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account for the diminutive size of the older parts of this extensive building; and to their comparatively limited scale, offering greater facility, as their vicinity to the sanctuary greater temptation, to an invading enemy to destroy them, added to their remote antiquity, are to be attributed their dilapidated state, and the total disappearance of the sculptures executed during the reigns of the Pharaohs who preceded Osirtesen I., the contemporary of Joseph, and the earliest monarch whose name exists on the monuments of Thebes." But, indeed, no better evidence could be sought for the importance of the remains of ancient Thebes, than the fact that Wilkinson has devoted a large volume to the illustration of its remarkable relics. After describing the small temple and palace, near the river, dedicated to Amun, the Theban Jupiter, by Osirei, he remarks: "Following the edge of the cultivated land, and about one hundred and eighty yards to the west of this building, are two mutilated statues of Remeses II., of black granite, with a few substructions to the north of them; and seven hundred and seventy yards farther to the west, lies, in the cultivated soil, a sandstone block of Remeses III., presenting in high relief the figure of that king between Osiris and Pthah. Fourteen hundred feet beyond this, in the same direction, is a crude brick inclosure, with large towers, which once contained within it a sandstone temple, dating probably from the reign of the third Thothmes, whose name is stamped on the bricks, and who appears to have been the contemporary of Moses.
“ Other fragments and remains of crude brick walls proclaim the existence of other ruins in its vicinity; and about a thousand feet farther to the south-west is the palace and temple of Remeses II., erroneously called the Memnonium: a building, which, for symmetry of architecture and elegance of sculpture, can vie with any other monument of Egyptian art. No traces are visible of the dromos, that probably existed before the pyramidal towers, which form the facade of the first hypäthral area, a court whose breadth of one hundred and eighty feet, exceeding the length by nearly thirteen yards, is reduced to a more just proportion, by the introduction of a double avenue of columns on either side, extending from the towers to the north wall. In this area, on the right of a flight of steps leading to the next court, was the stupendous Syenite statue of the king seated on a throne, in the usual attitude of these Egyptian figures, the hands resting on his knees, indicative of that tranquility which he had returned to enjoy in Egypt after the fatigues of victory. But the fury of an invader has levelled this monument of Egyptian grandeur, whose colossal fragments lie scattered around the pedestal, and its shivered throne evinces the force used for its demolition.
“ If it is a matter of surprise how the Egyptians could transport and erect a mass of such dimensions, the means employed for its ruin are scarcely less wonderful; nor should we hesitate to account for the shattered appearance of the lower part by attributing it to the explosive force of powder, had that composition been known at the period of its destruction. The throne and legs are completely destroyed and reduced to comparatively small fragments, while the upper part, broken at the waist, is merely thrown back upon the ground, and lies in that position which was the consequence of its fall; nor are there marks of the wedge, or other instrument, which should have been employed for reducing those fragments to the state in which they now appear.
The fissures seen across the head, and in the pedestal, are the work of a later period, when some of these blocks were cut for millstones by the Arabs, but its previous overthrow will probably be coeval with the Persian invasion. To say that this is the largest statue in Egypt will convey no idea of the gigantic size or enormous
ight of a mass, which
from an approximate calculation, exceeded, when entire, nearly three times the solid content of the great obelisk of Karnak, and weighed about eight hundred and eightyseven tons five hundred weight and a half.”
One of the most celebrated relics still remaining in a mutilated state, amid the vast ruins of Thebes, he “ Vocal Memnon.” On this the author of the “ Topography of Thebes,” remarks :—“The easternmost of the two sitting colossi has been the wonder of the ancients, and the subject of some controversy among modern writrys; nor were the numerous inscriptions, which decide it to have been the Memnon of the Romans, sufficient to convince every one that this was the statue reported by ancient authors to utter a sound at the rising of the sun. Strabo, who visited it with Ælius Gallus, the governor of Egypt, confesses that he heard a sound, but could not affirm whether it proceeded from the pedestal, or from the statue itself, or even from some of those who stood near its base;' and independent of his total disbelief that it was uttered by the stone itself, he does not hint that the name of Memnon had as yet been given it. The superstition of the Roman visitors, however, shortly after, ascribed it to the son of Tithonus, and a multitude of inscriptions testified his miraculous powers, and the credulity of the writers. Previous to Strabo's time, the ‘upper part of this statue, above the throne, had been broken and hurled down,' as he was told, 'by the shock of an earthquake;' nor do the repairs afterwards made to it appear to date prior to the time of Juvenal, since the poet thus refers to its fractured condition :
Dimidio magicæ resonant ubi Memnone chordæ.'
But from the account in the Apollonius Thyaneus of Philostratus, we should conclude that the statue had been already repaired as early as the age of Juvenal, who was also a contemporary of the emperor Domitian, since
Damis, the companion of the philosopher, asserts that the sound was uttered when the sun touched its lips.' But the license of poetry and the fictions of Damis render both authorities of little weight in deciding this point. The foot was also broken, and repaired; but if at the same time as the upper part, the epoch of its restoration must date after the time of Adrian, or at the close of his reign, as the inscription on the left foot has been cut through to admit the cramp which united the restored part. Pliny, following the opinion then in vogue, calls it the statue of Memnon, and adds that it was erected before the Temple of Sarapis ;-a strange mistake, since the temple of that deity was never admitted within the precincts of an Egyptian city, and the worship of Sarapis was unknown in Egypt at the epoch of its foundation.
“ The nature of the stone, which was also supposed to offer some difficulty, is a coarse hard gritstone, spotted,' according to Tzetzes' expression, with numerous chalcedonies, and here and there coloured with black and red oxide of iron. The height of either Colossus is fortyseven feet, or fifty-three above the plain, with the pedestal, which, now buried from six feet ten inches to seven feet below the surface, completes, to its base, a total of sixty. The repairs of the vocal statue are of blocks of sandstone, placed horizontally, in five layers, and forming the body, head, and upper part of the arms; but the line of hieroglyphics at the back has not been completed, nor is there any inscription to announce the era or name of its restorer. The accuracy of Pausanias, who states that 'the Thebans deny this is the statue of Memnon, but of Phamenoph, their countryman,' instead of clearing the point in question, was supposed to offer an additional difficulty: but the researches of Pococke and Hamilton have long since satisfactorily proved this to be the Memnon of the ancients; who, we learn by an inscription on the left foot, was supposed also to bear the name of
Phamenoth. And the hieroglyphical labours of M. Champollion at length decided the question, and Amunoph once more asserts his claims to the statues he erected.
“ The destruction of the upper part has been attributed to Cambyses, by the writers of some of the inscriptions and by some ancient authors, which seems more probable than the cause assigned by Strabo, since the temple to which it belonged, and the other colossi in the dromos, have evidently been levelled and mutilated by the hand
" The sound it uttered was said to resemble the breaking of a harp-string, or, according to the preferable authority of a witness, a metallic ring, and the memory of its daily performance, about the first or second hour after sunrise, is still retained in the traditional appellation of Salamat, 'salutations, by the modern inhabitants of Thebes. The priests, who, no doubt, contrived the sound of the statue, were artful enough to allow the supposed deity to fail in his accustomed habit, and some were consequently disappointed on their first visit, and obliged to return another morning to satisfy their curiosity. This fact is also recorded on its feet with the precision of the credulous.
“ In the lap of the statue is a stone, which, on being struck, emits a metallic sound, that might still be made use of to deceive a visitor, who was predisposed to believe its powers; and from its position, and the squared space cut in the block behind, as if to admit a person who might thus lie concealed from the most scrutinous observer in the plain below, it seems to have been used after the restoration of the statue; and another similar recess exists beneath the present site of this stone, which might have been intended for the same purpose when the statue was in its mutilated state."
In still further illustration of the same curious inquiry, the author observes ;-" Mr. Burton and I first remarked