Egyptian Pyramids: History and Interesting Facts

Egyptian pyramids were made around the time when Egypt was a wealthy country with a fast rate of acquisition of knowledge. Although some of the oldest Egyptian pyramids date as far back as 4,000 years ago, their magnificence has not diminished with the passage of time.

What is an Egyptian Pyramid?

Egyptian Pyramids

The Great Sphinx of Giza stands atop the Giza Plateau

They are huge pyramid-shaped structures of ancient times. These pyramids form a very important part of Egyptian history. They look natural but on the contrary, they are man-made. It’s been estimated that, as ten years ago, there were over one hundred and twenty (120) pyramids in Egypt. Most of them were built as tombs for Egyptian pharaohs – kings and queens.

One of the earliest pyramids built was the Pyramid of Djoser. Historians believe that Djoser was planned by Imhotep, Chancellor to the Pharaoh Djoser’s. Most of the popular pyramids we see today can be found in Giza, Egypt. The largest of the pyramids in Giza is known as the Pyramid of Khufu, also known as the Pyramid of Cheops or the Great Pyramid of Giza. The Great Pyramid of Giza, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, is the biggest of the three pyramids (Khufu, Khafre and Menkaur) that form the Giza pyramid complex.

During the Archaic Dynasty period when upper and Lower Egypt were united, only the elite were laid to rest in Mastabas.  Mastabas were built like long seats. They were ancient Egyptian tombs, rectangular in structure and made of mud-bricks.

The Building of the Pyramids

The Pyramid of Djoser which was built by Imhotep was built to look like mastabas packed on each other creating space that looked like stairs. This stacked-type of the pyramid was the first of its kind at the time. The ancient Egyptians believed that the souls of the dead Kings climbed the stairs up to heaven. It was also insinuated that the Egyptian gods handpicked the kings to be in between the people and the gods. For this reason, ancient Egyptians made major efforts in preserving the honor of kings whenever they died.

Imhotep, the builder of the Pyramid of Djoser, was revered by many as a living embodiment of a god, based on all the spectacular structures he constructed. Additionally, he healed ailments, preached and got referred to as the saint of physicians and scribes.

In the Giza pyramid complex, the second-largest pyramid was made for Khafre, Khufu’s son.  In this pyramid, a carving of limestone was made as a statue to guide him. The upper side of the carving was human while the lower part was animal, specifically lion.

Thieves and tomb raiders of old times and current times pillage the bodies and other items of people who were buried in these pyramids.

Egyptologists and archaeologists have maintained that the quality and scale of construction of the pyramids naturally coincided with the fall of Egyptian civilization. Today, pyramids are no longer built.


The Shape of the Pyramids

You may also like...