Egypt.. Review of the restoration of the Small Pyramid of Giza after a wave of controversy

Controversy erupted after the Egyptian Ministry of Tourism decided to create a scientific committee composed of Egyptian and foreign antiquities experts to review the Supreme Council of Antiquities' project to restore and re-cover the Small Pyramid with granite. Which reached the point of ridicule among the citizens. And experts.

The ministry's statement – Saturday – reported the decision to create a higher scientific committee to review the joint project between the Supreme Council of Antiquities and the Japanese Waseda University delegation to carry out architectural restoration work for the Pyramid of Menkaure in the pyramid's antiquities area. Gave. ,

According to the statement, the committee is led by archaeologist and former antiquities minister Zahi Hawass, and includes “a number of senior Egyptian and foreign scholars specializing in antiquities.”

The Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, Mustafa Vaziri, posted a short clip on his official Facebook page explaining the “Menkaure” pyramid restoration project, describing it as “the project of the century”.

He said the project represents “the re-establishment of the granite blocks that represent the outer shell of Menkaure's pyramid,” explaining the progression of the work's phases, starting with “the study of the stone blocks, then surveying the area.” What happens is, a laser scan, and then reinstalling the blocks.”

Waziri described the project as, “It will take 3 years…until it becomes like the ancient Egyptians…and it will be Egypt's gift to the world in the 21st century.”

According to the ministry statement on Saturday, the committee constituted, after completing the review of the project, will prepare a detailed scientific report on the results of its work, the findings of the scientific review conducted by it and take a decision on whether to proceed further with the project. To grow or not.”

According to Waziri, the Pyramid of Menkaure is the only one among more than 124 pyramids in Egypt whose design includes a granite exterior.

logic

The project sparked controversy on social media platforms and Egyptologist Monica Hanna wrote on her Facebook account, “It is not possible. In fact, what is missing from the restoration of the antiquities is the floor of the pyramid of Menkaure. What would not be tampered with? Are the antiquities of Egypt gone?”

The Egyptologist said, “All international conferences in restoration reject this intervention in all its forms, and I hope that all university professors in antiquities and restoration will immediately stand against this project.”

A Facebook user mocked the project by posting a photo of the Leaning Tower of Pisa in Italy and commented, “A project to restore the Leaning Tower of Pisa to its current state.”

Another wrote, “I think we should paint the pyramid instead of paving it, then covering it with wallpaper.”

According to Waziri, the date of the fall of these stone blocks covering the pyramid is unknown, and only seven sections remain.

According to Waziri, the Pyramid of Menkaure is the only one among more than 124 pyramids in Egypt whose design includes a granite exterior.

It is noteworthy that the Pyramid of Menkaur was built during the Fourth Dynasty, and is the last and smallest of the pyramids of Giza. The length of its base side is 108.5 metres, and its height is 66.5 metres. Its entrance is located on the northern side, as was the custom in the Fourth Dynasty. The entrance leads to a descending corridor 31 meters long, which in turn leads to another corridor leading to the burial chamber, which was constructed of granite stone.

Alexandria Mosque restoration controversy

In addition, the Alexandria Governorate ordered a commission specializing in heritage to investigate what happened at the “Abu Abbas al-Morsi” mosque, one of the oldest mosques in the coastal city, the website of state newspaper Al-Ahram reported on Saturday. Decided to appoint a committee. ,

The newspaper reported that a contractor affiliated with the Endowments Directorate in the governorate was tasked with restoring the ceiling of the main mosque, known as the “Shakhshikha”, by erasing the decorations and colors on it and replacing them. White color can be applied.

The Abu Abbas al-Morsi Mosque is the largest in Alexandria and was built in the year 1775 in memory of the Andalusian Sheikh who was buried at the same place and the mosque was named after him.

On Friday, the “Diwan Architects” page wrote on Facebook, “The ornaments on the chandeliers of the al-Morsi Abu al-Abbas Mosque in Alexandria were destroyed during its restoration work. Due to the assignment of the work we are losing an important artistic element For the unworthy.”

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