Ancient Origins IRAQ Tour

The Unfinished Obelisk at Aswan (Image: David H Childress)

The Enigma Of The Unfinished Obelisk At Aswan

The standard definition of an obelisk is a monolithic stone monument whose four sides, which generally carry inscriptions, gently taper into a pyramidion at the top. These massive, pointed shafts of polished granite were often capped with gold. Their size undoubtedly made them extremely difficult to move and raise. The real purpose of these obelisks could have been to act as antennas for receiving and possibly for transmitting energy or other signals such as radio or homing beacons.

Pylons and Obelisk At Luxor Temple (Image: © David Hatcher Childress)

Obelisks Of Dynastic Egyptians

The dynastic Egyptians, however, used them for different purposes, mainly as monuments. The dynastic Egyptians, who had lost the underlying science, sometimes moved various obelisks from their original sites, currently unknown, and placed them as monuments in temples at Karnak, Heliopolis and a few other places. At some sites, such as Karnak, it seems that the obelisks were already standing when the immense temples with their walls and massive columns were built around them. Typically, the dynastic Egyptians would erect two obelisks in front of temples. There are exceptions to this, such as Hatshepsut’s obelisk in the temple of Karnak and the Unfinished Obelisk, which does not seem to have a twin.

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