SF: I also find it difficult to fathom that the engineering/construction skills within AE could have come up the requisite "learning curve" so quickly to produce such an awesome structures as the Gizamids given the scope of the earlier projects.
SC: The “earlier projects” you mention were quite incredible undertakings in their own right and not to be considered lesser achievements. Much would have been learned from these precedents. I don’t see the learning curve being a problem at all. Between the construction of the first pyramid (Djoser’s Step Pyramid at Saqqara) and the Great Pyramid of Khufu at Giza, over 100 years had passed. Look how much our civilization has advanced in its building skills and technology since 1908!
SC: Resources may have been an issue or a change in religious emphasis. My own view is somewhat simpler – the AE started building pyramids towards the ultimate goal of implementing a long-term “sacred plan” on the ground at Giza (where the Sphinx had probably already been in place for thousands of years). Giza represents – in my view - the manifestation and implementation of an ancient “sacred” model. When that goal was achieved with the construction of Giza (the model made manifest) then the desire for pyramid building on such a scale would naturally relinquish – they had achieved their goal. Pyramid structures thereafter would perhaps be built only in “homage” to the ancient plan. There was no real need – in my view - to continue building such elaborate and gargantuan pyramid structures now that they had achieved the goal And it is interesting to note that Shepseskaf, son of Menkaure, the first Pharaoh after Giza was completed - almost as if to underline the fact that the sacred codex had now been completed - built only a Mastaba (not a pyramid) for his tomb, the Mastaba el Faraun at Saqqara; Saqqara where it had all begun some 200 years previous..Quote
SF: Also, I do find it odd that efforts of the later Dynasties appear to be of a lesser scope and quaility, although certainly changes in "resource allocation" philosophies could have played a large role.
SF: Anyway, the rationale for the 10,500 B.C. connection seems to center around the position of Orion in the night sky at that time relative to the 3 large yramids…
SC: Not only the three main Pyramids but ALSO the Queens’ pyramids. These demonstrate the precessional motion of the belt stars and they do so by marking two very key moments in the precessional cycle of the belt stars – their min and max culminations. Without demonstrating this property of the belt stars we might have confused the pyramids as being symbolic of – for example – the Cygnus constellation. By demonstrating to us how their “chosen” star group precess across time, we simply cannot fail to identify the correct star triad. The 10,500BC date is – in actual fact – presented to us in the Giza structures in 5 (and possibly 6) different ways, not just one!
SF: Isn't it just as plausible that the Gizamids were built ~ 2,450 BC and that they were symbolically linked the belt stars of Orion?
SC: I think you will find that most (though not all) “alternate” commentators are agreed that the Gizamids are 4th Dynasty constructions. I don’t think there is any question now that they were symbolic of the belt stars of the Orion constellation (and ONLY the belt stars).
SF: However, this could have been done in a non-precise, loose manner without any crisp degree of alignment. Practical factors in terms of site location, ground conditions, etc may have well driven minor shifts in the exact locations of each Pyramid.
SC: This is not unreasonable to suggest and I think Bauval has cited this himself many times as perhaps part of the reason for the slight error in positioning of G3. My own view, however, is that it is G2 that was “misplaced” (but deliberately so) because what we find is that the centre pyramid of Khafre (G2) is offset from the centre of the theorized Great Giza Circle by 44 cubits by 14 (or 22 by 7 – approx of Pi).
SF: If this approach were true (i.e., symbolic and "loose" alignment to the belt stars), than couldn't it be simply a random calculation that results in the discovery that Gizamids were much more accurately aligned with the Orion belt stars ~ 8,000 years earlier?
SC: As stated above, there are a possible 6 means by which the structures at Giza indicate the remote c.10,500BC date – not just one. If it were just one reference – “one random calculation” - then I would agree with you that it would most likely be simple coincidence. But not six different indicators!