10 facts about the Egyptian Pyramids that You May Not Know
Step back in time and explore one of the most fascinating wonders of the ancient world – the Egyptian pyramids. These towering structures have captivated historians, architects, and travelers alike for centuries with their mysterious allure, grandeur, and breathtaking engineering marvels. But did you know that there are some lesser-known facts about these iconic monuments? From secret underground chambers to hidden messages etched into stone, we’ve rounded up 10 intriguing facts about the Egyptian pyramids that will surprise even the most ardent history buff. Join us on a journey through time as we uncover some little-known secrets about these incredible structures!
The Story of the Egyptian Pyramids
Most people know the story of the Egyptian pyramids. They were built by the ancient Egyptians to serve as tombs for their pharaohs and their queens. The most famous pyramid is the Great Pyramid of Giza, which was built for the pharaoh Khufu. But there are many other pyramids in Egypt, some of which are even older than the Great Pyramid.
The first pyramid ever built was the Step Pyramid of Djoser, which was constructed around 2630 BC. This pyramid was not built as a tomb, but rather as a temple for the sun god Ra. It was only later that the Egyptians began to use pyramids as tombs.
The largest pyramid in Egypt is not the Great Pyramid of Giza, but rather the Pyramid of Khafre, which was built for Khufu’s son. The Great Pyramid is actually slightly smaller than the Pyramid of Khafre. However, it is still an impressive structure, measuring 147 meters (481 feet) tall and 230 meters (755 feet) long at its base.
Fact 1:These Used To Be The Tallest Structures That Humans Have Built
The Egyptian pyramids are some of the most iconic structures in history. They are also some of the most mysterious, with their origins and purpose still largely unknown. However, there are some facts about the Egyptian pyramids that you may not know.
For example, did you know that the Great Pyramid of Giza was not always the tallest structure in the world? In fact, it wasn’t even the tallest structure in Egypt! That honor belonged to the Pharos of Alexandria, which was built around 280 BCE. The Pharos was a massive lighthouse that stood at approximately 400 feet tall. It was one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World and served as a guide for ships entering Alexandria’s harbor.
However, the Pharos is no longer standing. It was destroyed by earthquakes and other natural disasters over the centuries. As a result, the Great Pyramid of Giza is now considered to be the oldest remaining Wonder of the World.
So, there you have it! A few facts about the Egyptian pyramids that you may not have known before.
Fact 2: Pyramid Stones Used To Weigh More Than An Elephant
The Egyptian pyramids are some of the largest and most impressive structures ever built. They were constructed over 4,500 years ago and were used as tombs for the pharaohs and their consorts. The pyramids were built using limestone, granite, and sandstone, and they range in size from the Great Pyramid of Giza, which is around 480 feet tall, to the smaller pyramids at Dahshur, which are around 100 feet tall.
The stones used to build the pyramids were extremely heavy, with some weighing up to 70 tons. In order to move these massive stones, the Egyptians used a variety of methods, including ramps and sledges. Once they had moved the stones into place, they would then use a material called gypsum mortar to hold them together.
One of the most interesting facts about the Egyptian pyramids is that their builders managed to create such massive structures without the use of modern machinery or equipment. In fact, many of the techniques used to build the pyramids are still not fully understood today.
Fact 3: They Were Not Built By Slaves
Most people think that the Egyptian pyramids were built by slaves. This is not true! The people who built the pyramids were paid workers. They were not slaves.
The Egyptian pyramids are some of the most iconic and well-known structures in the world. They are also one of the most mysterious, with their origins and purpose still largely unknown.
One of the most persistent myths about the pyramids is that they were built by slaves. This is simply not true. There is no evidence to support this claim, and it is contradicted by a great deal of archaeological evidence.
In reality, we don’t know who built the pyramids. It is possible that they were built by Egyptians, or by foreign workers brought in to help with the project. What we do know is that they were not built by slaves.
Fact 4: The Ancients Used Two Constellations To Align Pyramids
The ancient Egyptians used two constellations to align pyramids. The first was Orion, which they associated with the god Osiris. The second was Sirius, which they associated with the goddess Isis. By aligning the pyramids with these stars, the Egyptians believed they were creating a link between the earthly and cosmic realms.
There are two main theories about how the ancient Egyptians aligned their pyramids. The first theory suggests that they used the constellation Orion to align the pyramids. The second theory suggests that they used the constellation Draco to align the pyramids.
The Orion theory is supported by the fact that the three main stars in Orion’s Belt (Alnitak, Alnilam, and Mintaka) line up perfectly with the three main Giza Pyramids. Additionally, when looking at a map of the stars, Orion’s Belt points directly to the Sphinx.
The Draco theory is supported by the fact that there is a star in Draco (Thuban) that was directly overhead of the Giza Pyramids during the time when they were built. This alignment would have allowed the builders to get an accurate bearing for where they were building.
So, which theory is correct? It’s likely that both theories are correct, as it’s possible that the ancient Egyptians used both constellations to align their pyramids.
Fact 5: Special Mortar Was Used In The Making Of The Pyramids
The Egyptian pyramids were built using a special type of mortar known as lime mortar. This mortar was made from limestone, sand, water, and egg whites. It was used to bind the blocks of limestone together and make them waterproof. The use of lime mortar in the construction of the pyramids is one of the things that makes them so unique.
The ancient Egyptians used a type of mortar known as emmel to build the pyramids. This special mortar was made from sand, lime, and water, and it was used to bind the blocks of stone together. Emmel was especially tough and durable, which made it perfect for use in the construction of the pyramids.
Fact 6: You Will Find Secret Doors Inside
The Egyptian pyramids are full of secret doors and passages that have yet to be discovered. It’s believed that these hidden chambers and passages were used by the ancient Egyptians for storage or as a way to escape the tomb in case of emergency.
The Egyptian pyramids are full of secret doors and hidden chambers that have yet to be discovered. It is believed that these hidden rooms and passages were used by the ancient Egyptians for storage or as a place to hide during times of war.
Fact 7: The Smooth And Angled Sides Symbolize The Sun’s Rays
The Egyptian pyramids are some of the most iconic structures in the world. They are also one of the most mysterious, with their origins dating back thousands of years. There are many theories about how they were built, but one thing is for sure – they are an amazing feat of engineering.
One of the most interesting facts about the Egyptian pyramids is that their sides are angled and smooth, which is believed to represent the sun’s rays. This is why they are often referred to as ‘sun pyramids’. The theory is that the ancient Egyptians built them this way to honour their sun god, Ra.
Whether or not this is true, it’s definitely a fascinating fact about the Egyptian pyramids!
Fact 8: The pyramids Of Giza Were Made Over 1,200 Years Before King Tut’s Rule
In 2560 BC, the first of the Great Pyramids was built for King Khufu (Cheops, in Greek). His grandson, King Djoser, constructed the first ever six-step pyramid about a century later. It was during the Old Kingdom period that most of the major pyramids were built, including the famous Great Pyramid of Giza, which was constructed around 2560 BC. Although there were earlier and smaller pyramids built in different parts of Egypt, the Old Kingdom pyramids are generally considered to be the finest examples of this type of architecture.
The three largest and best-preserved pyramids on the Giza Plateau were built in a span of just over 80 years for three pharaohs of the Fourth Dynasty: Khufu (2589–2566 BC), his son Khafre (2558–2532 BC), and Menkaure (2532–2503 BC). The small pyramid ofQueen Sneferu (Dynasty IV) at Dahshur seems to have been an afterthought added to her husband’s tomb complex.
Fact 9: The Egyptian People Built These Pyramids
Most of the Egyptian pyramids were built during the Old and Middle Kingdom periods. The Old Kingdom pyramids were constructed between 2613 and 2181 BC, while the Middle Kingdom pyramids were built between 2055 and 1650 BC. The earliest pyramid was built during the Third Dynasty by King Djoser. His stepped pyramid, which was located at Saqqara, is thought to have been inspired by the mastabas that were common in Ancient Egypt.
Fact 10: It Is Easy To Visit These Pyramids
The Egyptian pyramids are some of the most popular tourist attractions in the world. They are located in the Giza plateau, just outside of Cairo. The three main pyramids were built for the Pharaohs Khufu, Khafre, and Menkaure.
The Great Pyramid of Giza, also known as the Pyramid of Khufu, is the oldest and largest of the three pyramids. It was built around 2560 BCE and is approximately 481 feet tall.
Visitors can purchase tickets to visit the pyramids and explore their ancient history. Guided tours are available, as well as camel rides around the plateau. There is also a museum nearby with artifacts from Ancient Egypt, including mummies.
10 More Interesting Facts about the Egyptian Pyramids
1. The Egyptian pyramids were built as tombs for pharaohs and their consorts.
2. The first pyramid was built for Pharaoh Djoser in the 27th century BC.
3. The largest pyramid was built for Pharaoh Khufu in the 26th century BC and is known as the Great Pyramid of Giza.
4. The Egyptian pyramids were constructed using mainly limestone blocks weighing around two tons each.
5. It is estimated that it took around 20,000 workers around 10 years to build a single pyramid.
6. There are a total of 118 pyramids known to have been built in Egypt.
7. The Egyptian pyramids were originally painted white with red stripes and were illuminated at night by fires burning atop them.
8. In the 12th century AD, the Muslim ruler Saladin ordered the destruction of many of the pyramids due to their pagan associations. However, some still remain standing today.
9. The Great Pyramid of Giza is one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World and is the only one that remains standing today.
10 .The word ‘pyramid’ comes from the Greek word ‘pyramis’ meaning ‘wheat cake’, as they believed that these structures looked like pointed wheat cakes when seen from a distance.
Top FAQ about the Egyptian Pyramids
Who built the Egyptian Pyramids?
The Egyptian Pyramids were built by ancient Egyptians, who were skilled builders and architects. They were built during the Old Kingdom period of ancient Egypt, between 2686-2181 BCE.
Why were the pyramids built?
The pyramids were built as tombs for the pharaohs and their consorts. The ancient Egyptians believed in an afterlife and thought that the pharaohs would need a place to rest in the afterlife, so they built these massive tombs.
How long did it take to build a pyramid?
It took around 20 years to build a pyramid, on average. However, the exact time it took to build a pyramid would depend on the size and complexity of the pyramid.
How were the pyramids built?
The pyramids were built using a combination of ramps, sledges, and levers. The builders would first lay a foundation and then build the pyramid up layer by layer. They would use limestone blocks, some of which weighed as much as 80 tons, to construct the pyramid.
How many pyramids are there in Egypt?
There are around 118 known pyramids in Egypt. The most famous pyramids are the Pyramids of Giza, which include the Great Pyramid of Giza, the largest and oldest of the three.
What is inside a pyramid?
The inner chambers of the pyramid are where the pharaohs were buried, along with their treasures and offerings for the afterlife. The burial chambers were filled with items such as furniture, jewelry, food, and statues.
How tall are the pyramids?
The height of the pyramids varies, but the Great Pyramid of Giza is the tallest at 147 meters (481 feet). The other two pyramids at Giza are slightly smaller, with the Pyramid of Khafre standing at 136 meters (446 feet) and the Pyramid of Menkaure at 65 meters (213 feet).
How were the pyramids aligned?
The pyramids were aligned to the cardinal points of the compass, with the sides of the pyramids facing exactly north, south, east, and west. This was done using astronomical observations and careful measurements.
Why are the pyramids important?
The pyramids are important because they are a testament to the ingenuity and skill of the ancient Egyptians. They are also important because they provide insight into the beliefs and practices of ancient Egyptian society.
Are the pyramids still standing?
Yes, the pyramids are still standing today, although they have suffered from erosion and weathering over the centuries. However, they are still impressive and awe-inspiring structures that attract millions of visitors every year.
How were the blocks used to build the pyramids transported?
The blocks were transported from the quarries to the construction site using sledges pulled by laborers. The sledges were placed on top of rollers made of logs, and the blocks were dragged along these rollers to their destination. When the blocks needed to be raised to a higher level, ramps were built using mud bricks or stone blocks.
Were slaves used to build the pyramids?
There is some debate among historians about whether or not slaves were used to build the pyramids. Some believe that the laborers were skilled workers who were paid for their work, while others argue that slaves were forced to work on the construction sites. It is likely that a combination of both skilled workers and forced labor was used to build the pyramids.
How were the pharaohs buried in the pyramids?
The pharaohs were buried in a series of chambers inside the pyramid. The burial chamber was at the center of the pyramid, and it was filled with items such as furniture, jewellery, and statues. The pharaoh’s body was placed inside a sarcophagus, which was then placed inside the burial chamber. The burial chamber was sealed, and offerings were left for the pharaoh’s use in the afterlife.
What is the purpose of the small pyramids next to the larger ones?
The small pyramids next to the larger ones were built for the pharaoh’s consorts and family members. These pyramids were smaller and less elaborate than the pharaoh’s pyramid, but they still contained treasures and offerings for the afterlife.
How were the pyramids constructed without modern technology?
The ancient Egyptians used a combination of simple machines and brute force to construct the pyramids. They used ramps, levers, sledges, and rollers to move the blocks, and they used simple tools such as chisels and hammers to shape the blocks. They also used mathematics and careful planning to ensure that the pyramid was built to the correct dimensions.
How were the pyramids discovered?
The pyramids were never truly “lost,” but they were largely forgotten by the ancient Egyptians themselves. It wasn’t until the 19th century that Western explorers rediscovered the pyramids and began to study them in detail.
Why do the pyramids have flat tops?
The tops of the pyramids were originally capped with a pyramid-ion, a small pyramid-shaped stone made of gold or electrum. However, these pyramid-ions were often stolen over the centuries, leaving the pyramids with flat tops.
Are there any pyramids outside of Egypt?
There are a few pyramids located outside of Egypt, such as the Pyramid of the Sun in Mexico and the Nubian pyramids in Sudan. However, these pyramids are not as large or as numerous as the pyramids in Egypt.
How did the pyramids influence later architecture?
The pyramids had a significant influence on later architecture, both in Egypt and around the world. The pyramid shape became a popular architectural motif, and it was used in structures such as the Louvre Pyramid in Paris and the Luxor Hotel in Las Vegas.
Why were the pyramids built at Giza?
The pyramids at Giza were built on a plateau overlooking the Nile River, which made them highly visible and easily accessible. They were also located near the ancient capital of Memphis, which made them a symbol of the power and wealth of the pharaohs.