Sphinx from set of 1923 film epic unearthed in California

Paramount Pictures poster for the 1923 film The Ten Commandments. Public domain image

GUADALUPE, Calif. (AP) – Archaeologists working in sand dunes on the central California coast have dug up an intact plaster sphinx that was part of an Egyptian movie set built more than 90 years ago for Cecil B. DeMille’s epic “The Ten Commandments.”

The 300-pound sphinx is the second recovered from the Guadalupe-Nipomo Dunes.

Dunes Center Executive Director Doug Jenzen tells Santa Barbara news station KEYT-TV that it’s unlike other items found on previous digs because most of it is preserved with the original paint intact.

The set of the 1923 movie included more than 20 sphinxes. After filming, DeMille ordered everything buried in the dunes 175 miles northwest of Los Angeles.

They lay undisturbed for decades before recovery efforts began. The newly recovered sphinx is expected to go on display at the dunes museum next summer.

Cropped image of the Great Sphinx of Giza, Egypt. Photo by Usuario: Barcex, licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license

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Information from: KEYT-TV, http://www.keyt.com/

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