Scottish Rite Temple

Location: 1733 16th St., NW Washington, DC 20009

The Sphinxes flanking the front entrance to the House of the Temple at the Scottish Rite Temple in Washington DC are adorned with inscriptions in both Phoenician characters and Egyptian hieroglyphs.

“A sphinx is a mythical creature with the body of a lion, most often with a human head and sometimes with wings. The creature was an Egyptian invention and had a male head – human or animal; however, in ancient Greek culture the creature had the head of a woman. The sphinx is also present in the art and sculpture of the Mycenaean, Assyrian, Persian and Phoenician civilizations.

Sphinxes were first created by the Egyptians and usually wore a nemes (head-dress) as worn by Pharoahs. Examples exist of sphinxes with human faces but surrounded by a lion’s mane, particularly from Nubia, and in the New Kingdom the head was sometimes that of a ram and representative of Amun… “http://www.ancient.eu/sphinx/

Sphinx of Amenemhat III,
Tanis, Egypt
Great Sphinx,
Giza, Egypt
Sphinx of Taharqa
Kawa Sudan

Photo credits: Africa Access
Photo credits: Flickr


Cartwright, Mark. “Sphinx.”  Ancient History Encyclopedia.  http://www.ancient.eu Accessed 4/10/2017.