June 24, 2024 at 9:33 am

A Lost River Could Finally Explain The Origins Of The Pyramids

by Trisha Leigh

Source: Shutterstock

One of the world’s most enduring mysteries lies in Egypt, where the massive pyramids loom over the otherwise barren landscape.

How was the feat accomplished?

There have been many theories over the years, but honestly, none of them are able to fully explain it.

Now, the discovery of an ancient river could provide a huge piece of the puzzle.

The theory would explain the pyramid’s obscure location, as well as explaining how they were able to built them over 4,500 years ago.

There are over 30 pyramids sit on a vertical strip between Giza and Lisht. They are situated along the edge of the Sahara Desert, a fair distance from the Nile River of today.

Source: Dario Morandotti/Unsplash

Archaeologists know that the river has changed significantly since it fed the ancient world, and likely had a much higher discharge in the past.

Scientists behind this new study used satellite imagery to search for a former branch of the Nile that might have run near the foothills of the Western Desert Plateau near the pyramids.

Once finding a promising candidate, the went to the location to perform geophysical surveys and collect soil samples.

They claim in their paper that they found evidence of a 40-mile branch of the Nile River that has since disappeared. They’ve proposed to name the river “Ahramat,” which means “pyramids” in Arabic.

Source: Eman Ghoneim et al.

Dr. Eman Ghoneim, the lead author on the study, spoke with IFLScience in 2023.

“The length probably was really, really long, but also the width of this branch in some areas was huge. We’re talking about half a kilometer or more in terms of width, which is something that is equivalent to today’s Nile course width. So it wasn’t a small branch. It was a major branch.”

They believe the branch began to dry up during an intense drought 4,200 years ago, the strip eventually buried under a blanket of sand.

“As branches disappeared, Ancient Egyptian cities and towns also silted up and disappeared, and we have no clue actually where to find them.”

Source: Eman Ghoneim et al.

The river would have been a necessary tool in building the pyramids, as the waterway would have allowed materials and workers to be shipped nearby.

“If there are pyramids everywhere in this specific area, there must have been in the past water bodies that carried or facilitated the transportation of rocks and large numbers of workmen to these sites.”

It definitely makes sense that a nearby waterway would have made this feat much more manageable.

One more piece of the puzzle.

If you thought that was interesting, you might like to read about the mysterious “pyramids” discovered in Antarctica. What are they?