Riddle of the Sphinx

An Egyptian Adventure

Commentary & Walkthrough
Soren Andersen


The world’s literature throughout the ages contains a vast amount of writing on Egypt’s pyramids and the Sphinx, from scholarly disser-tations to crackpot assertions and speculation. A few of the more factual of these articles that have been culled from the Internet and are appended to the end of this document, mainly because they include names that appear in the game’s preamble (not, of course, the fictional Gil Geoffreys) and to actions and journals that are encountered in the game. The timeline that appears in the game’s introductory video is also appended, but keep in mind that it is part of the game and may be factually tainted for that reason. It is assumed that before beginning the game you have read the Prologue that appears on pages 3 and 4 of the game booklet/user manual from the CD jewel case.

The game cursors (there are a lot of them), interface, and inventory are described on pages 8-12 of the game booklet, but some amplification may be helpful: when the hand cursors appear with a circular arrow superimposed, it means that a VR condition (i.e., continuous panning) will be initiated on the next click, which may show a 45º rotated square; hold down the left mouse switch and move the mouse, whereupon the square becomes a bullseye, and you may begin panning at a speed controlled by the cursor position. There will be small arrows appearing as well. The bullseye may show without the appearance of the square; there is a certain amount of inconsistency in this whole operation. You may have to be in a particular area of the screen for the VR operation to be available. When you pan over a location in which there is an item or location of interest, a hand appears on the bullseye, and you may stop and click to move forward to explore it. You will quickly get used to this, but the square and bullseye are not described in the booklet...When you wish to retrieve an item from inventory, double click on it...When you start a return along a passageway or stairway that has taken many clicks to traverse—-there are plenty of these—-carefully move your cursor around and you will usually find the arrow indicating that you may warp back in one step to the passage beginning.

The walkthrough that follows does not give specific answers to the challenges presented, but it is pretty specific on how the answers are obtained...You can get killed in a few of the game situations, but not if you pay close attention to the clues.


At various times up to about the middle of the twentieth century much excavation was done on the Giza Plateau, including excavation of the body of the sphinx, previously unsuspected after long ago being covered by sand over the centuries, which actually preserved the soft limestone from the abrasive desert weathering. The game takes place some years in the future, and prior to this future date, violent sandstorms had again covered much of the excavations, including the sphinx body so that only the head was visible, and the body had to be uncovered once again. Later you will find a journal with more about this. You know from the Prologue in the game booklet that after all this excavation, archeologist Gil Geoffreys discovered an ancient scroll purported to reveal the storied secret of the Sphinx, and that for translating it and thus learning the directions to the secret, he has released a curse that has resulted in his death. Before this happened, his colleagues turned against him, so he hid the scroll and then sent for you to carry on.

As the game opens you are in a helicopter flying over Gil’s campsite near the Sphinx, and you land there at a temporary helipad. You will very soon find a map of the area as you investigate Gil’s tent, an exploration that is the first order of business, as you need to see what he has left that might be of help in your quest. Leave the helicopter and go to his tent, the farthest one of the group.

Gil’s Sphinx Tent

The tent has been left in some disarray, not too surprising when one is under a deadly curse. Spilled coffee, empty food cans, scattered papers. He must have left clues so that you can find the hidden scroll. A reasonable place to start searching is his desk.

There are several items on the desk that may be examined, but the first thing you notice is a letter warning of a cutoff of expedition funding. Bummer. There is a tape cartridge on which is written, presumably by Gil, "A Message For You, My Old Friend". Except for recording, the tape player next to it is fully functional, so open the top and load the cartridge. (You might have to first rewind tape to be sure it is at the beginning. This also applies to subsequent tapes.) Adjust the volume control, then use the Play button to listen to the tape and get information from Gil about the curse, the scroll, and his colleagues. Gil's advice: "Assume nothing, examine everything, and make exhaustive notes". When his message is finished, remove the tape and place it back on the desk.

The desk is locked but the desk writing board may be pulled out, and on it is taped a sheet of paper with three sets of notations that are probably important. Continue exploring. Gil’s wash stand offers no clues, though the mirror seems focused on the stove. Next to the bed is a stand on which is to be found a candle and a matchbook, below these are four books. One is a book about Egyptian monuments written by Gil and bookmarked to pages that you should read and remember for later reference. Another book is about many Egyptian hieroglyphics that is interesting to scan, the third is a bible that falls open to the Book of Numbers, and the fourth book contains some mathematical observations on a couple of the pyramids; observe the drawing and description of the Great Pyramid, because you will explore it soon.

Under the pillow on the bed is a sheet of paper. It appears to be blank, so put it back. In the center of the bed is a box that contains a watch with the crystal broken and that is stopped at 8:00, Gil’s passport, and his billfold. The latter contains several ID cards, the numbers of which you should probably record ("exhaustive notes"). Behind one card is a scrap of paper on which there are three sets of notations with the same RLR prefaces as those on the desk writing board. Above this notation is the word "Numbers", and each notation consists of two numbers separated by a colon, which you as a scholarly person recognize as how chapter and verse in the books of the bible are designated. It is no coincidence that the bible fell open to the Book of Numbers, so return to it and look up the locations indicated, each of which contain some reference to a particular number, and again should be so noted and correlated.

On the stove is a pot in which there is a residue of something that Gil cooked; it has all the appearance and smell of stew...The large trunk is secured with a combination padlock, and if you look in the trash you will find the packaging in which the lock came. You can turn the packaging over and read the directions for opening the padlock, which is the standard method of turning the dial right, left, and right again. Aha!: RLR--you have found two such references: the desk writing board and the billfold scrap. So you know how to open the lock, what you need the lock combination numbers.

Now pretend that you are tired and you need sleep as night is falling; click on the pillow to watch it fall. Click on the pillow in the darkness to wake up in the middle of the night. You need light, so get a match from the matchbook, drag it on the matchbook striking strip, and light the candle. Now if you look at the paper from under the pillow with the candlelight behind it, you can make out a doggerel poem by Gil about stewing over a key. You can think further about this in the morning, so click on the pillow to go back to sleep, then click once more on the pillow to wake up in the morning.

The poem intimates that you investigate the stew on the stove. Light another match and hurry to the stove, click on the knob to turn on the gas, then light the burner. Look in the pot and very shortly a key appears. Turn off the stove, pick up the key and go to the desk, where you can unlock all four drawers. Put the key back in the pot, as you won’t need it any more.

Now to investigate the desk drawers. In the center drawer you will find two star plots with constellations indicated, and also the annotated site layout diagram referred to above. On the left, the top drawer holds two tapes and an unimportant sketch of two pots, the center drawer holds Gil’s scrapbook, the few pages of which you can quickly read, and in the bottom drawer is another tape.

Pull out the desk writing board. The top notation with the circled R says Tape #3 and has four digits in a set of squares. Get this tape from the top left drawer and put it in the tape player. Be sure the tape is rewound, then set the tape player counter to zero by clicking on the left end of it. Fast forward so the counter reads the number of the four digits, or perhaps a little less. Now play the tape and Gil will give you the clue you need to determine the first number of the trunk padlock by using the corresponding bible quotation. Repeat this operation with the other two tapes and you will have the padlock combination. Put the tapes back in the drawers.

Using the procedure described on the back of the padlock packaging, open the padlock. This can be a finicky set of steps. Here is how it is done:

  1. Get a closeup of the padlock.
  2. Place the cursor on the dial, where it become a hand showing a T.
  3. Hold down the left mouse button and spin the dial to the right(clockwise)a couple      times. Release the mouse button, whereupon the hand cursor shows an R.
  4. Hold down the mouse button and turn the dial clockwise to the first number of the combination. Release the button and an L appears on the hand cursor.
  5. Hold down the mouse button and turn the dial counterclockwise past the first number to the second one. Release the mouse button and the R reappears on the cursor.
  6. Hold down the mouse button and turn the dial clockwise directly to the last number. Release the mouse button.
If you have the correct combination and if you have carefully followed the above steps, you will hear a click and after a short pause the lock will open.

Unsnap the two hasps and click on the trunk top to open it. Click on the book inside to get a closeup, then click on it again to open it to find a scroll in the hollowed out pages. Pick up the scroll and examine it. When you put it in inventory, the name that appears for it is Translation Scroll. Take the tape from the trunk to the tape player, be sure it is rewound to the beginning, set the tape counter to zero, and listen to Gil’s halting and none too lucid reading of the scroll. He says that there is something that you "should use as your first clue"—tableture, it sound like, six of them, and indeed on the right side of the scroll are depicted six headstone style tablets. Gil admits to not having a complete understanding of what the scroll says, and that is indeed reflected in his taped message. The "Atlantean" writing about which he speaks is a mystery, as is any connection to Horus the Red, whatever that might mean. Confusing.

The foregoing translation is a ploy by Gil to put off anyone--his colleagues, presumably--who chance to have found the tape. Fast forward to read 325 on the counter, and listen to Gil again. He is now far from being hesitant and confused. He clearly and authoritatively translates the four lines of hieroglyphics, and says the curse points to the tableture on the right side of the scroll, pointing out that some have three scarabs on them and some do not. The tablets as pictured are cursed, avoid them. The Atlantean references in the first part of the tape are to be taken seriously.


Well, you’ve found the scroll that Gil hid, so now explore the Sphinx dig site. Leave the tent, cross the plank bridge to the front of the sphinx, and go down the ramp between the statue’s front legs to the excavation floor. You could examine the groups of barrels, but there is nothing to find in these. You could also walk all around the excavation, but the quickest way to the tunnel in the side of the Sphinx that is indicated on the site layout diagram is to go under the plank bridge. On the way you will see on one of bridge support planks a construction date. You may as well record this date in line with Gil’s dictum of making exhaustive notes. Continue on to the opening in the side of the Sphinx. Enter and go to the end of the tunnel.

Someone has conveniently left an operating lantern here, and by its light you can see an enormous portal that resembles the hexagon at the bottom of the Translation Scroll, except that there is a scarab pictured in the center, and in addition there is a golden circle next to each of the ones at the apexes of the hexagon. You can’t do anything here but observe, and since you have done that you might as well go back to the helicopter and fly to the Great Pyramid for further investigation. When you land, go to the nearby camp.

Great Pyramid base camp

There is not much here: a plank bench over some barrels under a canvas tarp, some boxes, a shovel. On the bench is a water container and a can of gasoline. Check to see if there is any water by turning the spigot near the bottom of the container. Yup, there is. Water runs into the sand leaving a strange depression. Waste some more water on the sand. The depression deepens. Run a lot of water, and you uncover a broken container in which there is another scroll. This one again shows the hexagon of circles, each circle containing a clearly visible icon that has the appearance of Arabic writing, but is probably the Atlantean symbols to which Gil referred in his reading of the Translation Scroll. There is also the scarab as seen on the portal. Inventory calls this find a Sacred Scroll.

Behind the camp is a sand ramp between fences that leads to the pyramid entrance. Proceed up this ramp, and to save yourself a trip back, take the can of gas with you. When you get to the entrance, fill the generator with gas and press the green button to start it. Now you have lights for the pyramid corridors. You may wish to consult the Great Pyramid diagram at this point.

After you enter the pyramid and advance some distance up the passageway your progress will be stopped by a sandslide that completely fills the passage. Go back a couple clicks until you achieve VR mode, then look upward and you will find in the roof of the passage another one that leads to the inner chambers. Move along this corridor until you come to some ladders and the corridor branches, one branch going straight ahead and the other going upward. Look behind the ladders to find a grate, which when swung back will reveal a note from Gil with an important message. Then take the upper passage to the King’s Chamber, where you will see nothing but an uncovered empty sarcophagus. Return back to the ladders and move through the straight ahead passage to the Queen’s Chamber.

Queen’s Chamber

In this chamber there is a table on which is some electronic equipment, and to the right are the equipment carrying cases. On the table with the equipment is a journal kept by an unnamed member of Gil’s expedition team. The sporadic entries cover several months, and while reading it is somewhat difficult, you really should take the time to do so. The robot used to explore the shaft (this device is called a cheoptronic in the journal) is on the carrying cases, and the opening of the square shaft down which it is to go is in the wall next to the electronics. The shallow niche mentioned in the journal is in the wall to the left of the square shaft opening.

Pick up the robot unit and place it in the shaft opening, then get a closeup of the electronics, which has three units: a power supply at the top, a control unit with monitor below it, and a data unit at the bottom. Press the switches to turn the three units on. Press the Library 1 switch on the right side of the control unit and you will get the robotic view of the shaft. Systematically press all 24 switches on the data unit. Switch #2 gives operating instructions for the control unit to run the robot, several switches produce remarks from previous runs, and many yield blank displays.

You will may well find the operation of the robot to be none too easy, not to say frustrating. In theory you move the unit forward or backward by grasping the rightmost of the two switches on the control unit and dragging it up or down, and the leftmost switch to jog it loose when it gets stuck on rubble encountered on the shaft floor. Most of the time it rolls right over these pebbles, but occasionally it does get stuck, particularly at the beginning of the shaft journey. This is a very long shaft and takes a while to traverse; you just have to keep at it. You can judge your progress by watching the signal strength level as it appears on the data unit panel. It starts at 99 and you will be near the end when it reads 71. Also, when you near the end of the shaft, the character of the wall changes. (A program glitch may result in the meter resetting; if so, just keep trying. Should you experience a lot of trouble you may wish to save your game periodically as you move forward.)

When you get to the door at the shaft’s end, you will be asked to enter the 4-digit code that you got from Gil’s note that was behind the grate in the passage by the ladders. Use the data unit’s keys for this code entry, and the robot’s hydraulics then push the door back; the scene shifts to the shallow niche in the Queen’s Chamber, where the back recedes and it is no longer shallow. Exploring this now deep niche you will find an opening near the floor at the back, but do not enter as you do not have all that you need at this time.

As it happens, there have been other wall movements. Return the King’s Chamber.

King’s Chamber

A stone block behind the sarcophagus has moved inward slightly. Click on it to push it farther in and follow the passage to the real tomb of Cheops. Gold everywhere. Under the foot of the structure on which the king’s mummy is resting is another passageway that leads to the King’s Gallery, a series of several chambers in which there is much to see and

do. When you emerge from this tunnel into the Gallery you will be facing a cobra lamp. Turn left and go along the Gallery, around the corner to an open archway. Above the arch is the representation of a chair, or more likely a throne. Enter.

Throne Chamber

The room you find is rather messy. Your cursor will lead you to a squat vessel in one corner from which you can remove the cover and pick up an object the inventory calls the Heraldic Key. In another corner is a golden disk on which is formed a maze. Chances are that this is important. Or not.

There is another room off this one. Go in there and see the throne that gives the chamber its name. Ever wanted to sit on a throne? Click on this one do so. Your weight on the throne moves a statue in a corner. Enter yet another room behind the statue. In the middle of the floor is a strange appearing device that the inventory says is the Royal Scope. Spotlighted on the wall is an icon, a rectangle with six spikes protruding upward. For want of a better appellation, call it a comb. From the way it is displayed, it must very important. Go back through the rooms to the Gallery, and on to the next open archway.

Knife Chamber

Over this arch is an image of a knife or dagger. Enter the chamber and go to the top of the steps in the room. Remove the cover of the chest and get a golden dagger. Come back down the steps and examine the vase on the right.

(You can rotate it.) On the bottom is an impression of a tower, and on the side a grid that resembles nothing so much as a star chart. On the other side of the steps is a box in which you will find the Yacht Scroll. You might wish to pick up a couple arrows from the vase next to the box. Go back to the Gallery and on to the next open archway.

Hat Chamber

Over this arch is an image of a hat, a dunce cap with a brim. When you enter this chamber you will be looking at a mannequin of a flute player on the other side of the room. Look to the left, where at the foot of a column you will find another vase on which is a star chart, and on the bottom of this one is a rectangle with a dome and two rods like antennas. To the right of this vase is some sort of game board; get a closeup of this board and click on one of the yellow bars protruding from it. A drawer will slide out and you can acquire the Flax Wick Key.

Move around the room looking at the base of the walls. You will find one more star chart vase, this one with a cross within a circle on the bottom. Next to it is a vase containing the Throne Scroll. Elsewhere you will find a long straight horn that is the Royal Trumpet. In a pot next to the trumpet is the Flautist Scroll. Perhaps this one is immediately significant, considering the presence of the flute playing mannequin. When you are behind the this mannequin, note the pipe that runs up his back. Attached to this pipe is a cylinder from which is hanging a plug on a chain. Click on the plug to put it into the cylinder to close an opening in the pipe.

On opposite sides of the room are bulging wall panels that show an animal headed figure blowing a trumped that is on a stand like the one in front of the mannequin. You can do that. Put the Royal Trumpet in the stand where it points to one of the panels. Click on the trumpet, and when it sounds the panel shatters. Reverse the trumpet. Click on it and the other panel shatters. In one of the new openings are some vases with cobras in them. Best to leave cobras alone. Behind the other shattered panel is what looks to be an athletic punching bag hanging from a pipe like that on the mannequin...Aha! On the Flautist Scroll there are eight of these bags depicted, so click on the bag eight times, forcing air into the pipe. Faintly the sound of a flute is heard. Now go to the room where you saw the cobras to find that they are no longer there, so you can go in and get the Hathor Tablet that is on the far wall. This tablet is one of the six on the Translation Scroll. "Tabulations", to use Gil’s terminology when reading the scroll.

Go back out to the Gallery and proceed to the right around the corner and on to where there is an archway with a door in it. You can come back to this door later when you have more information. Continue along the Gallery around the corner to an open archway with an arrow above it.

Arrow Chamber

When you enter this room you should as usual look around. You will find two more star chart vases, on the bottom of one a set of three wavy lines and on the other a rectangle with eight lines projecting from one side and a long and short line from the opposite side. Lift the lid of a basket to get the Reed Leaf Key.

In this room are six pillars, each one with a set of doors tied shut. Go to each pillar and use the Golden Dagger to cut the cords holding the doors together. If you can open the doors after you cut the cord, you need not go to any of the other pillars. When the pillar doors open, enter it and climb the rope. At the top cross the rope and bone bridge to a room in which there is a firepit and a crossbow mounted on a turntable. The latter is pointed at a bone ladder and two statues at the far side of a pit, and it is your task to shoot a fiery arrow at the two statues, igniting cords biding their wrists to free them. There is one arrow already lit on the firepot and another one to the side; there is also a broken one that is unusable.

Save your game here, so that if you miss and use up the two arrows you can restore the game and try again. Or perhaps you have a couple arrows from the Knife Chamber in inventory. Put the flaming arrow in the crossbow and aim it by dragging the turntable; when you release the mouse button you also release the arrow. Get the other arrow, ignite it by passing it over the firepot, and shoot again. When you free the wrists on both statues you also free a covering that comes rolling across the pit. Cross to the bone ladder, climb it, and approach the two almost identical Anubis Tablets. One is deadly and will end your game if you choose it. Check the Translation Scroll to see the one you must not choose.

Go back down the bone ladder and cross the pit to the base of the crossbow support pillar where you can pick up the Archway Scroll. Find your way back to the Arrow Chamber and out to the Gallery, then proceed to the right to the next open archway over which is an image that could conceivably be that of a boat.

Ship Chamber

The first thing you see when you enter the Ship Chamber is a model of an Egyptian boat on a display pedestal in the center of the room. It has four columns on each side, one of which has fallen. Go around and view the model from the back so that you can readily see the arrangement of the steps; note these and the wheel at the rear. The ship may be moved slightly by dragging it with the cursor.

Inside a small covered box you can get the Sacred Amulet and the Charmer Scroll, which shows a lady holding this very same amulet in front of a cobra. There is a standing chest in the corner of the room from which you may get the Pillar Key. Return to the Gallery and to the last of the open archways. Over this one is the image of a vase.

Vase Chamber

On the far side of the room as you enter is a table on which is a pot with a bright golden cover; move the cover aside and get the Ahnk Key. Looking around you will find three more star chart vases. On the bottom of these are a circle with lines across it, a circle with a smaller one centered in it, and one with the six-toothed comb that you saw in the last room of the King’s Chamber. Considering the prominence given to this icon, it would be a good idea to make a copy of the star chart on this vase.

Since there are no more open archways in the gallery, return to the one with the pivoting door. Over this archway is a figure that strangely resembles a parabolic reflector with three energy rays.

Astronomy Chambers

Click on the door for it to pivot open. When you go through you encounter a series of many stairways leading upward. This really is a long climb. On the way up you will see in the wall on the right a skinny Egyptian star with a handle behind it and a star opening in the wall below it. The handle wants to move if you click on it, but it is restrained. Continue upward to the room at the top of the stairs, where there are two Horus statues on either side of a grate. Notice that the holes in the grate are star shaped and are on a 10x9 grid, the same as the star fields on the several star chart vases.

To the right is a vase of stars on which are the several icons that were found on the bottoms of the star chart vases. Keep selecting stars from the vase until you get one with a comb icon, then put this in the grate where a star should be according to the star chart. Do this for all nine stars on the chart. Having done this correctly, the stars fall away, the grate recedes to form a stairway, and the golden Star Scepter pops out of the wall into the waiting arms of a Horus statue. Get it.

It is dark in the room at the top of the newly formed stairs. Return down the entrance stairway to the star in the wall with the handle behind it. Insert the Star Scepter in the star shaped hole, then click on the handle, which now rotates and the star becomes a sun. Go back up the stairs to find the dark room is now lit. Immediately in front of you as you get to the top of the stairs is a handle in the floor; get behind this handle and click on it to move it from right to left to move the stairs and reveal another one. Go down these stairs to get the Astro Scroll. Return to the top and move the lever to its original position. In a corner are two more tablets, one of them next to a skeleton with a note in its lap stating that the curse is real. That is a fair enough warning not to take that tablet. Take the other one and you have a Thoth Tablet for your tabulation collection.

Following now is an optional operation, inasmuch as it does not seem to have any application to finding the sphinx riddle. It might be of interest to amateur astronomers.

The walls here are sloping, with an opening in all four, below which are identical pedestals and above which are the heads of different Egyptian gods. Get the King’s Scope from inventory and put it on one of the pedestals. Look through it and you see cloudless blue Egyptian sky. Well, it’s daytime. You have been moving around the bed in the center of the room, now get on it and sleep until night falls, as it did in Gil’s Sphinx area tent. Get up during the night and you can see different star constellations through each of the windows as you move the scope from pedestal to pedestal. It would be nice if you could note these in some way. Get back on the bed and return to sleep, and when you arise in the morning leave this room.

Go down the stairs to the Gallery. As you leave the pivoting door you will see an opening ahead at the base of the wall. Go through that.

Sobek’s Chamber

In this room is another boat model, much larger than the one in the Ship Chamber, and instead of columns on the side, there three crocodile god Sobek statues on each side. Getting closeups of these statues reveals that they have different color eyes. Front to back on the left the colors are white, green, white, and on the right pink (red), blue, green.

All of the areas behind the King’s Chamber have been explored, so now return to the Queen’s Chamber.

Queen’s Chamber

Go to the niche where the back wall receded and go through the opening in the base of the wall to the right.



When you emerge from the tunnel you will have before you a large stone block in which an illumination fire is burning. Continue to the left of this block and you will pass through a doorway over which there is a circular maze image and you will come to the statue of a pharaoh holding a large lollipop. Take the lollipop, turn around, and go to the doorway, on the right side of which is a fod into which you can insert the lollipop handle; pull it down and chains will slowly raise a stone slab almost to the top of the doorway, closing you in this small room. Lift the lollipop and the stone goes back down. There doesn’t seem to be much point to this room, no reason to shut yourself into it. Go back out to the stone with the fire.

Proceed along the passage to the right of the burning block, past a statue of a seated pharaoh, then past two statues of seated pharaohs, all the way to the end of the corridor where it is blocked by a very black door, again with a circular maze image over it. Turn around and start to go back. On the right is a doorway over which is the maze image and which is blocked by a stone slab held by chains just as when you raised the slab at the lollipop room. This should set you thinking. Return to the lollipop room. Go inside and throw the lollipop switch, then quickly step back out through the doorway before the slowly moving slab can go up. Return once more to end of the passageway to find that the slab on the door has now gone down.

Enter the room. There you will find a wheel with a snake wrapped around it and attached to a shaft. In inventory it is called a Cobra Wheel. As you turn to leave, on a stone above and to the left you will see a drawing. Examination shows it to be a rather simple maze, though in fact it is not quite so simple when you have to refer to it later. Leave this room and go back up the passageway to the two seated pharaoh statues, who are facing an open doorway. Go through this doorway almost to the end, then go right between a pair of large fluted pillars and down some steep steps. Turn left and go along a hallway and into a really immense room.

Harp Chamber

At the far side of the room a golden snake is coiled around a large pillar. Go up the ramp at the snake’s tail, then follow the terrace to the right until you come to a building with a conical roof with a scarab on it. Inside is a small golden harp on a pedestal. Click on the harp, it will rotate noisily, then wait a bit while you hear discordant harp notes. Return to the snake.

Walk upward along the snake a long way, then up a ladder to a area in which are five harpist mannequins. Get closeups of the bottoms of each of the harps and you will find that on each one a different string tensioning key is missing. You should have gathered five keys while touring the King’s Gallery, so now proceed to place one in each harp. When you have completed doing this, go back down the snake; as you move down look around this large room to observe the outstanding graphics. At the bottom go again to the building with the harp on the pedestal. Click again on the harp and once more it rotates noisily, after which the notes you hear are no longer discordant. The harp pops off the pedestal and falls to the floor. Pick it up and you will find you have a Gold Harp Key. Return to the two seated pharaoh statues.

Rotating Maze

Go left down the passageway toward the blocked end. Just before you get to it there is a pink and yellow stone next to the illuminating fire. Though there is nothing to indicate that you should do this, click the Cobra Wheel on this stone, and the wheel then becomes affixed to the stone. Now click once on the Cobra Wheel to turn it, and with much rumbling the very black door swings aside to be replaced by an open passage. This is the entrance to the maze that you saw depicted on the stone near the ceiling of the adjacent room. Examination of the maze diagram will show that the two outer circles are very close together; the diagram can not indicate this, but the disk formed by inner one of these two represents a turntable, and you have just rotated the real one when you rotated the cobra wheel. The entrance that is now before you is at the bottom of the diagram, which also shows an exit opposite at the top, and another a little to the right of the bottom entrance. The diagram as shown does not represent the rotating maze position that now exists. Right now the turntable has stopped so that you may enter and go around to the right and exit at the top. Do that.

Go forward until you are in VR mode at the near end of a long room with many gold columns and a long pit in the center. (This VR mode point is sort of a position reference within this room.)

For a pointless exercise, turn left and move toward the wall where the program turns you right and you can go forward to an ornate table. Click on the table top to have the door open to show an arrangement whereby if you drag a knob at the edge of a sun it changes to a star and a block moves to reveal a hand drawn star underneath. That’s about it, so go back to the entrance VR mode.

Go down the length of the other side of the room to where two statues are holding a rather large metal container, funnel shaped at the bottom and ending in a lever. Get close and you will see a cuspidor on the floor below. Click on the lever and sand runs into the cuspidor. (It’s really not a cuspidor, but that is what it resembles.)

Return to the VR mode reference at your entry and go to the central pit. At the bottom of a set of stairs you can see a large yellow figured dome. At the head of the stairs is a pillar that looks like the one from which the Gold Harp Key popped off. Click the Harp Key on the pillar and it becomes affixed and rotates as noisily as before, whereupon the dome opens like a flower, and four statues holding a palanquin rise from it. There is an empty basket in front of the palanquin. You can sit in the palanquin, but again that’s about it. Return through the maze to the Cobra Wheel.

Click on the Cobra Wheel. It turns and so does the maze turntable, which results in its being in the position shown in the ceiling maze diagram. Examining the diagram reveals that it now has nothing but dead ends. You may enter and verify this, but that is rather pointless. Click on the Cobra Wheel again to rotate the maze so that you may go through it to the other exit, the one just to the right of the entrance, which you should now do. This leads through a short passage to an underground room. Before you on a pedestal is a dipper, which inventory calls a Sacred Cull(?).On the floor in a corner in a fetal position is a skeleton from which you can pick up the Flume Scroll. Return through the maze to the Cobra Wheel.

Click on the Cobra Wheel to rotate the maze yet again. It has reversed itself from the first position so that you can now again go through to the palanquin room, you just go around in the oppositely curving walk as you do it. Go to the sand dispenser, put the Sacred Cull on the cuspidor, and click on the lever to get a cullful of sand. Take the sand down in the pit and empty it in the basket in front of the palanquin. Do this a tedious five more times. (The warp speed function can help here.) After the sixth cullful the program places you on the palanquin and you ride down a very deep shaft. When you finally stop, move forward through a pivoting door to a cavern in which there is a mosaic cobra. The cobra is coiled around an opening covered by a locked grate.


You are at the beginning of another maze. It is diagrammed by the images over the doors in the passageway where you used the Cobra Wheel and on the golden disk found in the Throne Chamber of the King’s Gallery, but none of these diagrams are in good enough condition to provide the detail needed to guide yourself through. It is not so complicated a maze that you cannot make it through by trial and error. In the maze are several images of several gods to serve as reference points. However, here is a detailed set of steps to get you through to the Sacred Pool:

  1. From the cobra go either left or right until Anubis (Jackal God) appears through opening in the inner wall.
  2. Approach Anubis.
  3. Go right, passing Hathor (Horned Cow God) on the left, until Anubis again appears through an opening in the inner wall on the left.
  4. Approach Anubis.
  5. Go right. Keep going as the passage jogs and you get turned around. Continue moving forward, now curving to the right, until Horus (Falcon God) appears on the right. Turn toward Horus to face him head on.
  6. Approach Horus.
  7. Pass Horus on the right and move until you face Anubis head on.
  8. Approach Anubis. View turns left facing wall.
  9. Turn right to face Anubis again.
  10. Click on Anubis. You can now see the Hippopotamus God past Anubis.
  11. Move forward toward Hippopotamus God and down passage past him to Anubis.
  12. Click on Anubis, then go past him on his right.
  13. Continue along passage, passing Horus on the right.
  14. The next opening in the wall on the left will be to the Sacred Pool. The opening just beyond on the right is to a six column valve apparatus as is seen on the Flume Scroll.
Examining the Flume Scroll and this valve apparatus will introduce a new set of six icons appearing at the top of the columns on both. Below each of the columns on the scroll are an associated set of six larger symbols representing ancient cultures, real and mythical. Left to right these are: Mayan, Bermuda Triangle, Atlantis, Giza, Stonehenge, and Easter Island. Also on the scroll, note the five disks in the red area inside the columns.

Now turn your attention to the valve apparatus and perceive what happens when you click and hold the top control on any of the valve apparatus columns. Observe that after a brief pause the dark red area rises from the bottom and gets smaller, leaving a pink area behind. A column of five balls is revealed which also rise as long as you hold the control. The reverse occurs when you click and hold the bottom control. Go to the Sacred Pool.

Sacred Pool

Around the pool are six statues of Anubis. Go to one of them and click on it, and it will roll back in its enclosure. Get a closeup of the revealed base, where you will see a round cover, to the right of which are five small black disks in a background of red and white that you will find varies as you move from statue to statue. The cover shows an icon that is also seen at the top of one of the columns on the Flume Scroll and also on the valve apparatus. You must note the number of small disks in the red area that is associated with each icon. Click on the cover and it will turn and rise. Go to all six Anubis statues and raise the covers, and when you have done this to the sixth one you will hear the water draining from the pool.

Go to the room where the valve apparatus is located. In each column use the upper and lower controls to move the balls so that they are divided between the white and pink halves as are the black circles at the base of the Anubis statues divided between the red and white sections,
matching the icon on the Anubis cover with that on the top of the valve columns. Back to the pool.

The ladder down to the bottom of the empty pool is between the two animal horns or tusks at the pool edge. Climb down to the bottom, go to the center of the pool and look around. Opposite the ladder that you just came down is a shorter one below a fairly large hole in the pool wall, and around the wall are six grates with disks above each that show the six by now familiar new icons. Go to these in turn and click on the disks and the grates will open, provided you have properly set the disks in the valve apparatus columns. Behind each grate is a very long passage leading to an ornate room in which are unwrapped mummified bodies. VR mode lets you look around these rooms if you wish, but what you need to find in each case is a chest flanked by two kneeling gods. Click on the chest cover and it moves aside so that you can get a shiny golden object that looks like a torch, but inventory calls it a key, after which you can leave the room. When you leave each of the six rooms, as you get between the railings at the head of the entry stairs, find the warp speed cursor that will take you directly to the pool.

When you have gathered six keys, those for Easter Island, Bermuda, Giza, Stonehenge, Atlantis, and Mayan Pyramid, you have completed your mission for this area and it is time to head back. To avoid the maze, go to the hole halfway up the wall of the pool, enter it and follow the tunnel to a ladder, at the top of which is a grate locked in place by a pin. Click on the pin to open the grate and climb out next to the mosaic cobra. Go back to the palanquin and click on the rod supporting the basket. The basket empties and the program again puts you in the palanquin for the long ride up to the room at the top. Leave the palanquin and go through the rotating maze, past the Cobra Wheel, past the two seated pharaohs, to the single seated pharaoh. Click on this statue and it slides aside to reveal an entrance to a sand covered passageway that in turn takes you to a ladder in a vertical passageway. Go down the ladder and you will enter a large chamber in which is a pharaoh’s funerary ship, the model of which and its surroundings you saw in the King’s Gallery Ship Chamber.

Funerary Boat Chamber

Go down the stairs to the floor of the chamber, where you will be at the stern of the ship. Go along either side of the boat toward the front. There is an alcove between the two ropes running along the floor. Enter this alcove, where there is a vase in a corner. Knock it over and when it breaks you can get the Vase Bolt. While in the alcove, look at the figure of Sobek, the crocodile god, in the stone arch and observe that several of the arch stones are depressed.

Compare this figure with the Archway Scroll and note the numbers of the depressed stones. When you come back out of the alcove, go back along the side of the ship to your right to the stairs you came down.

Crocodile Cavern

In the far corner under the stairs you will see some cobwebs. Go through the cobwebs and you will find a stone arch in which is a statue of the crocodile god. Again referring to the Archway Scroll, click in numerical sequence on the stones that you have noted as having been depressed in the alcove arch. The statue will rotate and you must quickly hop onto the turning base to get through.

Proceed along this rough cave until you come to a stream with three crocodiles swimming back and forth in it. To get across, step on one of them (the middle one is fastest), and keep going until you get to a bone pile in which there are a pair of tablets. Consult the Translation Scroll to determine which of the two is deadly, then choose the other, and you will have a Sobek Tablet for your tabulation collection. Return to the Funerary Ship Chamber.

Funerary Boat Chamber

You will have noted that each of the pillars on the sides of the rooms have rungs on them. When you climb these pillars you will see Sobek heads with colored eyes, and by dragging the levers you can rotate the tops of the pillars to change eye colors. Sobek’s Chamber in the King’s Gallery in which there was a ship model had Sobek statues with different eye colors, so your assignment is to set these on the columns in the same pattern. Sobek’s Chamber had three statues on a side, here there are four columns on a side. Refer to the Yacht Scroll and you will see that six of the eight columns have Sobek silhouettes on them, these are the ones to use in setting the eye colors.

When you have this task done, go up the steps at the bow end of the chamber to the wheel at the top and get a closeup of the hub on the right. There is a hole where you can insert the Vase Bolt to lock the wheel hub to the axle. Then click on the wheel, twice if you need to, to draw the ship toward you, just as happens with the Ship Chamber model. Now when you go to the stern of the ship you will see that a hole in the floor has been uncovered. Down you go.

Watery Passages

At the bottom of the steps is another rough cavern that leads to a pool. Once more, down you go. When you dive into the pool, go down two strokes, then go right to an underwater opening and keep going until you surface, where you find that there are only two openings in the cavern wall that surrounds you. The one to the left leads to a dead end, so take the one to the right. Move along this cavern about 13 clicks until you change to VR mode. You now have ahead of you three choices to proceed. Save your game here should you wish to make a new start. The cavern on the left leads to the Cobra Shrine, the one in the center leads to the Temple of Ra, and the one on the right is the River of Death. The latter leads to items and information you will need, so go that way.

River of Death

After a lengthy swim, or watery walk, you will come to a bank that you cannot climb, but if you move the cursor to the left where it becomes the bent finger reverse and then click, there appears a bank that you can get up, and which leads to a triangular shaped cave. Enter, take a deep breath and hold it, for you must swim under water for several clicks until you come to a ladder and can climb out.

VR mode lets you look around. You are in a cave with a hole in the roof and a wall with several hand- and footholds. A short distance away is a briefcase; go to it. Next to it is a pickax for you to pick up. Inside the briefcase is a journal kept by another if Gil’s colleagues. Read it, for it is very informative. Gil was correct when he told you on his introductory tape that he thought he was overheard. This fellow evidently went through the King’s Gallery where he found and left the Sacred Amulet and the Charmer Scroll, since he describes them and indicates how to use the amulet. Another thing—-he writes of wading these rivers rather than swimming. And now you have yet another name for the tablets: Tabulator. Look around and you will find his remains and the tablet with which he was working, according to his journal; it is quite obvious that you should find the other one about which he has written. The cursor leads you to the wall with the handholds; climb it and get Horus’ Tablet. Climb back down and return through the underwater cave and the River of Death to where the three river caverns join.

Cobra Shrine

Traverse the leftmost of the three river caverns until your way is blocked by a white wall covered by hieroglyphics and with a hole in the center. This clearly must be what Gil’s now dead colleague wrote about, and the hole he made. Use the pickax twice on the hole and much of the wall falls away. A cobra rises ready to attack. Quickly go to inventory, get the Sacred Amulet, and click it on the cobra, which then sinks away. Enter the shrine and go up to the large cobra statue, then turn and face outward. Very carefully search in the shadows to the left of the railing and you will find another pair of tablets (the cursor does not change). Refer once more to the Translation Scroll to determine which of the two not to choose. Inventory does not identify this tablet, but from the notes of Gil’s late colleague that you just read it must be the Meretsinger Tablet. You now have the six tableture clues about which Gil spoke when reading the Translation Scroll. Return to where the three river caverns join.

The Temple of Ra

Proceed through the center of the three river caverns, and after much wading the temple appears on the other side of an entrance pool. You have to go through this pool right up to where you are stopped by a wall, then go either left or right up a ramp to VR mode. Double back so that you can go through the big arch, where in the distance across a lake you can see four very large seated statues carved from a lakeshore cliff. These statues bear a curious resemblance to the four statues of Ramses II by the Nile at Abu Simbel, even to the fallen head from one of them. In order to get to them, clearly you will have to go around the lake, so turn left and start walking.

After a while you will come to a stone arch behind which is a walkway leading to another arch and eventually to a very yellow pyramid. Moving the cursor over the window in the door of this building brings up several different icons, and if you click on them they become fixed. You can walk around this pyramid and on three sides there are toeholds so that you can climb to the top. If you do this, you can see large raised rotatable disks covered with hieroglyphics, and above them are cobras on different colored spheres. However, there is no way to get past this pyramid and continue along the lake shore to the statues. Going left from the temple was the wrong choice, so head back. After you leave the steps down from the yellow pyramid, examine the bases of the trees as you go back, because in the sand at one of them you will find a sphere that the inventory calls a Scarab Weight.

When you get back to the Temple of Ra continue straight ahead to go around the lake in the other direction. After about a dozen clicks you will have passed several groups of trees and will be in VR mode next to a small temple arch in the water to your left. Cross the stones to reach this structure and go up to the top, where you will find three umbrella shaped orange objects on a stone scarab. Click on each of them

and the shuttered tops fold aside to show flattened hemispheres of different colors. Note these colors. Return back down from the arch and continue your walk around the lake. As you pass in the shadow of the pointed rock ahead, watch for and pick up another Scarab Weight in the sand on the right.

Cliff Statues

Eventually you will reach the statues, where there will be a ramp leading up to them from the shore. Go past this ramp to other side of the fallen statue head, then turn back and go to the head’s ear, from which you can pluck another Scarab Weight. Return to the ramp that you passed and go up it into the alcove where you will find Ra’s Scroll in the sand. Scrutinize this scroll.

Come back out of the alcove and go left on the terrace until you come to some steps on the left leading upward between the legs of one of the statues. Go up the steps and keep ascending, using steps and handholds, until you get to the top of the statue, looking out across the lake to the Temple of Ra. Look down to see three circles with icons in them. Copy the icons. If you studied Ra’s Scroll, you will recognize them on it, though they are reversed and appear as mirror images. Go back down to the lakeshore and then back around the lake to the temple.

The Temple of Ra

Go through the arch to VR mode at the entrance pool, then go all the way along the right side of the pool. Turn right to see a statue with colored geometric markings on its torso and left leg. As usual, make a note of these markings.

  • Note: There are three symbols on the statue’s leg. You can’t see the lowest one when close to the statue, but you can see it when you are one click back from it...Also, one of the colors of the torso markings may appear to be orange, but it is in fact meant to be red. This true for the other statues that you will encounter.
  • Go back around the pool and all the way down the left side of it; the program turns you left to see an entrance in the wall. Go through this entrance, then just keep clicking as the program takes you along passageways, up steps, out to and across a temple escarpment, into a tower, through more passageways, up more steps, into a long narrow room with a pair of windows on each side. Turn around to see most of another statue with colored symbols on its torso and leg for you to note.

    Turn around and go down the steps at the far end of the room. This brings you out into an open area and into VR mode. Go left and look down, where you can see the entrance pool. Turn around and you will see suspended by chains a disk like those on the sides of the yellow pyramid. Continue on through the doorway and up the steps into another long narrow room and that has at the far end one more statue with torso and leg markings to note.

    Proceed down the steps under the statue and you will come upon what might best be called a Blue Balance. There are three rods on this device, each with a Scarab Weight on one end; you must add the Scarab Weights that you have collected to the other ends in order to balance the rods. Now recall the geometric markings that you have seen on the three statues: set the top ball of the balance so that the geometric and color code coincides with that statue in which the black circle on the leg is on top. Then taking into account the position of the black leg circles, do the same operation for the other two balls on the balance, and if done correctly the chains in back will move with much rumbling. Return to the open area where you could see the entrance pool. Looking closely at it now, you will see four icon patterns that you should note, and perhaps recognize from your earlier visit to the yellow pyramid. That is where you should now go.

    Yellow Pyramid

    Go up to the door of the pyramid and set the icon patterns on the window to match the ones on the entrance pool. When you do this, the door will fall inward. Go inside and look around. It appears that that is all you can do, so go back outside and consider the only other adjustment possibility that you have previously found that you could make: the three disks on the pyramid sides...Now you have a matching exercise to do. Recall the colors, left to right, of the shuttered hemispheres on top of the scarab arch at the end of the lake. Recall also, left to right, the icons in the circles on the top of the giant statue. Look at Ra’s Scroll and locate these icons, even though they are reversed, in the two columns on the left, then pick out the corresponding glyphs in the two columns on the right. You can now associate a glyph with a color.

    The cobras that are on three sides of the pyramid near the top are resting on spheres of the three different colors. The glyphs are on the moveable disks below the cobras, so rotate the disks to match the glyph with the color. There is, however, a rather subtle catch to this operation. As has been remarked, the icons on Ra’s scroll are reversed from those in the statue circles, and therefore you need to set under the cobra the glyph on the disk that is opposite your chosen one. This is not very difficult to figure out, and as you climb back down you can see the bottom edge of the disk and you can tell if you did it right. When you have set the three correctly you will hear a couple of sharp cracks.

    Reenter the pyramid. The formerly smooth slanting areas on each side of the three pharaoh statues now have tablet shaped depressions in them. Proceed to put the six tablets that you have collected into the depressions; when the god glyph on the chosen tablet matches the one on the column above, a scroll pops out of the hole in the hemisphere, and you will soon have the Giza Complex, Bermuda, Stonehenge, Easter Island, Mayan Pyramid, and Atlantian Scrolls, each with an Atlantean script icon matching those on the hexagon in the Sacred Scroll, and therefore you can associate the six keys that you got from the crypts around the Sacred Pool with each of the red circles on the Sacred Scroll hexagon.

    You are finished with your mission at the Temple of Ra. Find your way back through the waterways to the Funerary Boat Chamber and to the Queen’s Chamber. The warp arrow should help.



    Go to the Great Pyramid entrance, where the generator has been running all this time on a gallon of gasoline (turn it off if you wish), and get in the helicopter. Fly to the sphinx site and go to the tunnel entrance in the side of the sphinx body. Enter and approach the blue hexagonal portal. Referring now to the Sacred Scroll and the identified red circles, put the keys in the yellow receptacles by the circles.

    With all six keys in their proper places, the portal rolls aside and you can see a golden winged box, but as you move toward it a star viewer drops down in front of you. (Save your game here.) There are six lenses in this unit, and placing the cursor (not clicking) on each results in a different star field appearing. You must select from these the one that matches one of the two you found in Gil’s desk at the beginning of the game, then click on that lens. If you have read the accompanying articles on the pyramid builders you will have noted their strong interest in the Orion constellation. Choosing a wrong lens brings the familiar death’s head, choosing the correct one allows you to move to the box, which turns out to be the Ark of the Covenant, and brings up the culmination of the game. It is hoped that you will be able to understand what is said in the long concluding lecture.


    There are some things that you encounter in this game that simply must be accepted, though one wonders about them. A universal one that is standard with almost all Adventure games is the inventory: where do you keep these items and how do you carry them with you? After a number of games one does not think about this oddity any more. A few others:



    The chronology listed here is that shown in the game introduction.

    10,500 B.C.

    As the last ice age ends, a riddle begins. Heavy rains pour down on the lush Sahara region, creating ideal conditions for a new civilization.

    circa 2,500 B.C.

    The Great Pyramid is built for Pharaoh Cheops (Khufu). Over 2,300,000 stones used, weighing over 6.5 million tons… The last of the "Seven Wonders of the Ancient World". The Great Sphinx is fashioned in the likeness of Chepren (Khafre). Like his father Cheops, he builds an equally impressive pyramid, guarded by the "Father of Terror", the Great Sphinx.

    circa 820 A.D.

    Treasure seeking Caliph Al Mamoun burrows into the great pyramid. The secret entrance is still hidden forcing him into dig through stones. Eventually breaking through the wall of a secret passageway.

    1940 A.D.

    Psychic Edgar Cayce predicts a chamber under the Sphinx paws. Cayce also claims the Hall of Records is near the Sphinx… All of which he predicts will happen at the end of the 20th century.

    1986 A.D.

    French architects drill holes into west wall of the Queen’s chamber… The test reveals a large cavity filled with unusually fine sand… Their work is suspended.

    1987 A.D.

    Secret passage is discovered in Sphinx... Only a 20th century newspaper and shoes are found.

    1988 A.D.

    Professor Yoshimura discovers new chamber in Great Pyramid. Shortly after, the Egyptians terminate Yoshimura’s work.

    1991 A.D.

    Seismology reveals chambers and tunnels under the Sphinx… Geologist Dr. Schoch finds Sphinx is rain eroded and much older. Just as these discoveries mount, West’s work is terminated.

    March 22, 1993 A.D.

    Rudolph Gantenbrink discovers secret "door" in Great Pyramid. Using robot "Upuaut II", the door is found 200 feet up an airshaft. He is banned from opening the door and continuing his work.

    2001 A.D.

    The Great Pyramid is intermittently closed and access is limited. The Sphinx and enclosure are off limits - rapidly deteriorating. No further work has been permitted with any of the discoveries.


    Violent sandstorms have once again concealed most of the Sphinx. Geoffreys discovers new hidden chambers within Great Pyramid and a newly revealed tunnel leading into and under Sphinx. Pyramidologist flock to touch pyramid walls and meditate… UFOlogists are linked via satellite transmissions, awaiting the return. Pagan rituals can be seen on the outskirts of the desert at night and religious groups are claiming it prophetical…

    It is time.

    Internet Information

    There are a plethora of articles on the sphinx and the pyramids on the Internet. Excerpts from a few of these have been selected as being of interest to a person playing Riddle of the Sphinx.
    The Sphinx is the first large, royal statue known in ancient Egypt and is one of the world's most significant monuments. A colossal 240 feet long and 66 feet high, it lies in the old kingdom quarry, carved from a core of solid bedrock and completed with masonry.

    It represents a couchant lion with the head of a king, wearing a false beard and the traditional Nemes head-dress. The image represented by the Sphinx is generally accepted as Chephren, son of King Cheops, builder of the Great Pyramids at Giza. Most scholars believe that it dates back to about 2500BC, the time of the Fourth Dynasty.

    The giant statue represents Chephren as Horus presenting offerings to Ra, the sun god, in the temple courtyard of the Sphinx. Although in common usage, Sphinx is a Greek word, and was not originally used as a name for the statue. In the New Kingdom, around 1550BC, it was known as Hor-em-akht, 'Horus in the Horizon' or Bw-Hol, 'Place of Horus'.

    There can be no doubt that the Sphinx once had a beard. Pieces of it were found between the Sphinx's paws by the archaeologist Caviglia in 1816, but these fragments represented only about 15% of the original beard. Graphic reconstructions were attempted, but the work proved difficult with so little of the beard available as a basis. Egyptologists also had difficulty in dating the beard to the Old or New Kingdom, and attempts at restoration were abandoned, particularly as the beardless Sphinx was already famous worldwide. Caviglia therefore donated some of the fragments to the Cairo Museum; others can now be seen in the British Museum in London.

    Enigmas and stories connected with the Sphinx are numerous. One such apocryphal tale has it that a record of the lost city of Atlantis lies somewhere under the Sphinx's paws, while others believe in the story of a huge temple beneath the Sphinx itself. Both of these are -- sadly -- untrue.

    During the past two centuries many have come to study and excavate the monument. These include French scholars accompanying Napoleon's army in 1798, Caviglia in 1816, H. Vyse in 1840, Mariette in 1853, Kamal and Daressy in 1909 and Baraize in 1926. It was Baraize who first began restoration work, by renovating the head using cement, and clearing the sand completely around the Sphinx.

    The most recent period of restoration began in 1953, continuing until the present day. The cement which had been used in earlier attempts at restoration was now found to be causing problems. The statue is mostly constructed of porous limestone, which allows the passage of air. Because cement is non-porous and rigid, changes in the basic proportions of the statue were found to be occurring.

    Another problem is caused by the rising water table, which evaporates, leaving salts behind. These salts react with the limestone, causing it to become powdery and to crumble. Pollution from the nearby city of Cairo, together with heat, wind, sand, and humidity are all agents in the monument's slow process of disintegration.

    The true origin and purpose of the Sphinx remains a mystery, and it is perhaps a puzzle which will never be fully solved. Despite its fundamental enigma, the image of the Sphinx remains in the mind of history as the keystone of ancient Egyptian civilization and a part of its religious beliefs. Thus, the smile on the face of the Sphinx is eternal.

    Information on the Great Pyramid and the Sphinx

    by Graham Hancock

    The "Door" in the Great Pyramid

    In March 1993, a small "door" made of marble or limestone with two copper handles fixed on it was discovered by a mechanized robot (Upuaut II, "The opener of the way" in ancient Egyptian) at the end of a long narrow shaft (8 x 8 inches and 200 feet long). Since then the discoverer, robotics engineer Rudolf Gantenbrink from Munich, has been banned from resuming the exploration and opening the door. The official reason given by the Egyptian Antiquities Authorities (known as the Supreme Council of Antiquities -- SCA) was that Gantenbrink leaked the news of the discovery to the British Press in April 1993 and thus, apparently, broke a "rule" of archaeology. The Director of the German Archaeological Institute in Cairo, Dr. Rainer Stadelmann, sided with the Egyptians and condemned Gantenbrink for his press action. Dr. Stadelmann was adamant about the non-importance of the find. "This is not a door; there is nothing behind it." The President of the Supreme Council for Antiquities, Dr. Muhamad Bakr, went as far as claiming a "hoax". "The orifice of the shaft is too small for the robot to go through," and he accused the "German scientist" of not having the correct "approvals" from the SCA to carry out the exploration. Dr. Bakr fired the Chief Inspector of the Giza Pyramid Plateau, Dr. Zahi Hawass, although the official reason given was that a valuable ancient "statue" under the custody of Hawass was stolen from Giza.

    Three months later, in June 1993, Dr. Bakr himself was fired and replaced by Dr. Nur El Din. Amid accusations of malpractice and fraud, Dr. Bakr spoke of a "mafia" which had been involved with the Pyramids for "the last twenty years." Refusing to give names, Dr. Bakr said, "I wanted the whole matter investigated by the prosecution authorities, but my request was refused."

    Tunnels and Chambers Under the Great Sphinx

    I. In a series of expeditions between 1991 and 1993 led by John Anthony West, an independent Egyptologist, scientific investigators conducted geological and seismic surveys around the Great Sphinx of Egypt. The chief geologist was Dr. Robert Schoch, Professor of Geology at Boston University, and the chief seismologist was Thomas Dobecki, from the highly respected Houston consulting firm, McBride-Ratclif & Associates

    II. The team's conclusions were as follows:
    A. Geology, The pattern of erosion on the Sphinx indicates that it was carved at the end of the last Ice Age, when heavy rains fell on the eastern Sahara -- perhaps more than 12,000 years ago. This contrasts starkly with the "orthodox" Egyptological dating for the Sphinx of around 4,500 years ago.

    B. Seismography. The seismic survey indicated the existence of several unexplored tunnels and cavities in the bedrock beneath the Sphinx, including a large rectangular chamber at a depth of some 25 feet beneath the monuments front paws.

    III. In 1993, John West and his team were physically expelled from the site by Dr. Zahi Hawass then (and now) the Egyptian government's Chief Inspector of Antiquities for the Pyramids and Sphinx. He appeared to be angered by the suggestion that the Sphinx might be far older than the civilization of Egypt itself -- and thus the work of a lost civilization -- and was particularly incensed by an NBC television film that was made about the team's work. This film linked the Sphinx to Atlantis and suggested that the chamber beneath the paws might contain the legendary "Hall of Records" of Atlantis. Hawass called these claims "Amer- ican hallucinations. There is no scientific basis for any of this. We have older monuments in the same area. They definitely weren't built by men from Atlantis. It's nonsense and we won't allow our monuments to be exploited for personal enrichment. The Sphinx is the soul of Egypt."

    IV. An article in the Egyptian press responding to the NBC film quoted Dr. Hawass on his further reasons for expelling John West and his team from the Sphinx enclosure: "I have found that their work is carried out by installing endoscopes in the Sphinx body and shooting film for all phases of the work in a propagandistic but not scientific manner. I therefore suspended the work of this unscientific mission and made a report which was presented to the permanent commission who rejected the mission's work in the future."

    V. The NBC film was produced by a certain Boris Said and partially financed by investments from the members of the Association for Research and Enlightenment. The ARE, headquartered in Virginia Beach in the USA, is a multimillion dollar organization that exists to promulgate the teachings and prophecies of an American psychic, Edgar Cayce, who died in 1947. Prominent amongst Cayce's pronouncements were many statements to the effect that the Sphinx had been built in 10,500 BCE by the survivors of the lost civilization of Atlantis and that the survivors had concealed beneath it a "Hall of Records" containing all the wisdom of their lost civilization and the true history of the human race. Cayce prophesied that this Hall of Records would be rediscovered and opened between 1996 and 1998. He connected the opening to second coming of Christ.

    VI. In 1995, John West and Professor Robert Schoch of Boston University put in an application to the Egyptian authorities to resume their research. Their application was ignored.

    VII. In April 1996, the Egyptian authorities granted a one-year license to a new team to conduct surveys around the Sphinx. This team, which claims academic sponsorship from Florida State University, is largely financed through the Schor Foundation of New York -- by Dr. Joseph Schor, an American multimillionaire. Dr. Schor is a life member of the ARE and wrote on 24th May 1994 of his great personal interest in corroborating "the Cayce records which indicated that the culture which led to the building of the Pyramids dates to 10,400 BCE." He also stated his wish "to further delineate that civilization."

    VIII. On April 11th, 1996 Dr. Schor stated of his current project at the Sphinx, "We do not work for the Edgar Cayce Group. The major purpose of the Schor Foundation and Florida State University is to aid in the preservation and restoration of the Pyramids and Sphinx. In addition, we are surveying the underground of the Giza Plateau to find faults and chasms that might collapse. This will increase the safety of the plateau."

    IX. Also financed by Dr. Schor is a short video film shot at the end of 1995 by Boris Said and produced in early 1996. The film opens with Dr. Zahi Hawass scrambling into a tunnel leading under the Sphinx. When he reaches the bottom, he turns to face the camera and whispers to the viewer, "Even Indiana Jones would never dream to be here. Can you believe it? We are now inside the Sphinx in this tunnel. This tunnel has never been opened before. No one really knows what's inside this tunnel. But we are going to open it for the first time." In commentary, the film's narrator goes on to state, "Edgar Cayce, America's famous Sleeping Prophet, predicted that a chamber would be discovered beneath the Sphinx -- a chamber containing the recorded history of human civilization. For the first time, we'll show you what lies beneath this great statue -- a chamber which will be opened tonight, live, for our television cameras."

    X. Dr. Schor has stated that this video is not a promotional venture aimed at hooking a major US network to televise a live opening of a chamber under the Sphinx. He insists, "It was made to test script and equipment and was made in November 1995, which was many months before we received approval for our expedition. We have abandoned its use."

    XI. On April 14, 1996 Dr. Zahi Hawass announced in the Egyptian press that there were secret tunnels under the Sphinx and around the Pyramids and stated his belief that these tunnels would prove to "carry many secrets of the building of the Pyramids."

    The Sphinx

    The Sphinx, unlike the Pyramids, is carved out of the living rock. It is 241 feet (73.5 meters) long and in parts is 65 feet (20 meters) high. It faces due east, towards the equinox. It has been suggested that it was built around the same time as the construction of the Pyramid of Khafre [Chephren; c.2555-2532 B.C.E.] (the pyramid to the left of the sphinx), but recent findings by John Anthony West suggest that there are water erosions unlike any other marks found on other Giza monuments. Unlike sand and wind erosions, which produce horizontal marks, West found that the erosion marks on the Sphinx were vertical...like those associated by water, but unlike the sand and wind marks which can be explained thanks to the destructive forces of the Sahara, where did the water marks originate?

    Well we know that Egyptologist's believed that the Sphinx was built in 2500 BC in the time of the pharaoh Chephren (or Khafre), so why are there no inscriptions that identify Khafre with the Sphinx? Surely a great monument having to be painstakingly carved out of solid rock would have been celebrated but there is not even the slightest of mention regarding it's construction.

    Dr. Robert Schoch, a geologist and professor from Boston University decided he would examine the new findings and come up with his own answers. He agreed with West's conclusion regarding the water erosion, but remarked that if it were due to the torrential rains pouring down on Egypt's monuments at that time, why are there no other water erosions found in Egypt to validate his theory? Surely there wasn't just a cloud raining down on the Sphinx?

    Again Egyptologist's dismissed Schoch's theory, saying that the great rain storms that once happened over Egypt had stopped long before the Sphinx was built. Then in stepped Robert Buvaul with his own theory behind the Sphinx's true age, I will let him in his own words explain his theory:

    In 1989 I published a paper in the Oxford Journal, Discussions In Egyptology (vol. 13), in which I demonstrated that the three Great Pyramids and their relative position to the Nile created on the ground a sort of 3-D 'hologram' of the three stars of Orion's belt and their relative position to the Milky Way. To support this contention, I brought into evidence the inclined shafts in the Great Pyramid which were aimed at the south meridian towards these group of stars as well as written evidence from the Pyramid Texts that identified the afterlife destiny of the pyramid-kings with Orion.

    Later, in my book The Orion Mystery (Heinemann-Mandarin), I also demonstrated that the best fit for the Giza Pyramids/Nile pattern with the Orion's belt/Milky Way pattern occurred when the sky was pushed back in time (i.e. precessed) to the epoch of 10,500 BC. There were good reasons for doing so.

    The ancient Egyptians, for example, constantly refer to a remote golden age they called Zep Tepi, "The First Time" of Osiris, which they believed had long predated the Pyramid Age. Osiris was Orion, and the Great Pyramid had a shaft directed to Orion at the meridian. To me, this "silent" astro-architectural language seemed to be spelling out "here is Osiris in the sky when these pyramids were built, yet know, too, that his origins are rooted in the First Time.: But The "First Time" of what? How could the stars of Orion have a "First Time"?

    Well, they can. And they do. Provided, of course, that you can read through the allegorical "language" of the ancients via the symbolic architecture and the related Pyramid Texts. Allegory, to put it in another way, is the "Q-Basics" of the master astronomers who designed the Giza complex. When the stars of Orion are observed at the meridian in the precise manner that the ancient Egyptian astronomers did over many centuries, they could not help noting that these stars crossed the south meridian at different altitudes at different epochs. This is, of course, due to the phenomenon of Precession (see The Orion Mystery, appendices 1 and 2). In short, the stars of Orion can be said to have a starting point or "beginning" at the nadir of their precessional cycle. Simple calculations show that this occurred in 10,500 BC. Could the ancient astronomers of the Pyramid Age have used their very clever "silent language" combined with Precession to freeze the "First Time" of Osiris - somewhat like the gifted architects of a gothic cathedral froze in its allegorical stonework the "time of Christ"?

    In the summer of 1993 Graham Hancock and I got together to investigate this issue further. Graham was quick to realize the important implications this approach could have on the Sphinx problem. He had a hunch that the curious harking back to the epoch of 10,500 BC by the pyramid builders of Giza was an invitation by them to consider the actual age of the Sphinx. If this hypothesis was correct, then the Sphinx must be an "original" time-marker of that remote epoch using an obvious celestial tag valid for 10,500 BC. But which tag? What could the Sphinx be representing that was in the sky? Could this have something to do with the due east direction of its gaze towards the horizon?

    In his ground-breaking book Fingerprints of the Gods (Heinemann-Mandarin), Hancock pointed out that the "First Time" date of 10,500 BC also denoted the beginning or "First Time" of the Age of Leo. This was when the "lion" constellation would have risen heliacally (at dawn before the sun) on the day of the spring (vernal) equinox. This event brought the celestial lion to rest due east, thus in perfect alignment with the Sphinx. The Sphinx, in other words, was made to look at his own image in the horizon - and consequently at his own "time". Hancock pointed out that 10,500 BC was no random date. It very precisely denoted another beginning, that of Orion-Osiris defined on the ground with the pattern and alignments of the nearby Pyramids. Here, then, were not just the Pyramids but also the Sphinx luring us to the same date of 10,500 BC. But were we dealing with a "coincidence" —albeit an astonishing one— or was all this part of a deliberate long term scheme set by the ancients? Could it be possible that some blueprint was put into motion in 10,500 BC with the making of the Sphinx then to be completed much later by the builders of the Pyramids? Was there evidence of a continuous presence here at Giza through the ages of some master 'astronomers' who could have been responsible to see this scheme through?

    If so, who were they? Where had they come from? Why here at Giza? Graham and I have spent the last two years researching this fascinating issue. We believe that what we have uncovered will change the perceptions of what Giza was (and still is) forever. The full results of our investigation, as you might have guessed, are laid out in our new book, Keeper of Genesis, available now at a discount through AA&ES. Suffice at this stage to say that author Colin Wilson, who gave the book an early review, thinks it's "a much more satisfying tour de force" than Fingerprints of the Gods or The Orion Mystery.

    So has Robert Buvaul got a "good case"? Many people seem to validate his theory, but maybe we will never truly understand the reasons behind these great monuments. We can only listen to the theories behind the mystery and come to our own conclusions. Until we are given unquestionable proof there will always be people wanting to knock others idea's, but please keep an open mind to all possibilities, and try to enjoy the experience.


    President Mubarak unveiled the renovated Sphinx, whose $2.5 million (U.S.) makeover took 10 years to finish. The greatest challenge facing the Sphinx's modern-day restorers was undoing the damage caused by previous restorations. Buried in sand and protected from the elements since the Middle Ages, the Sphinx was fully uncovered in the 1920s only to be patched with cement which leached salt through the structure, weakening it. After stones fell off a hind paw in the 1980s, more cement and stones were added, broadening the body by as much as nine feet in some places and ruining the lion's contour. Current efforts began after a boulder fell off the deteriorating Sphinx's right shoulder in 1988. Workmen used photographs from the 1850s and a color-coded, stone-by-stone blueprint of the Sphinx. Each damaged stone removed was measured, weighed, and sketched. Each new stone was hand-cut and placed with a mortar of lime and sand. Stones as heavy as 1320 pounds were installed. The project did not restore the Sphinx's beard, parts of which are in the British and Egyptian museums. Nor will he again have a nose, which has been missing since the 14th century. (May 26, 1998, compiled from a variety of news articles).


    Zahi Hawass was quoted as saying that it is likely that the Great Pyramid still does have an undiscovered chamber -- referring to the "door" discovered by Rudolf Gantenbrink in March, 1993, with the Upuaut2 robot. Dr. Hawass said a new robot is being readied to continue the job started a few years ago by Gantenbrink. We'll see. (November 5, 1998, in the Egyptian daily, "Al-Ahram")

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