2006 - The Obelisk

This years senior project was to construct an obelisk. Obelisks were a prominent part of the architecture of the ancient Egyptians, who placed them in pairs at the entrance of temples. Twenty-seven ancient Egyptian obelisks are known to have survived, plus one incomplete obelisk found partly hewn from its quarry at Aswan.

The obelisk symbolized the sun god Ra and during the brief religious reformation of Akhenaten was said to be a petrified ray of the aten, the sundisk. It was also thought that the god existed within the structure.

It is hypothesized by New York University Egyptologist Patricia Blackwell Gary and Astronomy senior editor Richard Talcott ("Stargazing in Ancient Egypt," Astronomy, June 2006, pp. 62-67) that the shapes of the ancient Egyptian pyramid and obelisk were derived from natural phenomena associated with the sun (the sun-god Re being the Egyptians' greatest deity). The pyramid and obelisk would have been inspired by previously overlooked astronomical phenomena connected with sunrise and sunset: the zodiacal light and Sun pillars, respectively.

The Romans were infatuated with obelisks, to the extent that there are now more than twice as many obelisks standing in Rome as remain in Egypt, although they all fell after the Roman period and were re-erected in different locations.





Let the good time roll!


DustinÕs on top of things!


Ms. AndrewÕs in charge!


Preparing the magic powder!






Another job well done!


E=MC2 Playground!




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