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Famed as the last surviving ‘wonder of the ancient world’, the scale and magnificence of Giza’s pyramid complex can only truly be appreciated in person. The largest of them all, Giza’s Great Pyramid, was built for Pharaoh Khufu (Cheops) some four and a half thousand years ago; the smaller but still titanic pyramids nearby were those of his son and grandson, the Pharaohs Menkaure and Khafre.
Most distinctive of all Giza’s monuments is the immense statue of the Great Sphinx, with its lion body and human head; excavated some two hundred years ago, this mystifying and enigmatic statue looms large over the Giza desert, at a length of 73 metres and a height of 20 metres. Some archaeologists suggest the Sphinx is even older than the pyramids, while others consider it contemporary; either way, its purpose remains a riddle.
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