March 10, 2017

"Statue Being Pulled From a Gritty Patch of Cairo Could Be of Ramses."

The NYT reports.
“This was a great surprise,” said Dietrich Raue, a director of a team of German and Egyptian archaeologists who have been excavating a vast temple complex at the site since 2012. “We had to clear the area before any future construction work and because the monuments are below the level of the groundwater. The quality of the stone is fantastic, and it has an amazing art historical value.”...

Establishing the identity of the colossus is complicated because it has been broken into pieces and only fragments of the face have been found. Dr. Raue said it might have been destroyed by early Christians, or by the Muslim rulers of Cairo in the 11th century as they used limestone stonework from ancient temples to build the city’s fortifications.

But statues like the colossus were cast aside because they were made from quartzite....

19 comments:

Michael K said...

The tourist industry of Egypt has been badly damaged by terrorists.

At one time I planned to go and take my daughter but I would not take a woman into Egypt now.

chickelit said...

Builders had planned to erect condominiums until Ramses popped up.

Fernandinande said...

The 26-foot statue is made of quartzite and could be up to 3,000 years old.

They're probably due for a new one.

traditionalguy said...

That was Moses buddy. I saw the movie in 1951. It does look a lot like Yul Brynner.

Steve said...

The Muslim Brotherhood would have smashed it.

Original Mike said...

"Dr. Raue said it might have been destroyed by early Christians, or by the Muslim rulers of Cairo in the 11th century ..."

My money's on the Muslims.

buwaya said...

We need a new Shelley to write us a poem about this new image of Ozymandias.

Smashed into pieces, under a Cairo slum.

Jay Elink said...

Damn! Somewhere in my house I have a slide (remember them?) of me standing on the fallen torso of Ramses II at the Ramesseum, taken 40 years ago.


I remember wandering around Egypt then, with almost no other tourists. At Luxor, in the Valley of the Kings.

Going deep into the Great Pyramid.

Good times.

p.s. if that's Ramses II, the statue would be MORE than 3000 years old. Open a freakin' book, will ya?

eddie willers said...

We need a new Shelley to write us a poem about this new image of Ozymandias.

"Look upon my urban renewal, ye Mighty, and sign here."

Yancey Ward said...

He looks like a Conehead.

rhhardin said...

It's curious that both Ramses and Trojan come from the Middle East.

Temujin said...

"....could be of Ramses."

Or it could be Beyoncé.

LordSomber said...

"Marion, don't look at it. Shut your eyes, Marion. Don't look at it, no matter what happens!"

Quaestor said...

The semi-educated reporters at the New York Times know only one pharaoh by name, which they use wrongly, and so the statue "could be Ramses". Which Ramesses? (Note the correct spelling. The king's name has three syllables, Mr Slim.) There were eleven of them. Considering its location, it is more likely to be Thutmose IV, who did a lot of Old Kingdom temple and monument restoration (often appropriating them to his glory, btw) in the area that is now Cairo.

Quaestor said...

It's curious that both Ramses and Trojan come from the Middle East.

Near East, just barely. The Trojans always bristled at the suggestion of being from the Middle East, that's why the moved West with Æneas to found their mighty health products empire.

Quaestor said...

He looks like a Conehead.

That's because the king is wearing the crown of the crown of Upper Egypt (i.e. the South). That could mean the statue is from the Middle Kingdom period when there were often rival pharaohs ruling simultaneously.

Fernandinande said...

buwaya said...
We need a new Shelley to write us a poem about this new image of Ozymandias.


There once was a statue of quartzite
Whose fragments of face were not quite right
This was a surprise
To the archaeologists' eyes
At the gritty working-class burial site.

I spent at least 32 seconds trying for a better last line, but, too bad.

T J Sawyer said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
T J Sawyer said...

Please don't be afraid of Egypt. We spend three months here in Cairo each year. See My Travel Blog for activities of the past week as we hosted guests for a very pleasant visit. I cannot walk down the street without warm greetings from shopkeepers and strangers alike.