The Sphinx at Gizeh, Pompey's Pillar and Cleopatra's Needle, 1804.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Engraving by J Pass after Denon showing Ancient Egyptian artifacts. At the top are sculptures of musicians playing harps and other stringed instruments, and in the centre a patera (bas-relief ornament) with portraits of the gods Osiris and Isis. Europeans are measuring the head of the Great Sphinx (below centre). The 27-metre granite shaft called Pompey's Pillar was in fact raised in honour of the Roman emperor Diocletian (245–313) in the 4th century, and is not connected with the Roman soldier Pompey (106-48 BC). Of the many Egyptian obelisks, two became known as Cleopatra's Needle; one is in London and the other in New York. Illustration from 'Encyclopaedia Londinensis, or, Universal Dictionary of Arts, Sciences, and Literature' published in London, 1810-1829.