Are the Pyramids of Egypt the World’s Oldest Monuments?
The pyramids of Egypt were originally built as tombs for the pharaohs and their consorts during the Old and Middle Kingdoms. The oldest pyramids were built in the region of Saqqara near Memphis during the Third Dynasty. The number of workers required to build the pyramids ranged from a few thousand to 1000,000. Many of these structures were designed by the architect Imhotep. The oldest of these structures is the Step Pyramid of Djoser, which was built between 2630 B.C. and 2611 B.C. As of 2008, 138 Egyptian pyramids have been discovered. Most of the Egyptian periods were constructed during the time of absolute pharaoic rule. The most famous of these pyramids were the Pyramids of Giza, which are the only remaining structures of the ancient Seven Wonders of the World. The largest pyramid served as the tomb for Pharaoh Khufu. After the pharaohs were replaced by councils, the desire to harness the resources necessary for such massive monuments began to wane. The most recent pyramids were often hastily constructed and, therefore, not nearly as lasting as their predecessors. The most recent pyramid discoveries were made by Angela Micol in 2012. Sitting at her computer in her North Carolina home, Ms. MIcol used Google Earth to find two pyramid complexes in northern Egypt approximately 90 miles apart. The pyramids of Egypt continue to draw thousands of tourists each year because in the minds of many, they are the oldest structures on earth.