The ancient civilizations left such wonderful remnants that there is a whole industry of people who say that they could not have been done without the help of extraterrestrials. Things like the pyramids and the Great Wall of China are incredible engineering feats. An archaeological dig in central California this week showed that the ruins of our civilization will be slightly different.
Reported by ABC, an excavation in the Guadalupe-Nipomo Dunes unearthed a 300-pound plaster of sphinx. No, there were no ancient Egyptians in California; was a support for the 1923 epic by Cecil B. DeMille The Ten Commandments . Surprisingly, it was the second of its kind recovered from the 18-mile dune system that stretches along the state's Pacific coast.
According to Dunes Center Executive Director Doug Jenzen, it is the most pristine accessory that anyone has found in the dunes, with most of his original painting intact. That's impressive for an accessory that was only designed to look good for the time it took for the movie The Ten Commandments 90 years ago. Once the production was completed, DeMille had everything buried instead of choosing to keep it.
To be fair, the film business was still young and it is possible that things have not been fully preserved as they are now. The time may have come, but justice has been done, since the Sphinx will be exhibited at the Guadalupe-Nipomo Dunes museum next summer. The Sphinx was part of one of the largest movie sets in history, which was effectively a fake city. The "lost city of DeMille" has been the subject of intrigue for decades among film enthusiasts.
DeMille's 1923 epic film was a technicolor marvel that, ironically, does not get much use of its expensive biblical pieces. The majority of The Ten Commandments actually takes place today as a religious parable about two brothers at opposite ends of the moral spectrum. DeMille would actually remake his own film with the same title in 1956. That version of The Ten Commandments suppressed modern history in favor of a star-studded biblical epic starring Charlton Heston and Yul Brynner. The Academy Award winning remake was one of the greatest films of its time and is preserved in the Library of Congress.
Stories like this will probably continue to appear until every piece of the lost city of DeMille has been discovered. It is the equivalent of Hollywood to when Atari buried almost 1,000 video game cartridges in the desert in the 1980s. Both stories are examples of people in the young industries who throw things that, over time, would become highly sought after artifacts because a culture of preservation had not developed.