Cambridge Catalogue  
  • Help
Home > Catalogue > Architecture and Mathematics in Ancient Egypt
Architecture and Mathematics in Ancient Egypt
Google Book Search

Search this book


  • 102 b/w illus. 9 tables
  • Page extent: 304 pages
  • Size: 247 x 174 mm
  • Weight: 0.75 kg

Library of Congress

  • Dewey number: 722/.2
  • Dewey version: 21
  • LC Classification: NA215 .R67 2004
  • LC Subject headings:
    • Architecture, Ancient--Egypt
    • Architecture--Egypt--Mathematics
    • Pyramids--Egypt

Library of Congress Record


 (ISBN-13: 9780521829540 | ISBN-10: 0521829542)


  List of illustrations page viii
  List of tables xiii
  Preface xiv
  Acknowledgments xvii
  List of abbreviations xix
Part I Proportions in ancient Egyptian architecture
  Introduction to Part I: Harmony and proportions in architecture 2
1 In search of ‘the rule’ for ancient Egyptian architecture 7
  Triangles and other figures 7
    Three triangles for ancient Egypt 7
    Viollet-le-Duc, Babin and the primeval pyramid 11
    Choisy and the introduction of the Golden Section 16
  The Golden Section 23
    The origin and definitions of the Golden Section 23
    The Golden Section and ancient Egyptian art and architecture 28
    The theory of Alexander Badawy 32
2 Mathematics and architecture in ancient Egypt 57
  Ancient Egyptian mathematics 57
    The mathematical sources and their language 57
    On φ, π and other anachronisms 60
  Intention, coincidence or tendency? 68
    Triangles and architecture 68
    Psychological experiments and involuntary trends 78
    Cases from ancient Egypt 80
  Conclusion to Part I: Ancient mathematics and practical operations 87
Part II Ancient Egyptian sources: construction and representation of space
  Introduction to Part II: Tradition and variations in ancient Egyptian art and architecture 92
3 Documents on the planning and building process 96
  Architectural drawings 96
    Representations of buildings and working drawings 96
    Drawings with written dimensions: the problem of the scale 101
    Full-size geometrical sketches of architectural details 113
    The use of square grids and the idea of a module 122
  Architectural models 128
    Votive objects 128
    Working models 135
  Projects and works in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Dynasty royal tombs 139
    Documents on the works 139
    Recording the progress: from the project to the survey 142
4 Foundation rituals 148
  Foundation ceremonies 148
    The ritual sequence 148
    Cords and geometry 154
  Building Texts 161
    The dimensions of the primeval temples 161
    The dimensions of the temples at Edfu and Dendera 166
  Conclusion to Part II: From the plan to the building 174
Part III The geometry of pyramids
  Introduction to Part III: Combining the knowledge 178
5 Symbolic shape and constructional problems 180
  The form 180
    Pyramidal form and solar cult 180
    Benben and benbenet 182
    As high as possible 184
  The technique 185
    Seked, side-length, diagonals and corners 185
    Methods for obtaining the slope 188
    Dimensions and proportions 196
6 The proportions of pyramids 200
  Analysing true pyramids 200
    Numerological theories 200
    Lauer’s simple ratios 202
  A list of true pyramids 204
    Available data 204
    Pyramidia as alternative sources 205
7 Pyramids and triangles 212
  Geometrical models 212
    Approximation and seked 212
    Equilateral and b = h triangles 214
    Seked 5 ½ palms, generally called 14/11 triangle 215
    Pythagorean triplets 216
  The evolution of the form 221
    Old Kingdom pyramids 221
    Middle Kingdom pyramids 228
    New Kingdom and Late Period pyramids 231
  Conclusion to Part III: Interpreting the slope of pyramids 236
  An overview 239
  Appendix List of Old and Middle Kingdom true pyramids 242
  Bibliography 255
  Index 271

printer iconPrinter friendly version AddThis