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The age of the first ancient wonders of the world began with the pyramids of Sneferu, he built three pyramids and may have had hand in others.
His pyramid at Medum began as a step pyramid and was modified to form the first true pyramid.
Sneferu's bent pyramid at Dahshur was originally planned as a true pyramid, but its geometry was altered at a point just above half its height. The angle of incline was decreased from 54° 31' 13" to 43° 21'.
When Khufu, also known as Cheops, became pharaoh, one of his first acts was to curtail the growing power of the priesthood.
He "shut up all the temples and forbade sacrifices". As a priest's living came from performing these rituals, it is not surprising that Khufu was unpopular with the religious orders.
Some believe that his pyramid at Giza was built by slaves, but this is not true. One hundred thousand people worked on it for three months of each year.
Three Pyramids at Giza
There are three pyramids at Giza, each of which one had an adjoining mortuary temple. Attached to this temple would have been a covered causeway descending down to a valley temple, near the Nile.
The "great" pyramid itself is truly an astonishing work of engineering skill - for over four thousand years, until the modern era, it was the tallest building in the world.
The sides are oriented to the four points on a compass, and the length of each side at the base is 755 feet (230.4 m). they rise at an angle of 51-52' to a heght, originally, of 481 feet (147 m), but nowadays 451 feet(138 m). It was constructed using around 2,300,000 limestone blocks, weighing, on average, 2.5 tons each, although some weigh as much as 16 tons. Until recently, relatively speaking, it was cased in smooth limestone.
Saqqara has the destinction of being the site of the first large stone structure built in the world. The first tombs of pharaohs were large, unimpressive, bunker affairs called mastabas. they were made from sun dried mud brick, and most have long since crumbled to dust.
This all changed around 2630 B.C.
with the erection of the step pyramid. It was made for the pharaoh, Djoser and began as a normal mastaba, but was subsequently enlarged by adding one mastaba on top of one another, until it consisted of six terraces of some 200 ft( 60 meters) high. The surface was originally encased in smooth white limestone, which must have caught the sunlight and reflected its rays.
The chap responsible for this was Imhotep, Djosers vizier. He is credited as being the inventor of building in stone, and was a man of many talents - Architect, physician, master sculptor, scribe, and astronomer. He must be the first true genius in recorded history, and his impresson on the Egyptians was profound because later generations revered him as a god of wisdom.