The Great Pyramid of Giza – What is there to See here?Posted in Africa | March 15, 2010 | 0 Comments
As it is with me, even you must have wished to once go to an Egypt tour and explore this great marvel. For me, it was a fascinating imagination since known from the school’s history books now turned into an exciting experience. I can only say one word for this pyramid – amazing!
Known as the Pyramid of Khufu or Cheops, the Great Pyramid of Giza is the oldest and largest pyramid in the Giza Necropolis. We all know that the pyramids of Egypt were the sacred tombs of the pharaohs. So, even this great structure is the burial chamber of the fourth dynasty Egyptian Pharaoh Khufu that took 20 years for its construction, which was completed in 2551 B.C. Undoubtedly, it is among the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World and that is was the tallest artificial structure for 3800 years long in the past.
The Great Pyramid of Giza is in a building complex that also is accompanied by two mortuary temples of Khufu (one near the pyramid and other near the Nile), three smaller pyramids of his wives, a bridge linking two temples, and small mastaba tombs of nobles.
The Great Pyramid of Giza is made up of millions of limestone blocks, while the king’s chamber holds the largest granite stones – all brought from the nearby and far away quarries. The archaeologists and the locals are of the opinion that these stones were transported by dragging them from the quarries and elevating them via transport mediums.
Exploring the Pyramid
According to our guide, the pyramid’s size has considerably reduced by 50 percent due to erosion. Further, he said that were once casing stones covering the structure to give external smoothness, which are now seen at its base scattered due to earthquakes and ransacking.
When I explored with guide, we passed through all the three chambers. Out of them, the lowest chamber is the base on which the entire pyramid stand and is segmented into the rock layer. The remaining two are the Queen’s Chamber and King’s Chamber located in the upper level.
The entrance is made in such a manner that it is sufficient enough to prevent any intruder in the pyramid. I passed through the Robbers’ Tunnel of 820 AD. Next, we came into a Descending Passage from the entrance to the masonry and then to the bedrock. From here, there is a smooth walkway that is linked to the incomplete Lower Chamber. Herein, a horizontal corridor continues in the south wall and that a deep pit is seen mysteriously on the floor, which proves the intentions to deepen the area may be to perform some rituals. Some say that this was supposed to be the actual crypt of the king, but later the king thought of building it at the higher level.
Moving ahead, a square hole in the roof of the Descending passage once sealed with a stone is where we entered the Ascending Passage. The al-Mamun’s men once were banging that led to the fall of the stone on the floor whose noise warned the robbers to turn left thus misleading them. Its end is closed by three huge granite blocks stored in the Grand Gallery on whose right, a hole in the wall takes you to the vertical shaft passing via an uneven route linked to the Descending Passage. This is the route from where the workmen escaped after work.
From the Grand Gallery, a Horizontal walkway links to the Queen’s Chamber holding shafts and is at the midway between the north and south directions. Do not miss to see the two slanting metal pipes in the left wall of the walkway kept by the Japanese archaeologists to have an x-ray film located in the Lower Chamber using the cosmic rays.
Next, we visited the King’s Chamber where the stone blocks are so brilliantly joined that my effort of inserting a tiny paper piece failed. There are five Relieving Chambers perched over the flat roof of nine stone slabs. Among them, the first four’s roofs are flat, while the fifth one has a sharp roof.
Despite this visit, we could not see the actual burial chamber at 24 m below the ground, as it is closed to the public.
The entrance tickets and limited to a group of 100 in morning and afternoon costing 100 LE per ticket.