Sakkara, Egypt, 2,630BC. A man stands atop a structure of dizzying height as the final block grinds into place. For Imhotep, it is the culmination of his life’s work: a mountain made by man. He checks the joint while his workers wait in silence. Then, he gives a barely perceptible nod. It is done.
Imhotep’s pyramid is the first, but more will come. Bigger pyramids, more beautiful pyramids, tombs filled with treasure, chambers inscribed with complex, sacred writings.
But what motivated these ancient people to toil for decades over their vast monuments? What purpose did the structures serve? And what mysteries might still remain inside?
This is a Short History of Pyramids.
Written by Jo Furniss. With thanks to Salima Ikram, Professor of Egyptology at the American University of Cairo.
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