- Sphinx (Marvel Comics)
caption=The Sphinx battles the
Fantastic Fouron the cover of "Fantastic Four" #208 (Jul. 1979). Art by Sal Buscema.
debut= Nova #6 (Feb. 1977)
Marv Wolfmanand Sal Buscema
aliases=The Dreaded One
powers=Via Ka Stone:
Superhuman strength and durability
The Sphinx is the name of two
fictional charactersthat appear in comic bookspublished by Marvel Comics. The first version of the Sphinx first appeared in Nova #6 (Feb. 1977) and was created by Marv Wolfmanand Sal Buscema. The second version first appears in New Warriors#47 (May 1994) and was created by Fabian Nicieza.
Fictional character biography
Anath-Na Mut is a magician in the court of
Ramesses II, who is defeated in a duel of magic by the prophet Moses, and is exiled into the desert for his failure. Anath-Na then discovers the alien Ka Stone, which grants him immortality and a host of other powers. Using the alias the Sphinx, Anath-Na wanders the Earth for thousands of years, and eventually becomes bored with his immortality. In the 20th century the Sphinx discovers the hero Nova, a human empowered by the aliens of Xandar. As Nova was instilled with the subconscious knowledge of Xandar's Living Computer - a computer connected to the still-living brains of deceased Xandarans - the Sphinx theorized that the Living Computer may be able to find a way to end his immortal life.
The Sphinx has several encounters with Nova, but is unable to glean the knowledge required. ["Nova" #6 - 7; 11 (Feb. - Mar. + Jul. 1977)] The Sphinx then empowers a pawn called Thraxon to help subdue the
Inhumans, as he plans to use the power of Black Boltto amplify a scanning device and read the minds of all mankind for knowledge of how to finally die. The Fantastic Four, however, defeat Thraxon and Black Bolthimself blasts the Sphinx into deep space. ["Fantastic Four" Annual #12 (1977)] After a brief battle, the Sphinx then allies himself with Nova and his allies when they travel back to Xandar to join a war against the Skrulls. ["Nova" #23 - 25 (Jan. - May (bi-monthly) 1978)]
This proves to be a ruse as once on Xandar the Sphinx takes advantage of the war to find and absorb the knowledge of the Living Computer. Evolving into a god, the Sphinx then has a change of heart and vows to destroy Earth. The Fantastic Four witness this, and knowing that they are hopelessly outmatched
Mr. Fantasticcontacts the cosmic entity Galactusand presents a proposal - if Galactus will defeat the Sphinx, then Mr. Fantastic will release him from his vow to never threaten the Earth again. Galactus accepts, and after the Fantastic Four find Galactus a new Herald - Terrax- the group travel to Earth. Galactus then battles and defeats the Sphinx, and after crushing his Ka Stone traps him in a time loop, which forces Anath-Na to constantly relive his life. ["Fantastic Four" #206 - 213 (May - Dec. 1979)]
Anath-Na relives his life several times over until due to a chronal flaw he is able to meet himself, and so warns the younger Anath-Na as to his future. The two then build a machine to reconstruct the Ka Stone, and after hypnotising the younger version of Anath-Na so he would not remember, the furture version enters suspended animation. The future version of the Sphinx awakens soon after Galactus departs, and begins to rebuild the Ka Stone. The Thing, however, battles the Sphinx to a standstill and destroys the machine, leaving the Sphinx with an incomplete Stone. ["Marvel Two-In-One" #91 (Sep. 1982)] The Sphinx then departs, but on learning that the incomplete Ka Stone is losing all power seeks revenge of the Thing. The villain the Puppet Master assists the Thing and forces the Sphinx to crush the Ka Stone; as a result Anath-Na immediately ages five thousand years and crumbles to dust. ["The Thing" #34 (Apr. 1986)]
"Meryet Karim" is a desert nomad who finds an unconscious Anath-Na Mut soon after he finds the Ka Stone. In nursing him back to health, Karim absorbs residual energies from the Ka Stone which grant her a fraction of its' power. Karim found that after death she was being perpetually recincarnated into new bodies and retaining the knowledge of her previous lives with each birth. In the modern era, Karim finds the remants of the Ka Stone and reconstructs it to become the new Sphinx. Karim then alters history so that Anath-Na Mut kills Moses, which leads to Egypt eventually conquering the world. Karim is thwarted by the superhero team the
New Warriors, and she resurrects Anath-Na in a bid to reclaim his love. The newly-empowered Anath-na battles the New Warriors, but when forced to face his feelings for Karim decides to merge with her into a composite entity, which goes back in time to live a normal life. ["New Warriors" #47 - 50 (May. - Jul. 1994); "Nova" #6 - 7 (Jun. - Jul 1994);" Night Thrasher" vol. 2, #11 - 12 (Jun. - Jul. 1994)]
* [http://www.marveldirectory.com/individuals/s/sphinx.htm Sphinx at MarvelDirectory.com]
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