If you have been to Luxor before, you are probably familiar with the two magnificent statues of King Amenhotep III that sit on the West Bank of Luxor. If you haven’t, then let us tell you about one of Luxor’s main attractions and the mysterious story behind it.
What is the Colossi of Memnon?
The Colossi of Memnon are twin image statues for Pharaoh Amenhotep III, along with two smaller statues carved by his feet for his wife and mother. Each statue is 60 feet tall and weighs about 720 tons, standing at the entrance of the mortuary temple.
What are the Colossi of Memnon made of?
The Egyptologists believe that the two colossi of memnon materials used were:quartzite sandstone, quarried at El Gabal El Ahmar near modern Cairo, and transported to Thebes (Modern Luxor).
When was the Colossi of Memnon built?
The two Colossi of Memnon were built by Amenhotep III during the 18th dynasty. They were the guardians of the mortuary temple of Amenhotep III that stood behind them but was destroyed by an earthquake and the floods; only the twin statues survived for thousands of years.
Amenhotep III;who built the colossi of memnon?
Colossi of Memnon erected by Amenhotep III , he was one of the greatest builders of Ancient Egypt; he reigned from 1386 to 1349 BCE during the 18th dynasty. He built around 250 buildings in his 37 years of ruling that some scholars think that he must have ruled for more to have time to build all of them. His mortuary temple that is guarded by the two colossi, was one of the greatest constructions ever, even bigger than the Luxor temple. It was destroyed in 27 BC soon after its completion and restored by Roman Emperors during the Roman Empire in Ancient Egypt.
Why is it called Colossi of Memnon?
You are probably wondering by now why is it named the Colossi of Memnon if they are the statues of Amenhotep? The Romans gave it that name, and the Greeks referred to the whole complex as Memnonium.
Who is Memnon?
Memnon was a hero from the Trojan War; he was the King of Ethiopia. He traveled to Asia Minor with his army from Africa to defend the city under attack and was killed by the famous Greek Hero Achilles; you might know him from the movie Hercules.
interesting facts about colossi of memnon;Why is the Colossi of Memnon important?
Colossi Of Memnon Sound
Some Scholars believe that Amenhotep III was the Ethiopian King Memnon, but they mostly associated the Colossi with Memnon due to the sounds it makes. At dawn, they heard a cry from the northern statue, which they believed it is the cry of Memnon greeting his mother, Eos, the Goddess of dawn, and whoever hears the sound brings him good luck as it is like an oracle.
Tourists used to come from around the world to visit the Colossi of Memnon just to be blessed by hearing its sound. The reason behind this sound is one of the mysteries of ancient Egypt; they suggest that it is just the sound made by the shattered upper part due to the earthquake.
The silence of Memnon
The sounds stopped entirely after the statue was repaired by a Roman Emperor. After that, the popularity of the statues declined as people stopped going to them as it was no longer a miraculous oracle that answered their prayers, but it remained as a touristic attraction.