The Great Pyramids at Giza
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He succeeded in building a grand structure--the Step Pyramid of King Zoser. This is exactly what its name states. It is a series of mastabas, one on top of another in a step pattern. This step pyramid gave rise to the Great Pyramids at Giza.The Egyptian pyramids have been victim to a number of outrageous claims and theories about their construction. These range from curses to the involvement of space aliens. Because the structure of the pyramids is so astounding, people want to know how the Egyptians accomplished this task with access to only primitive tools and very primitive machinery.
"Two tools that were used were used for surveying, the merkhet (the instrument of "knowing" which is similar to an astrolabe) and they bay which was a sighting tool believed to have been made from the central rib of a palm leaf. These tools allowed the builders to lay out straight lines and perfect right angles." These tools also allowed them to adjust the sides and corners of the pyramids in line with the alignment of the stars. It is clear that the Egyptians used their understanding of the stars to help them in constructing the pyramids. British Egyptologist IES Edwards argued that "true north was most likely found by measuring the place where a particular star rose and fell in the east and west.
After this measurement was taken, one would then divide the angle between those two points." More recently, Kate Spence from the University of Cambridge developed a theory that the builders of the Great Pyramid sighted on two stars, Ursa Minor and Ursa Major, rotating around the north pole. "These would have been in perfect alignment around the year 2467 BC which is the time when Khufu's pyramid is believed to have been under construction." This theory is also supported by the fact that "inaccuracies in the orientations of earlier and later pyramids can be closely correlated with the degree to which the alignment of the two stars deviates from true north."
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