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Mysteries of the Nile
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Luxor Temple: Head of Ramses the Great

Ramses Head Ramses II (the Great) was one of the most prolific builders of ancient Egypt. Hardly a site exists that he did not initiate, add to, complete, or build entirely himself. Some of the greatest monuments on any tour of Egypt bear his stamp: Abu Simbel, Karnak and Luxor Temples, the Ramesseum, and many others. He also commissioned the largest monolithic statue ever, a seated statue of himself at the Ramesseum. Now lying in pieces, the giant red-granite statue inspired the English poet Percy Bysshe Shelley to craft the poem "Ozymandias" (the Greek form of User-maat-Re, one of Ramses II's many names):

I met a traveler from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert...Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them, and the heart that fed:
And on the pedestal these words appear:
"My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.


Ramses the Great Ozymandias, otherwise known as Ramses the Great.


Can you locate two Egyptian crosses, or ankhs, somewhere in this image? Hint: Each looks like the letter "T" with an egg perched on top.



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