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Mysteries of the Nile
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Questions and Responses
Set 2, posted March 9, 1999
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Question:

Our family has been in the exclusive field of heavy moving and rigging for centuries. I cannot help but to notice that much of the current team's approach to this endeavor consists of novice-generated theories, instead of "hands on" experience in heavy moving and rigging.

Indeed, my quandary in this matter is not HOW the objects were rigged, but in narrowing down the plethora of numerous available specific procedures and practices to one, verifiable approach.

(name witheld by request)



Response from Mark Lehner:

Our theories are not generated by novices. Roger Hopkins and our Egyptian foreman Ali el Gasab have spent their careers moving heavy weights. We have Mark Whitby and Henry Woodlock, who are both engineers, and we have Owain Roberts who is an experienced boat builder and has done his share of moving things about. Finally, we have Denys Stocks, who has long experimented with ancient stone-cutting technology.



Question:

I was of the understanding that there was significant Roman influence in Egypt. I realize that what you are investigating is far older than that influence of the great Roman rulers such as Marcus Aurelius or Agustus, but my question is this: Have the years of various cultural influences affected the excavation and examination of more ancient civilizations? Do these layers of newer civilizations above the older impede your discoveries

Bill B.
Ann Arbor, MI




Response from Mark Lehner:

Not at Giza where we dig. Mostly there was a lot of ancient drift sand over our site, which seems to be directly from the time of the Pyramids. But there are many sites in Egypt and other places in the world where indeed younger deposits and towns cover more ancient ones. And in that case it's always a question as to whether you completely remove the more recent layers of civilization to get at the older, deeper ones, or whether you stop at any given layer of civilization and only get the lower layers where they are exposed.



Question:

Is there is anything buried under the Great Sphinx? I believe that there is. Do you agree with my theory?

(name witheld by request)



Response from Mark Lehner:

I don't know. Many people think so, but so far nothing's been found. The Sphinx is made right out of the solid rock of the Giza Plateau, so if there's anything buried under it, it's in a shaft, passage, or chamber. So far none has been found except one: underneath the rear of the Sphinx, which came to a dead end.



Question:

I profess to know little about physics or engineering, but in response to Dr. Lehner's comments; isn't there now some evidence of the Egyptians having iron? Was not an iron door found in the Great Pyramid?

Jill
North Vancouver, BC



Response from Mark Lehner:

No, the Egyptians probably did not have iron until somewhere between 664 and 525 B.C. That is they didn't have iron extensively for tools and levers and chisels. A piece of iron was said to be found in the Great Pyramid in 1836, but it was not a door. It could have been embedded in the stones from the time when the outer casing stones of the Pyramid were pried off, probably with iron tools, and tumbled to the ground, to be used in building elsewhere in fairly recent times, that is to say somewhere in the Middle Ages or shortly thereafter.




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