Africa: Pyramids / Bent Pyramid

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PHOTO: isispuff 2947'24.02" 3112'32.65"

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Built by Pharaoh Sneferu, the Bent Pyramid dates from about 2600 BC. It was the first pyramid to have been planned as a true pyramid, as opposed to a step pyramid. The Bent Pyramid gets its nickname from its unusual bent angle - the initial 54° angle changes to 43° halfway up. It most likely occurred because the builders realized the initial angle was too steep and adjusted it to avoid collapse. The nearby Red Pyramid, which was built immediately after, has a 43° angle throughout. The Bent Pyramid is 599 ft square and its original height was 344 ft. It is believed to be the first attempt at creating a pyramid with smooth sides. It was only partially successful, but it was a significant step in pyramid development. Today it is also the only Egyptian pyramid to retain a majority of its original limestone casing, providing the best feel for the original appearance of all pyramids.


 

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