Pyramid - architectural type definition


The pyramid is one of the most recognisable architectural forms that has a long history and is found in various cultures around the world. Here is some information about the pyramids, its precursors and the most famous structures of this type.


Precursors to the pyramids

Mastaba: The mastaba was an earlier form of tomb used by the ancient Egyptians. Mastabas had flat roofs and perpendicular walls. Some were in the form of a stepped structure, which was an early incarnation of the pyramid.

Zikkurat: A zikkurat is a sacred structure found in ancient Mesopotamia. It was a tower built with several stepped levels, each one smaller than the previous one. Although the zikkurat were not technically pyramids, their stepped shape influenced the development of pyramidal architecture.


The most popular pyramid structures

Egyptian pyramids: the most famous pyramids are located in Giza, Egypt. These include the Great Pyramid of Giza (Cheops' Tomb), the Pyramid of Chephren and the Pyramid of Mykerinos. They are built of huge blocks of stone and were tombs for the pharaohs of ancient Egypt.

Step Pyramid in Mesoamerica: In Mesoamerica, especially in Mexico, there are various step pyramids built by cultures such as the Maya, Aztecs and Toltecs. The most famous of these are the Pyramid of Kukulkan in Chichén Itzá (Mexico) and the Pyramid of the Sun in Teotihuacán (Mexico).

Pyramids of the Sudan: Sudan is home to many little-known pyramids, such as the Nubian Pyramids at Meroe. They are the remains of the ancient Nubian civilisation and form part of the region's cultural heritage.


It is worth noting that pyramids were also built in other parts of the world, such as Peru and Indonesia. Each of these structures had its own cultural and historical significance, but they are united by their distinctive shape and monumental nature.

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