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The Colossi of Memnon, Thebes

The Colossi of Memnon on the West bank at Thebes depict Amenhotep III. They were built to guard his massive mortuary temple (now destroyed). The Greek historian Strabo writing in the 1st century BC says that one of the statues was destroyed from the waist up by an earthquake. It then began to ‘sing’ every morning. This effect, it is now believed, was perhaps due to changes in humidity in the porous rock. The ‘singing’ stopped when Emperor Septimius Severus in AD 199 put the pieces back together.

Memnon1

The Colossi in 1917. 

 

Memnon2

The Colossi today. Copyright Reg Clark.

More 1917 photographs of Egypt compared with modern views

 

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