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called Rā-nub, and M. Mariette found the same name on one of the stele in the Serapeum. The steps of the pyramid are six in number, and are about 38, 36, 342, 32, 31 and 29 feet in height; the width of each step is from six to seven feet. The lengths of the sides at the base are: north and south 352 feet, east and west 396 feet, and the actual height is 197 feet. In shape this pyramid is oblong, and its sides do not exactly face the cardinal points. The arrangement of the chambers inside this pyramid is quite peculiar to itself.
II. The Pyramid of Unȧs, called in Egyptian Nefer-as-u, lies to the south-east of the Step Pyramid, and was reopened and cleared out in 1881 by M. Maspero, at the expense of Messrs. Thomas Cook and Son. Its original height was about 62 feet, and the length of its sides at the base 220 feet. Owing to the broken blocks and sand which lie round about it, Vyse was unable to give exact measurements. Several attempts had been made to break into it, and one of the Arabs who took part in one of these attempts, "Aḥmed the Carpenter," seems to have left his name inside one of the chambers in red ink. It is probable that he is the same man who opened the Great Pyramid at Gizah, A.D. 820. A black basalt sarcophagus, from which the cover had been dragged off, and an arm, a shin bone, some ribs and fragments of the skull from the mummy of Unȧs, were found in the sarcophagus chamber. The walls of the two largest chambers and two of the corridors are inscribed with ritual texts and prayers of a very interesting character. Unás, the last king of the Vth dynasty, reigned about thirty years. The Maṣṭabat al-Fir'âûn was thought by Mariette to be the tomb of Unas, but other scholars thought that the 'blunted pyramid' at Dahshûr was his tomb, because his name was written upon the top of it.
The Pyramid of Teta (), called in Egyptian
Tet-ásu, lies to the north-east of the Step Pyramid, and was opened in 1881. The Arabs call it the 'Prison Pyramid,' because local tradition says that it is built near the ruins of the prison where Joseph the patriarch was confined. Its actual height is about 59 feet; the length of each side at the base is 210 feet, and the platform at the top is about 50 feet. The arrangement of the chambers and passages and the plan of construction followed is almost identical with that of the pyramid of Unas. This pyramid was broken into in ancient days, and two of the walls of the sarcophagus chamber have literally been smashed to pieces by the hammer blows of those who expected to find treasure inside them. The inscriptions, painted in green upon the walls, have the same subject matter as those inscribed upon the walls of the chambers of the pyramid of Unas. According to Manetho, Tetȧ, the first king of the VIth dynasty, reigned about fifty years, and was murdered by one of his guards. The Pyramids of Tcheser, Unȧs, and Teta belong to the Northern Group at Sakkâra.
The Pyramid of Pepi I. or 469
meri, son of the Sun, Pepi,' lies to the south-west of the Step Pyramid, and forms one of the central group of pyramids at Sakkâra, where it is called the Pyramid of Shekh Abû Manşûr; it was opened in 1880. Its actual height is about 40 feet, and the length of the sides at the base is about 250 feet; the arrangement of the chambers, etc., inside is the same as in the pyramids of Unas and Tetà, but the ornamentation is slightly different. It is the worst preserved of these pyramids, and has suffered most at the hands of the spoilers, probably because having been constructed with stones which were taken from tombs ancient already in those days, instead of stones fresh from the quarry, it was more easily injured. The granite
sarcophagus was broken to take out the mummy, fragments of which were found lying about on the ground; the cover too, smashed in pieces, lay on the ground close by. A small rose granite box, containing alabaster jars, was also found in the sarcophagus chamber. The inscriptions are, like those inscribed on the walls of the pyramids of Unas and Tetȧ, of a religious nature; some scholars see in them evidence that the pyramid was usurped by another Pepi, who lived at a much later period than the VIth dynasty. The pyramid of Pepi I., the third king of the VIth dynasty, who reigned, according to Manetho, fifty-three years, was called in Egyptian by the same name as Memphis, i.e., Men-nefer, and numerous priests were attached to its service. Pepi's kingdom embraced all Egypt, and he waged war against the inhabitants of the peninsula of Sinai. He is said to have set up an obelisk at Heliopolis, and to have laid the foundation of the temple at Denderah. His success as a conqueror was due in a great measure to the splendid abilities of one of his chief officers called Unȧ, who warred successfully against the various hereditary foes of Egypt on its southern and eastern borders.
III. The Serapeum or APIS MAUSOLEUM Contained the vaults in which all the Apis bulls that lived at Memphis were buried. According to Herodotus, Apis "is the calf of a cow incapable of conceiving another offspring; and the Egyptians say that lightning descends upon the cow from heaven, and that from thence it brings forth Apis. This calf, which is called Apis, has the following marks: it is black, and has a square spot of white on the forehead, and on the back the figure of an eagle; and in the tail double hairs; and on the tongue a beetle." Above each tomb of an Apis bull was built a chapel, and it was the series of chapels which formed the Serapeum properly so called; it was surrounded by walls like the other Egyptian temples, and it had pylons to which an avenue of sphinxes led. This remarkable
place was excavated in 1850 by M. Mariette, who having seen in various parts of Egypt sphinxes upon which were written the names of Asȧr-Ḥāp, or Serapis, concluded that they must have come from the Serapeum or temple of Serapis spoken of by Strabo.
Happening, by chance, to discover one day at Sakkara a sphinx having the same characteristics, he made up his mind that he had lighted upon the remains of the long sought-for building. The excavations which he immediately undertook brought to light the Avenue of Sphinxes, eleven statues of Greek philosophers, and the vaults in which the Apis bulls were buried. These vaults are of three kinds, and show that the Apis bulls were buried in different ways at different periods: the oldest Apis sarcophagus laid here belongs to the reign of Amenophis III., about B.C. 1500. The parts of the Apis Mausoleum in which the Apis bulls were buried from the XVIIIth to the XXVIth dynasty are not shewn; but the new gallery, which contains sixty-four vaults, the oldest of which dates from the reign of Psammetichus I., and the most modern from the time of the Ptolemies, can be seen on application to the guardian of the tombs. The vaults are excavated on each side of the gallery, and each was intended to receive a granite sarcophagus. The names of Amāsis II., Cambyses, and Khabbesha are found upon three of the sarcophagi, but most of them are uninscribed. Twenty-four granite sarcophagi still remain in position, and they each measure about 13 × 8 × 11 feet. The discovery of these tombs was of the greatest importance historically, for on the walls were found thousands of dated stela which gave accurate chronological data for the history of Egypt. These votive tablets mention the years, months, and days of the reign of the king in which the Apis bulls, in whose honour the tablets were set up, were born and buried. The Apis tombs had been rifled in ancient times,
and only two of them contained any relics when M. Mariette opened them out.
IV. The Tomb of Thi lies to the north-east of the Apis Mausoleum, and was built during the Vth dynasty, about Thi=]], was a man who held the dignities of smer, royal councillor, superintendent of works, scribe of the court, confidant of the king, etc.; he held also priestly rank as prophet, and was attached to the service of the pyramids of Abûşîr. He had sprung from a family of humble origin, but his abilities were so esteemed by one of the kings, whose faithful servant he was, that a princess called Nefer-hetep-s was given him to wife, and his children Thi and Tamut ranked as princes. Thi held several high offices
under Kakaå (4) and User-en-Rã (1)
kings of the Vth dynasty. The tomb or maṣṭaba of Thi is now nearly covered with sand, but in ancient days the whole building was above the level of the ground. The chambers of the tomb having been carefully cleared, it is possible to enter them and examine the very beautiful sculptures and paintings with which the walls are decorated. To describe these wonderful works of art adequately would require more space than can be given here; it must be sufficient to say that the scenes represent Thi superintending all the various operations connected with the management of his large agricultural estates and farmyard, together with illustrations of his hunting and fishing expeditions.
The Necropolis of Sakkâra contains chiefly tombs of the Ancient Empire, that is to say, tombs that were built during the first eleven dynasties; many tombs of a later period are found there, but they are of less interest and importance, and in many cases small, but fine, ancient tombs have been destroyed to make them. As our knowledge of Egyptian architecture is derived principally from tombs and temples, a brief description of the most ancient tombs now known