Rather, it seems very clear that what today appears to be a "horned serpent" was a more complex glyph originally, possibly a 4-legged creature; arguably three of the four feet are still visible within the cartouche today, two were actually depicted in Vyse's original sketch (perhaps 2 of the 4 feet were too difficult to "erase" without causing detectable harm to the limestone and revealing the ploy). The presence of such "feet" is physical evidence that the "serpent" originally may have been the body of a land animal whose legs may have since "faded" either through natural erosion or by manual intervention. In either case, as a legged animal, that original glyph would correctly be positioned farther down to the baseline of the text. And let's not even venture into the quirky presence of "Khufu" in the Abydos King's List which clearly dons the "sun/Re(Ra)" glyph and not "seive/placenta/Kh".
Therefore, there is no reason to propose that the entire cartouche was defrauded by Vyse (especially since part of the cartouche frame extends under the adjacent block), but that it may only have been "necessary" for Vyse to do a little nip and tuck of the pre-existing glyphs.
It's only prudent to understand the real pressure Vyse was under at that time, both in terms of dwindling funding and in terms of his falling behind in the significance of his discoveries compared to his other contemporaries such as Belzoni, to realize that it's not that much of a stretch for Vyse, alone with a candle in the middle of the night, to have enough motivation to modify a glyph or two for the sake of being able to continue his gun powder blasting and save face with his benefactor (not to mention, secure a place in history). There is enough in Vyse's writings to indicate that he possessed such a maverick, over-achiever (perhaps even a bit paranoid) personality to cast at least some doubt on the find, enough to temper how much credibility we really should embue in his claim.
The preponderance of the physical evidence screams that the "Khufu" cartouche may be fraudulent. In fact, very little evidence points to it being authentic. In the very least, considering the huge motive Vyse had along with the anomalous positioning of the serpent glyph and those phantom feet suspended below, it is a rather flimsy piece of evidence to hang anyone's hat on to insist it is any kind of smoking gun proof that Khufu, the man, built that pyramid in the 4th Dynasty, despite the lack of any appropriate means whatsoever to do so.
Post Edited (16-Jul-14 19:44)
How can any of us ever know, when all we can do is think?