These pyramids—especially the Great Pyramid of Giza—are the most spectacular man-made structures in history. Egyptian pyramids were built to bury the bodies of the then kings.
Although the pyramids date from the beginning of the Old Kingdom to the 4th century BC. The constructions were done during the Ptolemaic Empire in d. The spire of the pyramid building began in the latter part of the third dynasty and continued until about the sixth (c. 2325 BC).
Even after more than 4,000 years the Egyptian pyramids still retain their grandeur, providing a glimpse into the country’s rich and glorious past.
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Early Age of Civilization in Egypt
The kings held a unique position in Egyptian society between the human and the divine, who was believed to have been chosen by the gods to serve among the people who lived on earth.
Because of this, the glory of the king was retained even after the death of the king. When the kings died, food items, clothes, ornaments, utensils, and weapons were also buried with them.
The smooth angular sides of the pyramid symbolize the sun’s rays and were designed to help the king’s soul ascend to heaven and join the gods, especially the sun god.
The ancient Egyptians believed that, when the king died, part of his soul (called the “ka”) remained with his body. The ancient Egyptians believed that the things buried with them after death would be useful to them later.
Thus the pyramid became a focal point for the dead kings, it was believed that the accompanying burials would be useful after their death, their wealth not only for them but also for their relatives, officials, and priests who were around them. were buried.
Pyramid of Beginnings
From the beginning of the dynasty era (2950 B.C.), royal tombs were carved into the rock and protected with a flat-roofed rectangular structure called a “mastaba”. Which were the leading pyramids.
The oldest known pyramid in Egypt dates back to 2630 BC. was built around. In Saqqara, known as the other pyramid for King Djoser of the Third Dynasty, it began as a traditional mastaba.
One story says that the pyramid’s architect was Imhotep, a priest, and physician who, 1,400 years later, became the patron saint of writers and physicians there.
During the nearly 20-year reign of King Djoser, the pyramid builders assembled stone, six stepped layers (which were clay-brick, like the earlier tombs), which eventually reached a height of 204 feet (62 m). Gaya; It was the tallest building of its time.
After Djoser, other pyramids became ideal for royal burials.
A “true” of the first tomb, this pyramid-built Red Pyramid was at Dahshur, one of three burial structures built for the first king of the Fourth Dynasty. This was known as the color of the limestone used for the construction of the pyramids.
Great Pyramid at Giza
The Pyramids of Giza, the oldest and largest, known as the Great Pyramid, is the only surviving structure of the famous Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. It was built for Khufu (Cheops, in Greek), Sanferu’s successor, and eight kings of the Fourth Dynasty.
Although Khufu reigned for 23 years (2589–2566 BC), relatively little is known of his reign beyond the pyramids of his grandeur. The base of the pyramid averaged 755.75 feet (230 m), and its original height was 481.4 feet (147 m), making it the largest pyramid in the world.
Three smaller pyramids built for the queen of Khufu are erected next to the larger pyramid, and a mausoleum was found nearby in which her mother, Queen Heteferus, is buried.
The Middle Pyramid at Giza was built for Khufu’s son Khafre (2558–2532 B.C.). A unique feature built inside Khafre’s pyramid complex was the statue of a mystical man, a guardian, carved in limestone with the head of a man without a nose and the body of a lion. It was the largest statue in the ancient world, measuring 240 feet tall and 66 feet high.
In the 18th Dynasty (c. 1500 B.C.), the Great Mysterious idol was worshiped, as it was an image of a local form of the deity, who when Napoleon invaded Giza, he shot it with a cannon. was blown up.
The southern pyramid at Giza was built for Khafre’s son Menkaur (2532-2503 B.C.). It is the smallest of the three pyramids (218 ft) and is a precursor to the smaller pyramids built during the Fifth and Sixth Dynasties.
To build the Great Pyramid of Khufu, about 2.3 million pieces of cut stone (about 2.5 tons), and transportation was used. Herodotus, the ancient Greek chronicler, wrote that it took 100,000 people to build and 20 years to build, but later archaeological evidence suggests that the workforce may have been around 20,000.
Although some popular versions of history held that the pyramids were built by slaves. These workers were probably Egyptian agricultural workers. When the Nile flooded, the pyramids were being worked on at that time, and thus they were submerged in water.
end of pyramid era
Pyramids continued to be built throughout the Fifth and Sixth Dynasties, but gradually the general quality and scale of their construction declined with the power and wealth of the kings over the period.
In later older pyramids, workers in the pyramid, starting with King Unas (2375–2345 B.C.), began inscribing the events of the king’s reign on the walls of the burial chamber and the rest of the pyramid. Known as the Pyramid Texts, they are, in a way, the oldest religious works known from ancient Egypt.
At the time of his reign, the prosperity of the Old Kingdom was declining, and the pharaohs (people belonging to the race or religion or class of the ancient Egyptian kings) were also losing some of their semi-divine statuses, because of the need for non-royal administrative officials. The powers were increasing.
The Pyramid of Pekki II was built at Saqqara and took about 30 years during his reign to build it, being much less (172 ft) in height than the older kingdoms.
With Pepi’s death, the state and strong central government almost collapsed, and Egypt first entered a turbulent phase known as the Intermediate Period. Later kings of the 12th dynasty returned to the pyramid building during the phase of the so-called Middle Kingdom.
How do pyramids look today?
Robbers plundered most of the bodies and funeral items from ancient and modern tombs from the Egyptian pyramids. The smooth white limestone over them was deformed.
Although today millions of people visit the pyramids every year for their sheer grandeur and the enduring attraction of Egypt’s rich and glorious past.