The Great Pyramid

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The largest pyramid ever built, King Khufu’s Pyramid is often called the Great Pyramid. It lies in the desert west of Giza, accompanied by the pyramids of Khafre and Menkaure (Khufu’s son and grandson). The Great Pyramid was built during Khufu’s reign.  When newly completed, the Great Pyramid rose 146.7 m – nearly 50 stories high. Researchers estimate that 2.3 million blocks were used to build it, with an average weight of about 2.5 metric tons per block. The work of digging up, moving, setting, and sculpting the huge amount of stone used to build the Great Pyramid was most likely accomplished by two crews of 2,000 workers each. Teams of bakers, carpenters, water carriers, and others probably served the pyramid builders, so that a total of about 25,000 men and women may have lived year-round near the construction site. None of the workers were slaves. Most were probably farmers, contracted to work for a limited period. Specialists, who were permanently employed by the king, filled the positions that required the most skill – architects, masons, metal workers, and carpenters. 

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