13 THE PYRAMID OF HAWARA.
 
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The Nile mud, brought in by the stream which has always run through this valley, is deposited within a quarter of a mile of the pyramid ; thus any amount could be obtained close to hand, for making the mud bricks of which the pyramid is composed. The relation of the pyramid to the labyrinth on the south side of it is shown in the plan, Pl. XXV of last year's volume, " Hawara, Biahmu, and Arsinoe."

The material of the bulk of the pyramid was mud brick, laid in beds of clean yellow sand. This was covered with a casing of the usual fine limestone, weathering with a brown coat outside. Thus the original appearance was exactly like that of the other pyramids of the Memphite district The fragments of this casing I have found around the pyramid; and one piece shows an angle of 48° 4.5' ± 3'. It can hardly be doubted that this was constructed therefore as a rise of 8 on a base of 7, as that requires the angle 48° 48' 51", and would be laid out by a cubit and handbreadth vertically for each cubit horizontally. Two other pieces however give 49° 51' and 52° 25', so that the angle is not well fixed.

18. The question of the size of the pyramid is not easily settled. The whole of the casing has been removed apparently, as not a single piece was found in position all along the middles of the sides, though that is the most favourable place for its preservation. Not only is the casing all removed, but the pavement also, excepting at the N.W. corner, and in the middle of the north side. At the latter place (see Pl. VI, top corner) it is covered with concreted stone chips so firmly that it is impossible now to cut them away without disfiguring any traces of the place of the casing which might have remained. At the N.W. corner I very carefully cleaned and brushed the paving which remains, and searched for any traces of the casing. At 140 inches from the brick core there was some mortar, showing the casing to have covered that; and at about 160 there were general signs of a weathering having taken place beyond that point, which suggested that the casing extended up to there. This distance it will be seen (PL VI) agrees very well with the position of the slope of the core brickwork ; and it is certain that 30 inches less, or as much more, would have been an improbable thickness of casing. This position requiring 65 inches thickness from the sloping core, while it is not likely to have been either as thin as 35 or as thick as 95.

The matter may be more closely settled if we can see any theoretical reason for assigning a particular thickness of casing. The entrance passage is about midway between the middle and the S.W. comer of the south face (see Pl. II); if the axis of it were exactly so the casing foot would need to be only 77 inches, in place of 160 outside of the brick core ; or if the west side of the passage were taken the casing would still be but 115 inches below, which would be impossibly thin on the sloping core. But another connection to examine is the relation of the entrance to the base. On Pl. II it will be seen that the remaining part of the entrance passage slopes so that its floor would emerge at the base level at 157 inches outside of the face of the brick core. This agrees so nearly with the probable thickness of the casing as required by the sloping aide of the core, and with the probable trace of the edge at about 160 on the N.W. paving, that I have here adopted it as presumptive truth. The size of the brickwork base, with vertical face in the first six courses, was measured by setting a theodolite near the middle of the south side ; the angles subtended by long rods at the S.E. and S.W. corners were observed, thus showing the distances; and the distance and direction of a plumb line hung down to the mouth of the entrance passage was also measured. Thus the length of the south side and the position of the entrance were fixed ; and levels were taken through all the pyramid, at the entrance, N.W. paving, N. paving, and Arab canal. The brick- work base was found to be 3692 inches (307 feet 10 inches) in length; adding 2 x 157 we find 4006 inches for the original size of the finished pyramid base: and hence a height of 2284 inches. It seems very strange that it should not have been 10 feet longer, and so reach 200 cubits. If there were a flap door of stone, as at Gizeh and Dahshur (" Pyramids of Gizeh," p. 168), the casing may easily have been a few inches larger, and so outside the intersection of the passage floor and pavement. A connection with the size of the sepulchral chamber would thus be possible; the chamber being 267.5 long, fifteen times this is 4012.5, with an uncertainty of not more than two or three inches. Such a connection with the base would not be without analogy. The pyramid of Khufii is 100 times the outer length of his sarcophagus, and that of Khafra 100 times the inner length of his sarcophagus; so the pyramid of Amenemhat III may have been fifteen times the length of his chamber.

19. A very curious step in the construction was discovered by accident while cutting the tunnel in the brickwork from the N. face. At a distance of 552 inches from the face of the brick core, or about

 

 

 


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