The Egyptian pyramids have been a source of wonder for people for centuries. Each year, thousands make their way to Egypt to get a closer look at these amazing structures that have lasted longer than most modern buildings ever will.
The Egyptian pyramids are structures that were built beginning around 3000 BC and were designed as final resting places for the Pharaohs of ancient Egypt. In addition to holding mummies and their coffins, a room in the pyramid also included items believed to be taken with the pharaoh into the after life.
The fascination behind the wonder of the Egyptian pyramids can be credited to a number of factors, including:
The construction of the Egyptian pyramids is a wonder in itself. The pyramids began as crude structures called mastabas, which were tombs shaped like squares that had a simple room inside. Because they were not very aesthetically pleasing, the Egyptians decided to construct even grander pyramids for their Pharaohs, while princes and other aristocrats were housed in the mastabas.
As a result, more elaborate pyramids began to be built. From mastabas, step pyramids were built and had steps and chambers within them. The Egyptians piled mounds of dirt and earth on top of the mastabas to achieve step pyramids.
Finally, the Egyptians began to fill in these steps with limestone to make them look even better, so now instead of having steps, they looked like giant triangles. These pyramids are the ones most commonly thought of today when one sees a pyramid and come to a point at the top. One example of this is the Great Pyramid in Giza.
Pyramids took years to construct (the Great Pyramid took roughly twenty years), still a remarkable feat considering its height and the lack of resources available at the time.
Another wonder of the Egyptian pyramids is the fact that they have withstood all manner of conditions for thousands of years. Even modern buildings that are built today with all the technology available would not be able to last as long as the pyramids have.
The durability of the pyramids is the result of the Egyptians’ knowledge about construction techniques, durable materials, and an awareness of their surroundings. They needed to be able to build pyramids that would withstand harsh heat and sand storms.
The pyramids have lasted for a great deal of time; in fact, the Great Pyramid is the oldest of the Seven Wonders of the World and is actually the only surviving of the Seven Ancient Wonders. The Great Pyramid, built in 2650 BC, has only lost about thirty feet off of its top point in over 3000 years.
The pyramids themselves are quite tall. In fact, the Great Pyramid was the tallest building in the world for over forty three centuries until the Eiffel Tower was built. This is also amazing considering the lack of technology available. Using ramps, they were able to hoist heavy limestone and other types of stone to the very tops of the pyramids.
The pyramids were designed to house the dead Pharaohs as they began their journey into the afterlife. The symbolism and ritual associated with the pyramids is wondrous in itself.
The wonders of the ancient pyramids, from their size to their construction to their rich history, have fascinated and astounded people for centuries and will undoubtedly continue to do so.