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Gaston Maspero, the French Egyptologist and second director of the Egyptian Museum in Cairo, conducted a survey of the Sphinx in 1886.He concluded that because the Dream Stela showed the cartouche of Khafre in line 13, it was he who was responsible for the excavation and therefore the Sphinx must predate Khafre and his predecessors—possibly Dynasty IV, English Egyptologist E. Wallis Budge agreed that the Sphinx predated Khafre's reign, writing in The Gods of the Egyptians (1914): "This marvelous object [the Great Sphinx] was in existence in the days of Khafre, or Khephren, Rainer Stadelmann, former director of the German Archaeological Institute in Cairo, examined the distinct iconography of the nemes (headdress) and the now-detached beard of the Sphinx and concluded the style is more indicative of the pharaoh Khufu (2589–2566 BC), known to the Greeks as Cheops, builder of the Great Pyramid of Giza and Khafra's father.In 2004, Vassil Dobrev of the Institut Français d'Archéologie Orientale in Cairo announced he had uncovered new evidence that the Great Sphinx may have been the work of the little-known pharaoh Djedefre (2528–2520 BC), Khafra's half brother and a son of Khufu.Dobrev suggests Djedefre built the Sphinx in the image of his father Khufu, identifying him with the sun god Ra in order to restore respect for their dynasty.In the New Kingdom, the Sphinx was revered as the solar deity Hor-em-akhet (English: The commonly used name "Sphinx" was given to it in classical antiquity, about 2000 years after the commonly accepted date of its construction by reference to a Greek mythological beast with a lion's body, a woman's head and the wings of an eagle (although, like most Egyptian sphinxes, the Great Sphinx has a man's head and no wings).).Though there have been conflicting evidence and viewpoints over the years, the view held by modern Egyptology at large remains that the Great Sphinx was built in approximately 2500 BC for the pharaoh Khafre, the builder of the Second Pyramid at Giza.
Because these quarries are known to have been used by Khufu, Reader concludes that the Causeway (and the temples on either end thereof) must predate Khufu, thereby casting doubt on the conventional Egyptian chronology.When the Stele was re-excavated in 1925, the lines of text referring to Khaf flaked off and were destroyed.Theories held by academic Egyptologists regarding the builder of the Sphinx and the date of its construction are not universally accepted, and various persons have proposed alternative hypotheses about both the builder and the dating.The sand of the desert whereon I am laid has covered me.
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The Great Sphinx is one of the world's largest and oldest statues, but basic facts about it are still subject to debate, such as when it was built, by whom and for what purpose.