When we talk about slaves, the first topic that hit our minds is the building of the Great Pyramid where numerous slaves lost their lives, did they? Slavery, as we know, is the evil of our past that prevails even today. There are almost 40 million people estimated to be trapped in slavery even in the 21st century when the world has already assigned all the hard labor to machines. So, if slaves can exist today, it is more likely that they will continue to prevail for the years to come.
People for centuries have been arguing about the conditions of slaves during the building of the Great Pyramid, several theories, counter theories, and myths continue to haunt people about the fate of those people. However, recent research proves that the Great Pyramid was not built by slaves but by free workers. What’s the story? Let’s check it out!
The Great Pyramid was built by free workers and not slaves
New tombs found in Giza are 4,000 years old and support the fact that the Great Pyramids were built by contract workers, not, as widely believed, by slaves according to Egypt’s chief archaeologist. Egyptian scholars believe that the slave factor was widely popularised by Hollywood through films and media emphasizing the myth of ancient slavery.
The located tombs were built beside the King’s Pyramid which indicates that the people who built the great wonder were not by any means slaves. Because if they have been slaves, their tombs wouldn’t be built next to the king. The worker’s tomb that was first discovered in the 1990s was the most significant finding of the 21st century. These tombs were of workers who build the pyramid of Khufu and Khafre. Archaeologists have also located a graffiti saying “friends of Khufu” that again signifies that the workers were not slaves.
The 9 feet deep shaft held dozens of skeletons well preserved by the dry sand along with a bottle of beer and bread for the afterlife. No kingdom in history has ever treated a slave this generously, suggesting that the tombs do not belong to the slaves. These tombs belong to the paid laborers according to Egypt’s chief archaeologist, Zahi Hawass. Hawass also added, that the evidence also proves that farmers in the Delta and Upper Egypt had sent 21 buffalo and 23 sheep to the plateau every day to feed the around 10,000 to 100,000 builders.
The archaeologist’s department believes that the slave myth around the pyramids was first ignited by Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin back in 1977. It was further popularized by Hollywood. According to several archaeologists, the Israeli PM claim has no evident ground as Jews never existed back in the 4th century, when these pyramids were initially built. If Hebrew ever build anything, it was the city of Pi-Ramesses in the Delta region of ancient Egypt.
So, what happened that the audience believed so much in the slave myth of the Egyptian Pyramid?
Dieter Wildung, a former director of Berlin’s Egyptian Museum once said that “The world simply could not believe the pyramids were built without oppression and forced labor, but out of loyalty to the pharaohs.”
It is backed up by several pieces of evidence that the Great Pyramid was actually built by the ancient Egyptians and not the ones of conspiracy theories. Surviving records were identified in 2013 at Wadi al-Jarf on Egypt’s Red Sea coast. They suggest that the Egyptian marvel was built by contract workers who worked under the leadership of an officer. These people were either permanent construction workers or seasonal agriculture workers who would occasionally take up the job during the non-harvest period.
According to papyri, the workers were allotted a special diet that included vegetables, poultry, and meat. Villagers would every day bake large amounts of bread and slaughter hundreds of animals to feed the high number of workers. Based on the animal bones found at the site, 1,800 kilograms of animals were slaughtered every day. Additionally, the remains of the workers found in the graves near the pyramid show that the worker’s bones were set properly which indicates that these people had access to medical aid as well. All these facts alone are enough to prove that no slaves build the Pyramids, they were built by ancient Egyptian contract workers and ordinary people.