The mysterious Pyramids

The Pyramids of Giza are the most famous monuments of ancient Egypt. These massive stone structures were built around 4500 years ago on a rocky desert plateau close to the Nile. But the intriguing Egyptian pyramids were more than just tombs for kings. The mysteries surrounding their symbolism, design and purpose have inspired passionate debate. It is likely that many of these mysteries will never be solved

 

The rise and fall of the pyramid era


The pyramids epitomize ancient Egypt, yet the biggest were constructed during a short span of time early in a civilization that was to last almost three millennia. The first large Egyptian pyramid was the Step Pyramid at Saqqara, built during the third dynasty of the Old Kingdom to protect the body of the king Djoser who died around 2649 BCE. It was this feat that heralded the short age of the gigantic stone pyramids of ancient Egypt The greatest achievements of the pyramid builders were the Pyramids of Giza, built near the capital city of Memphis for the fourth dynasty kings Khufu, Khafre and Menkaure who ruled through 2589-2504 BCE. But pyramid building soon waned as the power and prosperity of the kings of Egypt weakened with the end of the Old Kingdom  The Sphinx and Pyramid of Khafre. The age and purpose of the Great Sphinx are debated, but it was probably part of Khafre's Pyramid complex Unfortunately, the pyramids became obvious targets for tomb robbers. The Giza Pyramids were plundered long ago of the bodies and anything entombed with them, despite the almost superhuman efforts of the Egyptians to protect the remains of their kings  







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