Why Is the Great Sphinx so Important?

The Power of Forever Photography/E+/Getty Images

The Sphinx is important because it is one of the earliest and largest ancient Egyptian carvings. It is also famous because no one knows exactly when it was carved. There is no concrete information about why it was carved or its significance.

The Sphinx has a mysterious past, but its size and age make it an important part of the Egyptian landscape. The Sphinx is on the Giza Plateau and appears to guard the great pyramids. The statue was carved from the stone in the place it currently rests rather than transported like many other Egyptian monuments, and it is 241 feet long and 65 feet tall.

It is generally accepted that the Sphinx was built around the time of Pharaoh Khafre, which was around 2500 B.C. Because the Sphinx has the head of a man that is wearing the royal headdress, it is possible that it was carved in his likeness.

There is also a tablet between the front legs of the Sphinx that tells of a dream Thutmose IV had of the Sphinx tells him he will be king in around 1400 B.C. In front of the tablet is an alter added during the reign of Rameses II in the 1200s B.C. This shows how important the Sphinx has been throughout ancient Egyptian history.