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Egypt’s ‘Avenue of Sphinxes’ to be Unveiled in ‘Spectacular’ Ceremony

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Egypt’s ‘Avenue of Sphinxes’ to be Unveiled in ‘Spectacular’ Ceremony

Luxor Temple Complex - Avenue of Sphinxes (2) | Luxor and ...
Luxor Temple Complex, Avenue of Sphinxes | c. Gerhard Huber

After on-going restoration efforts, the Avenue of Sphinxes (El Kebbash Road) is to be unveiled Thursday 25 November. The Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities has sent open invitations to a number of foreign ambassadors and public figures, reports Al Ahram.

Located in Upper Egypt, the Avenue of Sphinxes is a 3,000-year-old walkway. As an extension of the Karnak Temple complex, it connects to the Luxor temple three kilometers down the Nile’s Eastern shore. The avenue is 2,700 meters long and about seven meters wide, flanked by hundreds of ram-headed and traditional sphinxes.

Egypt has scheduled a televised “spectacular grand reopening ceremony” in celebration of the avenue’s revival. A period performance will set off from the Luxor temple and end at Karnak, in a parade expected to “surpass the grandeur” of the April 2021 Royal Mummies procession through Cairo.

This restoration project is one of several undertaken by Egyptian authorities in a bid to revitalize Egypt’s touristic appeal post-COVID-19, and is considered “a great cultural achievement for Egypt and an exquisite addition to the study of ancient Egyptian civilization.”

Avenue of the Sphinx, Luxor, Egypt | The Avenue of Sphinx ...
Avenue of the Sphinx, Luxor, Egypt | c. Paul Lemons

According to Mustafa al-Saghier, director of the Karnak Temple complex and general supervisor of the Avenue of Sphinxes’ revival project, the excavation “has unearthed other objects, […] including a wall dating back to the Roman period.”

Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi has described Luxor as a reflection of the glory of ancient Egyptian civilization, and intends to use this ceremony as a means to “promote the country’s soft power internationally.”

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With a heart for radio and an appetite for culture, Mona is a writer and illustrator based in Cairo. At the Erasmus University Rotterdam, she obtained a BSc and MA in Media, Culture, and Society, while actively writing for the faculty magazine. After graduating, Mona was an academic advisor at the American University in Cairo, as well as Managing Director of a small, campus-based advertising firm. Gears shifting, her knack for cultural research took over - enter: Egyptian Streets. Mona’s focus is tapered to issues of identity politics, culture, and social architecture.

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