Everything in the world is afraid of time, and time is afraid of the pyramids. They rise among the hot sands of the Libyan desert and stretch tens of kilometers from present-day Cairo to the Faiyum canal. The oldest is the pyramid of Pharaoh Djoser – built about five thousand years ago. Its height is 60 meters. The builder of the first pyramid Imhotep was an architect, physician, astronomer, writer, adviser to the pharaoh, for many centuries was considered the greatest sage of old-fashionedness, and later statues and temples were built in his honor.
The pyramids served the pharaohs, according to their religion, the steps by which they ascended to heaven. Therefore, the most ancient pyramids were stepped, had the form of steps, and only in the later walls are obese. Why this took place, has not yet been clarified. Archaeologists counted 80 pyramids. Not all of them have reached our days.
The most famous are three large pyramids near Giza Cheops (Khufu), Khafre (Khafre) and Mekerin (Menkaure). The largest of them, the pyramid of Cheops, built in the XXVIII century BC. At first it climbed 147 meters, but through the approach of the sands its height decreased to 137 meters. Each side of the square foot of the pyramid is 233 meters, or, to be more precise, one side is longer than the other by 20 centimeters, that is, an error of only 0.0009. The area of the pyramid is more than 50 thousand square meters. The pyramid of Cheops is almost continuous masonry.
The pyramid consists of two million three hundred thousand cubic blocks of limestone with smoothly polished sides. According to Napoleon’s calculations, stone blocks from the three pyramids of Giza would be enough to gird the whole of France with a wall up to three meters high and 30 centimeters thick. It was calculated that each block weighs in the main 2.5 tons, and the heaviest – 15 tons. The total weight of the pyramid is about 5.7 million tons. The stones keep it in its own weight – there is no connecting material. Despite this, the blocks are so carefully aligned with each other that the gap between them is not more than five millimeters. This skillful work of stonemasons is surprising. After all, it is made mostly with stone tools. The architect of this pyramid is also known – Hemin.
Researchers who tried to find out how the ancient builders could build such a grandiose structure, and not just to build, but to add to it the geometric correct form of the pyramid, all this put in despair. Sometimes, like about megalithic structures, the idea is expressed that the pyramids could not build a people that lives in the Bronze Age, and that the creation of these colossal structures was taken by… aliens.
Gradually the mystery of the information of the pyramids was revealed. Now they think that the pyramids, most reliably, were built like this. On the right bank of the Nile in the quarries near Memphis, a thousand people were engaged in the extraction of white, fine-grained limestone. In the rock, the border of the future block was designated, then along these borders a deep ditch was seen, and blades of dry wood were hammered into it, which were poured with water. The tree swelled, increasing in volume, the crack widened, and, eventually, the monolith separated from the rock. Then the stone block was processed with tools of stone, copper and wood. It took the form of a standard cube. In the outskirts of Aswan, and now there are ancient quarries on the territory of which many ready-made blocks have been found. As it turned out, it was a flaw.
The processed blocks on boats were transported to the other bank of the Nile. Then they were transported along a specially laid road, the construction of which took 10 years and which, according to Herodotus, is just a little simpler construction of the pyramids. Then, at the foot of the future pyramid, the face was carefully sanded using stone and sand.
The pyramid boiled down on a limestone massif, cleared of sand and gravel. Herodotus confirms that the construction of the pyramid lasted 20 years. During the annual floods of the Nile peasants were free from agricultural work, and over the construction of the pyramid worked continuously for every three months for 100 thousand people. English archaeologist Flinders Petre believes that 100,000 builders, working for three months a year, could build a larger pyramid faster than in 20 years.
To raise the blocks, the Egyptians built a steep embankment of bricks and stone with a lifting angle of about 15 °. As the pyramid was being built, the embankment was lengthened. Diodorus of Sicily confirmed that on these mounds the stone was pulled on wooden sledges. And indeed archaeologists have discovered the remnants of such sledges. Modern researchers believe that to reduce friction, the trawl was constantly wetted with water, so that the skids easily slid over the mud. Then, with the help of wooden levers, the blocks were put in place. When the construction was mostly completed, the embankment was leveled, and the surfaces of the pyramid were covered with lined blocks.
Pyramids, perhaps, the most famous architectural structures in the world. From the engineering point of view, these are primitive structures, the mountains are made up by people. Nevertheless, the goal was achieved – the pyramids became eternal monuments, having survived a millennium. For the first time such high constructions were built, which remained a kind of a record up to the Eiffel Tower.