Hawara Pyramid

Sphinx of Amenemhat III
Sphinx of Amenemhat III

 Amenemhet III was the last great ruler of the Middle kingdom as numerous inscriptions on monuments from Syria to the third cataract on Nile testify

Hawara, s historical site is not only famous for its pyramid and its mortuary temple. It’s also famous because in 1888 professor Petrie discovered in the tombs around the pyramid, the first of the famous fayoum portraits, the incredibly lifelike studies that were attached to the mummies of the deceased settlers of roman era in the fayoum. portraits were found in other parts of the fayoum and in other parts of Egypt but most of those we now see in museums around the world were found here at Hawara.

The pyramid
    Amenemhet’s pyramid, as usual for the pyramid was built of mud brick and cased with limestone. the pyramid was built with a base length of 105 m and a height of 58 m rising with a slope of 48 o 45 o as the king built another pyramid in dahshur which had been abandoned because it’s lack of suitability so the fear of collapse probably what caused the builders of the Hawara pyramid to lower the slope with as much as 9o    30o.
The pyramid’s core was built entirely of mud brick stones with only an outer in limestone. The limestone encasing has been pillaged by stone robber’s centuries ago but the limestone core still remains, giving the modern visitor the impression of Amudbrick Mountain.
The entrance to the substructure is located on the west side of the south face of the pyramid. It descends down into a first chamber, from where it appears to continue to the north, leading to dead end. A short passage in the ceiling of the first chamber running east leads to an antechamber from which the actual burial chamber can be entered when entered in the nineteenth century, the pyramid was found to contain two sarcophagi one for Amenemhet III and one for his daughter nefru -ptah. She was buried temporarily in her father’s pyramid until her own tomb could be completed.
The burial chamber is often rightly described as a technical marvel. It is carved from a single piece of hard quartzite into a rectangular .when the burials had been completed the chamber was sealed by a single roofing slab of some 45 tons. The internal security arrangement should have been impenetrable yet robbers still managed to penetrate the tomb ravage the bodies and burn the wooden coffins.
The mortuary temple
The accepted theory until now has been that the labyrinth was the mortuary temple of Amenemhet III .labyrinth is a Greek word that Brugsh says is derived from the Egyptian name of this Hawara temple “elpa -rohunt ” ” temple of the mouth of the lake ” Herodotus who visited the fayoum around the middle of the fifth century BCE writes:’ it has twelve courts all of them roofed, with gates exactly opposite on another”. There are two different sorts of chamber throughout half underground, half above ground. The roof was throughout of stone like the walls; and the walls were carved ll over with figures; everycourt was surrounded with acolonnade, which was built of white stones exquisitely fitted together .
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