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excursions by water, listening to music and watching women dance, overseeing building operations, or the work of ploughing, sowing and reaping on his estate, the management of cattle, the bringing of offerings to his tomb, etc. The reader will gain a good idea of the general arrangement of the false doors inside the mastaba chamber, and the painted decorations and sculptures of an ordinary mastaba, by examining the complete monument exhibited in the Assyrian Saloon. This was built originally on the side of a small spur of the mountain near Şakkârah for Ur-åri-enPtah, a royal scribe and councillor who fourished in the reign of Pepi II Nefer-ka-Rā, about B.C. 3100. It is interesting to note that two “false doors” are found on the south wall of this mastaba, one for Ur-åri-en-Ptah and one for his wife Khent-kaut-s, and that the former contains a list of names of about ninety canonical offerings. The decorations of mastabas never include figures of gods, or the emblems which at a later period were considered sacred.
The next form of the tomb was the pyramid,' which is to all intents and purposes merely a mastaba built on a square base, with the greater part of it above the surface of the ground. It contained a long passage, with a sarcophagus chamber, or mummy chamber, at the end of it. The place of the mastaba chamber was taken by a small temple, or chapel, built outside the pyramid, in which funerary gifts and offerings were made; the pit of the mastaba was represented by a long passage, which sloped either upwards or downwards ; and the inummy-chamber in each case was substantially the same.
The principal pyramids of Egypt are those of Abû Roâsh, Gizah, Zâwyet al-'Aryân, Abû-Şir, Sakkârah, Lisht, Dahshûr, Al-Lâhûn, Hawârah, and Kulla. In the Egyptian Sûdân there are pyramids at Kurrû, Zûma, Tankâsi, Gebel Barkal, Nûrî, and Bagrawîr, but all these are inferior in design and construction to the pyramids of Egypt. The latest of the pyramid tombs in the Sûdân were built probably during the first or second century A.D. by a series of native queens, each of whom bore the name of “ Candace." A great many theories, chiefly of an astronomical character, have been formulated about the Pyramids of Gizah : but it is now generally thought that they were tombs and nothing else, and there is no evidence to justify us in believing that they
The word "pyramid” seems to be derived from the Egyptian PEREMUS
1 , which probably means "a building with a sloping side.”
underground passage, and mummy chamber.
were built by any of the Hebrew patriarchs, or that they were the “Granaries of Joseph," or that they contain chambers filled with gold and precious stones, which have not yet been discovered or cleared out. The kings of the XIIth dynasty followed the example of their predecessors of the Vth and VIth dynasties, and built pyramids for their tombs, but they were on a much smaller scale. The pyramids of Amenemhāt I and Usertsen I were at Lisht, those of Amenemhāt II and Usertsen III were at Dahshûr, the pyramid of Usertsen II was at Al-Lahûn, and that of Amenemhāt III was at Hawârah. Nobles and high officials built pyramidal tombs, usually about
Entrance to the tomb of Khnemu-ḥetep, an official, at Beni Hasan.
XIIth dynasty. 30 feet high, which were supposed to contain the three essential parts of the tomb, the upper chamber, the pit, or shaft, and the mummy chamber; but as a matter of fact, the body was buried in the brickwork which formed the base of such a pyramid ; there was no pit, and the pyramid itself represented the upper chamber.
Rock-hewn tombs.—The pyramid tomb was suitable for regions where the ground was flat, but the Egyptians who dwelt in places near mountains began at an early period of history to hew tombs in them. Thus at Aswân (Syene) the mountains on the west bank of the Nile contain three tiers of tombs, the oldest being those of nobles and governors of Elephantine under the VIth and VIIth dynasties. These are approached by means of a staircase cut in the slope of the hill, down the middle of which a smooth path was made for the purpose of drawing up the coffins and sarcophagi of the dead. At the top of the staircase the hill was scarped, and here the chambers of the tombs were hewn. The "false doors” were cut in the solid rock, and were above the mouth
of the shaft, or pit, at the bottom of which, in chambers made for the purpose, the mummies were placed. Some of the tombs of the XIIth dynasty on the north side of the hill have long corridors leading to the mouths of the pits, and above these are the “ false doors," before which statues were sometimes placed.
Under the XVIIIth dynasty rock-hewn tombs of great size were made, and the finest examples of these are
undoubtedly the Tombs of the Kings at Thebes. The annexed plan and section of the tomb of Seti I will give an idea of the extent of the largest of them. A is a Aight of steps, B a corridor, C a second Alight of steps,
I. Ground Plan of the Tomb of Seti I, B.C. 1366.
(From Lepsius, Denkmäler, Abth. I, Bl. 96.)
D a corridor, E, F, and G are rectangular chambers, H and I corridors, K an ante-chamber, L the large six-pillared hall in which stood the king's sarcophagus and mummy, and M, N, O, P, Q are chambers in which funerary ceremonies were performed. Under the sarcophagus is another staircase, which