Kushite Pyramids

Nubian pyramids are pyramids that were built by the rulers of the ancient Kushite kingdoms.

The area of the Nile valley known as Nubia, which lies within the north of present day Sudan, was home to three Kushite kingdoms during antiquity.

The first had its capital at Kerma (2500–1500 BC). The second was centered on Napata (1000–300 BC). Finally, the last kingdom was centered on Meroë (300 BC–AD 300).

They are built of granite and sandstone. The pyramids were partially demolished by Italian combat medic turned explorer and treasure hunter Giuseppe Ferlini in the 1830s.

Kerma was Nubia’s first centralized state with its own indigenous forms of architecture and burial customs. The last two kingdoms, Napata and Meroë, were heavily influenced by ancient Egypt culturally, economically, politically, and militarily. The Kushite kingdoms in turn competed strongly with Egypt economically and militarily. In 728 BC, the Kushite king Piye united the entire Nile valley from the delta to the city of Napata under his rule. Piye and his descendants ruled as the pharaohs of the Twenty-fifth Dynasty. Napatan control of Egypt ended after being conquered by Assyria in 656 BC. The Nubian pyramids are recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Twice the ammount of the Egyptian pyramids Nubian pyramids are pyramids that were built by the rulers of the ancient Kushite kingdoms.

The area of the Nile valley known as Nubia, which lies within the north of present day Sudan, was home to three Kushite kingdoms during antiquity. The first had its capital at Kerma (2500–1500 BC).

The second was centered on Napata (1000–300 BC). Finally, the last kingdom was centered on Meroë (300 BC–AD 300). They are built of granite and sandstone.

The pyramids were partially demolished by Italian combat medic turned explorer and treasure hunter Giuseppe Ferlini in the 1830s.So far, more than 350 pyramids grouped in five sites were discovered in Sudan. They were constructed in Nubia over a period of a few hundred years to serve as tombs for the kings and queens and wealthy citizens of Napata and Meroë.

The first three sites are located around Napata in Lower Nubia, near the modern town of Karima.

The first of these was built at the site of el-Kurru, including the tombs of King Kashta and his son Piye, together with Piye’s successors Shabaka, Shabataka, and Tanwetamani. Fourteen pyramids were constructed for their queens, several of whom were renowned warrior queens. This can be compared to approximately 120 much larger pyramids that were constructed in Ancient Egypt over a period of 3000 years.

Later Napatan pyramids were sited at Nuri, 10km north on the opposite bank of the Nile. This necropolis was the burial place of 21 kings and 52 queens and princes including Anlami and Aspelta. The bodies of these kings were placed in huge granite sarcophagi. Aspelta’s weighed 15.5 tons, and its lid weighed four tons.The oldest and largest pyramid at Nuri is that of the Napatan king and Twenty-fifth Dynasty pharaoh Taharqa.

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