GIZA PLATEAU – TOMBS OF THE PYRAMID BUILDERS

The burial places of the Pharaoh’s  –  the pyramids and the tombs in the Valley of the Kings –  have dazzled the world since their discovery. But where are ordinary people buried and how? People like the workers who helped build the pyramids?

No, they were not slaves, but farmers. They came to work on the Pyramids  during the inundation period when the Nile flooded their land.  Craftsmen, stone cutters, overseers, and other supportive staff lived near the Pyramids all year around.

Today archaeologists are discovering the  village where they lived. It is less than a 1000 feet south of the Great Sphinx. Higher up on the slopes a cemetery area with 300 burial places was found. Some are small-scale copies of royal tombs, or stone mastabas built for the craftsmen and support staff, and then there are the graves of the workers.

I was lucky to be visiting when several new tombs had just been found, and we could see them.

This grave was a small, rectangular space about five feet deep. It was a tomb of a workman. His worldly possessions to accompany him into the afterlife are sparse, a few jars and a few tools.

Our tour guide, Aki, a scholar of ancient Egyptian history, took a jar out of the grave and explained that it was  over 4000 years old  —  and while pointing it towards me asked. “Would you like to hold it?” I was tempted, but I said no.  I was terrified of dropping  it and robbing this man of the little he had for his afterlife.

More from Egypt soon

Brigitte

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About Brigitte Nioche

Author of Living Longer, Living Well - How to Embrace the Challenges of a Long Life. Other titles - Dress to Impress, The Sensual Dresser, What Turns Men On.
This entry was posted in Egypt, Islam, Luxor. Valley of the Kings, Pharaohs, Tourism, Travel, Valley of the Kings and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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