The Great Pyramid

Topics: Great Pyramid of Giza, Egyptian pyramids, Giza Necropolis Pages: 5 (1439 words) Published: November 24, 2003

Thesis Statement: The Great Pyramid is a mystery to the modern age, even though its purpose; uses, history, and condition have challenged explorers for centuries it will always be considered one of the greatest wonders of the world.

1.Why was the Great Pyramid built?
A.Who built the Great Pyramid?
B.Why was it built?
C.Comparative theories.
2.What was the Great Pyramid used for?
A.Religious uses.
B.Astronomical uses.
C.Environmental uses.
3.How was the Great Pyramid built?
C.Surrounding community.

Why the Great Pyramid of Giza was built is a question that has been challenging archeologists, philosophers, and historians for hundreds of years. What we do know is that the Egyptians built it during the fourth dynasty under the rule of King Khufu in the area known as Giza. (i) The amount of people that it took to build such a massive structure has been the subject of dispute for hundreds of years. The Greek historian Herodotus believed that it took one hundred thousand workers over a twenty-year period to build the great pyramid, but recent archaeologists using modern calculations believe that the pyramid was built by four thousand primary laborers and sixteen to twenty thousand secondary workers but also over a twenty year time period. (ii)

There are many competing theories on why the great pyramid was built, none of them are definite but all of them are interesting. Many other pyramids have been built in the Middle East but none of the same stature. Other pyramids have been found to be burial chambers for various kings and pharaohs, but the Great Pyramid contained no burial remnants even though its essential design is the same as other pyramids, even containing special chambers for a king and a queen. (iii) Modern day scientists have discovered many interesting correlations between the location and dimensions of the Great Pyramid, that relate to the earth, the stars, and the seasons. (iv)

Several controversies have risen over the last hundred years about the reasons for the building of the Great Pyramid. Some theories believe that the Great Pyramid was built by or aided by alien beings because of the precise nature of its location and dimensions. While others believe that, the pyramid represented a symbol of ultimate power for the king. There are those who think the pyramid was a temple or an astrological observatory. As well as some who think it was just a big sundial to tell of the time and change of seasons. Some theorists also believe that it may have been a combination of all these things. (v)

According to Egyptian and Sumerian mythology, there was a battle between two families of gods for supremacy and control over the ancient lands and the pyramids of Giza were strategic strongholds for the gods. (vi) The different shafts and chambers of the great pyramids are said to point to various constellations that represent several Egyptian gods. (vii) It is also thought by some that the pyramid may have been a place where Egyptians made a pilgrimage to honor the gods or their pharaoh who, according to legend was a descendent of the gods. (viii)

Scientists have discovered that in the ceiling of the grand gallery the thirty-six ceiling stones were individually removable. Because of this, it is believed that during the construction of the pyramid it could have been used as a stellar observatory. They have also noticed unusual facts, such as the descending passage of the pyramid pointed to the pole star Alpha Draconis, which was the North Star of that time period. The southern shaft in the king's chamber pointed to the star Al Nitak which was associated with the god Osiris. The southern shaft of the queen's chamber pointed to the star Sirius which was associated with the god Isis. It has also been discovered that the Giza pyramids are a mirror reflection of the Orion constellation. (ix)

There are many interesting theories about possible...

Bibliography: 1. "Pyramid." Encyclopedia Britannica. 2003. Encyclopedia Britannica Premium Service. 27 Sep, 2003 .
2. "Egyptians." British Broadcasting Service. 2003. British Broadcasting Service Interactive. 26 Sep, 2003
3. "Excavations at Giza 1988 – 1991." University of Chicago. 1992. Oriental Institute, University of Chicago. 26 Sep, 2003
4. "Q&A with Dr. Kent Weeks." The Learning Channel. 2003. The Learning Channel Online. 26 Sep, 2003
5. "Great Pyramid Facts and Statistics." Egyptian Pyramids Index. 2001. Crystalinks. 27 Sep, 2003
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