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Building a pyramid - part 2

60 second histories

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How the Egyptians moved those immense stone blocks; fascinating evidence now leads us to believe they were moved on ramps using sand rather than rollers

It took thousands of skilled people to build a pyramid, but how on earth did they move those great pieces of stone, which weighed up to two and a half tons? There’s no evidence to show that Egyptians had ropes and pulleys strong enough to lift the stone, but there is a drawing which was made a thousand years after the Great Pyramid was built, which shows what looks to be a block of stone on a ramp. Now remains of ramps have been found at several pyramid sites in Egypt, so it leads us to believe that a straight ramp was used to raise the stone up to the building level. Recent tests have shown that you can move heavy stone on sand using a sledge but experiments have shown that if you wet the sand, the sledge glides more easily. One of the best pieces of evidence for the moving of heavy stone on a sledge is a drawing from the tomb of Djehutihotep, which shows four rows of forty-three men dragging a statue on a sledge. It also shows men pouring liquid under the sledge, so I’d say this is pretty good evidence to how they moved those huge blocks.
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