Ancient Egyptians used ‘Solar Ships to ferry their Pharaohs into the Pyramids’


Experts have found a large number of Ancient Egyptian Solar Ship near different archaeological sites in Egypt. The most famous of all is the Khufu Solar Ship, which is preserved at the Giza Solar boat museum beside the Great Pyramid at Giza.

While the history and exact function of the ships remains a mystery, experts believe they may have been used as a ‘solar barge,’ a kind of ritual vessel that carried the resurrected rulers with the sun God Ra across the Heavens.

Interestingly, some of these ships bear clear signs of bein used in water, pointing to the possibility that some of them were used in the river Nile.

Not long ago an archaeological excavation near the Great Pyramid of Giza revealed new details concerning the famous Solar Boats. It turns out that the Egyptians utilized metal inside of their vessels.

Experts concluded that metal hooks —shaped in the letter U— were found inside one of the components of an ancient Egyptian boat which was discovered during the same year that the famous ‘Solar Boat of Khufu’.

Experts state that the boats were buried inside massive holes located close to the royal burial chambers.

Scholars concluded that these are solid indications that the vessels were used as transportation during a pharaoh’s travel to the funeral, and were meant to help in the travel during the afterlife.

Experts have found SEVEN boat pits to date. Five of them are located in the vicinity of the Great Pyramid of Giza, while two more were unearthed at the Pyramid of Hetepheres and the Pyramid of Ka.

Curiously, the solar boats belonging to Khufu were found inside two pits when archaeologists were performing a usual cleaning task in the southern part of the Great Pyramid.

The Khufu Ship is an intact full-size boat from Ancient Egypt sealed into a pit at the Giza Pyramid complex –at the foot fo the great pyramid of Giza— around 2500 BC.

Experts believe it is the oldest ship described as “a masterpiece of woodcraft” that could sail today if put into water. In fact, the Khufu Ship is one of the oldest, largest, and best-preserved vessels from antiquity. It measures 43.6 m (143 ft) long and 5.9 m (19.5 ft) wide.

Solar bark of Kheops. Situation when discovered. Image Credit.
Solar bark of Kheops. Situation when discovered. Image Credit.

The reconstructed "solar barge" of Khufu
The reconstructed “solar barge” of Khufu. Image Credit.

Here is a Comparative table of solar ships (source)

Name of ship(s) Dating Number Discovery site Current site Length & width Owner
Khufu First Solar ship c. 2566 BC 1 South of Khufu pyramid, Giza Khufu Solar Ship museum, Giza 43.6 m long & 5.9 m wide King Khufu
Khufu Second Solar ship c. 2566 BC 1 South of Khufu pyramid, Giza 2nd Solar Ship pit, Khufu pyramid complex, Giza N/A King Khufu
Hetepheres I Solar Ship c. 2589–2566 BC 1 Pyramid of Hetepheres (GIa), Khufu pyramid complex, Giza N/A N/A Queen Hetepheres I
The Ka Solar Ship c. 2566 BC 1 Pyramid of the Ka, Khufu pyramid complex, Giza N/A N/A King Khufu
Other Khufu Solar ship c. 2566 BC 3 East of Khufu pyramid, Giza N/A N/A King Khufu
Khentkaus II Solar ship c. 2445 BC 2 pyramid of Khentkawes in Giza (LG 100), Giza N/A N/A Queen Khentkaus II
Khafre Solar Ships c. 2570 BC 7 5 around the Upper temple: 2 on north side & 3 on south; 2 in tunnels of Lower temple; Khafra pyramid complex, Giza N/A N/A King Khafra
Nyuserre Ini Solar ship c. 2421 BC 1 outside the temple on the south-east corner of Niuserre Sun Temple, Abo Gorab, Abusir Boat pit preserved N/A King Nyuserre Ini
Den Solar ship c. 2935 BC 2 northern area of Mastaba number six, Abu Rawash New National Museum of Egyptian Civilization 6 m length and 1.5 m wide King Den
Djedefre Solar Ship c. 2575 BC 1 East side of the pyramid complex of Djedefre, Abu Rawash Louvre, France 35 m long & ? m wide king Djedefre, son of Khufu
Neferirkare Solar Ships c. 2181-2160 BC 2 North & South sides of Neferirkare pyramid, Abusir mentioned in a papyrus N/A King Neferirkare
Neferefre Solar Ships c. 2445 BC 5 funerary temple of Neferefre, Abu Sir N/A N/A King Neferefre
Ptahshepses Solar Ships c. 2445–2421 BC 2 Southern part of the complex of the vizier Ptahshepses, Abu Sir N/A N/A Ptahshepses
Hor-Aha Solar ships c. 2775 BC 14 between the Shunet ez-Zabib and the Western Mastaba, Abydos N/A 18–27 m long & 2.5 m wide King Hor-Aha
Khasekhemwy Solar Ships c. 2675 BC 12 Umm el Qa’ab, Abydos N/A 25 m long & 2.5 m wide & 0.5 m deep Khasekhemwy
Senusret III Solar ships c. 1839 BC 6 Near the pyramid of Senusret III, Dashur 1 in Carnegie Museum of Natural History in Pittsburgh, USA and 1 in the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago, USA; 2 in The Cairo Egyptian Museum & 2 were lost? 10–18 m long & 5.9 m wide King Senusret III
Amenemhat III Solar ship c. 1814 BC 1 South perimeter of Amenemhat IIIpyramid, Dashur decomposed 15 m long & 5.7 m wide King Amenemhat III
Saqqarah First dynasty Solar boats c. 3100-2890 BC 3 Tomb S 3357, Saqqara N/A N/A First Dynasty of Egypt kings
Kagemni Solar ships c. 2345 – 2333 BC 2 tomb of the vizier Kagemni, Saqqara N/A N/A Vizier Kagemni
Unas Solar Ship c. 2345 BC 2 150 meter from the funeral Temple of Unas Pyramid, Saqqara N/A 44 m long & ? m wide King Unas
Tarkhan Solar ship c. 3100-2890 BC ? Tarkhan (Egypt) or Kafr Ammar N/A N/A First Dynasty of Egypt kings?
Helwan Solar ships c. 3100-2890 BC 5 Tombs 762 H5, 649 H5, 1502 H2 and 680 H5), Helwan N/A N/A First Dynasty of Egypt kings?
Senusert I Solar Ship c. 1926 BC 1? Pyramid of Senusret I, Lisht N/A N/A King Senusret I
Amenemhat I Solar ship c. 1962 BC 1 Pyramid of Amenemhat I, Lisht N/A N/A King Amenemhat I
Imhotep Solar ship c. 2650–2600 BC 1 Pyramid of Imhotep?, Lisht N/A N/A Chancellor Imhotep

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