Until now Egyptologists and Architects who have analysed the pyramid have always reasoned it to have been constructed chronologically, that is to say from base to peak !
The majority think that its internal architecture is tied to the fact that the Pharaoh could have died during construction and that it would therefore be necessary to store his body in some part whilst awaiting the end of the work.
They would have created the underground chamber and the Queen’s chamber in anticipation of the Pharaoh’s premature death. As for the King’s chamber they apparently abandoned it following the discovery of cracks in the crossbeams of the ceiling and would have decided to store the body in another, hypothetic chamber, that is yet to be discovered. (LA CHAMBRE DE CHEOPS de Gilles Dormion chez FAYARD) Two provisional tombs for a single body and a third that is unused ? Unlikely ! Why did they not use one of the two temporary chambers after the discovery of these cracks ? The mystery lingers ! We therefore have three known chambers devoid of hieroglyphics and half a sarcophagus that is more resemblant of a trough and cannot even pass through the corridor leading up to it. The Pharaoh’s mummy would therefore have to have been transported on a stretcher before being put in his sarcophagus. Try to imagine the funeral procession passing through the descending corridor, the ascending corridor or grand gallery whilst having to pass on top of the granite plugs, and all this in the dark in a confined atmosphere and with a steep incline ! It is no longer a royal funeral but more French “INTERVILLES” game TV show.
What if the King’s chamber was never destined to serve as tomb ?
Can it be true that all those who have studied the monument have been looking for a tomb and therefore have been unable to see the real use for this chamber ?
In every case it appears to demonstrate this with deeper analysis of the “relieving chamber” – this strange structure consisting of five successive granite ceilings covering the King’s chamber.
Cross section of the King’s chamber showing the 5 successive ceilings
Gilles Dormion said it in his book “Khéop’s Chamber” published in 2004 by Fayard.
“If the term ’relieving chamber’ is evocative it is not however really justified here. What would actually protect the King’s chamber from the considerable weight that it must absorb is the relieving keystones , the chevron that sits on top of the whole structure.”
So then, what can the real aim of the constructors be in adding so many crossbeams, and therefore weight, between the King’s chamber and relieving keystones ?
Longitudinal cross section of the King’s chamber. Extract from the book by Gilles Dormion (Kheop’s chamber)
Almost 2200 tonnes of granite (coming from quarries situated 960 km from the grand pyramid), have also been added above the King’s chamber without apparent logic.
When we think that the largest crossbeam borders on 63 tonnes and that it was necessary to hoist it up between 49m and 60m in height, it must have been for a very good reason !
One explanation, the most advanced and serious to date, was that this structure served to raise the chevrons so as not to press on the grand gallery and support less weight. They operate then as chambers of elevation.
This solution, even if it consists of a part of the structural truth, would not however stand up long to critical analysis. Not least that the Queen’s chamber, situated on a level clearly inferior to that of the King’s chamber, would have its own chevron arch, and it would have been a lot simpler to lay it horizontally along side the King’s chamber in the grand gallery to rectify the problem of the weight displacement.
Those who support this hypothesis of elevation also admit that the internal architecture of this pyramid had been the subject of several modifications in the course of the works. The abandoning of the underground chamber and the Queen’s chamber seems to give them reason, but then since the modifications were on-running why did they not chose an easier solution to use and so avoid the transportation and handling of all these granite crossbeams ?
But, what if the constructors hadn’t made a mistake ? What if there had simply been another logical reason for the position of the chamber ?
If we look at it, these four supplemental levels of ceiling only support their own weight and carry their loads on the crossbeam of the first ceiling of the chamber. Why have all they been made to add more weight onto the crossbeams ? It is left then to the royal mummy to risk lifting the ceiling with his little muscular arms ?
Examinations of another hypothesis !
To truly understand the role of this structure it is necessary to reason in the sense of gravity (from high to low) and abandon the idea of a tomb. Abandonment is actually easy if we admit that the two shafts said to be for “Ventilation” that open out on the side of the pyramid run a huge risk to the mummy and the funeral embellishments. Apart from the circulation of air, bacteria, insects, sand and eventually rain it would have only taken someone to pour water into the shafts to drown the mummy and its royal furniture. Pillagers could have had the idea just to see where the water would exit. It is a risk Cheops would never have taken if he wanted to preserve his mummified body to ascend to the life eternal.
Everything becomes clear if we start to look at the king’s chamber as a simple watertight granite vat supplied by two water feeding shafts and closed by a granite guillotine gate system (the portcullis chamber).
So, what will happen if we fill it up with water from one or other of these shafts ?
With a column of water round 34 meters in height between the underside of the ceiling and the exterior of the shafts we will obtain a pressure of 3.4 bars or 34 tonnes per m² and would leave around one meter of compressed air in the top of the vat (Calculated from Mariotte’s law / Boyle’s law – the relationship between volume and pressure).
This pressure would be sufficient to very easily elevate the ceiling constituting crossbeams of around sixteen tonnes, affording each one near six square meters in contact with the compressed air, unless of course they were held in place by the weight of the crossbeams above.
To elevate 2200 tonnes spread out over (10.48m x 5.24m) = 54.91 m², it would be necessary for a pressure of 40 tonnes per m² whereas the column of water only produced 34 tonnes par m².
If we consider the first ceiling to be like a lid of a watertight vat then the floors above are acting as weights in this lid to prevent the elevation. A calculation effectuated by the structural engineer to demonstrate that the crossbeams of the ceiling could have easily held the pressure without breaking but that they would be lifted without the weight of the structure above.
This device is therefore proof positive that the constructors wanted to battle against the pressure.
In case of escape they even had the foresight to add a security valve in the “passage” (see the longitudinal cross section of the King’s chamber) allowing the protection of the chalky rafters when evacuating the water towards the grand gallery.
A lid sufficiently ballasted to resist the pressure
The choice of a flat ceiling for this chamber is equally justified by the fact that the surface in contact with the pressure is a lot weaker than those on covering made of rafters. Moreover, the pressure on the ceiling is uniformly distributed whereas in the case of rafters the pressure would be stronger on the base of the rafter than on the roof, clearly augmenting the risk of collapse in the rafter’s gap.
As soon as we forget the history of the tomb it is surprising to diagnose from the longitudinal cross section of this “King’s chamber” that it strangely resembles a sort of hydraulic piston.
What if its paving had been conceived to descend under the effect of the pressure ?
Such a device appears good and to have been tested by the constructors in the Queen’s chamber. Her floor is lowered, without logical reason, 54 cm in relation to the level of her access corridor, and the surface area of the depression on the Queen’s chamber and the lowered corridor is within a few centimeters of the granite floor area of the King’s chamber and the chamber of portcullises.
Step seen in the Queen’s chamber
Sketch in cm showing that the passageways of the two chambers would almost have the same axis if there was no step. Have the constructors made an experiment in sinking the floor of the Queen’s chamber ?
It suffices therefore that the paving of the King’s chamber is sunk by 54 cm to obtain an automatic liberation of the water without human intervention. The water escapes by the portcullises that follow the granite floor’s descent.
The fourth portcullis is fixed to the antechamber functions as a nozzle in order to avoid damaging the chalky wall between it and the grand gallery.
You are asking yourself why the grand gallery resembles a sloping sewer ? Two lateral benches and a central drain ! It even has a step in the high part that was originally cut in a V to orientate the residual water towards the drain.
Photograph dated 1910 showing the step cut with a V situated in the top of the grand gallery.
To come back to the “relieving chambers” or rather now to the “lid loading floors” you understand that this structure not only correctly explains that it is a box battling against the pressure but that it loses all other use !
It would therefore be good for Egyptologists to admit the possibility that what they have taken to be the King’s chamber is in fact just a watertight vat for a primitive hydraulic piston.
Accepting this idea will not only be a major discovery for humanity but will also allow a newed research in the pyramid from a new base. Until now thought was that the portcullises were destined to prevent looters from entering but now it is evident that they are to prevent water from leaving. It is for this reason that they have been by-passed so easily.
In fact all logical investigative thought on this matter has to be restarted !
New interior plan
If we follow the progress of the free-flowing water it engulfs the ascending corridor until the granite plugs. As the ascending corridor is filled up and the weight of the column of water grows the first plug in the descending corridor seals the passage towards the subterranean chamber. The excess water is evacuated by the well (at the bottom of the grand gallery) towards the subterranean chamber, which was used only as a receptacle.
This explains why this chamber has not been completed ! It was not acting as a provisional tomb but of a simple vat destined to receive water, and probably sand also, for a temporary mechanism.
So, to the Queen’s chamber. It simply served to test the sinking mechanism of the floor, also before the shafts were put to use they reached the same level as the King’s chamber. It only acted as a test chamber and not as another provisional tomb as is held in certain official theories.
So, let’s look at the King’s chamber.
We can easily imagine that the pressure obtained by the filling of the shafts could also move the blocks, which fitted with holes, would allow the free flowing of the sand through the shafts allowing the moving of the blocks in the level above the King’s chamber and so opening the true doors of the pyramid.
The King’s chamber would therefore only be a level switch. A simple hydraulic lock !
Click to download mechanism sketchup 6 model.
1- King’s chamber.
2- Queen’s chamber.
3- Subterranean chamber.
4- Grand gallery.
5- Portcullis chamber.
A- Crossbeam with hole (the sand switch).
B- Superior shaft full of sand.
C- Inferior shaft empty towards the floor of the subterranean chamber.
D- Shaft full of sand towards the opening mechanism of the real doors.
The existence of a vertical shaft descending to the floor of the subterranean chamber alone explains the inclination of the north shaft and why it is shorter in length than the ones of the Queen’s chamber.
It further explains the presence of the subterranean chamber as the distance between the walls in any other construction would not be sufficient to support the weight above unless it was a natural chamber dug out from the chalk.
Of course, it would remain as a chalk membrane in the ceiling of the subterranean chamber but could it yield under the weight of the sand above if the shafts were full after activating the mechanism ?
Preparation for a shaft in the subterranean chamber ceiling
We can almost follow this theory like footprints in the pyramid !
It will be most interesting if Dr Zahi Hawass (Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Eqyptian Antiquities) could check this preparation for a shaft in the ceiling of the subterranean chamber using a sonar scanner.
If there was a vertical shaft behind it would be proof positive of the existence of a secret opening mechanism camouflaged in the heart of this pyramid.
In this case we can be sure that one or more of these secret chambers clearly exist and that they have remained unviolated.
For all knowledge of the position of these secret rooms and all details of this theory read the book by Philippe Lheureux and Stéphanie Martin “Le mécanisme secret de la grande pyramide d’Egypte” (The secret mechanism of the great Egyptian pyramid) published by Temps Présent.
The authors also invite you to view the website for their book www.grande-pyramide.fr where you will discover other interesting elements not present in this article.
This french article was translated into English by Jonnie Hurn