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Questions about the Great Pyramid
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Mike
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 07, 2003 1:00 am    Post subject: Questions about the Great Pyramid Reply with quote

I have some questions relating to the great pyramid which I hope somebody can answer

1) How long has it been estimated that the Great Pyramid took to build ?

2) How many workers were involved.

3) What sort of cutting tools were involved in obtaining the granite ?

4) How far did the granite have to be transported ?

5) Is it true that no "mummy" of a dead king has ever been found in a
tomb/coffin in any pyramid ?

6) Were the tombs/coffins made of the same granite ?


Looking forward to the answers.

Cheers
Mike
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Lou Powell
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 13, 2003 4:51 pm    Post subject: Giza Reply with quote

Mike,

Hopefully i can answer some of your questions for you but i highly recomend that you have a look at the national geographic web site as it is an absolute hive of information. Of course there are plenty of other web sites that have loads of information but NG is my favourite.

It is estimated that it took 20,000 - 30,000 workers 80 years to complete the Pyramids of Giza.

I don't really know what type of tools were used as this is one of the mysteries of just HOW did they do it. Without the technology we have today to be able to cut and manover such immense granite blocks. I read that some blocks were floated down the nile while it was in flood to get them closer to the 'construction' site.

Tombs and coffins were made of a variety of materials which, i guess, depended on your or your families wealth. Wood , granite , quartz, gold. to name but a few.

Hope i've been of some help. Check out National Geo, it's a must.

Lou.
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Mike
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 13, 2003 8:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the information Lou.

I have just checked the National Geo site as you suggested and you're right - it is a must. Smile
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Jason Patterson
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 29, 2003 5:43 pm    Post subject: Sorry Lou your Wrong Reply with quote

Lou, I am sorry but you are somewhat wrong about the answers.

Quote:
1) How long has it been estimated that the Great Pyramid took to build ?


It has been estimated my Egyptologist that it took about 25 years to build the pyramid of Khufu.

Quote:
2) How many workers were involved?


It took about 100,000 workmen to build the Great Pyramid.

Quote:
3) What sort of cutting tools were involved in obtaining the granite ?


The tools that it took were very simple but efficent, as well quarring granite was a hard task. Copper and bronze chisels, wood mallets, dolerite chippers. What was done was cut strait out of the rock slab, not like limestone where they would cut trenchs into the rock and place dry wood then pour water on it until it chipped. I would estimate it took a month or so to cut out one block of granite.

Quote:
4) How far did the granite have to be transported ?


It was quarried at Aswan. So therefore it was transported down the Nile about 500 miles.

Quote:
5) Is it true that no "mummy" of a dead king has ever been found in a tomb/coffin in any pyramid ?


First let us define tomb and coffin. First the pyramid is the tomb, the granite coffin is called the sacophagus. And no Pharaoh Kufu's mummy was not found in the sacophagus. It has been gathered that tomb robbers got to him and his treasures. You can tell this by the broken off piece of the granite that they did rising the heavy lid.

Quote:
6) Were the tombs/coffins made of the same granite ?


As stated by Lou it all depends on the family wealth. The tombs were made out of limestone, regular rock, clay blocks, mud what ever they could afford and the style was at the era. The sacohaguses where usually made of granite, well at least at the time of Kufu and his family's reign. As to the same granite used in Khufu's pyramid I do not know. The style of art was the factor. Not all sacohaguses look like King Tut's.

I hope this helps.

Jason Patterson
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Hatshepsu
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 29, 2003 6:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

lol ... wow... a walking encyclopedia! goodjob! Smile
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Jason Patterson
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 29, 2003 6:17 pm    Post subject: Thanks Reply with quote

It is my job to know that information, I am a historian.
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Hatshepsu
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 29, 2003 6:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i know that. I read that about you already. Be happy, i was only joking. Very Happy
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Hatshepsu
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 29, 2003 6:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

oh yeah. and take my polls! Smile
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Mike
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 30, 2003 9:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the update Jason.
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Lou Powell
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 01, 2003 10:08 am    Post subject: Re: Sorry Lou your Wrong Reply with quote

Jason,

Thanks for helping me out with the information i gave to Mike.

I am a little confused though. I have read several books on various aspects of Egyptology and i find that no two books are the same in respect of facts and figures. As i had recommended the National Geographic web site to Mike , i thought i would use that site for my reference in answering his questions. Obviously that wasn't such a good idea.

Lou. Confused
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Jason Patterson
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 01, 2003 2:58 pm    Post subject: Confusion Not Reply with quote

Your welcome Mike.

Lou, differnt book will have differnt information. This is mainly because that the scources they get that information from are a little off then you have a chain of "a litte bit off book". National Geographic are good for the facts 99.8% of the time. The books I use for refrence is mainly from Dr. Hawass, Dr. Lehnar, and the Egyptian Antiquities. They get the facts write 99.9% of the time. But it also helps of when the books and websites were wrote, because there was some more evidence that came in around January on the figures I presented and that for now is the correct figures.

Jason
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Jan
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 03, 2003 9:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Lou,

Depends upon interpretation. You said:

'80 years to complete the Pyramids of Giza.'

In my opinion you weren't wrong as you were referring to the 'Pyramids at Giza', and not just the Great Pyramid - and as there are three pyramids at Giza (will actually there are more than three - but say three main ones) it would have taken roughly eighty years to build them. Not consecutively - but in total.

Jan
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Lou Powell
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 08, 2003 7:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jan wrote:
Hi Lou,

Depends upon interpretation. You said:

'80 years to complete the Pyramids of Giza.'

In my opinion you weren't wrong as you were referring to the 'Pyramids at Giza', and not just the Great Pyramid - and as there are three pyramids at Giza (will actually there are more than three - but say three main ones) it would have taken roughly eighty years to build them. Not consecutively - but in total.

Jan




Cheers Jan. Very Happy
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Pete Vanderzwet
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 08, 2003 2:43 am    Post subject: Pyramids Reply with quote

I'm in a bit of a rush to get through this as I have a mid-term on Friday I need to study for and my girlfriend is about to call, so I don't have the time to read through the responses to see if your questions were answered.

Quote:
1) How long has it been estimated that the Great Pyramid took to build ?


About 23 years. Keep in mind that Khufu is not the king of pyramid building. That title goes to his father, Sneferu, who is credited with building at least four (Meydum, Bent, Red, Seila) pyramids.

Quote:
2) How many workers were involved.


Herodotus said 100,000 but this is wrong. More recent calculations put the number at 20,000. They worked in crews of 2000 which were divided into gangs of 1000. These gangs were futher divided into work groups of 200, the names of which we have many.

Also keep in mind that the bottom 50% of the pyramid contains 80% of the mass, so as building progressed fewer and fewer workers were required.

Quote:
3) What sort of cutting tools were involved in obtaining the granite ?


The granite could be drilled or cut using a slury, but the quarrying process is in evidence at the quarries in Aswan, where an unfinished (cracked) obelisk still sits today. Basically, you pounded it out of the stone, or you drilled the stone, inserted dry wood and soaked it with water. The water would expand the wood and crack the piece of granite off. This process was still being used in the marble quarries of Italy not too long ago.

Once the granite was disloged from the core, it was loaded on a barge and floated down the Nile.

Quote:
4) How far did the granite have to be transported ?


About 7-800 km.

Quote:
5) Is it true that no "mummy" of a dead king has ever been found in a
tomb/coffin in any pyramid ?


No. While no body was found in the pyramid of Khufu (although several accounts of Mamun's explorations do suggest a body was found), remains have been found in the pyramids of Djoser, Sneferu, and some later pyramids. The black basalt sarcophagus in the pyramid of Merenre was found to contain a mummified body which may be that of King Merenre himself. In addition, the pyramid of Amenemhat III had evidence of aggressive tomb robbing by burning the mummy of the king so you had access to amulets contained in the wrappings.

Take this papyrus, for example: "We found the pyramid of King Sobhekemsaf I, this being unlike the pyramids and tombs of the nobles that we were used to robbing. We took our copper tools and forced a way into the pyramid of this king through its innermost part. We found the substructure, and we took our lighted candles in our hands and went down. Then we broke through the blocking that we found at the entrance to his crypt, and found this god lying at the back of his burial place. And we found the burial place of Queen Nubkhaes, his wife, situated beside him, it being protected and guarded by plaster and enclosed by a stone blocking. This we also broke through, and found her resting there in the same way.

We opened their sarcophagi and their coffins in which they were, and found the noble mummy of this king equipped with a khepesh-sword; many amulets and jewels were upon his neck, and his mask of of gold was upon him. The noble mummy of the king was completely bedecked with gold, and his coffins were adorned with gold and silver inside and out and inlaid with all kinds of precious stones...."
- Papyrus Leopold II

Quote:
6) Were the tombs/coffins made of the same granite?


Sometimes yes, sometimes no. There are a variety of factors here to consider which I don't have time to go into at the moment.

Feel free to ask any more questions. I'm writing a paper on the evolution of the Egyptian pyramid from 8000 BCE (Grave pits) - Khufu's at Giza, so much of this information is still fresh in my mind.
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Steve
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 12, 2003 8:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

All information on the pyramids is only theory right?
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