The Great Sphinx of Giza, Through the Years (21 photos)

The monumental statue known to the world as the Great Sphinx of Giza is believed to have been built more than 4,500 years ago. While photography has only been around for about 200 years, photographers have flocked to the Giza pyramid complex to capture images of the enigmatic creature in the Egyptian desert. Gathered below are varied photographs of the Sphinx over the past 170 years, from Maxime du Camp’s image of a still-mostly-buried Sphinx in 1849, to 21st century light shows, and much more.


The Great Sphinx and the Pyramids of Giza, Egypt, photographed by Maxime du Camp in 1849, and published in a book of travel photos in 1852. The chest area of the Sphinx had only recently been uncovered—for years the statue was covered with sand up to its shoulders.

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Maxime du Camp / Art Media / Print Collector / Getty)

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