Ramses II statue moved near Great Pyramids
Pharaoh statue moved near Pyramids
Friday, August 25, 2006; Posted: 11:20 a.m. EDT (15:20 GMT)
CAIRO, Egypt (AP) -- Engineers on Friday moved the giant statue of Pharaoh Ramses II from a congested square in Cairo to its new home near the more peaceful Great Pyramids.
Contractors moved the more than 3,200-year-old statue from Ramses Square in an effort to save it from exhaust fumes and other environmental hazards that were causing the 83-ton structure to deteriorate.
The trip took about 10 hours from Ramses Square -- its home since the early 1950s when it was taken from a temple at the site of the ancient Egyptian capital of Memphis -- to its new location about a mile from the pyramids near the site of the future Grand Museum of Egypt.
"I think that today if Ramses could talk, he would say 'Thank you for moving me,"' antiquities chief Zahi Hawass told state-run television.
The statue will be renovated as it waits for its new home to be built. The museum, which also will house King Tut's mummy and other treasures, is not expected to open for at least five years, officials have said.
Ramses II was a warrior king who is credited with bringing Egypt unprecedented power and splendor during his 67-year reign. He died in 1225 B.C. Read the whole thing.
Previously on this site.
New Tomb Discovered in Egypt's Valley of the Kings