The Pyramid of Menkaure

The Pyramid of Menkaure

Where is the Pyramid of Menkaure located ?

The Pyramid of Menkaure is an Egyptian pyramid located near Cairo and is known as the Three Great Pyramids of Giza, along with the Pyramid of Khufu and the Pyramid of Khafra. The Pyramid of Menkara is the tomb of Pharaoh Menkara of the Fourth Dynasty of Egypt.

when was the pyramid of menkaure built?

The date of the construction of the Munkara Pyramid is still unknown, as the reign of Munkara is not precisely defined, but the Munkara Pyramid was probably completed around the 26th century BCE. The Pyramid of Menkaure is located in the area a few hundred meters southwest of the Pyramid of Kafra and the Pyramid of Khufu.

yramid of Menkaure
The Pyramid of Menkaure

Pyramid of Menkaure dimensions :

The original height of the Menkaure Pyramid was 65.5 meters (215 feet), making it the smallest of the Giza pyramids. The present height of the Menkaure Pyramid is 61 meters (204 feet), and the length of its four sides is 108.5 meters. Its tilt angle is about 51°20’25″. The Menkaure Pyramid is made of limestone and granite. There are three satellite pyramids to the south of the Menkaure Pyramid, but all are in an unfinished state. The largest satellite pyramid is partially composed of granite, similar to the Menkaure pyramid [1][2]. The construction progress of the other 2 satellite pyramids is limited to the inner core.

The Pyramid of Menkaure differs from the externally clad limestone Pyramid of Khufu in that the base of the Pyramid of Menkaure is composed of granite. The interior chambers of the Menkaure pyramid also used granite, which is much more difficult to mine than limestone. Menkaure died in the middle of building the pyramid, and it is possible that its successor used bricks to complete the rest of the construction work.

 pyramid of Menkaure
Pyramid of Menkaure with camels

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How big is the pyramid of Menkaure?

The pyramid of Menkaure’s the smallest of the three great pyramids at the Giza Necropolis, with an initial height of 65.5 meters (215 feet) and a base height of 65.5 meters (215 feet). Its current height is 61 meters (200 feet), while its base is 108.5 meters (356 ft). It has an inclination angle of roughly 51°20′25′′

Why was the Menkaure pyramid the smallest?

The base of the Menkaure pyramid is just a fraction of the size of the other Giza pyramids. Egypt had run out of economic resources, but it’s also plausible that Pharaoh’s influence was waning, making it impossible to marshal the massive workforce required to erect another vast monument.

Some say that the king’s diminished authority is to blame for this discrepancy. On the other hand, others point out that the valley and the funeral temples are bigger and more complex even though the pyramid is smaller. When the pyramids abandoned and the proliferation of hidden graves with grand funeral temples began, this may be the beginning of a long process

What was inside the Pyramid of Menkaure?

To reach the funeral chamber, a descending corridor on the north facade leads to an unfinished room adorned with false door panels, followed by a new corridor opening to the funeral chamber, where an intact basalt sarcophagus was discovered, this sarcophagus lost at sea by the ship taking it to England.

The burial chamber is linked to another antechamber by a tunnel dug into the rock. They used a massive piece of granite to cut the ceiling. An exquisitely decorated sarcophagus was discovered at the beginning of the 19th century but was lost at sea while transported to the British Museum in London

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The Temple:

The base and core of the temple are made of limestone, while the floor begins with a granite structure and the walls are decorated with granite. The foundations of the temple were composed of stone, although the outer portions were decorated by rough bricks. Archaeologist Reisner estimates the weight of some of the wall stones at 220 metric tons, while the heaviest granite (transported locally from Aswan) weighs more than 30 metric tons. It is not rather unusual for the temple to have been completed after Menkara’s death. The person who completed the temple may have been the succeeding Shepseskaf pharaoh. According to the temple inscription, he “completed the temple in honor of his father: the king who ruled over Upper and Lower Egypt.” During the excavation of the temple, Reisner found many statues of Menkara, which reveal the naturalistic style of the ancient dynasty [3].

Pyramid of Menkaure
The walls of The temple

Sarcophagus :

During his first visit to Egypt in 1835, British anthropologist Richard William Harward-Weather found a wooden, human-like coffin with the name Menkara engraved on it and containing human bones inside in the antechamber. Archaeologists now believe the coffin is simply a substitute, from the Seleis dynasty. After using the bones for radiocarbon 14 dating, archaeologists learned that they were less than 2,000 years old, a phenomenon that suggests it was later relocated here from another region, perhaps in Roman times. After Richard William Harward Wither penetrated deeper into the pyramid, he found a beautiful basalt sarcophagus that was quite beautifully carved. Unfortunately, this sarcophagus is now sunk at the bottom of the Mediterranean Sea. on October 13, 1838, the Atreus sank while transporting the sarcophagus between Cartagena and Malta, after which archaeologists prepared to send it to the island of Great Britain [6]. However, the woodwork escaped death by being transported on another ship and is currently in the British Museum.

Destruction attempts:

In the late 12th century, Sultan Aziz Othman (son of Saladin) of the Ayyubid dynasty attempted to dismantle the pyramid complex, with the Pyramid of Menkara being the primary target. The workers who dismantled the pyramids found that the cost of destroying them was comparable to the cost of building them. The workers worked for as long as eight months, and they were only able to remove one or two stones per day. Some workers used wedges and levers to move the stones, while others used ropes to pull them down. The dismantling of the pyramid was ultimately not completed and only a large number of vertical cracks were left on the north side of the pyramid.

How long did it take to build the pyramid of Menkaure?

It is estimated that the construction of the Menkaure pyramid took about two decades. It has been speculated that workers created ramps to move the stone building blocks into place on the pyramid.

Facts about the pyramid of Menkaure:

  • It is one of the three principal pyramids of Giza’s necropolis.
  • Even though it is the tiniest, it is more significant than it looks.
  • It was constructed as a tomb for the same-named Pharaoh.
  • The actual date of the building of the pyramid is unknown today.
  • It was made using granite imported from southern Egypt.
  • Archaeologists will appreciate the fact that the pyramid was left incomplete.
  • Except for the lid, the sarcophagus sunk in the Mediterranean Sea.
  • They used massive blocks to construct the funeral temples.
  • Only one of the three adjacent lesser pyramids was finished.
  • The Egyptian Sultan attempted to destroy the pyramid but quickly abandoned his attemp

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The sphinx with Menkaure

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