In this paper, Robert Schoch and I searched for written evidence of a monumental lion statue at Giza. Here is what we found: At the very beginning of writing, over 5000 years ago, and seven centuries before the reigns of Khufu/Cheops, Khafre/Chephren, and Menkaure/Mycerinos, three symbols first appear depicting the front and back of a lion and a third symbol which looks like a crack or fissure. The lion was a revered animal in the ancient world and so to show this majestic animal split in half seems strange. Where did this idea come from, we asked?
These three symbols were used in the earliest known forms of writing in ancient Egypt and so we knew they must be special. They were used to mark the quality of oil shipped to royal and elite private tombs. Much later, almost 3000 years later during the Ptolemaic era of Egypt, we find these symbols in a completely different context: Theology and myth. Here, they are used to name three of seven words of creation in the Memphite story of the creation of the world. These words were given shape in the form of baboons. Baboons and lions share a long, close relationship in ancient Egypt which goes back to the time of the first appearance of writing.
And so we have two very different ways these three symbols were used: As shipping labels of luxury goods and in religion. In order to answer the question where the idea to use symbols showing a lion split in half came from, we revisited the most monumental lion we know: The Great Sphinx. And here lay the answer, now covered by the cement of the repairs a century ago: The Major Fissure through the waist of the Great Sphinx. This fissure over 2 meters wide, is a geological defect in the stony layers of the rock from which the monument was made and likely was there before it was made. We concluded that it was this gaping crack in the body of the stony lioness, we previously identified as Mehit, which inspired with awe those who first conceived the symbols of writing in ancient Egypt. And to repeat once more what this means: It means there was a monumental lioness, split in half by a force of nature, at Giza long before dynastic Egypt, long before the Old Kingdom, long before Khufu, Khafre, and Menkaure. This lioness, Mehit, profoundly affected the Egyptian civilization, its language and its religion.
As part of this research, we also discovered something about the lost language of Egypt's Delta, the ghost language of Buto-Maadi, in existence before Narmer unified the south and north into one nation under one king. This language and script were connected with the Sumerian language. We present a method which may help to resurrect this long lost written language. One of these symbols, the bent-rod we call the JAW Sign to commemorate the life and work of John Anthony West, survived in association with the symbol for Mehit: A couchant lioness with rings around her neck. This symbol has never been translated, but we now think we know what it meant in its original language, that of Buto-Maadi: It meant gate-way or opener.
With this paper, we want to supplement the official record from which the debate about the age of the Great Sphinx will doubtlessly go on. However, we propose a test, a real experiment, to put the predictions of our model proposed here to a possibly decisive test: One more probe of the void beneath the left paw of the Great Sphinx, only this time correctly guided by the seismic data generated by Thomas Dobecki and Robert Schoch three decades ago.