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door of the pyramid was walled up after the body of its builder had been laid in it, and thus remained a finished tomb. The explanation of Dr. Lepsius may not be correct, but at least it answers satisfactorily more objections than do the views of other theorists on this matter. It has been pointed out that near the core of the pyramid the work is more carefully executed than near the exterior, that is to say, as the time for the king's death approached the work was more hurriedly performed.
During the investigations made by Lepsius in and about the pyramid area, he found the remains of about seventyfive pyramids, and noticed that they were always built in groups.
The pyramids of Gîzah were opened by the Persians during the fifth and fourth centuries before Christ; it is probable that they were also entered by the Romans. Khalifa Mâmûn (A.D. 813-833) entered the Great Pyramid, and found that others had been there before him. The treasure which is said to have been discovered there by him is probably fictitious. Once opened, it must have been evident to every one what splendid quarries the pyramids formed, and for some hundreds of years after the conquest of Egypt by the Arabs they were laid under contribution for stone to build mosques, etc., in Cairo. Late in the twelfth century Melik al-Kâmil made a mad attempt to destroy the pyramid at Gîzah built by Mycerinus; but after months of toil he only succeeded in stripping off the covering from one of the sides. It is said that Muhammad ‘Ali was advised to undertake the senseless task of destroying them all, and it is recorded that he actually ordered the stones of the Great Pyramid to be used in building the Barrage ; Linant de Bellefonds, however, proved to the Pâshâ that it would be cheaper to obtain the stone necessary for the work from the quarry, and so the Great Pyramid was spared.
The Pyramid of Cheops. This, the largest of the three pyramids at Gizah, was built by Khufu (** or Cheops, the second king of the IVth dynasty B.C. 3733, who called it S A Khut. His name was found written in red ink upon the blocks of stone inside it. All four sides measure in greatest length about 755 feet each, but the length of each was originally about 20 feet more ; its height now is 451 feet, but it is said to have been originally about 481 feet. The stone used in the construction of this pyramid was brought from Tura and Muķațţam, and the contents amount to 85,000,000 cubic feet. The flat space at the top of the pyramid is about thirty feet square, and the view from it is very fine.
The entrance (A) to this pyramid is, as with all pyramids, on the north side, and is about 45 feet above the ground. The passage A B C is 320 feet long, 34 feet high, and 4 feet wide; at B is a granite door, round which the path at D has been made. The passage at D E is 125 feet long, and the large hall E F is 155 feet long and 28 feet high ; the passage E G leads to the pointed-roofed Queen's Chamber H, which measures about 17 X 19 X 20 feet. The roofing in of this chamber is a beautiful piece of mason's work. From the large hall E F there leads a passage 22 feet long, the antechamber in which was originally closed by four granite doors, remains of which are still visible, into the King's Chamber, J, which is lined with granite, and measures about 35 x 17 x 19 feet. The five hollow chambers K, L, M, N, 0 were built above the King's Chamber to lighten the pressure of the superincumbent mass. In chamber o the name Khufu was found written. The air shafts P and Q measure 234 feet x 8 inches x 6 inches, and 174 feet * 8 inches X 6 inches respectively. A shaft from E to R leads
down to the subterranean chamber s, which measures 46 x 27 x 10 feet. The floor of the King's Chamber, J, is about 140 feet from the level of the base of the pyramid, and the chamber is a little to the south-east of the line drawn from I to u. Inside the chamber lies the empty, coverless, broken red granite sarcophagus of Cheops, measuring 74 x 34 x 3 feet.
On Friday, January 19, 1906, the south air chamber of the Great Pyramid was cleared out by Mr. Covington, an American residing in Cairo; it was first opened by Howard Vyse in 1837.
The account of the building of this pyramid is told by Herodotus* as follows : “Now, they told me, that to the reign of Rhampsinitus there was a perfect distribution of justice, and that all Egypt was in a high state of prosperity ; but that after him Cheops, coming to reign over them, plunged into every kind of wickedness. For that, having shut up all the temples, he first of all forbade them to offer sacrifice, and afterwards he ordered all the Egyptians to work for himself; some, accordingly, were appointed to draw stones from the quarries in the Arabian mountain down to the Nile, others he ordered to receive the stones when transported in vessels across the river, and to drag them to the mountain called the Libyan. And they worked to the number of 100,000 men at a time, each party during three months. The time during which the people were thus harassed by toil, lasted ten years on the road which they constructed, along which they drew the stones, a work in my opinion, not much less than the pyramid; for its length is five stades (3,051 feet), and its width ten orgy (60 feet), and its height, where it is the highest, eight orgyæ (48 feet); and it is of polished stone, with figures carved on it: on this road then ten years were expended, and in forming the subterraneous apartments on the hill, on which
* Bk. ii. 124-126.
the pyramids stand, which he had made as a burial vault for himself, in an island, formed by draining a canal from the Nile.
“Twenty years were spent in erecting the pyramid itself: of this, which is square, each face is eight plethra (820 feet), and the height is the same; it is composed of polished stones, and jointed with the greatest exactness; none of the stones are less than thirty feet. This pyramid was built thus ; in the form of steps, which some call crossæ, others bomides. When they had first built it in this manner, they raised the remaining stones by machines made of short pieces of wood : having lifted them from the ground to the first range of steps, when the stone arrived there, it was put on another machine that stood ready on the first range; and from this it was drawn to the second range on another machine; for the machines were equal in number to the ranges of steps; or they removed the machine, which was only one, and portable, to each range in succession, whenever they wished to raise the stone higher ; for I should relate it in both ways, as it is related.
“The highest parts of it, therefore, were first finished, and afterwards they completed the parts next following ; but last of all they finished the parts on the ground and that were lowest. On the pyramid is shown an inscription, in Egyptian characters, how much was expended in radishes, onions, and garlic, for the workmen ; which the interpreter, * as I well remember, reading the inscription, told me amounted to 1,600 talents of silver. And if this be really
* Herodotus was deceived by his interpreter, who clearly made up a translation of an inscription which he did not understand. William of Baldensel, who lived in the fourteenth century, tells us that the outer coating of the two largest pyramids was covered with a great number of inscriptions arranged in lines. (Wiedemann, Aig. Geschichte, p. 179.) If the outsides were actually inscribed, the texts must have been purely religious, like those inscribed inside the pyramids of Pepi, Teta, and Un's.