Did the Egyptians have the Power Of Flight?

A 2000 Years Old Egyptian Airplane? This object was found in 1898 in a tomb at Saqqara and it was dated to 200 BCE. The facts can turn upside down what we know about the Egyptians and their knowledge.

ancient egyptSince in 1898 there were no such thing as airplanes, this discovery was put in a box and labeled as a bird model.

It was only when Dr. Khalil Messiha (a investigator of ancient mechanical models) found it again stored in the basement of the Cairo museum, could the world saw an entire different thing in that same object.

Though Dr. Khalil Messiha, was the first to talk about it, the claim may have been most famously made by Hunter Havelin Adams III in the notoriously specious essay African and African American Contributions to Science and Technology.  On pages 52 and 53 of this essay,  Adams claims:

“The ancient Egyptian model looks contemporary and bears a strong resemblance to the American Hercules transport aircraft…[Although the glider] could sail through the air for a considerable distance with only a slight hand thrust it definitely was not a toy. It was a model for a full-scale glider! …[Another source claims that] Egyptians used their early planes for travel, expeditions, and recreation!”

Egyptian model by Khalil Messiha
Egyptian model by Khalil Messiha

The “discovery” was considered so important by the Egyptian government that a special committee of leading scientists was established to study the object.

They found out that:

– The model has the exact proportions of a very advanced form of “pusher-glider”. This type of glider will stay in the air almost by itself. This ability is dependent on the shape of wings and their proportions.

– The tipping of wings downward, a reversedihedral wing as it is called, is the feature behind this capability.
A similar type of curving wings are implemented on the Concorde airplane, giving the plane a maximum lift without detracting from its speed.

Egyptian model by Khalil Messiha
Egyptian model by Khalil Messiha

Also Egyptians are known to have nearly always made scale-models of projects and objects which they planned to create or build. Giving this into consideration, one can wonder that it is incredible that someone more than 2,ooo years ago, devised a model of a flying device with such advanced features.


Many theories insist that since the model has no horizontal tale it shouldn’t be able to fly. Therefore this finding remains controversial.

Whether the Egyptians planned these airplanes, or actually constructed them, it’s unknown. No full-size airplanes have been found in any Pharaoh’s tomb or anywhere in Egypt.

But taking into account that the bird depicted cannot be found anywhere in nature, is it possible to imagine that the ancient Egyptians could have seen something in the air?

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