The Great Pyramid
By: Andrew Sommerville
About five thousand years ago the Egyptians began the technique of cut stone. Before the Great Pyramid was built they started to use huge 3 ton blocks instead of mud brick. The Pharaoh, Cheop and the best architects of his empire decided that the great structure would be built at the bank of the Nile River. It to years to plan but was built at Giza between 2560-2660 B.C.The Pharaoh wanted the pyramid to be only 470 feet tall in respect for Khufu. It was the second biggest but only ten feet lower. The plans were twice enlarged before the final product was chosen.
First they cleared the land where the pyramid would be built. Then they marked the base with a crisscross of channels and filled them with water. Rocks above the waterline would be cut off to level the land. The channels were later filled with rocks. brought in the stones. The stones were dragged by workers to the site were they would be placed. The Egyptians Didn't have enough strength to lift the heavy stones so they made ramps going up the pyramid. They poured water on the ramps to reduce friction . The stones were lead by ropes and levers . the ramp was taken down after the structure was finished. The pyramids shape was meant to represent the rays of the sun falling on the earth.
The pyramid consisted of 2,500,00 stone blocks and covers 12.25 acres of land. The finished pyramid could hold four of Europe's largest churches. The interior of the pyramid was built to withstand enormous amounts of weight. Cheop's final burial chamber had six roofs to support the weight above.
The pharaoh's relatives and courtiers were buried around the pyramid in low, flat tombs called Mastasba. The great causeway led to large rectangular mortuary temple in front of the Great Pyramid. It was here that the body of the pharaoh was prepared for burial. Servants put valuable perfumes and spices on the dead pharaoh's body and took out his organs. They took out the organs to preserve the body. When the body was ready they put it in the tomb and filled the chamber with riches and things he would need in the afterlife.-
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