Archaeologists in the southern temple city of Luxor have unearthed twelve new sphinx statues and a road from the reign of ancient Egyptian pharaoh Nectanebo I (380-362 BC), Egypt’s culture minister Farouk Hosny announced on Monday.
The sphinx statues are inscribed with Nectanebo I’s name and were found in the last sector of the Avenue of the Sphinxes, one of the most important archaeological and religious paths in Luxor, the site of the Ancient Egyptian city of Thebes.
The mythological creatures with human faces and reclining feline bodies were typically used to decorate the tombs of ancient Egyptian rulers.
The Avenue of the Sphinxes, built by Nectanebo I, runs from Luxor to nearby Karnak, where it connects to the temple of the goddess Mut. Karnak and contains a vast conglomeration of ruined temples, chapels, monumental gateways to temples, and other buildings.
The archaeologists discovered the new sphinxes at the end of the newly unearthed road of Nectanebo I, said Zahi Hawass, head of Egypt’s Supreme Council of Antiquities.