The Pyramids of Giza are one of the most famous monuments in human history, with a construction that continues to boggle human minds across centuries.
Even after nearly 4,500 years archaeologists have not been able to determine all the technical aspects surrounding the construction of the pyramids. Many questions remain about how the Pharaonic civilization built these huge edifices, despite their lack of technical means as we know today.
A new study led by a natural geographer, Hader Sheisha of Aix-Marseille University in France, has shed new light o this dilemma.
It revealed that the construction of the Giza pyramids was possible thanks to the presence of a tributary branching from the Nile, which no longer exists today, that allowed the transportation of the necessary building materials.
According to Radio Monte Carlo, the study suggests that the Pharaohs’ engineers used the Nile and its annual floods through a complex system of canals and basins that formed a port complex at the foot of the Giza plateau.
Experts studied ancient pollen at the site, which enabled a precise analysis of the variation in water levels in this region over more than 8,000 years, including the period during which the pyramids were built between 2,686-2,160BC.
The research showed that the water level rose sharply during the African humid period between 4,800 and 5,500 years ago, which turned the dry soil of part of the Sahara into a patch of grass, trees and lakes.
After that, the Nile branch receded, but remained navigable for a long time.
This allowed for the transportation of stones and materials for building the pyramids, and it is reported that many of these stones were transported from distant sites in Egypt.
The study showed that the water in this tributary maintained high levels during the reigns of Khufu, Khafre and Menkaure, which facilitated the transportation of building materials to Giza.
But after the reign of King Tutankhamun, who came to power from 1,349 to 1,338 BC, water levels in this tributary of the Nile gradually decreased until they reached their lowest levels documented in the last 8,000 years.