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Archaeologist sheds light on pyramid origin
CNN ^ | Wednesday, February 11, 2004 Posted: 4:12 PM EST (2112 GMT) | Editorial Staff

Posted on 02/16/2004 4:46:46 PM PST by vannrox

CAIRO, Egypt (Reuters) -- Egypt's ancient pyramids are probably a byproduct of a decision to build walls around the tombs of kings, a leading expert on early Egyptian royal burials said on Wednesday.

Guenter Dreyer, director of the German Archaeological Institute in Cairo, said he based his theory on similarities between Egypt's first pyramid, built at Saqqara south of Cairo for the Pharaoh Zozer in about 2650 BC, and the structure of the tomb of one of his immediate predecessors.

The Saqqara pyramid, known as the Step Pyramid because of its unique shape, began as a flat mound about 25 feet high built over the burial chamber of the pharaoh.

(Excerpt) Read more at cnn.com ...


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Constitution/Conservatism; Crime/Corruption; Culture/Society; Extended News; Foreign Affairs; Government; Israel; News/Current Events; Philosophy; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: archaeology; block; build; discovered; economic; ggg; giza; godsgravesglyphs; greatpyramid; history; origin; origins; past; pyramids; pyrmaid; reason; saqqara; science; unusual
I am NOT convinced.
1 posted on 02/16/2004 4:46:47 PM PST by vannrox
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To: vannrox
CAIRO, Egypt (Reuters) -- Egypt's ancient pyramids are probably a byproduct of a decision to build walls around the tombs of kings, a leading expert on early Egyptian royal burials said on Wednesday.

Guenter Dreyer, director of the German Archaeological Institute in Cairo, said he based his theory on similarities between Egypt's first pyramid, built at Saqqara south of Cairo for the Pharaoh Zozer in about 2650 BC, and the structure of the tomb of one of his immediate predecessors.

The Saqqara pyramid, known as the Step Pyramid because of its unique shape, began as a flat mound about 25 feet high built over the burial chamber of the pharaoh.

At the slightly earlier tomb of the Pharaoh Khasekhemwy, at the old royal cemetery at Abydos in southern Egypt, German excavators found evidence of a similar flat mound covering the central part of the underground burial complex.

The walls in the central part of the tomb were compacted to about twice the thickness and half the height of the walls to the sides, suggesting a heavy weight had once stood on top, Dreyer told Reuters in an interview.

Khasekhemwy's complex also had one of the niched enclosure walls which later became a distinctive feature of the dozens of pyramids built along the western edge of the Nile Valley for hundreds of years to come, he said.

Mound of creation
But in the Abydos example, the enclosure wall was much further from the tomb than in the case of Saqqara.

"My theory is that...these two elements [the mound and the wall] were united at Saqqara by his successor Zozer and then something happened. The mound on top of the tomb was hidden by the large surrounding wall -- it was not visible.

"This was a problem, because this mound I think represented the primeval mound of creation and guaranteed the resurrection of the king," said Dreyer.

The architects of the Saqqara complex solved the problem by building another smaller flat mound on top of the first and then decided to extend it upwards by adding more mounds.

The Sakkara pyramid is an intermediate stage between the flat mounds, known as mastabas, of the earlier period and the smooth-sided classical pyramids of the type found at Giza, just outside the modern city of Cairo.

Archaeologists have long speculated that the pyramids are an extension of the mastaba concept but Dreyer's theory adds the enclosure wall as an explanation for the transition.

Dreyer, who has spent the last decade studying the kings who ruled in southern Egypt in what was called the pre-dynastic period, before about 3100 BC, said he now believed he had identified another king from the period, known by the name of Horus or Hor, the same as that as the falcon god.

He is basing his theory on a close analysis of two ancient palettes, flat ceremonial stone plates on which early Egyptians appear to have recorded historical and mythological events.

Two palettes show a Horus falcon in a context which Dreyer interprets as the place where the name of a king should appear.

Several palettes have been interpreted as commemorating the conquest of Nile Delta towns by the kings from the south, a process which later led to the political unification of Egypt.

The conquest has traditionally been attributed to either King Narmer or King Aha, who lived about 200 years later.

"He [King Horus] started the whole thing, conquering the Delta, several generations before Narmer. Why? He wanted to safeguard trade routes to Palestine which ran along the Delta, where the Egyptians brought all the wine in," Dreyer said.
2 posted on 02/16/2004 4:55:11 PM PST by sharktrager (The last rebel without a cause in a world full of causes without a rebel.)
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To: sharktrager

3 posted on 02/16/2004 5:03:11 PM PST by BenLurkin (Socialism is Slavery)
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I thought it had something to do with disco.
4 posted on 02/16/2004 5:03:42 PM PST by BenLurkin (Socialism is Slavery)
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To: blam; farmfriend
GGG ping.
5 posted on 02/16/2004 5:05:06 PM PST by Slicksadick (Miserable failure = http://www.michaelmoore.com/ put it in your tagline too)
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To: vannrox
I like the Stargate Theory better.
6 posted on 02/16/2004 5:13:26 PM PST by Kerberos
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To: vannrox
"I am NOT convinced."

I agee...I'm not either. (good post)

7 posted on 02/16/2004 5:16:17 PM PST by blam
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To: vannrox
I enjoyed reading the article but like you, I am not convinced.
8 posted on 02/16/2004 5:37:42 PM PST by ruoflaw
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To: Kerberos
I like the Stargate Theory better.

Original theory found on P3-X4992. Gotta luv it.

9 posted on 02/16/2004 5:40:27 PM PST by Use It Or Lose It
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To: vannrox; *Gods, Graves, Glyphs; A.J.Armitage; abner; adam_az; AdmSmith; Alas Babylon!; ...
Gods, Graves, Glyphs
List for articles regarding early civilizations , life of all forms, - dinosaurs - etc.

Let me know if you wish to be added or removed from this ping list.

10 posted on 02/16/2004 5:54:05 PM PST by farmfriend ( Isaiah 55:10,11)
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To: Kerberos
I like the Stargate Theory better.

I was thinking something similar, where is Daniel when you need him.

11 posted on 02/16/2004 6:00:13 PM PST by farmfriend ( Isaiah 55:10,11)
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To: vannrox
There isn't much talk lately, about the pyramid-like structures on mars or the Face, for that matter. comments?
12 posted on 02/16/2004 6:19:11 PM PST by desertsolitaire (M.O.O.N. that spells SCARY.)
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To: desertsolitaire
Because hi-res pics showed the face wasn't a face.
13 posted on 02/16/2004 6:30:03 PM PST by John H K
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To: desertsolitaire
What John said. The "face" is part of a mountain top and just a natural formation.
14 posted on 02/16/2004 6:37:50 PM PST by Shooter 2.5 (Don't punch holes in the lifeboat)
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To: John H K
Rats! I knew I should have sourced this from other than Coast to Coast a.m.
15 posted on 02/16/2004 6:40:15 PM PST by desertsolitaire (M.O.O.N. that spells SCARY.)
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To: desertsolitaire
My theory is that the interior of the pyramid is a series of shelves with numerous still unlocated chambers.
16 posted on 02/16/2004 6:53:08 PM PST by Sacajaweau (God Bless Our Troops!!)
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To: desertsolitaire; farmfriend; vannrox; Sacajaweau; Shooter 2.5; John H K
NASA Mars Odyssey 2001 Cydonia Infrared Images...

'Analysis of These Images'...a Martian City under the ice...

...and a Pyramid, too!

17 posted on 02/16/2004 8:40:34 PM PST by harbingr (first time on FR???...'To Boldly Go Where Someone(thing?) has Gone Before'...CYDONIA IR PICS)
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To: BenLurkin
If it irks Egyptologists, I am pleased.
18 posted on 02/16/2004 8:55:12 PM PST by razorback-bert
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To: Sacajaweau
My theory is that the interior of the pyramid is a series of shelves with numerous still unlocated chambers.

It's certainly possible. The volume of any of the great pyramids is immense.

Within the last few years, there was a team that uses a tiny rover to explore the "air ducts" that lead to the King's chamber. These ducts radiate up and out from the chamber and towards the exterior of the Great Pyramid. One of the these ducts actully opens to the surface. One other takes a sharp bend before going who knows where. The others end at a block. No one knows what these were for. Another great pyramid exhibits these same ducts, but they end within a few feet of the openings. Apparently, these ducts were real engineering headaches: bad enough to cut and move blocks to make a pyramid. Then to make special blocks to form and accomodate the ducts leading to the exterior of the pyramid!

Getting back to your point, there was speculation that the blocked ducts may have ended at the walls other unopened chambers.

It always amazes me that there are things that the ancients knew how to do that we had to rediscover. A few things we still haven't puzzled out for certain, such as exactly how the pyramids were built. (Well, I don't know, anyway!)

19 posted on 02/17/2004 12:48:51 AM PST by BradyLS (DO NOT FEED THE BEARS!)
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To: BradyLS
I think the openings were defined as a path for the mummified Pharaohs to "seed the universe", nice trick for a mummified corpse.
20 posted on 02/17/2004 12:53:58 AM PST by Las Vegas Dave
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To: vannrox
Until anyone can demonstrate how the great pyramid was built the rest of the "theory" is total bunk. Yeah, they used copper tools to cut stones which are harder than copper, and they rolled them in on logs and managed to align them closer than we can today with hydrolics. Sure, and then a cow jumped over the mooon. Fairytales is fairytales.
21 posted on 02/17/2004 1:06:44 AM PST by thedugal (Have you seen my tagline?)
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To: desertsolitaire
There isn't much talk lately, about the pyramid-like structures on mars or the Face, for that matter. comments?

You seem to have missed it. In at least one of the Spirit images, PIA04995, aside from all the rocks and debris, they've turned up about a dozen items which appear to be pieces of machines and other artificial things and, in the lower right hand corner, several fresh footprints. You have to download the 40 mb tif image and zoom in a bit to see it.

22 posted on 02/17/2004 7:26:26 AM PST by greenwolf
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To: vannrox; blam
> I am NOT convinced.

Me either. Anytime someone advances a theory about the date of the pyramids I'm skeptical. Too many problems with the lateness and inconsistencies of Manetho's chronology, the lack of written records on the building of some of the pyramids, and the difficulties inherent in trying to date the pyramids archaeologically in the absence of written records. Egyptology for periods earlier than the Iron Age is a very speculative discipline IMO.
23 posted on 02/17/2004 10:29:06 AM PST by Fedora
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To: vannrox
Interesting. Thanks.
24 posted on 02/18/2004 2:40:48 PM PST by HowlinglyMind-BendingAbsurdity
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25 posted on 03/01/2009 12:23:04 PM PST by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/____________________ Profile updated Monday, January 12, 2009)
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