The Amazing Pyramids In Egypt Essay Research — страница 2

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was probably brought by barge from quarries farther up the Nile. Some of them had small blocks of stone and rubble inside, while others had only mud bricks. To build the tomb, the Egyptians marked the plan on the ground. Then they laid in position the column bases and the first layer of blocks for the walls. The spaces between the blocks were filled with sand, giving a flat surface over which to pull the nest layer of stones. An ever-growing ramp was used, which the blocks were dragged to the top. When each layer was in place, more sand was added to give a flat surface again. This went on until the roof was in place. The sand was then removed and decorations could be completed at the same time (Millard 41). Funeral ceremonies were performed in temples that were attached to the

pyramids. Most pyramids had two temples connected by a long stone passageway. One temple stood next to the pyramid and the other stood beside the river. Inside the pyramid, corridors and shafts lead to various subterranean chambers, most of which are unfinished. In almost the exact center is a room called the King’s Chamber where there is an empty stone box, called a sarcophagus, which was meant to hold the king’s coffin. This room is reached by an ascending corridor in the midst of which is a magnificent gallery 153 feet long and 28 feet high. The pyramid builders attempted to hide these passageways from thieves and vandals by covering them with stone slabs. The passage to the King’s Chamber, for instance, was closed by a granite plug, which made the entrance look just

like the surface blocks of the pyramid. So well concealed was the entrance that when 3000 years later, the Caliphs of Cairo tried to get inside, they had to dig tunnels in the rock. These details emphasize what a colossal task it must have been to construct this great monument. Nevertheless, there is a general agreement on some things. When the architects looked for the right place to situate the pyramid, they decided to use a large rock mass that appeared on the plateau as an inner core for the building. Having done that they leveled the ground all around so as to have a flat base. The ancient Egyptians sought eternal life above all else. The Egyptians thought that if they could but satisfy the hundreds deities who regulated every event; if they could preserve their bodies as

permanent shelters for their souls; then, surely, they would live forever. They would be able to live free from illness and harm, continuing the colorful existence they enjoyed along the fertile banks of the Nile. To Egyptians after life meant that the soul left the body at death, but it was expected to return to it throughout eternity. That is why the Egyptians mummified their dead, to preserve the body from decay. Although they needed to preserve the bodies and tried very hard to hide the tombs, few rich burials survived even a relatively short time. There have been many tomb robbers. Egypt could not protect the temples and tombs, then or now, against the greed of robbers or the dedication of archeologists. Another large problem came about with trying to preserve the tombs.

Travelers from all over came to visit Egypt, including archeologists. Everyone wanted a little souvenir to take home with them. Small trinkets from the ancient tombs, and using parts of mummies and of other artifacts for medicine, became a fad. There was no care taken in retrieving these articles. More was probably destroyed in the process of retrieving artifacts, than was actually found. One century afterwards, during the 21st dynasty the priests of Thebes and other authorities had to go to the Valley of the Kings and rescue what they could, because tomb robbery was so great. They took the mummies they could save and rewrapped what was left to them. These mummies along with what was left of their funeral possessions were put in a mass burial in an abandoned tomb. 341