Friday, January 07, 2011

Obelisk Repo

If horrible snow removal efforts that cost an infant its life followed by a failure to deal with fetid garbage was not enough woe for Mayor Michael Bloomberg of New York City, here comes something different. Egypt is threatening to take back an obelisk that has been in Central Park since the 1881 and is called Cleopatra's Needle. The reason for the threat, the obelisk is deteriorating with hieroglyphs obliberated so Zahi Hawass was prompted to write the following -

"Recent photographs that I have received show the severe damage that has been done to the obelisk, particularly to the hieroglyphic text, which in places has been completely worn away. I have a duty to protect all Egyptian monuments whether they are inside or outside of Egypt. If the Central Park Conservancy and the City of New York cannot properly care for this obelisk, I will take the necessary steps to bring this precious artifact home and save it from ruin."

This should prove interesting if New York City gives the same attention to Cleopatra's Needle and its preservation as they have given the rebuilding of St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church. If so, I expect the History Channel and National Geographic to have specials on the moving of an obelisk.

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