The Great Pyramid of Giza, also referred to as the Pyramid of Khufu, is the oldest and largest of the three pyramids at the complex in El Giza, Egypt. It was once the oldest of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, and is now the only one left. The secret of how it was built has perplexed archaeologists and scientists alike.
However, we may be finally on the threshold of solving this mystery.
It was revealed during Channel 4’s “Egypt’s Great Pyramid: The New Evidence” how archaeologists are starting to learn more about this ancient civilisation.
The 2019 documentary stated that: “Sourcing the 170,000 tonnes of high-quality limestone to encase the pyramid was Khufu’s biggest challenge.”
According to the documentary, they could only be mined from faraway quarries, at a place called Tora.
“Nobody has ever been completely sure how so much stone was brought to Giza to complete the build in just over a quarter of a century.”
“But now new evidence is revealing that Khufu may have only managed this with a fleet of specially-built boats and highly-trained sailors.”
The series then made reference to a find made by a team of archaeologists back in 1954.
In a pit near the base of the pyramid, an Egyptian team discovered a number of carefully disassembled wooden beams. At the time, the discovery did little to shed light on the pyramid’s secrets.
However, modern advances in technology have allowed scientists to determine that the beams were the remains of a dismantled boat.
The documentary added: “Today, at the foot of the pyramid, a unique find is shining light on this theory.”
“These pieces of wood are actually a dismantled boat – a ceremonial ship that Khufu would command in the afterlife."
The find offers researchers a unique insight into the vessels that were in use at that period in time.
Eissa Zidan, who oversaw the project, believes this particular boat may have even belonged to the great Pharaoh himself.
“According to our analysis, this is the result from 2,600 BC”, he said. “This is the same period as Khufu’s pyramids, so we know this is the boat of King Khufu,” said Zidan, adding this is currently the number one archaeological project, not only in Egypt but in the world as well.
In other recent finds, archaeologists have discovered exceptionally well-preserved statues and coffins made of high-quality limestone at a newly discovered cemetery near the pyramids at Giza. According to scholars, one of the oldest tombs dates back to 2,500 BC.
According to the inscriptions, the ancient tomb contains the mummified remains of two men — a priest and an official — who allegedly lived at the time of the builders of the first pyramids.
Most historians believe the Great Pyramid of Giza was constructed over a period of more than 20 years, for the Pharaoh Khufu, who was buried in a tomb inside.
Something that has always perplexed laymen and scientists alike is how an ancient civilisation dating to around 2500 BC was even able to transport six million tonnes of stone blocks to the site and then assemble them to produce such a grandiose structure.
Step by step, layers of mystery are laid bare by modern research and exciting technology.