- Dashur -
The Black Pyramid of Amenemhat III (Dahshur) is located 1.3 km to the east of the Bent Pyramid (as well as the White Pyramid of Amenemhat II, located at the same distance from the Red Pyramid).
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The first explorations of the Black Pyramid took place in the middle of the XIXth century and where provided by John Perring and Karl Lepsius. In 1894-1895 the Pyramid was studied by the French archaeologists Jacques de Morgan and George Legrain.
Pyramid's height - 75 m; Slope of the sides - 57 °; Length of each side - 105 m.
Pyramid of Amenemhat III has a very complex internal architecture, unusual for the Pyramid Builders of the XII Dynasty. There are two entrances, leading inside the Pyramid. The first is one is located in the southeast corner of the east side of the Pyramid. It leads into the descending corridor, equipped by staircase. The corridor leads into a maze with a number of passages and chambers, built on the different levels of the eastern side of the Pyramid. Burial chamber has a gable vault ceiling. It is oriented to the east-west and, like most underground chambers of the Pyramid - it is made of white limestone blocks.
The second entrance inside the Pyramid is located opposite to the first one, described above. It is located on the west side of the Pyramid, closer to its south-west corner. It leads inside the two Burial Chambers of the Queens. The first Burial Chamber probably belongs to the Queen Aam, but the name of the owner of the second Burial Chamber is unknown.
The Pyramid is surrounded by the double wall, built of mud brick. It is believed that Amenemhet III has built and then refused from the Pyramid in Dahshur on the 15th year of his reign and began the construction of a new Pyramid in Hawara. The reason was - the unstable geological area, selected for the construction of the megalithic structure close to the Nile Valley. The Pyramid was built at an altitude of only 10 meters above sea level. The soft mud brick material of the Pyramid allowed the groundwater to seep into the thickness of the main Pyramid masonry, thus making her heavier. This fact has provoked a gradual lowering of the main body of the Pyramid, causing cracks of the main walls of the underground rooms.
Now both entrances are unaccessible.
In the year 1900, during inspection of the surrounding area of the Pyramid of Amenemhat III, the Egyptian Antiquities Organization has found the perfectly preserved basalt Pyramidion, decorated with inscriptions and drawings . If this artifact was ever finished the top of the Black Pyramid, shining in the rays of the bright sun of Dashur at the heigh of 75 meters above the desert level - hard to say... The Time has taken away the original appearance of the Pyramid at all. Now, this artifact is in the Central Hall of the Cairo Museum, surprising the visitors with its high precision geometrical parameters along with the high technique of ancient egyptian masters, who did these wonderful drawings on a mirror - polished surface of black basalt.