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The mausoleum of Prince Coh, in Chichen, stands in front and to the east of the Memorial Hall. The statue on the top was that of a leopard with human head. (Plate LXII.) The color of the Mayas was red brown, judging from the fresco paintings in the funeral chamber, and Landa tells us 1 that even to the time of the Spanish Conquest they were in the habit of covering their face and body with red pigment.
According to Henry Brugsch: "To the north of this huge form lay the temple of the goddess Isis; another, dedicated to the god Osiris, had its place on the southern side; a third temple was dedicated to the Sphinx. The inscription on the stone speaks as follows of these temples: He, the living Hor, king of the upper and lower country, Khufu, he, the dispenser of life, founded a temple to the goddess Isis, the queen of the pyramid; beside the god's house of the Sphinx, northwest from the god's house and the town of Osiris, the lord of the place of the dead."
The Sphinx being thus placed between temples dedicated to Isis and to Osiris, by their son Hor, would seem to indicate that the personage represented by it was closely allied to both these deities.
Another inscription shows that it was especially consecrated to the god Ra-Atum, or the "Sun in the West; " thus connecting said personage with the "lands toward the setting sun," with "the place of the dead," with the country whence came the ancestors of the Egyptians, where they believed they returned after the death of the physical body, to appear in the presence of Osiris seated on his throne in the midst of the waters, to be judged by him for their actions while on earth.
1 Landa, Las Cosas de Yucatan, ? xx., p. 114, and xxxi., p. 184. 'Henry Brugsch, History of Egypt under the Pharaohs, vol. i., p. 80, Seymour and Smith's translation.
Mr. Samuel Birch, in a note in the work of Sir Gardner Wilkinson, "Manners and Customs of the Ancient Egyptians," says "that the Sphinx was called Ha or Akar." These words mean respectively, in the Maya language, "water," and "pond" or "swamp." In these names may we not see a hint that the king represented by the huge statue dwelt in countries surrounded by water? Its position, again, with the head turned toward the east, its back to the west, may not be without significance. Might it not mean that the people who sculptured it travelled from the West toward the East? from the Western Continent where Isis was queen, when she abandoned the land of her birth and sallied forth, with her followers, in search of a new home?
May not that lion or leopard with a human head be the totem of some famous personage in the mother country, closely related to Queen Móo, highly venerated by her and her people, whose memory she wished to perpetuate in the land of her adoption and among coming generations?
Was it the totem of Prince Coh? We have seen in Mayach, on the entablature of the Memorial Hall, and in the sculptures that adorned his mausoleum at Chichen, that he was represented as a leopard. But in Egypt,
Osiris, as king of the Amenti, king of the West, was likewise portrayed as a leopard, His priests always wore
1 Samuel Birch, Sir Gardner Wilkinson, Manners and Customs, note, vol. iii., chap. xiv.
a leopard skin over their ceremonial dress, and a leopard skin hung always near his images or statues. In seeking to explain the meaning of the names inscribed at the base of the Sphinx, we will again make use of the Maya language, which may be for us, in this instance also, the thread of Ariadne that will guide us out of this more than dædalian labyrinth.
Henry Brugsch again tells us: "The Sphinx is called in the text Hu, a word which designates the man-headed lion, while the real name of the god represented by the Sphinx was Hormakhu, that is to say, 'Horus on the horizon.' It was also called Khepra, 'Horus in his resting place on the horizon where the sun goes to rest.'"'1
Herodotus says that Horus was the last of the gods who governed the Egyptians before the reign of Menes, the first of their terrestrial kings. He came into the world soon after the death of his father, being the youngest son of Isis and Osiris; and he stood forth as his avenger, combating Set and defending his mother against him.
According to the Maya language Hormakhu is a word composed of three Maya primitives-Hool-ma-ku: that is, hool, "head," "leader; " ma, "country," or ma, radical of Mayach, that becomes syncopated by losing the desinence yach in forming the compound name; and ku, “god." Hormakhu would then mean "the God chief in Mayach." It is well to remember that the Maya inscriptions and other writings were read, as generally were the Egyptian and many other ancient languages, from right to left. That Ma stands for Mayach in this instance, there seems to be no doubt, since the sign, which is the shape 'Henry Brugsch, History of Egypt, vol. ii., p. 464. 'Herodotus, History, lib. ii., 144.
of the peninsula of Yucatan, forms part of the hieroglyph representing the name of the Sphinx. Had not this been the intended meaning, the hierogrammatists would no doubt have made use of some other of the various signs with which they represented the Latin letter M. We must not lose sight of the fact that hieroBesides, the sign
zon," makes it
graphic writings were mostly pictorial. the "sun resting on the western horievident that the hieroglyph
intended to represent a country, having similar geographical contour, situated in the regions where the sun sets; that is, the West. The Mayas made use of the same sign to designate regions situated toward the setting sun.1
Khepra would read in Maya Keb-la. Keb means "to incline;" La is the eternal "truth," the god, hence the sun. Kebla or Khepra is therefore the sun inclined on the horizon. As to the name Hu, used in the texts to designate the Sphinx, it may be a contraction of the Maya hul, an "arrow," a spear.'
The Greeks placed offensive weapons in the hands of some of their gods, as symbols of their attributes. So also the Egyptians. They represented Neith, Sati, or Khem holding a bow and arrows. To Horus they gave a spear, hul, with which he was said to have slain Set, his father's murderer. They represented him sometimes standing in a boat, piercing the head of Set swimming in the water. Did they mean by this to indicate that the tragedy took place in a country surrounded by water, reached only by means of boats? They
1 This sign forms part of the word Alau in the Troano MS., in part ii., plates ii. and iii.
See Introduction, ubi supra, p. lix.
' Plutarch, De Yside et Osiride, ¿f 25, 36.
also figured Horus on the land, transfixing with a spear the head of a serpent (illustration, p. 124).
Was, then, the serpent in Egypt one of the totems of Set, Osiris's murderer, as it was in Mayach of Aac, Prince Coh's slayer?
No doubt it was, since Osiris's worshippers were wont, at the celebration of his feast, to throw a rope into their assembly, to simulate a serpent, emblem of his murderer, and hack it to pieces, as if avenging the death of their god. Was this a reminiscence of the tragedy that occurred in the mother country, where one member of the Can (serpent) family slew his brother?
From the portraits of his children, carved on the jambs of the door of Prince Coh's funeral chamber at Chichen, we learn that his youngest son, a comely lad of about sixteen, was named Hul; his totem, a spear-head, is sculptured above his head. Are not Hul, Hu, Hor, Hol, cognate words?
Elsewhere I have endeavored to show, from the identity of their history, from that of their names, and from their totems, that Seb and Nut, and their children Osiris, Set, Aroeris, Isis, and Niké, worshipped as gods by the Egyptians, were the same personages known as King Canchi, his wife Zoo, and their five children Cay, Aac, Coh, Móo and Niké, who lived and reigned in Mayach, where, having received the honor of apotheosis, after their death, they had temples erected to their memory and divine homage paid them.
Queen Móo, not finding vestiges of the land of Mu, went to Egypt, where we meet with traditions of her family troubles. There she became the goddess Isis, was worshipped throughout
the land, her cult being superior even to that of Osiris.
Aug. Le Plongeon, Sacred Mysteries, p. 87, et passim.
'Herodotus, Hist., lib. ii., 42, 59, 61.