It was made out of 186 stones, weighing an average of 2.2 tons each. Twelve quarrymen carved 186 stones in 22 days, and the structure was erected with 44 men. They used iron hammers, chisels, and levers (this is a modern shortcut, as the ancient Egyptians were limited to using copper, later bronze, and wood). The ramps were made of packed earth mixed with small rocks.
Some scholars believe that the pyramids were not designed solely for tomb markers but also served as temples where the pharaohs could communicate with their people. This is possible, but there is no evidence of this other than speculation. Regardless, they are remarkable structures and still stand today after thousands of years.
There are four main types of pyramids: mastaba, conical, brace-ridge, and true pyramids. Mastabas are flat-topped stone structures without internal chambers; they are usually found in groups and serve as the simplest type of pyramid. Conical pyramids have a broad base that narrows toward the top in a point shape. They can be single or multiple stacked. Brace-ridge pyramids have several stacks of rectangular blocks tied together with ties made of rope or metal. True pyramids have two parallel sides almost equal in height. The third side is shorter and ends in a sharp point. There are three true pyramids in Egypt: Giza, Dahshur, and Swenett (these sites are all near Cairo).
The Great Pyramid was constructed by quarrying an estimated 2.3 million massive pieces weighing a total of 6 million tonnes. The bulk of the stones are not consistent in size or shape, and they are only loosely prepared. Mortar was used to hold the outer layers together. Local limestone from the Giza Plateau was mostly utilised. The Egyptians quarried the stones from remote locations and transported them to the construction site on rollers.
An alignment tool would have been used to line up certain markers at specific angles before each stone was cut from its location. Most likely wooden pegs were placed at regular intervals along the ground to serve as references for removing equal amounts of rock.
The pyramid is composed of two main parts: the lower court and the upper chamber. The lower court is a large open area with four square pillars at its corners. The walls of the lower court are made of fine rubble mixed with mortar. They stand about 40 feet (12 m) high and run around the entire perimeter of the enclosure. The ceiling of the lower court is also called false sky because it resembles the night sky with its stars and moon. It's made out of wood and covered with sheets of copper which help reflect the sunlight away from the king's tomb inside the pyramid.
The upper chamber is a small room located above the lower court. It has one entrance near the top of the south wall and another smaller one on the east side.
Some scientists have diverse perspectives on stones. How many stone blocks were needed to build Egypt's Great Pyramid? According to recent study, the Great Pyramid of Egypt has about 2 billion stones. Each stone weighs more than 2.5 tons on average. There are also several figures for the overall stone number of the Great Pyramid. Some say that there are up to 20 million stones, while others estimate that there are between 7 and 12 million stones.
The huge number of stones involved in its construction explains why the Great Pyramid is considered one of the wonders of the world. It also made it difficult for people to believe that such a structure could be built without using any tools other than human hands.
In fact, some scientists believe that the technology required to construct the Great Pyramid was probably not available during its era. They think that the Egyptians might have acquired their knowledge of building such structures from foreigners. However, this theory cannot explain how workers were able to move so many heavy rocks.
Since the early 19th century, scientists have been able to measure specific gravity of rocks, which allows them to estimate their weight. The average specific gravity of a stone block used to build the Great Pyramid is about 2.5. This means that each block weighs about 10,000 pounds (4,540 kg).
However, since the original measurements were done by hand, they have large margins of error.
Over 2 million pieces of rough yellow limestone were extracted from the earth on-site to build the tallest pyramids. The majority of the blocks were dug into the earth and then extracted with wooden levers. They utilized enormous wooden sleds that they hauled across damp sand to transfer the heavy stone. Some blocks were as large as a bus and weighed over 20,000 lbs.
The construction site was originally part of an estate called Giza. It was purchased by the British government in 1876 and remains under their control today.
Pyramid Building was not easy work. It required careful planning and many years might pass before another structure was begun. The Egyptians looked upon it as a task for the spirits rather than men because only certain priests were allowed to do such work. However, since there were no scaffolds used by modern builders, it is possible that some people lived within the pyramids and carried out maintenance work on them. There are several pyramids at Giza that remain intact today that were built between 2680 and 2504 B.C. They are the work of Pharaoh Khufu.
It's important to note that although the Egyptians believed that building pyramids helped ensure immortality for those who constructed them, this did not always prove true. Several pharaohs including Khufu have been lost to history and it's possible that they too may be entombed within one of these monuments.
Stone, the most enduring of all building materials, was used by the ancient Egyptians to construct their pyramids, tombs, temples, and palaces. The Egyptians were the first people to use the stone mason's tool called a chisel. They carved the hard stones such as granite, marble, and limestone into shape. The stones were then joined together with mud using simple tools such as sticks and mallets.
Pharaohs were great builders who built many structures around Egypt. Some of these structures still stand today. The Pharaohs also built large monuments to honor themselves and their gods. These included pyramids for themselves and temples for other gods.
In addition to stone, the Egyptians used wood, bricks, plaster, and even gold and silver to build their cities and monuments. They built roads, bridges, and canals too. All of this workmanship is evidence that the Egyptians were a advanced culture.
Pyramids are among the best-known monuments built by the Egyptians. There are two types of pyramids: those built by kings and princes and those built by priests or monks as places to store sacred items.
The Pharaohs mostly lived in lavish royal courts located outside of old Cairo.
Pyramids were erected throughout the Old and Middle Kingdoms to hold the pharaohs' corpses after death. Some were 40 storeys tall and made of stone blocks weighing three tons or more apiece. The Pyramids were the tallest. The best known is that of King Khufu (or Cheops), also called the Great Pyramid for it is this king who is said to have ordered the construction of the other two pyramids (see photos).
The others are named after their predecessors: King Khafre's (Chephren) is next to the Great Pyramid; and that of King Menkaura (Mensahirk) is further south.
All three pyramids were constructed from limestone, which can be seen in their appearance even today. They are actually tombs designed to protect the pharaohs' bodies after they died. Although none of the pyramids has been fully excavated, we know that within them were placed great stones covered with ancient writing that may help us understand how the Egyptians believed the dead could live in another world. The oldest still intact pyramid is that of King Khufu, who lived between 2570 and2490 BC. It is estimated that during its construction, hundreds if not thousands of people must have worked on it.
The idea of building such huge structures came about after the death of several successive kings.