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How did Egyptians light inside of pyramids?


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#16    kmt_sesh

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Posted 08 March 2012 - 12:14 AM

View Postblackdogsun, on 08 March 2012 - 12:00 AM, said:

my understanding is that only the 'queens chamber' shafts were plugged and also walled over
the 'king's chamber' shafts were completely open to the outside (though whether the casing stones sealed them off we may never know)

I'd have to say you're correct. As I understand it, the shafts leading from the King's Chamber were not plugged. But it's a good point about the casing stones--we can't know if they covered the outlets of these shafts.

Just the same, whether or not the shafts leading from the King's Chamber reached the outside unimpeded, I would still caution against seeing them as "air" shafts. This is a modern appellation--nothing from ancient times demonstrates such a thing one way or another. All we have to go by is the context of the Great Pyramid in comparison to other tombs. And of all the royal tombs constructed over the span of 3,000 years in ancient Egypt, I can't think of any other with something similar to the shafts inside the Great Pyramid. That goes for private tombs, too, come to think of it.

Logic dictates that if these shafts were made for the ventilation of chambers, many if not most other tombs would have them, too. And yet they are absent in other tombs, so logic dictates they were not for the ventilation of chambers.

Whatever the case, claiming they were for ventilation still makes more sense than trying to claim the ancient Egyptians used light bulbs. :rolleyes:

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#17    blackdogsun

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Posted 08 March 2012 - 12:56 AM

View Postkmt_sesh, on 08 March 2012 - 12:14 AM, said:

I'd have to say you're correct. As I understand it, the shafts leading from the King's Chamber were not plugged. But it's a good point about the casing stones--we can't know if they covered the outlets of these shafts.

Just the same, whether or not the shafts leading from the King's Chamber reached the outside unimpeded, I would still caution against seeing them as "air" shafts. This is a modern appellation--nothing from ancient times demonstrates such a thing one way or another. All we have to go by is the context of the Great Pyramid in comparison to other tombs. And of all the royal tombs constructed over the span of 3,000 years in ancient Egypt, I can't think of any other with something similar to the shafts inside the Great Pyramid. That goes for private tombs, too, come to think of it.

Logic dictates that if these shafts were made for the ventilation of chambers, many if not most other tombs would have them, too. And yet they are absent in other tombs, so logic dictates they were not for the ventilation of chambers.

Whatever the case, claiming they were for ventilation still makes more sense than trying to claim the ancient Egyptians used light bulbs. :rolleyes:

thanks kmt_sesh
you are in all likelihood correct

i hope i'm not getting too far off topic here but do you think it possible that the great pyramid may have had a duel role
that of both tomb and mausoleum - the 'queens chamber' being the tomb and the 'king's chamber a mausoleum used by the priests on occasions for ceremonies etc during auspicious times of the year
hence the possible need for air circulation and the reason why no other tombs have these shafts or the extraordinary internal architecture


#18    kmt_sesh

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Posted 08 March 2012 - 02:31 AM

View Postblackdogsun, on 08 March 2012 - 12:56 AM, said:

thanks kmt_sesh
you are in all likelihood correct

i hope i'm not getting too far off topic here but do you think it possible that the great pyramid may have had a duel role
that of both tomb and mausoleum - the 'queens chamber' being the tomb and the 'king's chamber a mausoleum used by the priests on occasions for ceremonies etc during auspicious times of the year
hence the possible need for air circulation and the reason why no other tombs have these shafts or the extraordinary internal architecture

Lots of people have speculated that one or more of the interior chambers were used subsequent to the interment of Khufu in the King's Chamber. No, I don't think it happened, for the simple reason that the Great Pyramid was sealed after Khufu's interment.

Although the form of royal mortuary cults changed quite a lot down through pharaonic history, the function rarely changed. The burial chamber of the tomb was for the interment of the body and was not meant to be disturbed; in Khufu's case the entire pyramid was more or less the burial chamber (with a burial chamber inside). The offering chapel of the tomb was accessible to priests and visitors and was where the cult of the deceased was maintained; in Khufu's case the mortuary temple was an offering chapel and was frequently visited and serviced by priests, who would've conducted any number of rituals and ceremonies in the name of Khufu. This was fairly typical for practically all pyramids from the Old Kingdom through the MIddle Kingdom.

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#19    blackdogsun

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Posted 08 March 2012 - 02:51 AM

View Postkmt_sesh, on 08 March 2012 - 02:31 AM, said:

Lots of people have speculated that one or more of the interior chambers were used subsequent to the interment of Khufu in the King's Chamber. No, I don't think it happened, for the simple reason that the Great Pyramid was sealed after Khufu's interment.

Although the form of royal mortuary cults changed quite a lot down through pharaonic history, the function rarely changed. The burial chamber of the tomb was for the interment of the body and was not meant to be disturbed; in Khufu's case the entire pyramid was more or less the burial chamber (with a burial chamber inside). The offering chapel of the tomb was accessible to priests and visitors and was where the cult of the deceased was maintained; in Khufu's case the mortuary temple was an offering chapel and was frequently visited and serviced by priests, who would've conducted any number of rituals and ceremonies in the name of Khufu. This was fairly typical for practically all pyramids from the Old Kingdom through the MIddle Kingdom.

thanks again

i agree with all that you say
for me the mystery of the great pyramid is its unusual internal architecture
khafre's by comparison, while of almost the same dimensions, seems essentially a pile of building blocks over a simple ground level chamber .. so why was the GP built so very different from all the others? [rhetorical]  :hmm:


#20    kmt_sesh

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Posted 08 March 2012 - 03:11 AM

View Postblackdogsun, on 08 March 2012 - 02:51 AM, said:

thanks again

i agree with all that you say
for me the mystery of the great pyramid is its unusual internal architecture
khafre's by comparison, while of almost the same dimensions, seems essentially a pile of building blocks over a simple ground level chamber .. so why was the GP built so very different from all the others? [rhetorical]  :hmm:

It's good you wrote that word "rhetorical," blackdogsun. I can't count the number of times I've written about the Great Pyramid at UM and Egyptology's analyses of its architecture, but I'm always tempted to continue to do so.

You just saved everyone yet another one of my long, tedious, and relentless diatribes. :w00t:

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#21    blackdogsun

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Posted 08 March 2012 - 04:10 AM

View Postkmt_sesh, on 08 March 2012 - 03:11 AM, said:

It's good you wrote that word "rhetorical," blackdogsun. I can't count the number of times I've written about the Great Pyramid at UM and Egyptology's analyses of its architecture, but I'm always tempted to continue to do so.

You just saved everyone yet another one of my long, tedious, and relentless diatribes. :w00t:

[chuckle] never tedious or relentless, but if i can't tempt you (lest we get too far off topic) i'll go browse through your webblog

of course another thought occurred to me is that the great pyramid is how it is because that's what khufu wanted, above what was traditionally done.
perhaps (and i'm just thinking out loud here) khufu intended to worshiped his gods in the 'king's chamber' for many years before he was entombed there and the pyramid finally sealed


#22    socrates.junior

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Posted 08 March 2012 - 05:12 AM

View Postkmt_sesh, on 08 March 2012 - 03:11 AM, said:


You just saved everyone yet another one of my long, tedious, and relentless diatribes. :w00t:

Darn it. I haven't been here in a while and I was really wishing I could read one of them.

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#23    blackdogsun

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Posted 11 March 2012 - 05:06 AM

found a paper that satisfies all my questions in regard to the 'air-shafts', which i've posted in a more appropriate thread here
http://www.unexplain...c=206175&st=150
see post #157


#24    JayMark

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Posted 12 March 2012 - 06:36 PM

Trying to anwser such a question is quite hard thus why I shall only relate to one very famous quote from my good friend Mr Heisenberg.

"...it is uncertain..."

Bartender says: "Sorry, we don't serve faster-than-light neutrinos here."

So you have these two faster-than-light neutrinos walking into a bar...

#25    Arbitran

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Posted 27 March 2012 - 03:31 AM

View Postbulveye, on 03 March 2012 - 08:51 AM, said:

Hi,

So I saw an episode of Ancient Aliens and the wacky dude on that said that the Egyptians had some sort of light bulbs to light the inside of the tunnels. I dont know if they did or not but I figured they proably used fire instead.

Would that mean that the little tunnel/holes that face the sky are just air vents to help cycle the air so the candles or fire torches did not go out and smoke did not build up?

I except that the little tunnel/holes may have had a dual purpose.

I used to think that the Egyptians used fire too. That was before my Egyptologist uncle explained that there isn't any smoke/soot residue on the ceilings inside the Great Pyramids--so no decent amount of flame was lit inside for any decent amount of time.

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#26    Oniomancer

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Posted 27 March 2012 - 04:17 AM

There are a number of vegetable-based oils that burn smoke-free or nearly so. The AE had access to several of them.

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#27    Arbitran

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Posted 27 March 2012 - 04:50 AM

View PostOniomancer, on 27 March 2012 - 04:17 AM, said:

There are a number of vegetable-based oils that burn smoke-free or nearly so. The AE had access to several of them.

In any case, there is no evidence that fire was used. No torches (or torch brackets; or whatever an ancient Egyptian equivalent might have been), and no evidence of soot, excess heat, or anything even remotely indicative of long-term exposure to flame (smoke-less or not). There is simply no tangible evidence that fire was used to light the interior of the Great Pyramids--unless you propose they had access to a sort of "heatless, smoke-less, contained light". Oh... in other words, a sort of light bulb?

Try to realize it's all within yourself / No-one else can make you change / And to see you're really only very small / And life flows on within you and without you. / We were talking about the love that's gone so cold and the people / Who gain the world and lose their soul / They don't know they can't see are you one of them? / When you've seen beyond yourself then you may find peace of mind / Is waiting there / And the time will come / when you see we're all one and life flows on within you and without you. ~ George Harrison

#28    DieChecker

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Posted 27 March 2012 - 04:52 AM

View Postbulveye, on 03 March 2012 - 08:51 AM, said:

So I saw an episode of Ancient Aliens and the wacky dude on that said that the Egyptians had some sort of light bulbs to light the inside of the tunnels. I dont know if they did or not but I figured they proably used fire instead.
I agree that is wacky.

View PostSteveBronfman, on 07 March 2012 - 05:35 AM, said:

Everyone knows of the famous Baghdad battery. Making electric cells using (citric and other) acid isn't really very hard and has been used for thousands of years eg to plate jewellery.
There is only one known "Battery" and only a handful of suspected electro-plated objects. That hardly leads to support of an electric infrastructure.

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The fact that no smoke residue is present inside the Pyramids lead us to the question of how the inside was lit if not by torches or lamps.
Judging off how much the tunnels would have had to be used, even by robbers, not much smoke would be generated. Plus, the pyramids have been subject to renovations not just recently, but many times going back to the time of the Romans.

Quote

Mirrors have been suggested
I beleive mirrors are possible as a source of light.

Quote

but I personally do think lightbulbs aren't really that hard to make. We know the ancients had glass and metal working skills. The ancient Egyptians knew how to blow glass;

http://www.historyof.../ancient-glass/

Making a "crude" light bulb is the next step.
You know that a proper (lasting more then a few seconds) incandecent light bulb must have a resistive, tough filament in a vacuum, that glows when a current passes through it. It is so easy to build that it took many of the worlds smartest inventors and over one hundred year after the idea was discovered, for a good light bulb to be invented.

View PostArbitran, on 27 March 2012 - 03:31 AM, said:

I used to think that the Egyptians used fire too. That was before my Egyptologist uncle explained that there isn't any smoke/soot residue on the ceilings inside the Great Pyramids--so no decent amount of flame was lit inside for any decent amount of time.

http://www.world-mys..._lights_fd1.htm

Quote

I took an ash tray, filled it with olive oil, formed a wick out of cotton wool, and soaked it with oil. Then I put the wick onto the side of the bowl so that it stuck out about 5 mm over the rim. I lit it - and it produced a steady, smokeless flame. Only an extremely long wick lead to an emission of soot.

I put a white dish over the flame, about 50 cm high, but I was unable to detect any trace of soot even after a long time. And it was nice to find out after some years that even experts like the famous material experts Clarke/Engelbach shared my opinion:

"Many visitors to the monuments express surprise that the painting could have been carried out in the darkness of the tombs and in the dim light of the temples. The Egyptian lamp was of the simplest type, merely a wick floating in oil. It is not infrequently represented in the scenes in the tombs, where it usually takes the form of an open receptacle mounted on a tall foot which, in the smaller examples, can be grasped in the hand. In the pictures, there arise from the receptacle what we may assume to be wicks or flames, always curved over the top as if blown by a current of air. Stand lamps in limestone have been found in the pyramid of El-Lahun, and representations of them in stone in the 'Labrinth' at Hawara. In Egyptian houses, small dishes were also used as lamps. They usually have their rims pinched into a spout ...

The absence of smoke-blackening in the tombs of the kings is also no difficult explanation. If olive-oil is used, there is very little smoke, and a suitable covering over the lamp, for which various methods readily suggest themselves, would very easily prevent carbon being deposited on the ceiling."[ 4 ]

And even from the region where artificial light was most necessary we have notes from the Egyptians themselves: The many 100 m long tombs in the Valley of the Kings were definitively lighted with oil lamps and wicks, since we have protocols about wicks and lamps handed out to the workers each day from the Valley of the Kings - where it was carefully documented how many wicks of what length, and how much oil was given to each worker - there is no mystery at all how these tombs were illuminated. There is no place for pharaonic flash lights.[ 5 ]


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#29    Arbitran

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Posted 27 March 2012 - 05:50 AM

View PostDieChecker, on 27 March 2012 - 04:52 AM, said:

And even from the region where artificial light was most necessary we have notes from the Egyptians themselves: The many 100 m long tombs in the Valley of the Kings were definitively lighted with oil lamps and wicks, since we have protocols about wicks and lamps handed out to the workers each day from the Valley of the Kings - where it was carefully documented how many wicks of what length, and how much oil was given to each worker - there is no mystery at all how these tombs were illuminated. There is no place for pharaonic flash lights.[ 5 ]

Could you please provide citations of the aforementioned "notes from the Egyptians themselves", which you allege "definitively" shows protocols in regards to wicks and oil quantity? My uncle and I would be most intrigued to read them.

Try to realize it's all within yourself / No-one else can make you change / And to see you're really only very small / And life flows on within you and without you. / We were talking about the love that's gone so cold and the people / Who gain the world and lose their soul / They don't know they can't see are you one of them? / When you've seen beyond yourself then you may find peace of mind / Is waiting there / And the time will come / when you see we're all one and life flows on within you and without you. ~ George Harrison

#30    aquatus1

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Posted 27 March 2012 - 06:02 AM

Arbitran...you really need to be a little more open-minded in your approach.





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