A Presentation On

Group 1

2650 BCE²2610BCE 62 m .INTORDUCTION Pyramid of Zoser World's tallest structure c.

as it eventually worked out. This would have been used for some of the funeral rites and for the ongoing offerings to sustain the soul of the dead king. In prehistoric times a heap of sand was placed over the graves of the deceased who were laid out in simple burial pits. The most relevant precedent is found at Saqqara mastaba 3038. it was customary to build a large mud-brick enclosure. evolved into whole suites of underground compartments and the mound had become a rectangular structure of mud-brick (By the end of the Early Dynastic Period at least. during the 27th century BC. in the case of rulers at any rate. now known as a ¶mortuary palace·. Imhotep·s plan. was to combine the two separate structures into one enormous complex . By the time of the earliest pharaohs these pits had. It was built for the burial of Pharaoh Djoser by his vizier Imhotep.CHRONOLOGICAL HISTORY Djoser·s Pyramid draws ideas from several precedents. to go along with the tomb.

The Chamber of Blue Tiles 4. Plan of Precinct of Djoser 5. Processional way 8. Hall of Columns 9.LOCATION AND MASTERPLAN 1. Axonometric reconstruction of Precinct of Djoser 3. Reconstruction by Firth of south tomb chamber 15. Inscription depicting Djoser . Entry hall viewed from the south west 6. Schematic drawing of successive pyramid construction stages 14. Reconstruction of entry hall 7. Statues in the east court 13. Stepped pyramid and Heb-Sed Court 10. Heb-Sed Court 11. East portico. with engaged columns (papyrus stalks) 12. House of the North (east side). Map of Lower Egypt. showing location of Saqqara 2.

Builder. First in line after the King of Upper Egypt. Chief Sculptor. and Maker of Vases in Chief. and physician in early history.ARCHITECT IMHOTEP He is considered to be the first architect . .engineer. The full list of his titles is: Chancellor of the King of Egypt. Chief Carpenter. Hereditary nobleman. Doctor. High Priest of Heliopolis. Administrator of the Great Palace.

.PHYSICAL ANALYSIS The original structure was an underground burial chamber. most mastabas were rectangular. The royal tomb is 28m underground with a vertical shaft leading to it. This chamber was rare in that it was square.

The pyramid temple is situated at the north side of the pyramid. first evenly on all four sides (M2) and later just on the east side (M3)[9]. The complex covers 15ha and is about 2.5 times as large as the Old Kingdom town of Heirakonpolis. Furthermore. whereas in later pyramids it is on the east side. the Djoser complex is built on a NorthSouth axis whereas later complexes utilize an EastWest axis[6]. which now had a rectangular base on an east-west axis. Also. a French architect who reconstructed key portions of the complex. . whereas later pyramids have two enclosure walls with the outside one being smooth and the inside one sometimes niched. The mastaba was built up in two stages. first to form a fourstepped structure (P1) and then to form a sixstepped structure (P2).PROPORTIONS The superstructure of the Step Pyramid is six steps. the Djoser complex has one niched enclosure wall.The main excavator of the Step Pyramid was Jean-Phillipe Lauer. Several features of the complex differ from those of later Old Kingdom pyramids. as might be expected with an experimental structure.The pyramid began as a square mastaba (one should note that this designation as a mastaba is contended for several reasons) (M1) which was gradually enlarged.

but it has been suggested that it may be a monumental symbol of the crown. The pyramid was not simply a grave in ancient Egypt. is unknown. Its purpose was to facilitate a successful afterlife for the king so that he could be eternally reborn.FUNCTIONS Djoser·s Step Pyramid complex has several structures pivotal to its function in both life and the afterlife. The symbolism of the step pyramid form. especially the royal mortuary cult. Several are discussed below with attention paid to function and form. . since seven small step pyramids (not tombs) were built in the provinces. which did not survive the 3rd Dynasty.

A passageway with a limestone ceiling constructed to look as though it was made from whole tree trunks led to a massive stone imitation of two open doors. which some Egyptologists propose may have been for each of the provinces of Upper and Lower Egypt. but were attached to the wall by masonry projections. Between the columns on both sides of the hall were small chambers. At the end of the colonnade was the transverse hypostyle room with eight columns connected in pairs by blocks of limestone. Beyond this portal was a hall with twenty pairs of limestone columns composed of drum shaped segments built to look like bundles of plant stems and reaching a height of 6. .The columns were not free-standing.6 m.ENTRY & CIRCULATION The roofed colonnade led from the enclosure wall to the south of the complex.

A burial chamber of alabaster existed before the one of granite.TOMB CHAMBER The burial chamber was a vault constructed of four courses of well-dressed granite. which was sealed with a 3. The king sought to associate himself with the eternal North Stars that never set so as to ensure his rebirth and eternity.5 ton block after the burial.Interesting evidence of limestone blocks has been found with five pointed stars in low relief that were likely on the ceiling. indicating the first occurrence of what would become a tradition. No body was recovered as the tomb had been extensively robbed. . It had one opening.

the entrance was covered. To gain access. inclined inwards at an angle of 75°.CONSTRUCTION TECHNIQUES Five changes of plans The work involved was enormous.000 tons of stone would have been needed³ more than four times the material required for the first version. The courses were not laid horizontally but rather in a series of buttresses. presumably when the first pyramid was planned. This greatly increased the stability of the finished structure by reducing the amoun of lateral stress (Figure 3). It ran right up to the surface but. The Burial Chamber was simply a box made out of slabs of pink granite to form a small oblong room about 3 x 1. a much smaller tunnel was dug. It has been estimated that a total of 850. when the pyramid was enlarged. Originally. the decision was taken to continue the main shaft to a depth of 28 metres.7 metres high. beyond the edge of the mastaba. . swinging around in a broad curve from the passage to a courtyard of the Mortuary Temple (Figure 4).5 metres and a passage running away from it to the north.7 metres and 1. the floor of the passageway was also quarried away to create a stairway. white Tura Limestone quarried across the river. . So in the end. At some point. The successive changes to the superstructure also involved some remodelling of the substructure of the tomb. stopping at a point about 9 metres from the bottom of the shaft. this consisted of a vertical shaft 7 x 7 metres which was sunk to a depth of 8. The core of the structure was made out of small blocks of limestone quarried on the site. encased in fine.

.CONSTRUCTION MATERIALS The Djoser complex is surrounded by a wall of light Tura limestone. .The stones that are used are different from the huge stones used in the pyramids at Giza. in that they are small in size. The entrance ceiling is a simulation of a roof made from split logs.

. much of the activity was diverted (as far as the visible record shows) to the tombs of private individuals.After reaching its peak in Dynasty IV. the ¶pyramid industry· was gradually wound down. The pharaohs of Dynasties V & VI continuted to build them but on a much reduced scale. Instead.CONCLUSION .

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