The Egyptian Pyramids: How were 'The Ancient Megastructure' is Built?

The outrageousness of the ancient Egyptian monuments are best reflected in the pyramids. The beautiful, yet mysterious aura surrounding the Egyptian pyramids are still the hotspots for active research pertaining to the uncovering of further information, the most crucial of them being the construction of the pyramids itself. The number of identified pyramids can be approximately said to be around 118, which includes amongst others the Great Pyramid of Giza, and the pyramid of Djoser, as well. But how were they built? While there are several conspiracy theories to spice up the conversation, but those are for another day. Let's see what recent discoveries suggest about our favourite monuments.

Archeologist Pierre Tallet and his crew discovered the ancient logbooks back in 2013 in a cave near Wadi al-jarf, near the Red Sea, which turned out to be crucial in shedding light on the construction process of the Great Pyramid of Giza. The papyri, which dates back to almost 4,500 years ago, contains details jotted down by Merer (a middle ranking official), who describes about the workers and how they went about the construction, and details about transportation of huge quantities of limestone from Tora (which was a limestone quarry) to Giza. Merer's logbook also revealed the time, which was the 27th year of Pharaoh Khufu's reign, and one of the names mentioned there was of Ankhaf, who was probably in charge of the construction. 

But the question that lingered was how were the huge quantities of limestone moved? While the initial pyramids were simple, rectangular 'mastabas', the latter ones differed. They were advanced and more developed six layered ones. Researchers are of the opinion that wooden sledges were used for the purpose of carrying the materials to the construction site, and that the sand in front of the sledge was doused in water. This was done to prevent friction, as the water served the purpose of sticking the sand together. Also, wall painting discovered in the tomb of Djehutihotep, where the men were depicted in action, tugging at the ropes attached to the sledge to move the statue, while another stood in front to pour water over the sand.

It may take a while before researchers fully decipher the mystery of the pyramids. This is just a small, but significant step. I guess you have to give it to the pharaohs and their fancy tombs, and their brilliant riddle!

Post Written by - Lopamudra

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