The Bent Pyramid and the Red Pyramid are some of the oldest pyramids. They are close together in Dahshur. They are from the Old Kingdom, built by Pharaoh Snofru (2613-2589 BCE), father of Khufu and founder of the 4th dynasty. The Bent Pyramid was the first successful pyramid built in the typical pyramid shape. Pharaoh Huni (2637-2613 BCE) had started a pyramid in Meidum, his son Snofru tried to finish it. This pyramid was built with walls that were too steep for the construction material, so it collapsed. Snofru learned from that and when the Bent Pyramid started to show signs of weakening, they changed the angle of the walls on the Bent Pyramid halfway during construction from the steep 53° to a more moderate 43° and therefore managed to build the first lasting pyramid. Before that, the burial monuments were in the form of the Step Pyramid. The Red Pyramid is the oldest pyramid in the straight pyramid shape, built just after the Bent Pyramid.

Both the Bent and the Red Pyramids are about 105 m (344 ft) high. They are the third largest pyramids after the two largest ones in Giza. The Bent Pyramid retains most of the outer casing. Only one of the Great Pyramids in Giza has some of the casing left at the top. Originally, the pyramids were a gleaming white, which must have been a very impressive sight.

The Red Pyramid provides access to the burial chamber. You reach it through a very steep passage with 125 steps, 63 m (207 ft) long that starts 1/3 up the pyramid and climbs down to about ground level. When I climbed in there, there were no lights inside. My flashlight didn't provide enough light for my camera, so I didn't get a picture of the inside. There are two 12 m (39 ft) high antechambers and a 15 m (49 ft) high magnificent main chamber, in which human remains were found, probably remains of Pharaoh Snofru himself.

The Red Pyramid and the Bent Pyramid are part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site Memphis and its Necropolis - the Pyramid Fields from Giza to Dahshur.

All pictures are © Dr. Günther Eichhorn, unless otherwise noted.

Red Pyramid and Bent Pyramid

Back Side Red Pyramid
Back side of the Red Pyramid. (489k)
Front Red Pyramid See
Front of the Red Pyramid. You can see the entrance to the burial chamber 1/3 way up the pyramid. (664k)
Closer View Front Red
Closer view of the front of the Red Pyramid. (743k)
Path Entrance Burial Chamber
The path up to the entrance of the burial chamber. (1104k)
Red Pyramid Foreground Bent
The Red Pyramid in the foreground, with the Bent Pyramid in the back. (620k)
Stairs Going Burial Chamber
The stairs going down to the burial chamber in the Red Pyramid. (637k)
Full View Bent Pyramid
Full view of the Bent Pyramid. You can see the change in the angle of the pyramid faces and the white casing that is mostly intact. (598k)
Closer View Bent Pyramid
Closer view of the Bent Pyramid. (687k)
Close-up Side Bent Pyramid
Close-up of one side of the Bent Pyramid with casing. (693k)
Looking Corner Bent Pyramid
Looking up a corner of the Bent Pyramid. (712k)
Close-up Corner Bent Pyramid
Close-up of the corner of the Bent Pyramid. You can see the base structure of the pyramid and the white casing. (702k)
Close-up Bent Pyramid Casing
Close-up of the Bent Pyramid casing. (733k)
Remains Older Pyramid
Remains of an older pyramid. (414k)
View Red Pyramid Towards
View from the Red Pyramid towards Cairo. You can see several pyramids, including the Step Pyramid. (381k)
Overcast Occasional Holes Clouds
It was overcast with occasional holes in the clouds. Here the sun just illuminated the Step Pyramid in the distance. (444k)

This page contains 15 pictures

Here are the links to the other pages on Egypt:

Today's Egypt People in Egypt
Nature in Egypt
Birds in Egypt
Birds in Egypt
Ancient Egypt Egypt
Mytholopy in Ancient Egypt
Pharaohs of Ancient Egypt

Page last updated on Thu Mar 18 15:04:16 2021 (Mountain Standard Time)

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