Egyptian Pyramids - who built the pyramids? Why were the pyramids built? Where are the pyramids? How many pyramids are there in Egypt? What were the pyramids used for? The Bent pyramid. The Step Pyramid. The Red Pyramid. The Great Pyramid. The Pyramids at Giza. This site aims to answer those questions and many more, giving an insight into the truely magnificent structures know as the pyramids of Egypt!

The Red Pyramid

The Red Pyramid - Pyramid of King SnefruLocated in Dahshur (which forms the southernmost area of the Memphis Necropolis and contains a number of pyramid complexes and monuments), is the Red Pyramid.

The Red Pyramid was the last pyramid built by the pharoah Sneferu, the first ruler of the 4th Dynasty, who ruled from 2613 - 2589 BC. He previous attempt was the Bent Pyramid, also at Dahshur.

The Red Pyramid was the first successful attempt at a 'true' pyramid. It gets it's name from the the reddish sandstone blocks used in it's construction. The ancient Egyptians called it the Shining pyramid due to the limestone casing which would have hidden the red blocks. Those casing stones have long since vanished, hence the name we now use - The Red Pyramid.

The Red Pyramid at Dashur has the second largest base of any pyramid in Egypt. The total area of the structure is only slightly less than the Great Pyramid, but as the angle of inclination of its sides is much shallower (43 degrees 22''), it only reaches a height of 341 feet (104m). Nevertheless, it is the fourth highest pyramid ever built in Egypt, with almost 160 layers of stone.

Inscriptions on the stones of the pyramid indicate that the structure took around seventeen years to complete, with around 30 percent being finished within the first four years.

East of the pyramid is what remains of a mortuary temple, as well as the first capstone (Pyramidion) ever found belonging to an Old Kingdom Pyramid. It was recovered in fragments and reconstructed. The mortuary temple itself, though nothing much remains, is significant because Snefru pioneered the east west alignment of Egyptian temples to match the path of the sun.

It is almost certain that Sneferu was buried in the Red Pyramid although the fragments of human remains found inside the burial chamber are not certain to have been his.