> Hi Thanos5150,
> Those "easy pickings" probably were not visible.
Thats what I'm saying. If they were they would have split them up and taken them away. The fact they are still there suggests they were covered in sand. G2 and G1 suffered the same build up of sand and debris around its bases making the smaller blocks inherently more accessible if one so desired, though I doubt this was the case.
RE: your previous post for a more primary source for the Arab G3 accounts:
King Al-Aziz Uthman ibn Salah al-Din Yusuf ibn Ayyub, who reigned after his father, was pushed by ignorant people of his court to destroy the pyramids. He began with the small red pyramid and sent quarrymen and stonemasons, led by some emirs of the kingdom and the great empire, ordering them to destroy it. They pitched their tents near the pyramid, gathered laborers and workers, and did not spare any expense. They remained there about eight months with their people and their horses, destroying every day one or two stones with infinite pains and after strenuous efforts. Men posted above raised each stone with levers, and others pulled from below by means of ropes and cables. The falling of each stone made a terrible noise that could be heard from afar; the mountains quaked and the earth trembled. The stone sank into the sand, and new efforts were needed to lift it by means of levers placed below by digging a path through which they made the drive. Thus, they broke the stone into heaps, and each piece was carried away on carts and thrown at the foot of the nearby mountain. And after lengthy efforts and enormous expense, exhausted by fatigue, they were forced to abandon the work without being able to accomplish it. All they managed to do was to deface the pyramid and give proof of their impotence and the futility of their efforts. This was in 593 [1196-1197 CE]. Today, if you look at the heap of stones torn from the pyramid, you would think it was completely destroyed, but if we look at the pyramid itself, you would be convinced that the men did nothing at all for they removed only a small part of the side, which is now a mass of fallen stones. A fellow who witnessed the tragic attempt to demolish every stone asked the head of the workers: “If the sultan gave you a thousand dinars to put one of these stones back in place as it was, could you do it?” “No, by God,” replied the other, “it would be impossible, even if he doubled the amount.”
It refers to G3 as the "red pyramid" (?) and says nothing of casing stones and only seems to refer to the gash we see today as the only damage they were able to do. Looks like they never got around to touching G1 or G2. It also says "they broke the stone into heaps, and each piece was carried away on carts and thrown at the foot of the nearby mountain". Apparently it was just trash to them, not even worth using for building material. As an aside, I wonder what mountain they are referring to and if any of the rubble is still there. If this story is true you'd think there would still be remnants of this project. Regardless, I'm not saying this story isn't true, but personally I take these Arab accounts for what they are worth, most of which is not much.
> If Greaves didn't see any granite - that's sixteen courses -
> then, the sand was at least that high.
> Even though this on the record, it is sometimes easy to forget
> the historical side and assume that what we see today, is how
> it always was.
Indeed. Case in point.
> So, the gash in Menkaure doesn't indicate that
> the pillagers commenced at that height. They most probably
> started at ground level.
It doesn't necessarily mean it was that high, but obviously what constituted "ground level" at the bases was much higher regardless.
The way Greaves found it was closer to the way the Arabs would have originally found it. As of only 1954, G1 for example, still had a whopping 65 feet of debris and sand still needing to be cleared off its south face. It was upon removing this debris that they found "Khufu's" famous boat pit/boat buried under it. The Al-Aziz incident took place around c. 1200AD yet the earthquake that supposedly knocked off all the casing stones from all of the pyramids didn't happen until 130yrs later. And supposedly it is after this time the majority of the pilfering took place.
If we were to cull all the accounts of the last few hundred years alone of debris piled up at the bases of the pyramids, this would support the idea there was no need to pillage directly from the pyramids themselves. There were nearly inexhaustible quarries just sitting there for the taking. And the Al-Aziz account as an aside is one of attempting to destroy it, not take from it and even when they did they just dumped it as rubbish. An 8 month endeavour that ended in failure. If pillaging stones were the job there would be no need to bother with such things.