Edition - November, 2013
By Andrea Byrnes. Published on Egyptological, In Brief. 8th November 2013 November 8th 2013, Channel 4, 7.30pm Reporter: Aidan Hartley Director: Alex Nott Series Editor: Suzanne Lavery This evening on English television Channel 4 aired “Egypt’s Tomb Raiders” in their Unreported World series. The programme focuses on the plundering of Egypt’s heritage since the […]
Edition - February, 2012
The first part of this series tells how, in the early 1990s, modern science revealed the existence of something at the far end of the small shaft heading upwards and outwards from the north and south walls for the Queen’s Chamber in the Great Pyramid. These shafts had attracted little attention since the 19th century. Gantenbrink’s discovery, and explosive pictures, of a door at the end of the southern shaft changed the game.
The Great Pyramid on the Giza plateau at the apex of the Nile delta is one of the oldest and largest and yet perhaps the most enigmatic manmade structure in recorded history. Egyptologists have determined that it was commissioned by the pharaoh Khufu in the 4th Dynasty of the Old Kingdom to be his royal tomb. Figure 1 shows a vertical cross section indicating the main passages and chambers. However, within these passages and chambers are many elements of construction that are difficult to explain within the context of a royal tomb. This article focuses on one such enigma: the set of three massive granite blocks that plug the lower end of the Ascending Passage.
The early explorers of Egypt, often associated with ideas of adventure, discovery and buried treasure, fascinate many people interested in the earliest days of Egyptology. No name elicits a stronger, and often negative reaction from scholars than that of Giovanni Belzoni, who explored Egypt in the early 1800s. Belzoni has often been depicted as a villain, an irresponsible treasure hunter who destroyed valuable antiquities as he blazed through Egypt in a search for gold. It is this image of Belzoni that forms many people’s preconceptions.
By Garry Beuk
Edition - June, 2011
Although we now know that there is chamber at the end of the shafts in the Queen’s Chamber of the Great Pyramid, I still remember first hearing in the late 1990s that something had been found. The whole affair was shrouded in secrecy, back in the days when Dr. Hawass was the Director in charge of the Giza Plateau rather than Minister of State, the position he holds today.