When does genuine ancient become modern fake?

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HEPZIBAH
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When does genuine ancient become modern fake?

Post by HEPZIBAH »

Last night, I saw some photographs that had been posted online of the Avenue of Sphinx in the Karnak area. The photo graphs had been taken some years ago and showed some very worn, barely recognisable shapes on equally worn plynths, surrounded by various shaped lumps of stone on the ground.
There was another, up to date photograph showing a fairly pristine spyhnx on a plynth looking as though it had been made yesterday.

I also read about the new discovery of sphynx heads that are going to be attached to existing sphynx bodies along the Avenue of Sphynx. (At least that was my understanding.) I couldn't help but imagine a bodyband head argueing because they were not the original match.

Yet again, I found myself wondering where the lines are drawn between reclaimation, restoration, preservation, and reproduction/imitation.

Do archeaologists really know what they are doing, or are they just intent on satisfying their own egos by convincing the world that there truths are little more than supposition?


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Re: When does genuine ancient become modern fake?

Post by newcastle »

The criosphinxes which line the Kabash road come in all states of preservation.

Some are pristine...others barely recognizable as sphinxes at all. I would certainly hope that there’s no restoration going on beyond cleaning.

The attitude of archaeologists to restoration has changed over the decades and now, for the majority, adding and replacing what they “ think” might have been there before is a “ no no”.....or done subtly, and in a way easily removed ( e.g the outline figures on some of the blocks littering Luxor temple)

The contrast with, say, Deir el Bahari is staggering. The magnificent edifice there today is largely a complete reconstruction and, were the original ruins unearthed at the end of the 19th Century discovered today, I expect little would be done to resurrect Hatshepsut’s masterpiece.
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A lot can be done by assiduous cleaning ( e.g the remarkable work done at Dendera and Karnak) or the clever brush work ( meant to deceive the eye) in the tomb of Nefertari.....without permanently affecting what was there before.
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Re: When does genuine ancient become modern fake?

Post by newcastle »

Apparently the grand opening of the Avenue of Sphinxes has been postponed for a couple of weeks.

In time for them to find a few maybe.....?
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:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
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Re: When does genuine ancient become modern fake?

Post by newcastle »

Early photos of work on Rams road. Any idea when.....??
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Re: When does genuine ancient become modern fake?

Post by A-Four »

HEPZIBAH wrote: Thu Oct 28, 2021 6:08 am Yet again, I found myself wondering where the lines are drawn between reclaimation, restoration, preservation, and reproduction/imitation.

Do archeaologists really know what they are doing, or are they just intent on satisfying their own egos by convincing the world that there truths are little more than supposition?
Probably the best question that has ever been written on this form, and certainly a dynamite one if asked at a few lectures I've been to in the past.

Different cultures have varying ideas of restoration or even imitation, we see ancient vases restored from fragments of shards, to give an idea of its size and and past use. If we look carefully through the British Museum's Egyptian collection, we can see clearly where a number of sarcophagus have been patched together. More interesting if studied carefully, we can see what position a colossus statue has layed for hundreds if not thousands of years. In other words if we have eyes to see,then we will 'see', but for most who visit the British Museum or Luxor for that matter, will believe a cheap guide book rather than study carefully what is before them.

There are many fine examples of very bad 'restoration', the greatest horror is probably at Knossos Palace, produced by Sir Arthur Evens, his 'painting by numbers' reproduction resembles something from the art-deco era, yet those who read the cheap guide book will believe it is all original, the same will apply to what some of us know about the 'restoration' that is going on in Luxor.

Unlike some on this form, most people visit Egypt once only, the many 'painting by numbers' at various sites in Luxor is astounding, but to bring in the revenue people pay. A good example of this is the new museum in Giza, although yet not open, for $250 per person, and part of a group, the place is open with a full guided tour. I understand the project is still $500,000,000 short to complete.

In 2017, a gigantic statue of Ramessis II was discovered at Heliopolis, the worldwide publicity, was that this was the Ozandias as Shelley's great poem tells us, but not in my oppinion,.....

'I met a traveller from an antique land / who said "Two vast and trunkless legs of stone stand in the desert'. - Shelley.

For me this has to be the Ramassium, because although even the legs have long gone the feet, believe it or not, still remain there, not in the temple but in the immediate area of the agricultural land, which would have been at the front enterance of the temple.

With regards to the 'Avenue', I suppose I could says something, but what is the use , people will visit Luxor for a day in future, nothing more, and I hope has stated in an earlier post by Dusak on this subject, it will probably best viewed from a distance, so if half of the Sphinx's are Mickey Mouse, who really cares,..........'When the money keeps rolling in, you don't ask why".
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Re: When does genuine ancient become modern fake?

Post by newcastle »


In 2017, a gigantic statue of Ramessis II was discovered at Heliopolis, the worldwide publicity, was that this was the Ozandias as Shelley's great poem tells us, but not in my oppinion,.....

'I met a traveller from an antique land / who said "Two vast and trunkless legs of stone stand in the desert'. - Shelley.

For me this has to be the Ramassium, because although even the legs have long gone the feet, believe it or not, still remain there, not in the temple but in the immediate area of the agricultural land, which would have been at the front enterance of the temple.
Shelley’s epic poem “Ozymandias” was inspired by others who’d visited the Ramasseum and witnessed the fallen colossus of Ramesses II....of which barely the head, shoulders and feet remain. The imminent arrival in London of the Ramesses II head and torso rescued from the Ramasseum by Belzoni was the final stimulation. Shelley, who’d never been to the site, let loose his fertile imagination....naming the poem and its subject after the Greek corruption of Ramesses II throne name.
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As to the 2017 discovery at Heliopolis, no one in their right minds could have associated this with “ Ozymandias “....indeed, closer inspection of the giant torso revealed it to bear the cartouche of pharaoh Psamtik I of the 26thDynasty. Early reports mentioned Ramesses II simply because it was unearthed in excavations of what was reckoned to be one of his temples.
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Psamtik’s statue now lies in the garden of the Cairo Museum in Tahrir Square. They’ve recovered several hundred fragments of the statue which may, at some future date, form the basis of a reconstruction.
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Re: When does genuine ancient become modern fake?

Post by A-Four »

A-Four wrote: Sat Oct 30, 2021 9:47 am In 2017, a gigantic statue of Ramessis II was discovered at Heliopolis, the worldwide publicity, was that this was the Ozandias as Shelley's great poem tells us, but not in my oppinion,.....
The reason why I wrote the above, is to prove to Hepzibah, that yes she is right even fake, or shall we call it fake news, when the colossus at Heliopolis was presented to the press, it was announced that this was the true Ozandias of the Shelley poem, and thus was brought to the attention of all by the international press.

As I have also said it is MY belief that the Ramassium seems the right place, what others think is another question. It would be interesting to hear other people's oppinion.
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Re: When does genuine ancient become modern fake?

Post by newcastle »

I don’t think, for a moment, that anyone doubts that Shelley’s Ozymandias is Ramesses II and his poem was inspired by the fallen colossus at the Ramasseum. How could the Heliopolis torso possibly have been the “true” Ozymandias or in any way connected to Shelley’s poem. :lol:

Before the Heliopolis torso was identified, there was some speculation that it might be Ramesses II. This was soon disproved.

What relevance any of this has to “fake” sculptures or the goings on in Luxor’s Avenue of the Sphinxes is beyond my ken. It does illustrate that one should always be wary of archaeological “ gossip “ ...and the tendency of some to rush to print before they’ve got their facts straight.
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