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Luxor Temple Sphinxes

An avenue of human headed sphinxes of over one and a half miles (3 km) once connected the temples of Karnak and Luxor. This road was used once a year during the Opet festival when the Egyptians paraded along it carrying the statues of Amun and Mut in a symbolic re-enactment of their marriage. At Luxor temple Amun was magically transformed into Min the god of fertility.

Luxor Temple Sphinxes
Luxor Temple Sphinxes

Around 1,350 sphinx statues are thought to have lined this road together with barque chapels stocked with offerings. Queen Hatshepsut (1479-1425 BC) built six of these chapels. Each of which had a precise function such as to cool the oar of Amun or to receive the beauty of Amun.

The construction of the Avenue of Sphinxes was begun during the New Kingdom and finished during 30th Dynasty rule of Nectanebo I (380-362 BC).

The road was renovated by the Ptolemaic Queen Cleopatra (51-30 BC) and later used by the Romans. Recently 850 sphinx fragmented have been discovered along a section of Sphinx road built Amenhotep III (1390-1352 BC).


Two 80ft (25m) obelisks once stood here. One remains the other stands in Paris.

Pylon of Ramses IIluxorMapThumb1
Two towers 24 meters high, 65 meters wide and carved in sunken relief

Court of Rameses IIluxorMapThumb2
188 feet (57 m) long, 168 feet (51 m) wide and surrounded with 74 papyrus columns.

Amenhotep III Colonnade
Seven pairs of 52 foot (16m) high open-flower papyrus columns.

Court of Amonhotep IIIluxorMapThumb3
148ft long (45 m), 184ft wide (56 m), with papyrus columns on three sides.

Avenue of Sphinxes luxorMapThumb4
Karnak and Luxor temples were once connected by an avenue of  sphinxes


The mystery of Egyptian cult temples explained, illustrated with videos, photos, drawings and 30 highly detailed computer generated reconstructions.

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