Sphinx carbon dating
Vultures in particular may represent birds that carried away the dead, and human bones found in association with Göbekli Tepe have been suggested as indications of a death cult. Göbekli Tepe has been hailed in some circles as figuratively, if not literally, the Biblical Garden of Eden.Some of the human bones appear to have been unburied, perhaps left to be scavenged by wild animals as was done in various later cultures (Tibet is an example). Like the fabled Eden, it lies between the northern portions of the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers.What I would have given for a good example of megalithic structures securely dated to 10,000 or 12,000 years ago. Located in modern Turkey, just north of the border with Syria, Göbekli Tepe (the name means hill with a belly or navel) has yielded dozens of carved limestone megaliths, many of which date back to the extraordinarily early period of 11,000 to 12,000 years ago. The date is incredibly early, even earlier than my “conservative” estimate for the date of the Great Sphinx.Klaus Schmidt (German Archaeological Institute) has been heading the excavation team since 1994, and there is no doubt as to the importance, authenticity, and dating (based on radiocarbon) of Göbekli Tepe. Göbekli Tepe dates back to the end of the last Ice Age.For the better part of two decades I have advocated my “conservative” date of circa 7000 BC to 5000 BC, although not absolutely excluding the possibility that the Sphinx could be even older. Over the years, various authors have suggested that the Sphinx Enclosure was filled with water.Perhaps the Sphinx was essentially in the middle of a giant fountain, or the Sphinx stood island-like surrounded by a moat. I considered such notions carefully as far back as 1990.
Göbekli Tepe When I first publicized my re-dating of the Sphinx, one of the accusations repeatedly hurled by the establishment amounted to this: It is impossible for the Sphinx (more correctly the proto-Sphinx, since it has been reworked, repaired, and the head re-carved) to be so old, since people back then did not possess the social and organizational capability to undertake such a massive project.I duly noted that very ancient and sophisticated remains have been found as such sites as Jericho and Çatal Hüyük, but admittedly these examples do not include megalithic constructions comparable to the Great Sphinx.The Sphinx seemed to sit in splendid isolation, with no cultural context.The T-shaped monolithic megaliths are in the range of two to seven meters (six-and-a-half to twenty-three feet) high (the latter is the height of an unfinished megalith left where it was being quarried), and weigh ten tons, or more each.Sculpted onto their surfaces are a variety of animals, including snakes, boars, foxes, vultures, spiders, scorpions, a centipede, and a three-dimensional figure that has been interpreted as a lion. It has been hailed as the world’s oldest temple and the original Garden of Eden.