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The ancient Egyptians built more than 90 royal pyramids from about 2630 BC until about 1530 BC During that time the pyramid form evolved from a series of stepped terraces that resembled the layers of a wedding cake to the better-known sloped pyramidal shape The first pyramid the Step Pyramid at aqqrah was constructed during the reign of King Djoser 2630 BC-2611 BC The largest pyramid is the one built for King Khufu at the site of modern Giza Khufus pyramid known as the Great Pyramid is the only one of the Seven Wonders of the World that still survives A pyramid was built as the huge stone tomb of a Pharaoh The burial chamber in the center was filled with tremendous riches for the Pharaoh to take on into the afterlife The riches were a temptation to robbers so the pyramid builders tried to fool the thieves by making false doors staircases and corridors The burial chamber inside the Great Pyramid is as large as a small modern house The base of some of the pyramids was equal to seven or eight soccer fields For religious reasons the pyramids were built on the west bank of the Nile River because the sun would set there Building along the Nile also made it easier for the builders to transport the larges stones needed to erect the pyramids The Pharaohs were buried with religious writings to help them in the afterlife The earliest ones were written on the walls of the burial chambers Later they were written on the coffins The last were written on papyrus and rolled up and placed in the dead mans coffin The writings described different ways to get to the afterworld and are known as the Books of the Dead The pyramids contained everything the King would need in the afterlifeincluding a toilet In temples nearby priests performed rituals to nourish the dead monarchs spirit which was believed to stay
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