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  • Sophie Koenig

The Great Pyramids of Giza

No matter how much we have discovered and will discover about the famed Great Pyramids of Giza in Egypt, there always seems to be another puzzling mystery surrounding these mythical structures. Constructed 4,500 years ago, these giant relics of the Old Kingdom era have survived everything. The utter mass of the pyramids alone is breathtaking. The largest one of them stands at a total height of 146 meters (about 479 ft) and is made of 2.3 million massive stone blocks. To this day, scientists continue to hypothesize about the exact construction methods used by Egyptians to build these prehistoric architectural wonders. So far, the most common theory centers around thousands of workers using wet sand as a lubricant to move the large stones they mined from a nearby quarry on sleds across the desert. Evidence also leads to the conclusion that ramps may have then been used to transport and move the stones into place, but even if this where to be the solution it is still not clear how such heavy pieces made it up to the highest sections, especially at such steep angles.                                          

Egyptian pharaohs and their subjects believed that the pharaohs would become gods in the afterlife, so they created these pyramids as tombs filled with everything they would need to thrive in the next world after death. They were also built at a very tall height, as Egyptians believed that the dead pharaoh would pass into the sky, and that the pyramids were so tall that they could reach it. Production of the first pyramid was begun by Pharaoh Khufu around the time 2550 B.C. His son, Pharaoh Khafre built the second, slightly smaller pyramid around 2520 B.C., and in addition he added the limestone (limestone is a type of rock) Sphinx that is supposed to stand guard over this tomb. The third temple was built in 2490 B.C. by Pharaoh Menkaure and is visibly smaller than the first two structures but features a more intricate interior temple. It is said that these extraordinary structures keep the secrets of the Egyptian pharaohs.

While scientists have been capable to discover many facts about the different rooms and chambers within these pyramids, there are still a decent number of questions left unanswered, especially with the recent discovery of some secret passages and a peculiar void within the Great Pyramid of Giza. Fun Fact: It is thought that the pyramid once had an invisible swivel door which weighed almost twenty tonnes. Interestingly, it could only be found and opened from the inside. It is no surprise, then, that the door was so massive and heavy that the opening mechanism was only discovered when scientists were studying the Great Pyramid from the inside. The Ancient Egyptians’ capability to create and manage this effective feature has remained a mystery to this day. Was it meant for the dead Pharaoh to leave his grave and enter his old kingdom?

 

 

 

 

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