The Statue of Liberty was originally intended for which country?

The Statue of Liberty Was Originally Intended For Which Country?

The Statue of Liberty was originally intended for which country? The truth is that the statue was never meant for America. The sculptor’s initial plan was to place the statue at the Suez Canal’s north entrance. So what happened? Keep reading to know more.

The Statue of Liberty was originally intended for which country?

The Statue of Liberty was originally intended for which country?

At first, the Statue of Liberty was intended to be a Muslim woman.

Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi’s initial sketch of the Statue of Liberty in New York was originally intended to depict a “Egyptian peasant in Muslim clothing.” The sculpture was originally titled “Egypt Carrying the Light to Asia” by Bartholdi.

Nevertheless, Egyptian officials rejected the statue as being too expensive, prompting the architect to flee to America. He had to remove her Islamic robes and rename her “Liberty Enlightening the World,” as the statue has stood guard over New York’s harbor since 1886.

Why Was The Statue of Liberty Originally a Muslim Woman?

Why Was The Statue of Liberty Originally a Muslim Woman?

Inspiration from Egypt

Egypt is well-known for being the location of numerous colossi statues showing historical rulers because of its extensive archeological past. The Colossi of Memnon, which are prominently displayed on the West Bank of the Nile in Luxor, and the seated statues in front of the Temple of Abu Simbel are two examples of how most tourists to Egypt can recognize this.

As a result, it should not be surprising that this country served as an inspiration for the creation of contemporary structures and monuments due to its unique identity and cultural wealth.

The Statue of Liberty wasn’t intended to stand on American shores

The Statue of Liberty wasn't intended to stand on American shores

The imposing Statue of Liberty, which is situated on Liberty Island in New York, is one such unexpected project. While it may seem unbelievable at first, evidence suggests that the statue’s design was not intended to grace the shores of the United States, but rather to be nestled in the Egyptian city of Port Said.

An ambitious project that rivals Egypt’s ancient monuments

Egypt's ancient monuments

Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi, a French artist and sculptor, was inspired to create the Statue of Liberty after traveling to Egypt in 1855 with a group of Orientalist painters. He wanted to create a massive statue to rival Egypt’s ancient monuments, specifically the Sphinx, one of the most recognizable statues on the Giza Plateau.

Bartholdi pitched the statue to the Egyptian government, especially Khedive Ismail, as a grand project symbolizing the nation’s burgeoning industrial development, steps toward Europeanization, and social advancements. The statue was intended to stand at the northern entrance to the Suez Canal.

Upper Egyptian women’s portrait

“Bartholdi’s working title was Egypt Bringing Light to Asia,” writes Peter Hessler in his book The Buried, “and he designed the figure of a ninety-foot-tall Egyptian peasant woman, her arm raised, with a torch in hand.”

A fellaha is a female field worker or farmer who wears a cotton robe called a ‘galabeya.’ A fellaha used to frequently cover her face with a piece of cloth in the past, but contemporary fellahin in Egypt have changed with the times and now frequently just wear a veil, niqab, or kerchief over their heads.

Bartholdi’s figure was envisioned as a robed fellaha holding a torch in her hand or perched atop her head in the manner of Upper Egyptian women. Egypt Bringing Light to Asia would also stand as a lighthouse, like a recognizable figure welcoming ships home.

Projected project

According to the University of Chicago article ‘The Statue of Liberty and its Ties to the Middle East,’ Bartholdi set out in 1867 to work on his anticipated project for two years.

Unfortunately, his Egyptian counterparts were not enthusiastic about Batholdi’s project. The construction of the enormous statue was rejected because it would have been too expensive given the country’s financial woes, which had spilled over into the construction of the canal. According to the National Park Service, a branch of the US Department of the Interior, Bartholdi was informed at the canal’s inauguration that plans to proceed with the monumental project had been rejected.

The act that finally became the Statue of Liberty

finally became the Statue of Liberty

In light of this, Bartholdi’s neoclassical statue would eventually be reborn for a different nation and in a slightly different form.

Bartholdi created the “Statue of Liberty Enlightening the World” in 1870 in response to Édouard de Laboulaye’s suggestion that a monument honoring the principles of liberty and democracy in the United States be erected. This design was strikingly similar to his earlier concept for a sister port.

The new statue, on the other hand, was inspired by the Roman goddess of liberty, Libertas, and the ancient Colossus of Rhodes, which was once one of the Seven Wonders of the World before being demolished. 

The Statue of Liberty, now regarded as one of the most important symbols of the United States, was finally erected in 1886. Do you know Why Did France Give US The Statue of Liberty?

Frequently Asked Question

Was the Statue of Liberty intended for America?

Yes, the statue honors the American Revolution as well as a century of friendship between the United States and France. However, the statue also represents the sculptor’s desire to create a piece that is on par with the enormous Egyptian statues.

Was the Statue of Liberty a gift from France to Egypt?

The Statue of Liberty was originally intended to be a French gift to Egypt of a poor Muslim woman dressed in traditional attire as a symbol in the Suez Canal, not residing in New York Harbor.

Why did Egypt turn down the Statue of Liberty?

Egyptian officials rejected the statue because it was too costly.

So the Statue of Liberty was originally intended for which country? It was Egypt. Do you have any thoughts or information on this? Please leave a comment below. Thank you for reading Artseensoho‘post.

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