Great Sphinx Origins: Mesopotamian Lion of Ishtar + The Dawn of Ancient Egyptian Dynastic History
Published at : 10 Nov 2020
If you saw my last video about the Ancient Egyptian Festival of Drunkenness, you’ll see that I explained how the Sphinx, in its earliest incarnation, could be the goddess Hathor, in the form of Sekhmet, as described in the Book of the Heavenly Cow.
In this video I explore the origins of lioness goddesses in Ancient Egypt, as I try to see if Sekhmet could be the true origin of the Sphinx, and if not who else it could be?
I've look at Old Kingdom, Early Dynastic and Pre-Dynastic sources as I try and trace the origins of not just the Sphinx, but also the Horus Kings of Egypt, those that unified Egypt and formed the famous dynastic Era.
In doing this, the research takes me to Mesopotamia and Ancient Syria, as a possible origin for what some call 'The Dynastic Race' and the Great Sphinx could have actually been a monument dedicated to the powerful goddess Ishtar/Inanna, whose cult centre was an ancient Sumerian city.
Was the Sphinx the lion of Ishtar/Inanna? Was it originally a lion, or did it always have a human head? In this Ancient Architects special episode, I go in depth to present to you what I believe are the origins of Egypt's most famous ancient monument.
All images are taken from Google Images and the below sourcres for educational purposes only.
Petrie, W. M. F., The Royal Tombs of the Early Dynasties Vol. I & II. 1901.
Mattiae, P., The Lions of the Great Goddess of Ebla.
De Morgan, J., Recherches sur Les Origins de L'Egypte. 1897.
Seyfzadeh, M. et al, A New Interpretation of a rare Old Kingdom Dual Title: The King's Chief Librarian and Guardian of the Royal Archives of Mehit. 2017
Jensen, V., Predynastic Precursors to the Festival of Drunkenness: Beer, Climate Change, Cow-Goddesses, and the Ideology of Kingship. 2015.
Lange, Eva, The Lioness Goddess in the Old Kingdom Nile Delta: The Local Cult Topography.
Ward, W. A., Relations between Egypt and Mesopotamia from Prehistoric Times to the End of the Middle Kingdom. 1964.
Ward, W. A., Egypt and the East Mediterranean from Predynastic Times to the End of the Old Kingdom. 1963.
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