of my critics in attempting to discredit my work on the Sphinx. Maspero) were open to the notion that the Sphinx may be older than the Fourth Dynasty pyramids that it seems to guard, and ancients from New Kingdom Egyptians to Romans (circa 1400 B. Yet forensic expert Frank Domingo of the New York Police Department has definitively proven that the face of the Sphinx and the face seen on signed statues of Khafre are not of the same person (4); indeed, the face of the Sphinx apparently does not pertain to the same race as the face seen on statues of Khafre (the Sphinx has a distinctive "African," "Nubian," or "Negroid" aspect which is lacking in the face of Khafre).

Schoch 1995 [A modified version of this manuscript was published in the "Fortean Times" (P. [3] My work on the Great Sphinx has also received quite a bit of attention in the popular press. D.) generally thought that the Sphinx was older than the pyramids, modern Egyptologists have galvanized around the dogma that the Great Sphinx was built by Khafre, circa 2500 B. The basis for this attribution is purely circumstantial, the strongest piece of evidence being the reputed similarity between the face of the Sphinx and the face of Khafre as seen on other statues.

I heard West out, but did not think there was much chance he was correct in suggesting that the Sphinx was older than its standard attribution‑‑until I got to Egypt. I have been told that Lehner's book is a "classic" in its field among devotees. and under or near the Sphinx was buried a Hall of Records that contained the records from Atlantis. Fundamental Islam bans representational art, and all civilization that predates the prophet Mohammed is considered idolatrous.

Then, much to my surprise, I discovered that West might actually be on to something, even if he got a few details wrong (but then West has no formal training as a geologist). According to Edgar Cayce, as reviewed by Lehner, the Sphinx and pyramids were built ca. To suggest that portions of the Sphinx are even older than traditionally thought, implying a sophisticated society that existed even earlier in time, only rubs salt in the open sores of fundamentalists who must face (at least until they can destroy them) the magnificent remains of pharaonic culture.

34‑39.] The Great Sphinx of Giza, Egypt, has long been thought to have been carved de novo by the Fourth Dynasty pharaoh Khafre (Chephren) about 2500 B. Recently I have determined that, in fact, the Great Sphinx was built in stages and I have estimated that the earliest portions of the statue (the core body of the Sphinx) date back to the period of 7000 to 5000 B. My redating of the Sphinx is now well ‑ established.To begin with, one must realize (as I did not at first) that the dating of the Great Sphinx seems to be a very touchy subject for most modern Egyptologists. Still, most living Egyptologists maintain that the Sphinx was built by, or at least around the time of, Khafre.Despite the fact that some of the early founders of modern Egyptology (such as Sir Flinders Petrie, Sir E. Questioning the age of the Sphinx seems to shake the very foundations of conventional Egyptology.Maybe the whole notion of cultural progress will have to be reconsidered. Thousands of scholars working for hundreds of years" [a bit of an overstatement as to how many persons have seriously studied the Sphinx] have studied this topic . It's just not relevant" (SCIENCE, 14 February 1992, vol. The reason this evidence is "not relevant" to my critics is that they cannot accept the implications of the evidence.When told of my work on redating the Sphinx, Egyptologist Carol Redmount of the University of California, Berkeley, was quoted and paraphrased as saying (LOS ANGELES TIMES, 23 October 1991, p. They "know" when the Sphinx was built, and no evidence can overthrow their long‑cherished beliefs. James Wiseman (Chairman of the Archaeology Department, Boston University) asserted that I am not a member of the Boston University community.

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Mark Lehner of the University of Chicago accused me of practicing "pseudoscience" (NEW YORK TIMES, 9 February 1992, p. A large part of the problem seemed to be that I was an "outsider" (my Ph. is in geology and geophysics from Yale), and off the record I was even told by an Egyptologist that there were plenty of rocks for me to study other than those on the Giza Plateau where the Sphinx stands. do not bother me as long as they do not impinge adversely upon his (their) current scholarship. Here I might also note that ideology, theology, and nationalism often influence the manner in which archaeological data is interpreted [15].

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