This presentation follows on from the first in this trilogy:
‘The World’s First Pyramid – The Step Pyramid of Saqqara’.
The 4th Dynasty of the the Old Kingdom was ‘The Golden Age’ of pyramid building. There was a tremendous expansion of royal power and wealth; and of monumental royal building – not least, the fabulous pyramids of Giza.
* But why were these pyramids built?
* Who built them and what did they symbolise?
* How did they achieve such extraordinary, high standards and incredible accuracy?
There are so many questions – many of which remain unanswered to this day. No wonder they hold such fascination – and have done so for thousands of years!
In this talk I address some of these questions as we discuss the greatest period of Pyramid building, and the mighty 4th Dynasty; when the belief in Divine Kingship was at its height; when pharaohs were autocratic, influential and powerful; and nepotism was rife – power being jealously guarded by the kings, princes and royal families.
We begin with King Sneferu, the first king of the 4th Dynasty and possibly one of the most prodigious builders in the history of mankind. However, it was under his son, the great King Khufu, that absolute power, royal association with the Sun God Ra, and ‘divine kingship’ reach its height.
It was this royal power and solar association that spawned the three mighty pyramids at Giza; one of which is the world’s only remaining wonder of the ‘Seven Wonders of the Ancient World’. And which remained the tallest building in the world for more than 4000 years – the colossal funerary monument of Khufu – the Great Pyramid at Giza.
With this talk I endevour to give an insight into the long and fascinating history of pyramid building, and the Ancient Egyptian king’s obsession with their funerary monuments. We look in depth at the pharaohs of the 4th Dynasty and their many pyramids; which were never to be equalled in the entire, 3000-year-long history of this incredible empire.
Yet these great pyramids were far from the end of this fascinating story: there is still much to tell, and is covered in my final talk in this series ‘The Age of the Pyramids:
‘The Egyptian Renaissance – Early Decline and Late Resurrection’