Khufu (Cheops) was the son and the successor of king Sneferu and queen Hetepheres, daughter and heiress of king Huni. According to the ancient records Cheops has reigned for twenty-three years, he married several times, consequently he has many sons and daughters. He was responsible for building several projects and monuments. Moreover, he has exploited certain regions and they were Sinai, Nubia and the Arabian desert because of their mineral wealth. As a matter of fact, the name of Cheops during later times has its powerful impact and charm to the extent that it was engraved on scarabs in order to be used as amulets, his name was also connected with legends.
Cheops apparently was energetic and active ruler. During his reign, the land flourished and art reached perfection, moreover, he was divine and his subjects were certainly willing to participate in erecting his eternal monuments. In addition to this, his reign fostered the Egyptian architecture and art. When he died, his land was economically stable, as result he enabled his son Chephren to build the second pyramid, which was almost a colossal monument as that of his father.
The cult Cheops was preserved for many centuries after his death, and thus monuments referring to his priests, which back dated to several periods of Egyptian history down to Ptolemic Periods; that is to say for more than two thousand years after his death was preserved. Chephren was inspired most possibly by the magnitude of his father's construction. He has chosen a plateau, which was located at the edge of the desert about five miles to the west to Giza, and erected at its north-west corner a pyramid even vaster dimensions.
The pyramid of Cheops or the great pyramid marked the apogee of pyramid-building with respect of both size and quality. The great pyramid was surrounded by a temenos wall of which only the foundation remained. The height of the great pyramid nowadays is 137 meters where as its original height was 146 meters. The measure of each side originally was 230 meters with an angle 51 50. As a matter of fact, the sides of the pyramid were exactly set towards cardinal points, but the casing from Tura limestone has almost completely disappeared except for few blocks at the base. Generally speaking, this pyramid was greatly estimated, when builders finished it. The core of local stone, and the outer facing of Tura limestone were composed of about 2.300.000 separate blocks, and each one ranged from about two and a half tons in weight and its maximum weight was fifteen tons.
The plan of the pyramid
the interior parts of the pyramid had undergone several changes in design during its building. The entrance lay in the northern side of the pyramid, it has a pointed roof, which was built from blocks of limestone, it led to the steep passage, and in turn to the first chamber (burial chamber), yet this burial chamber remained unfinished, and it was the original burial chamber in the first design. As a matter of fact, the builders decided to enlarge the pyramid before finishing the first burial chamber. Accordingly they constructed an ascending passage, leading to a horizontal passage, which terminated in what was called incorrectly the "queen's chamber", thus this was the burial chamber of the pyramid in accordance to the enlarged plan. An opening of a shaft was situated at the juncture of the ascending and horizontal passage and it opened into the lower part of the descending passage.
The so-called queen's chamber was built entirely from limestone. Both the north and the south walls have a small hole, and this led into narrow channels, which originally opened in the exterior part of the pyramid.
After this the builders changed their plan once again, as they have enlarged the structure and built a third and higher burial room. Then, we retraced to the beginning of the horizontal passage and came upon the grant gallery, which led upward to the final resting place of king Cheops. The length of this grant gallery was 47 meters, and its height was 8.5 meters, and it has a corbelled roof. This grant gallery ended in a horizontal granite passage, which served as an antechamber, and beyond this antechamber the so-called "King's chamber" was found, it was directed E-W, and it was entirely lined by polished pink granite and roofed with horizontal slabs.
Furthermore, a unique device of four super imposed horizontal ceilings enclosing vacant spaces between them and topped with a gable roof of two series of blocks leaning upon one another, was located above this ceiling. These "relieving chambers" were intended as provision against stresses in the ceiling blocks of the chamber. The two ochre markings of the king's name were found in the two upper chambers. Moreover, the plain granite sarcophagus was located at the western end of the burial chamber. The apertures, that were similar to these of the middle chamber of channels square in section cut out of one stone a roofed with a slab, were found at the north and south walls. These channels were usually thought to be ventilation-channels, but would better be considered as an open ways for the king's soul to reach the circumpolar stars to the north and the Orion constellation to the south.
Language: Aspects of writing | Linguistic Features | Hieroglyphs etc.Gods
Gods: Isis | Ra | Set | Osiris | Qebhsennef | Maat
Pyramids: Building stones | Egypt Land of the pyramids | Canstruction of Pyramids | Huni's Pyramid | Zoser's step Pyramid | Sneferu's Pyramid | The solar Boat | The grest pyeamid of cheops | Chephren's pyramid | Senusert I's pyramid | Sphinx
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sports: Introduction | Chariots-training horses | Running | Combating sports | Aquatic sports | Competition | Games and toys | Acrobtics
jewellery: Introduction | Gold | Silver | The precious & semi-precious Stones | The substitutes of precious stones | Same kinds of jewellery | Discoveries of jewellery
Sculpture: Introduction | Old kingdom statues | Middle kingdom statues | New kingdom statues