European visitors to Egypt prior to Napoleon's expedition had already discovered the vandalism to the Sphinx. In 1546, for example, when Dr. Pierre Belon explored Egypt, he visited "the great colossus." "The Sphinx," writes Leslie Greener in The Discovery Of Egypt (London : Cassell, 1966), p.38, by this time "no longer [had] the stamp of grace and beauty so admired by Abdel Latif in 1200." Greener goes on to say: "this exonerates the artillerymen of Napoleon Bonaparte, who have the popular reputation of having used the nose of the Sphinx as a target." The charge against Napoleon is particularly unjust because the French general brought with him a large group of "savants" to conduct the first scientific study of Egypt and its antiquities.
Finally, an article by Ulrich Haarmann, "Regional Sentiment in Medieval Islamic Egypt," published in the University of London's Bulletin Of The School Of Oriental And African Studies (BSOAS), vol.43 (1980) p.55-66, states that according to Makrizi, Rashidi and other medieval Arab scholars, the face of the Sphinx was vandalized in 1378 A.D. by Mohammed Sa'im al-Dahr, a "fanatical sufi of the oldest and most highly respected sufi convent of Cairo." The nose and ears are mentioned specifically as having been damaged at this time. According to one account, Haarmann states, the residents in the neighborhood of the Sphinx were so upset by the destruction that they lynched him and buried him near the great monument he ruined. (Thanks to Ann Macy Roth's article in the online Ancient Near East Digest (University of Chicago, Oriental Institute) for the information on Haarmann's article).
Like ancient Rome, we today are once more importing every form of exotic superstition in the hope of finding the right remedy for our sickness.
-- C. G. Jung
Richard Wilhelm: In Memoriam (1930), CW 15: pg. 60
|Nose of the Sphinx||323||Karen H Taylor||09-Aug-10 13:11|
|Re: Nose of the Sphinx||145||Nolondil||09-Aug-10 20:55|
|Re: Nose of the Sphinx||144||Karen H Taylor||09-Aug-10 22:59|
|Riddle of the nose||153||Richard Fusniak||10-Aug-10 00:27|
|Re: Riddle of the nose||169||Karen H Taylor||10-Aug-10 10:39|
|Re: Nose of the Sphinx||183||Green Ruby||11-Aug-10 02:46|