How the Great Pyramid of Giza really looked the day it was finished


The great pyramids of Egypt were constructed 4,500 years ago and they awed the writers of ancient Rome thousands of years after their construction. Surviving intact they were finally stripped and mined for their outer limestone masonry after the Arab conquest of Egypt in the eight century AD.

The reason for their audacious construction was to serve as the vehicle for forging and organising the nation state of ancient Egypt. They were, like the Apollo moon shot, a deliberate nation building program on a monumental scale.

Through the tremendous and sustained intellectual and material organisation required for their realisation they brought into being the infrastructure and identity of ancient Egypt as a highly organsied self-conscious state.

Once this was achieved no more pyramids needed to be built.

Unlike the ruins that we see today, when finished their enormous smooth prismatic limestone surfaces shone like mirrors in the bright Egyptian light. And, it was all done with simple hand tools, voluntary labour, acute observation and superb technique.

This video by the Smithsonian Institute explains something of how our ancestors achieved the impossible.