The Magic of Obelisks
For centuries people have wondered why the Egyptian obelisks were erected, by whom & what they signified. There were at one time hundreds of obelisks throughout ancient Egypt, many of them covered with the lettering known as hieroglyphs. Like the great pyramids, the obelisks seem to possess a strange power, perhaps even the key to the secret of life.
From the time of the earliest invaders of Egypt through the 19th century expeditions from France, Britain & the USA seized obelisks. Transported to Rome by pagan emperors, they were later exhumed by the popes & christianized. The Inquisition, suspicious of secret rites descended from Egypt, persecuted scholars & free thinkers, for whom the obelisks became symbols of freedom. When Americans in 1799 cast about for a suitable tribute to the founder of the country, they chose to erect the largest obelisk ever, the Washington Monument.
In this profusely illustrated book, Tompkins explores the entire history of human association with obelisks; the many theories about them & their magical & physical properties; the adventures encountered in engineering & moving 300-ton monoliths; their association with sexual rites & the hermetic wisdom of ancient Egypt; & their suspected influence on & connection with many secret socities & historic figures including Freemasons, Knights Templar, Rosicrucians, Illuminati, Ficinio, Pico, Bruno, Kircher, Cagliostro, St Germain & Crowley