Friday, September 17, 2010

Abu Rawash

With photo.

The pyramid of Djedefre is located in Abu Rawash, about eight kilometers north of Giza. Djedefre, the son of Khufu, ascended the throne after his father’s death. We know that Djedefre was Khufu’s heir because his name was found in cartouches on the limestone blocks covering the boat of Khufu. Djedefre, the first pharaoh to bear the title ‘Son of Re’, chose this location for his tomb in order to be closer to Heliopolis, the center of the Sun Cult. It has also been suggested that Djedefre’s move from the necropolis of Giza to Abu Rawash may have taken place in order to reduce the risk of destruction. Recent excavation of the site has proved that there was no destruction of the site during the Old Kingdom.

There is evidence to suggest that the original construction of Djedefre’s pyramid was for a step pyramid that was completed during his reign. The Swiss expedition that worked on the site believed that the angle of the pyramid was 52 degrees. The pyramid was surround by a wall, and its funerary temple was built using mud brick. The workmen’s shops were built on the north end of the wall, and there was a boat pit on the south side. The pyramid had a long causeway that stretched out for about 1700m. The pyramid of Djedefre is a quarter of the size of the pyramid of Khufu, but the height of the Abu Rawash plateau is 20m higher than the Giza Plateau. The Swiss expedition discovered a pyramid of a queen, located to the southeast of the main pyramid. In addition to the many excavation projects, the SCA is developing a site management plan for Abu Rawash. (Photo: SCA)

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