By Willis Goth Regier
Sought, the Sphinx turns out all over, even if the mum or dad of the pyramids on Egypt's Giza plateau or the attractive man-eater with a dangerous riddle, to be approached with lousy warning. The Sphinx, that icon painted, sculpted, engraved, and exalted in poetry, fiction, and song, so inspired the thinker Hegel that he suggested the creature “the image of the symbolic itself.” With a wealth of illustrations, publication of the Sphinx confirms Hegel's lofty judgment, discovering the Sphinx in every single place: in tragedies, work, opera, homicide mysteries, brothels, bars, and advertisements. Pursuing the Sphinx via kaleidoscopic sightings and encyclopedic observations, Willis Goth Regier plumbs the symbol's mysteries, undertaking the reader down ever extra difficult and exciting paths. splendidly readable, his hugely idiosyncratic journey of the a long time and the humanities leads eventually to a belief of the Sphinx that embraces not anything lower than all that's unknowable—proving once more that confronting a Sphinx is among the most deadly and exhilarating adventures of the mind's eye.
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Extra resources for Book of the Sphinx
Phix and Horemakhet 15 During the Exodus the Lord commanded Moses to make two Cherubim of gold to cover the Ark of the Covenant with their outspread wings (Exodus 25:18–22 and 37:7–9). 27 Cherubim are among the army of angels, the ‘‘angels of governance,’’ in the Book of Enoch. ’’ 28 Sphinx angels often dropped into modern literature. In Alfred Jarry’s César-Antechrist (1895) Caesar meets a silent Sphinx walking between tombs. Caesar says, ‘‘You are a queen and a goddess; like the angels you have ribs fastened in front, and the substance of your brain diﬀers from mine as little as the seed of a woman from the sperm of a man.
For millennia Horemakhet was reduced to a stool and pedestal. Travelers rested on his shoulders, natives posed on his head, and military corps rode him like an enormous camel. Between 1925 and 1935 Emile Baraize completely excavated the Sphinx plateau to the south and east. He added concrete under the Sphinx’s headdress and poured concrete in its cracks and cavities. In 1936 Selim Hassan demolished Baraize’s retaining walls in order to excavate further to the left ﬂank of the Sphinx, and by the end of the year he had excavated the sand behind the Sphinx all the way to the western wall.
In the sixth century Cassiodorus explained, ‘‘Egypt stands for this world, which aﬄicts the Christian people with various calamities, but is inspired with fear by the Lord’s strength and power. ’’ 1 The symbol of Egypt inspired the fear of the Lord and extraordinary ambition. Napoleon’s conquest of Egypt in 1798 was done in the name of emancipating Egypt from despotism. He won a major victory in the Battle of the Pyramids but did not persuade Egyptians that he was their liberator. Egypt expelled Napoleon and brought forth its own Napoleon, Muhammed Alī, whose armies annexed Arabia, Yemen, Syria, and the northern Sudan.