Monday, March 28, 2011

The Pyramids - Egypt

Hardly a monument in Egypt is as controversial as the pyramids. To them is surrounded by many rumors and mysteries. Already on the construction techniques is a mystery for centuries, and there are many speculations about the meaning and nonsense of the pyramids, tombs for pharaohs of the rich over astronomical instruments, built from stone to buildings by aliens.

The modern Egyptology represents former thesis: they are grave monuments. How were they built, however, exactly about the scholars argue as ever. The most prevalent theory is likely to be construction of the ramp, but even here there are enough counter-arguments.

The most famous pyramids are the seven great pyramids of the Old Kingdom:

Step Pyramid

Step Pyramid of Djoser DjoserK?nig is the actual "inventor" of the pyramids. What was new was not only the shape but also the material was revolutionary. Although stones were already used in parts of earlier graves, but here was first used only stone. Imhotep, his client supported him vigorously and was later revered as a god. Originally a huge grave chamber was built, which consisted of two floors. To this mastaba is finally drew a 10 meter high wall, an area of ??554 x 277 m enclosed. First, the mastaba on all sides by 3 m and then expanded by a further 8.5m. She was then raised again to 3 meters. The future shape of the pyramid, however, drew up only when Imhotep Mastaba Mastaba sat up was finally reaches a height of 60 meters, which consisted of six steps. The plan now measured 125 x 110 m. Run underground shafts and tunnels, of which, however, the "real" by those who have created grave robbers, are almost indistinguishable. In these tunnels were buried, the family members of Djoser himself was found only a mummified left foot.

The Step Pyramid is built, however, only the center of a huge grave condition, the Djoser had. Example, there is on the south side of the southern tomb, whose exact function is not fully understood. This grave is similar to that in the pyramid, with particular grave chamber gives up mysteries: it consists of red granite, the walls are tiled in blue and covered with depictions of the pharaoh. Even a sarcophagus is available. This is only 1.60 m long, which is much too small to include a stretched body. In addition, the corpse would have carried a 80 x 40 cm wide opening must be introduced. Perhaps here the guts of the pharaoh was buried, but this is pure speculation.

To the east of the pyramid is a building complex, and it is here to dummy buildings. One finds here the W-festival-court with three pavilions, which have only appearance inputs. The house of the North and the house of the South are two major buildings within the complex, the meaning is not clear. The entire northern area could still be a treat for Egyptology, for he is still buried under rubble, sand and gravel.

Pyramid of Meidum

This is the first true pyramid - at least it should be the first. It is considered a work Snefru, the founder of the 4th Dynasty. Kurt Mendelssohn thought that was the construction of the pyramid, a devastating disaster, which is why the building collapsed. The reason for this construction disaster could be the steep incline. Today we have left only one type of tower. Here one finds for the first time the classic pyramid complex, which has since been always built in a similar way. The plant itself has an entrance on the north wall on the east side is a smaller satellite pyramid. A kind of embankment leading to the valley temple, which was accessible by ship. Another innovation is the location of the grave chamber in the pyramid body itself, is held in a shaft. The grave chamber was empty and not even contained a sarcophagus, which has led to the consideration that here has never been a funeral. Any Snofru was buried in one of his other two pyramids.

Bent Pyramid

The other two pyramids at Dahshur Snefru are. After prolonged dispute between the scholars, it is now assumed that the Bent Pyramid is the older of the two. The Bent Pyramid got its name because of the remarkable change in the slope angle from 54 to 43 degrees, which gives rise to many speculations. This measure reduced the level of the pyramid was originally 135 m to 101 m with an edge length of 190 m. The German Egyptologist Ludwig Borchardt (1863-1938) has put forward the theory that you pasted this bend to be faster. A common theory of Kurt Mendelssohn speaks against it by a disaster of the pyramid of Meidum that should have collapsed as a result of the steep angle of approach and why we chose here a lower angle so that the disaster is not repeated.

For the special feature of this pyramid is not only the classic one entrance on the north side, but also a second high in the west facade. Also in this pyramid an aligned access to the North Star passage leads to two chambers which are connected by an intricate system of tunnels and drop stones together. Furthermore, there is a second passage leading to the upper chamber to the west wall of the pyramid. Again, no mummy was found, not even a sarcophagus was found. Also, this pyramid has a valley temple as a mortuary temple on the east side.

Red Pyramid

The Red Pyramid is the first true pyramid, as they were built by the descendants Snefru. It was 'built, what little of the later standard (51 ° 52' with an angle of 43 "36) is different. The name has received the pyramid because of the color of the stone blocks that shine in the evening light reddish. The Red Pyramid was Egyptologists treated so far as a stepchild, their interiors, we did know. The entrance passage leads to three successive chambers, the third and largest 9.50 m long and just slightly wide of 4 m is an almost invaluable references to the markers on stones on the east side are dar. This indicates data that allow assumptions about the progress of the work. Otherwise, it will be interesting what lies still all under the desert sand.

Cheops pyramid

The undoubtedly best known pyramid is the Pyramid of Cheops, the Great Pyramid is also called.
Cheops Pyramid / Big PyramideDie largest pyramid in the history of the ancient Egyptians achieved impressive dimensions: the area has almost 230 m side length, a height of 146.60 m (137.50 today only) and was of about 6.5 million tonnes built of limestone, which is about 2.3 million stone blocks equivalent of 2.5 tons. The area is about 5.3 hectares, the slope again 51 ° 52 '. A spectacular phenomenon is its unique geometric property that their level is at its periphery in the same ratio as the radius to the circumference of a circle. In other words, the ratio is 1:2 Pi This fact suggests again and again to new speculation. Was this intended or is it merely a coincidence?

The interior of the pyramid is complicated. It appears that the plans during construction have been changed at least twice. The oriented to the north celestial entrance leads through a passageway under the surface of the plateau. At first they built a chamber whose completion was abandoned. Presumably this was due to the intolerable working conditions, as executed here arrived barely oxygen. Instead, they decided to move inside this chamber in the pyramid and the entrance tunnel built from a new course, which passes about 40 m in a horizontal passage that leads to another chamber grave. It is unfinished and will - described as the "Queen's Chamber" - for no reason. From this chamber lead from two so-called "air shafts" inside the pyramid. Research by R. Gantenbrink using a robot, however, revealed that there is at the southern end of the shaft, a type of door that was not opened until today. Thus, this may be not as supposed be air shafts. The world can only wonder what lies behind that door.

Another change to the Urspungsplanung can be seen in the construction of the Grand Gallery. She goes into a horizontal path of which leads to the royal chamber in the center of the pyramid. Three trap doors, or rather three "portcullis" working the grave stone chamber at the top end of the gallery protect against unwanted visitors. The King's Chamber itself is a bland, bare room in which there is on the west side, a simple granite sarcophagus. He was brought here during the construction because it would not have been possible to transport him to subsequently through the narrow passages of the pyramid.

Cheops' pyramid is surrounded by three small pyramids, in which relatives and high officials were buried. Continue to be found in rows aligned Mastaben. In 1954 the remains were found a large ship, which was located in one of the boat pits.


Khafre pyramid stands on a hill and has therefore larger than the pyramid of his father Cheops. In reality, however, it is 10.20 m smaller than the Great Pyramid, thus reaching a height of 136.40 m. The basic edge length is 216 m, the slope angle is 52 ° 20 'somewhat steeper. To the pyramid complex of a mortuary temple belongs to the eastern flank, which is connected by a path with the impressive valley temple - and of course the Sphinx, a larger than life image of the Pharaoh of the respect many recent speculations of his age have been brought into the world.

The interior of the pyramid is quite simple. Access is targeted as usual after the celestial pole, a passage leads to a grave chamber at the base of the structure. There is also a second entrance a little further north on the pavement of the pyramid square. The excavator was Giovanni Battista Belzoni in 1818 in the grave chamber has a beautiful granite sarcophagus, but disappointed he had to find that the grave robbers were again faster. Since the interior of the Cheops pyramid is quite complex, it was assumed here, further courses and / or chambers, and left the building "X" with the help of special rays. But the effort was in vain.


The smallest of the three pyramids at Giza was built by Pharaoh Menkaure (Menkaure). Compared to its predecessors the building looks small and inconspicuous. The basic edge length is just 108 m, the total reaches the pyramid a height of 70 m (146 m Cheops pyramid). It is like the last time this pyramid era, the other pyramids are not to be compared with the three giants. Otherwise, this structure also differs not greatly from those of his ancestors. Three grave chambers exist in the bedrock, a blind path, which starts from the upper chamber, is seen as a modification of the original building project. Colonel Howard Vyse was here in 1837 in the second chamber a basalt sarcophagus containing a mummy. This can be admired today in the British Museum in London.

The pyramid was probably built in great haste, for to stay a few blocks down and not even the dead and the Valley Temple are of inferior quality. The reason for this is found in an inscription, which reported, that Mykerions son Shepseskaf was completing the building.

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