Archaeologists and geologists working in the region have found evidence, through patterns of erosion, fossilized plant and animal material, and artifacts, that the area some 8,000 years ago was once quite fertile and lush with vegetation.Water was abundant and underground aquifers are still, as evidenced by the difficulties Zahi Hawass and his team had in exploring the Osiris Shaft of the Great Pyramid in 1999 CE due to the high water table. 15,000 BCE, and though it became less so in time, the area was still quite fertile at the time of the 4th Dynasty. 2670 BCE) had already built his famous Step Pyramid and complex at Saqqara while, at Giza, there were only mastaba tombs. 2613-2589 BCE) perfected the art of pyramid building through his work on the Meidum Pyramid, Bent Pyramid, and Red Pyramid.While that may be, it is also quite likely that the statue simply reminded Greek writers of their own mythical sphinx, such as the one famous in the story of Oedipus, with the body of a beast and head of a woman.Greek visitors to the site, scholars such as Verner claim, mistook the During the time of the New Kingdom of Egypt (1570-1069 BCE), the Sphinx was known by the Egyptians as Horemakhet (Horus of the Horizon) and a cult grew up around the statue associating it with the god Horus.
The 4th-century CE Coptic Christians called the statue (The Guardian), and this name is still used today.The statue was never known as 'the sphinx' by the ancient Egyptians.