The Egyptian-German archaeological mission headed by Dr. Horig Sorosian succeeded, during the current archaeological season, during the ongoing work of restoring the statues of Memnon and the funerary temple of King Amenhotep III, known as the “Temple of Millions of Years” on the western mainland in Luxor, in revealing a group of huge stones for two royal statues in the form of the Sphinx. and the goddess Sekhmet, in addition to revealing the remains of walls and columns decorated with ceremonial and ritual scenes.
This was stated by Dr. Mustafa Waziri, Secretary-General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, explaining that among the discovered pieces were parts of two colossal limestone statues of King Amenhotep III in the form of a Sphinx, wearing a mongoose headdress, a royal beard, and a wide necklace around the neck, which were found in the back area. The Gate of the Third Pylon, indicating that all the pieces of these two statues have undergone careful cleaning, strengthening and restoration, which showed the presence of an inscription in the chest area bearing the royal name of Amenhotep III, which is "the beloved of the god Amun-Ra".
He added that the mission also found three black granite busts of the goddess Sekhmet, at the front of the open courtyard, and the great pillared hall of the temple. These pieces will be grouped with other pieces found earlier at the site, in preparation for displaying them in their original places in the temple.
This is in addition to the discovery of a number of inscriptions on a sandstone wall with scenes representing celebrations for Valentine’s Day - a dam and a small black granite statue of an employee sitting perhaps next to his wife. Studies have indicated that it is likely that this statue dates back to the post-Amarna period when the works continued Restoration in this temple by artists and writers.
Also, some bases for columns and stone blocks were found in the southern half of the great pillared hall, which shows that this hall was larger than what is known with more columns.
These pieces were moved from the places they were discovered inside the temple for restoration and re-installation, where the original colors of many of them appeared, in preparation for re-placing them in their original places in the temple.
Dr. Horig Sorosian, head of the mission, emphasized the importance of this discovery, as the discovery and discovery of two huge statues in the form of the Sphinx confirms the presence of the beginning of the procession road, which lies between the third edifice of the temple and the courtyard of the columns, in which the celebrations of the Beautiful Valley Festival were held every year. As well as the celebrations of Valentine's Day-dam for the king in the last ten years of his reign.
She pointed out that the initial studies conducted by the mission on the two statues of the Great Sphinx showed that their length is approximately 8 meters.
It should be noted that the project to restore the statues of Memnon and the temple of King Amenhotep III began in 1998 under the supervision of the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities and the German Institute of Archeology to preserve the remains of the temple and rebuild it again. Queen T. It is known that King Amenhotep III had built his mortuary temple, which he called the Temple of Millions of Years on the western mainland in Luxor, but it was destroyed as a result of a devastating earthquake that swept the country during ancient Egyptian times.